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Windows 7: Windows unable to start - Startup Repair and System Restore won't work

30 Jun 2010   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate
Windows unable to start - Startup Repair and System Restore won't work

Hello. I've had problem with my friend's laptop (OS - Windows 7 Ultimate). It won't log on to it's fullscreen mode. When I open it, I'm always stuck at Startup Repair error cycle.

Here's what happened: I installed Glary Utilities and used it to uninstall the Adobe CS3 Bundle. Then I installed the CS4 Bundle. After that, I used Glary Utilities again to clean the registry, cookies, missing shortcuts, etc. Then I used its Registry Optimizer feature..after analyzing the system, it said that the computer needed to restart to complete the process. So I restarted it. And that's where I'm left at. I can't open the laptop anymore, I can't even run it on Safe Mode - it's not available. The only available options I will tell below. My theory on this problem is that maybe I or the Glary program have deleted system files that are essential for Windows startup.

Note: I uploaded: a video of what is happening to my friend's laptop during startup; .txt files of the errors; a picture of the ble screen; and a copy this post in a word document (ony, it's not translated into English but the dialog boxes are in English). Here's the link to the files so you could check my problem:

And here's what boxes appear during startup. The red ones are my comments.
(***sorry for my grammar. am not an english speaker. Hope you get what I'm talking about, though.)

This is what the screen says during startup (please see the video first, this is just a guide of what's happening):

A recent hardware or software change might be the cause...blah blah

Launch Startup Repair (recommended)
---when I choose this, the Startup Repair window appears (see below)
Start windows normally
---when I choose this, the laptop would restart and would bring me back to this screen again.

Startup Repair

Startup Repair cannot repair this computer automatically

-> Send information about this problem (recommended)
---when I click this, the Startup Repair message window shows up (see below)

-> Don't send
---when I click this, the computer either shuts down or restarts.

View problem details:
---please see the file I have uploaded: problem signature.txt

Startup Repair

Windows cannot repair this computer automatically

If you have recently attached a device to to this computer, such as a camera or portable music player, remove it and restart your computer. If you continue to see this message, contact your system administrator or computer manufacturer for assisstance.

Click Finish to exit and shut down your computer.

View diagnostic repair and details
---please see my uploaded file: diagnosis repair and details.txt
View advanced options for system recovery and support
---when I click this, the System Recovery Options window appear (see below)


3 System Recovery Options

Select a language ---English
Select a keyboard input ---US

System Recovery Options

To access recovery options, log on as a local user.

To access the command prompt as well, log on using an administrator account.

User name: ---
Password: ---

System Recovery Options

Operating system: Windows 7 on (C:) Local Disk

Startup Repair
Automatically fix problems that are preventing Windows from starting
---as what I've stated above, it can't fix the computer.

System Restore
Restore Windows to an earlier point in time
---this also won't work (see below for more details)

System Image Recovery
Recover your computer using a system image you created earlier
---I don't know what file to look at, in what location, and if the file Windows is looking for is really there.

Windows Memory Diagnostic
Check your computer for memory hardware errors
---I've already tried this option but it did not detect any error and just restarted the system

Command Prompt
Open a command prompt window
---works fine. I can run the regedit and notepad through this. I've also tried browsing the files using the Open command in Notepad. All the files are complete, even the external hard disk that I inserted in the USB hub is viewable and can be read by the system. I can also copy and paste files through that window, I can view the files' Properties, but when I right click>Open files that aren't .txt, I can't open them. And when I right click>Run .exe applications, I also can't open them. A pop-up would appear that says: The subsystem needed to support the image type is not present.

System Restore

You must always restore the drive that contains Windows. Restoring other drives is optional.

Local Disk (C:) (System)Status--You must enable System Protection on this drive

---when I tried this option, the list gave me only 3 restore points even if I have checked the box that says "Show more restore points". When I chose either of the three restore points, I always get the same problem:the Next button becomes unclickable in the next step. I tried double-clicking and right clicking and checking the box before it but nothing happens. I always end up clicking the Cancel button. Regarding the “Scan for Affected Programs” button, it only shows which drivers would be deleted and restored after the system restore.


When I choose System Image Recovery, this is what happens:

Re-Image Your Computer
Windows cannot find a system image on this computer

Attach a backup hard disk or insert the final DVD from a backup set and click Retry. Alternatively, close this dialog for more options.


When I click Retry, the dialog box just re-appears so I just close it and this box shows up:

Re-Image Your Computer

Select a system image backup
This computer will be restored using the system image. Everything on this computer will be replaced with the information in the system image.

-> Use the latest available system image (recommended)
---it did not detect anything so this option is unclickable

-> Select a system image
---I clicked this and below is what happened

Re-Image Your Computer

Select the location of the backup for the computer you want to restore
If the system image is on an external device, attach the device to this computer, and then click refresh.

If the system image is on a DVD, insert the last DVD fro the system image backup. Click Advanced to add a network location or install a driver for a backup device if it does not show up in the list below.


The only buttons are Refresh and Advanced, here's what appears when I click Advanced:


- Search for a system image on the network
Connect to the network to find a system image that you want to restore.
---not an option, I don't have a network to connect with.

- Install a driver
Locate and install a driver for a device that is attached to the computer but is not in the list of available system images.
---a window would appear where I would choose the file, but I don't which file, where to look at, and if I have that kind of file.

Then I would click Cancel and would go back to either Restarting and repeating the above processes or Shut it down, cry and apologize to my friend again. Please help me. :( Thank you very much in advance and sorry for this lengthy post. I don't know how would I explain it shortly.

