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Windows 7: Dell XPS M1530 Startup Repair Loop, Offline SFC does NOT function

25 Feb 2012   #21
writhziden

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Honestly, I wish Windows 7 had a method to do a repair install in place even if the OS is not running. Unfortunately, it does not. If you re-read my previous post, I've added some possible options to try.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
25 Feb 2012   #22
Z92435

Windows 7, 32-bit & 64-bit (Depends on Which Computer)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by writhziden View Post
Unfortunately, programs cannot be moved over and work properly due to them needing to be setup properly through the install procedure. You will just have the user files remaining in Windows.old that are still usable; everything else that is kept is not going to help too much unless there were files saved in other areas by your uncle.

Re-reading everything you wrote in the first post, I feel bad that I could not offer a better solution. The only thing I can say is it may be worth trying the Paragon Recovery CD just to see if the claim that it can restore boot problems is true. Do this after you create the clone, of course, in case you need to revert back due to the unforeseen.

As to what initially got the computer into this mess, I learned the hard way just as you are, although it was a little different since it was with my own machine. I now will not do a hard shut down unless I really have no other option. I have literally waited close to an hour for my system to shut down just to avoid what you are experiencing. I had software installed a few months ago that would cause my system to take between 15-53 minutes to shut down on a regular basis (that software has now been removed and I will never touch it again).

Believe me, I know what you are going through on both levels. I have caused problems with my mom's computer trying to fix it before. These things happen, and luckily family forgives us.

Anyway, try the recovery CD after you get the clone made. Then do a re-install with windows.old folders as a last measure.

Writhziden,

Thanks for the post edit and the feeling bad. I know it's not worth much, since my crazy attitude and penchant to whine is set to 11 right now. But, I really do appreciate it. Also, you're absolutely right that Windows 7 should have allowed a repair install over the exist system using the CD. I do NOT know who was the idiot who got that feature out of Vista, but they totally need to dragged out onto Main Street and shot in the head. Just curious, do you think using a registry repair editor would perhaps bring some room to work with? I mean, I totally get that registry cleaners and editors are typically major bad news, but I'm apparently up the creek in Piranha country, and I have steaks tied around my arms and a slow leak in my canoe. So, if I make a few clones, I somehow doubt that I can make the situation worse, given that I can always get back to this point.

Also, don't believe that my uncle will forgive me. This compute belongs to my cousin, who lives with his ex-wife that he's in a custody battle with. Originally, she wanted to get it fixed up so she can use it. God knows that it had problems before, with them somehow activating the Dell HDD Password on it. Getting past that garbage was just... Whew! Regardless, she will chew him a new one, and I will in turn get thrown to the compactor. *sigh*
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Feb 2012   #23
writhziden

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

If you get the system running, you could try getting all the updates set up, putting the program files where they belong, and and then moving registry files from the windows.old folder containing Windows registry files and seeing if it works. I would be surprised if this solution worked as intended, but it is worth a shot. You would have to do the registry file moves from within the recovery environment or from PartedMagic or something of that nature. Windows would not let you do it without changing the permissions, which causes a whole mess of other problem if you change them.

Whatever you do, do not replace any critical system files with the old files or you will likely end up where you are now.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

25 Feb 2012   #24
Z92435

Windows 7, 32-bit & 64-bit (Depends on Which Computer)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by writhziden View Post
Unfortunately, programs cannot be moved over and work properly due to them needing to be setup properly through the install procedure. You will just have the user files remaining in Windows.old that are still usable; everything else that is kept is not going to help too much unless there were files saved in other areas by your uncle.

Re-reading everything you wrote in the first post, I feel bad that I could not offer a better solution. The only thing I can say is it may be worth trying the Paragon Recovery CD just to see if the claim that it can restore boot problems is true. Do this after you create the clone, of course, in case you need to revert back due to the unforeseen.

As to what initially got the computer into this mess, I learned the hard way just as you are, although it was a little different since it was with my own machine. I now will not do a hard shut down unless I really have no other option. I have literally waited close to an hour for my system to shut down just to avoid what you are experiencing. I had software installed a few months ago that would cause my system to take between 15-53 minutes to shut down on a regular basis (that software has now been removed and I will never touch it again).

Believe me, I know what you are going through on both levels. I have caused problems with my mom's computer trying to fix it before. These things happen, and luckily family forgives us.

