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Windows 7: New laptop - Windows could not finish configuring the system

25 Sep 2010   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
New laptop - Windows could not finish configuring the system

I ordered a refurbished/reconditioned Packard Bell EasyNote TJ74 laptop from a very well known retailer in the UK called Currys. I received it two days ago. Initally, the laptop stayed on for all of about 5 seconds before shutting down, however I have solved that problem by Googling the text and looking here: pxe-e61:media test failure check cable. It was basically trying to boot from something other than the HDD itself, so I set the HDD to the top of the list in the BIOS.

Then, the next problem I got was this: I get the "Windows is Starting..." screen, and then a setup services starting message, and then this:
"Windows could not finish configuring the system. To attempt to resume configuration, restart the computer."

I restart the computer and... nothing happens. No Windows installation/recovery disk came with the laptop.

So, I set the laptop to boot from CD in the BIOS and, using a 64-bit edition recovery disc I found online and ran startup repair using it, apparently no problems were found, and I got a message about ensuring I didn't have any cameras etc. attached... er...

Someone online recommended I disable digital driver signing, so I did that by pressing F8 at one point when it was booting... it doesn't seem to have made any difference. Safe mode doesn't work either.

Currys have told me they can do nothing but send a courier to my house to pick up the laptop... I don't get a replacement, simply a refund. I needed this laptop for Monday as I start university.

I've set it back to boot from HDD and I'm getting the "Windows could not finish configuring the system, please restart" message again and again and again, and the system just constantly restarts and the same message appears. It is a never-ending loop!

I have absolutely no idea what was/is installed on the laptop to cause this to happen, and the man instore said this was just one of the faulty laptops to slip through the net. Rubbish, someone in their refurb department just seems to have been very lazy.

Does anyone know anyway at all that I could fix this? Your help would be GREATLY appreciated, thanks. I am on the verge of asking if it's possible that I can do a clean install myself if I borrow a disc from a friend... but I've looked at other posts about this, and for some people who tried that, they still get the same message (Windows 7 licence key was included on sticker on bottom of laptop, thankfully).

My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Sep 2010   #2

W10 Pro desktop, W10 laptop, W10 laptop, W10 Pro tablet (all 64-bit)

I would advise you to bite the bullet, get a refund and purchase a different laptop. If your refurbished laptop is starting out with problems it's not worth struggling with. You shouldn't have to jump through hoops to make your purchase usable. If you had purchased it at a deep discount due to known problems, that would be a different story. Don't waste your time on it, move on.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Sep 2010   #3

Windows 7 Home Premium x64

I took it to another branch of the store, much further away, and was less lenient. I actually managed to get the laptop out and show the technician the problem this time. They've agreed to repair it for free.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

26 Sep 2010   #4
Bare Foot Kid
Microsoft MVP

W 7 64-bit Ultimate

Hello ViPo, welcome to Seven Forums!

Glad to see you're getting some help and thanks for the update.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Sep 2010   #5
Microsoft MVP


I can tell you're resourceful enough to sort this out, then when the time is right if your Win7 isn't perfectly fast and instantaneous, clean reinstall using borrowed retail DVD for your version. Universal Installation Disc - Create

You can always back up a Win7 System image of the entire HD so it can be reimaged back to factory condition. There should also be a factory recovery partition on there that can do the same thing but without your modifications.

Some pointers on taming a factory install:

Uncheck everything in msconfig>Startup except AV and gadgets/stickynotes if you use them. All others are freeloaders on startup/RAM/CPU which can spy on you. MSCONFIG

Use a lightweight free AV like MS Security Essentials with Windows Firewall. Uninstall bloated factory AV and other factory programs you don't want using CCleaner. Then run sfc /scannow as Admin. to see whether System files have been damaged by bloatware.

Problems with factory installs can be studied in Event Viewer>Admin View. Google text and ID# to find how others have resolved them. Check also Performance log in Advanced Tools accessed by clicking WEI score at Computer>Properties.

Even the most bloated and corrupt factory install can often be sorted by a Repair Install which is the next best thing to a clean reinstall.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 New laptop - Windows could not finish configuring the system

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