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Windows XP Home Edition - Lost Original CD - Where to find it inside PC

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by Riglos, Jul 8, 2012.

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  1. Riglos

    Riglos Thread Starter

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    Hi,

    After months of struggling with my computer to get rid of all the viruses it had, I apparently and accidentally deleted important files, so my computer won't start anymore, showing the message "Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt: <Windows root>\system32\hal.dll. Please re-install a copy of the above file."
    I've tried everything to fix this problem without having to resort to a complete reformat of my C:, but finally decided to go for that option, since no other solution seemed possible. So I have already backed up all my important information to an external hard drive (I'm aware that some of the files I copied could contain a virus) through the use of the rescue CD "ERD Commander" (I also have the XP Pilitos, which is very good). However, before I proceed to reformatting the C:, I would like to know if there is any way I can create a copy of my orignal OS (when I bought the computer, the OS came pre-insalled and I didn't get the OS CD which I need now). Anyway, I haven been able to access my C: and see the partitions with Pilitos, and it does seem to have 2 partitions: one -the smaller- says "data", the other one is I guess the one I where I generally work. My questions are:

    a) Is there any way I can check through either the ERD Commander or the XP Pilitos whether the Original Windows XP Home CD is in that partition and create my CD from there?
    b) Can I reformat the other partition while keeping the smaller one intact?
    c) I want an original OS, so could I just install XP from a CD a friend lent me and activate my OS with the activation code that comes on the back part of the computer? I do have that! Would this solution be the same?

    Any help appreciated.
    Thanks a lot and l look forward to your replies!

    Mara.-
     
  2. etaf

    etaf Wayne Moderator

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    Yes - BUT your friends CD cannot be a recovery CD, but a windows CD
    AND
    it has to be the exact version you have written on your CoA
    http://www.microsoft.com/en-gb/howtotell/Hardware.aspx#PCPurchase

    Make and exact model of the PC
    it may have a recovery partition

    you only have two partitions ?
    system and data

    have you tried safemode
    keep tapping F8 as the pc starts and choose safemode from the menu
     
  3. Lance1

    Lance1

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    What is the exact make and model of your computer?
     
  4. Riglos

    Riglos Thread Starter

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    Thanks! Sorry, I'm editing because I misunderstood something. In fact, my CoA doesn't show any version, I don't know whether this is because it's cut or just blurred so I cannot see it properly. I don't know either what version is the one my friend copied for me, since it just says XP on the cover. Where can I check it? The only Windows-based computer I have is the one that won't start. The one I'm writing from now is a MacBook. Could I insert the CD in my Mac to check what OS is copied on the CD? I don't want anything to happen to the only working computer I have.
    Another question: are all XPs the same? I guess not! What if the CD my friend lent me is an XP Professional Edition and I insert my activation code, which I guess is for Home Edition, since I remember that to be the OS that showed in the "System" dialog box when the PC worked? Won't it work?
    What other alternative do I have? Is it possible to do what I described in a) with my computer in the state it is currently?
     
  5. Riglos

    Riglos Thread Starter

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    Lance1 and etaf! Thanks for your replies! My computer is a Vaio SZ 110
    The OS it originally came with was XP Home Edition. I had Service Pack 3

    Yes, only two partitions

    Yes, I've tried this but my PC won't start in Safe Mode. It shows the same message that the hal.dll file is missing or corrupt. It won't start at all. In fact, I even tried tapping F2 to acces the BIOS and I can't even do that. Anyway, -and luckily- my BIOS was already set to start the OS from the CD. Otherwise, I don't know what I could have done.
     
  6. Lance1

    Lance1

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    If you have the XP CD you can restore the hal file by using the recovery console. Here's How
     
  7. Riglos

    Riglos Thread Starter

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    Thanks, Lance1! But could this be any Windows CD or does it have to be the exact same version as the one I used to have as etaf mentioned in his previous post. If this is so, how can I check what version is inside my CD? Just by inserting it on my non-functioning PC?
     
  8. Lance1

    Lance1

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    You can pull the Hal file from the CD you have now. The only difference between versions of XP is the options you have after the install. The files system is the same.
     
  9. Riglos

    Riglos Thread Starter

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    OK, I will try this, though I was thinking of reformatting for two reasons:

    a) My computer had some viruses that I thought I could only get rid of by a reformat

    b) I have tried doing something like what you've suggested before: copying the hal.dll file from, for example, the xp pilitos cd and replacing the one that was apparently missing or corrupted. Didn't work. Is this solution similar to the one you propose?

    Thanks,

    Mara.-
     
  10. Lance1

    Lance1

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    Fallow the link tutorial in my post #6. It should work.
     
  11. Riglos

    Riglos Thread Starter

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    Lance1, I've tried your solution and the screen in the recovery console reads: Cannot create hal.dll file. 0 files expanded. What shall I do now? Just to let you know: I'm entering the prompts in English and my computer shows the screen in Spanish, could that be a problem?
    Another thing: in the recovery console, I've tried to create the boot.ini file again. I wrote bootcfg /list and, suprisingly, the message I got was: "There are currently no start entries available to show". What does this mean? Don't I have a boot.ini file?
     
  12. Riglos

    Riglos Thread Starter

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    Now when I turn my PC on, the black screen shows: "Windows could not start because of an error in the software. Please report this problem as: load needed DLLs for kernel. Please contact your support person to report this problem."

    What can I do now?
     
  13. Riglos

    Riglos Thread Starter

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    Can somebody help me out there? I need to get my PC back. Thanks a lot in advance!
     
  14. Lance1

    Lance1

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    sorry, I've been busy. I took another look at the link I set and noted that the command was incomplete. They said expand d:\i386\hal.dl_ c:\windows\system32 It should be expand d:\i386\hal.dl_ c:\windows\system32\hal.dll Remember you need to know the drive letter of the CD\DVD Drive. Run my command from the recovery console again.

    expand d:\i386\hal.dl_ c:\windows\system32\hal.dll
     
  15. Riglos

    Riglos Thread Starter

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    Hi, Lance1! I've just tried what you told me, but it doesn't seem to work. I keep getting the same error message I mentioned in my previous post: "Cannot create hal.dll file. 0 files expanded."
     
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