By the way, I haven't tried re-installing or repairing the Windows 7 installation because I don't have the Recovery and Setup CD. I only borrowed the laptop, and I can't ask the owner to hand me the the CDs because we're way, way too far away from each other right now. Reformatting is also my last option...when there's really no hope.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Dec 2010   #2

Win 7 Professional and Windows 8 Professional

Similar problems when trying to restore a system image from a portable HD. I used a bootable USB stick with the Win7 installation files on it and then tried to select a system image from the portable HD. After selecting the image and advancing to the next screen all of the selections would be grayed out and would not let me restore the image. I tried selecting another image from a backup partition on the computers HD and had the same problem. The fix was to repeat the procedure booting from the installation DVD instead of the bootable USB. I am not sure why the DVD worked when the bootable USB failed but it saved me a reinstall. This is an old post but I thought I would share my findings just in case someone has the same problem in the future.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Aug 2011   #3

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit

I have had some of the same issues. I have a Dell Inspiron 1545 with Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit and the Dell DataSafe Backup & Restore (basic-free system). I am to the point of trying to get it to do the factory restore installation as I don't have the discs either.

I have tried the system restore points (they are all deleted), system image (there isn't one), startup repair several times (it can't fix the problem) and pretty much everything else I can think of including Check Disk & sfc /scannow in command prompt. I also attempted to create a repair disc but it errored out as well as this was after the problem started.

Because everything on the machine has been fully backed up using an offsite service, I have no problem with just doing a reinstall. However, when I choose the option for factory reinstall, it will show 1% complete and this is after several hours (16+). It never completes the task. If I let it go for long enough, I eventually get an error message but I didn't write it down the first time it popped up. Waiting to see if it will do it again.

I have contacted Dell to request the recovery discs. However when I contact Tech support to request them (submitted a form online), I am told I have to contact the Sales department. The sales dept tells me to contact tech support using the same form online. Neither one seems willing to help me with just getting the discs.

All this trouble just because I think I got a virus and I used Malwarebytes Anti-Malware to get rid of it. My regular anti virus picked it up but then stopped working. Malwarebytes found 2 files infected which I told it to delete. Any help from anyone would be greatly appreciated.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

23 Aug 2011   #4

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient


information   Information
We always assume you have made your Recovery Disks using the OEM manufacturer's app the first day you had your new PC.
& made the Startup Repair CD.

How to use Dell Recovery Partition,make Recovery Disks & how to order Recovery Disks.
Dell - Support

I would Check the hard drive with the manufacturer's diagnostic tools.
Hard Drive Diagnostics Tools and Utilities (Storage) - TACKtech Corp.
HD Diagnostic
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Aug 2011   #5

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit

Thank you. Your Dell Support link is the exact same one I used to request the discs twice and was told to contact the sales department who also pointed me to that link.

I will run the HD diagnostics as soon as I can. I do have another hard drive here if that is the problem.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Sep 2011   #6

Windows 7 Ultimate x64


I got exactly the same problem on GLARY UTILITIES DEFRAG TOOL on WINDOWS 7 64 BITS ULTIMATE.
It booted my laptop after finishing defrag, then windows not worked after that. Even the SAFE MODE was corrupted.
For the ones who are not used to DOS line commands, I'm gonna explain what I did in 10 steps:
1. I opened the windows 7 DVD installation on boot (just put your DVD installation on drive, usually your computer is configured to access dvd drive first, if not, you should go to setup bios, look on internet how to do it)
2. I acessed the repair tool
3.I chose the Command Line (DOS).
4. on Command Line, my windows folder was in D:, so i typed 'D:' . (Usually is 'c:')
5. I acessed the folder with the files that I should substitute D:\Windows\System32\Config. To do that, I typed 'cd windows', then 'cd system32', then 'cd config'
6. I typed 'dir' to see the files. There were 5 files with the termination .gbck, and 5 files without any termination. They were the following files: DEFAULT, SAM, SECURITY, SOFTWARE and SYSTEM.
7. I renamed all the files without termination to .bak . One by one. just like that: 'ren COMPONENTS COMPONENTS.bak' (you should do it for the others 4 files)
8. I renamed all the .gbck to without termination. One by one. just like that: 'ren COMPONENTS.gbck COMPONENTS' (you should do it for the others 4 files)
9. I typed 'dir', to see if the files names were exactly I was expecting to.
10. I booted the pc, and voilá, it worked just fine.
that's all.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Oct 2011   #7

64 Windows 7

THANK YOU! You saved me so much time!! I was going to restore my whole system back to original (if that's what you call it...I'm not great with computers) BUT I saw your post for the exact same problem I was having as skittles. In a matter of a few minutes...I was back to new. Thank you for taking the time to post the fix!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Oct 2011   #8

7 Home Premium x 64

Wow, Skittle described my issue perfectly. I'm not sure I understand TJ's renaming fix though.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Oct 2011   #9

Windows 7 Home Premium x64

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by tjmlima View Post

5. I acessed the folder with the files that I should substitute D:\Windows\System32\Config. To do that, I typed 'cd windows', then 'cd system32', then 'cd config'
6. I typed 'dir' to see the files. There were 5 files with the termination .gbck, and 5 files without any termination. They were the following files: DEFAULT, SAM, SECURITY, SOFTWARE and SYSTEM.
Thank you! I had a problem when restarting my computer after updating my video drivers, and, apart from the backups being in a different folder, system32\config\RegBack, I just did what you said and my computer works again. Thank you!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Feb 2012   #10

windows 7

THANK YOU tjmlima!!!!!!!

I recently run iobit regristry defrag and BSOD my laptop.
You saved me SOOOO much TIME and headach by following your simple steps.
My only difference was that the 5 files ended in .iobit example: SYSTEM.iobit
Renamed, reboot and YAHTZEE!!!!! Back up and running!

Thank You
Thank You
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Windows unable to start - Startup Repair and System Restore won't work

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