Anyway, try the recovery CD after you get the clone made. Then do a re-install with windows.old folders as a last measure.
Sorry about this, but just wondering, do you know how to check disk usage using just CMD commands? The clone I made is only 75.4GB, but I thought that the original HD had closer to 100GB. I just wanted to check that out before I do anything.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Feb 2012   #25
writhziden

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Taken from: Find free disk space from command line? - CNET Windows XP Forums
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by tdenovan
fsutil volume diskfree C:
by tdenovan - 2/3/09 4:53 AM
In Reply to: Find free disk space from command line? by engineer331

My apologies for bringing this post back from the dead, but it does display in the top 3 in many google searches:

the solution:

fsutil volume diskfree C:

which returns something like:

Total # of free bytes : 230645665792
Total # of bytes : 266205130752
Total # of avail free bytes : 230645665792
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Feb 2012   #26
Z92435

Windows 7, 32-bit & 64-bit (Depends on Which Computer)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by writhziden View Post
Taken from: Find free disk space from command line? - CNET Windows XP Forums
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by tdenovan
fsutil volume diskfree C:
by tdenovan - 2/3/09 4:53 AM
In Reply to: Find free disk space from command line? by engineer331

My apologies for bringing this post back from the dead, but it does display in the top 3 in many google searches:

the solution:

fsutil volume diskfree C:

which returns something like:

Total # of free bytes : 230645665792
Total # of bytes : 266205130752
Total # of avail free bytes : 230645665792
Okay. Just found out something new. Apparently, both FSUtil and Defrag doesn't work from the CMD, if you're logged in via the Installation CD or WindowsRE. Lord. What's the point of having the CMD there, if none the commands worked?! =p

Bill, WTF is wrong with your people's designs?

I'll try to see if I can get something going with Paragon's thing. Maybe I can use it to adjust the partition on the Terabyte drive I've got, since when I cloned it using Acronis True Image, it took out all my partitions. Maybe I can set up another partition so that I can make yet another clone, just in case.

Just curious, what are the critical system files that you're referring to, and which are the items that I can put back, without breaking things? Just so I know what not to touch....
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Feb 2012   #27
writhziden

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Basically, the only things you should be touching in the Windows directory are the registry files. Those can be found as outlined in the tutorial for Startup Repair Infinite Loop Recovery.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Feb 2012   #28
Z92435

Windows 7, 32-bit & 64-bit (Depends on Which Computer)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by writhziden View Post
If you get the system running, you could try getting all the updates set up, putting the program files where they belong, and and then moving registry files from the windows.old folder containing Windows registry files and seeing if it works. I would be surprised if this solution worked as intended, but it is worth a shot. You would have to do the registry file moves from within the recovery environment or from PartedMagic or something of that nature. Windows would not let you do it without changing the permissions, which causes a whole mess of other problem if you change them.

Whatever you do, do not replace any critical system files with the old files or you will likely end up where you are now.

Hmmm! Color me purple and call me Laquifa! It appears that this might be a hardware rather than a software problem. I just ran Disk Health on PartedMagic's Disk that you referred, and it quite after 10% because it encountered an error. I wonder if I can just clone this onto another Hard Drive and have it be working. I'll be praising Jesus, Buddha, and the Spaghetti monster if this IS a hard drive failure.

I wonder if there's a way for me to premanently wall off the damaged the section and reuse that hard drive, if this is the case?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Feb 2012   #29
writhziden

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Hard disk failure cannot be repaired by walling off bad sectors. There are many who claim this, but I have never seen it successfully done for more than a temporary fix to recover lost data. You are much better off doing the clone to a good drive and seeing if it works.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Feb 2012   #30
Z92435

Windows 7, 32-bit & 64-bit (Depends on Which Computer)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by writhziden View Post
Hard disk failure cannot be repaired by walling off bad sectors. There are many who claim this, but I have never seen it successfully done for more than a temporary fix to recover lost data. You are much better off doing the clone to a good drive and seeing if it works.

Oh, no. I know that for an active hard drive, that'd never work worth a damn. But, I'm not planning on giving the hard drive back to my uncle. So far, the only other drive I found around the house is the old 80GB one that I had from my Macbook that I'm no longer using. I mainly just keep some original files on there as a sort of "last resort" back up. I was just wondering if I can copy my files onto the 250GB drive I'm going to be removing from the Dell, put my emergency files on, then leave it sitting in a closet. Of course, I'd have to make sure that none of the 911 files go on the bad sector, which shouldn't be hard given how much extra room there are. What do you think?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Dell XPS M1530 Startup Repair Loop, Offline SFC does NOT function




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