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I Have Problems - Windows 7
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Solinari
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Default I Have Problems - Windows 7 - 06-12-2013, 15:46 | posts: 3,213 | Location: Creative Audigy

Hello,

Last night I turned my PC off before I should of because it said that it was configuring updates despite not downloading or installing any, I have set it up so that I decide whether or not to download and install updates rather than have it do it completely automatically as it recommends. Anyway, it was doing something and I didn't quite catch what it was doing exactly cause I didn't care to read it but I'd say it probably told me not to switch off the computer, I did.

So this morning I tried to start it up as usual and went to make some coffee which is plenty of time for it to boot up fully. When I got back to the screen it was a black screen with the mouse pointer there, I could move it about press Caps Lock etc so it wasn't frozen. I noticed the hard drive LED was flashing intermittently but it became much less frequent until it virtually stopped flashing altogether.

I thought nothing of it and restarted the PC but same thing. I noticed that after the Windows 7 loading Logo progressed to the black screen with the mouse pointer I mentioned before. This time the hard drive LED was flashing pretty much constantly so I thought OK it's just loading up and it will progress towards the Desktop any moment, it didn't. Now I was starting to become concerned.

I then pressed F8 to get the boot menu up and tried Sake Mode and 'Last known good configuration', neither worked. I then tried the "Repair Your Computer" option in order to get the System Restore options, I have 5 restore points and one goes back over a month and the others go back from yesterday to around 2 weeks ago. The 3 or 4 I tried all failed. I also tried the "Startup Repair" option twice which didn't work stating something along the lines of 'No problems detected', then the last time I tried it it did do something and appeared to be repairing some problems. Regardless of that it still wouldn't get past this black screen with the mouse pointer.

So I have pretty much ran out of options apart from a Clean Install but I don't want to do that because I have one Hard Drive and it has a lot of stuff on it I don't want to lose including a lot of games (and saved games) that I have installed over the last year or so and all my programs and utilities. I also don't want to lose my Bookmarks and Firefox settings and addons which took me some time to get just the way I want it.

I have been told there is a "Repair Install" and according to him this will allow me to install Windows 7 but keep my installed programs, is this the case? Or will I end up with Windows 7 installed but while my programs and files will still be on the Hard Drive will they just sit there in Program Files and not be "installed"?

I am running out of time here so a prompt reply would be highly appreciated.

Thank you

Regards

Sol.
   
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mbk1969
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Default 06-12-2013, 20:58 | posts: 1,298 | Location: Moscow, Russia

There is repair install. When installer finds that HDD already contains installed OS it should give you choices like:
- install over the previous instance;
- install near the previous instance;
- repair the previous instance.
   
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Solinari
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Default 06-13-2013, 12:17 | posts: 3,213 | Location: Creative Audigy

Thanks for the reply,

I was really hoping for more, I was hoping there was someone who has came across this before and knows what it is. I am sure it's something silly that is stopping it from starting up and as I said it can't be a coincidence that this happened after I prematurely switched the system off.

I'm going to search Google to see if I can find anyone who has experienced this and find a solution, there must be a way without reinstalling. If I do a repair install I fear I will lose all my installed programs and games and it won't be the same.
   
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Extraordinary
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Default 06-13-2013, 12:33 | posts: 5,803 | Location: 127.0.0.1

A repair install is a repair install, not a wipe and full reinstall, hence the name, repair

Run the repair install

And the reason is says not to turn off the PC while it is updating is for this exact reason, system files are being updated, half updated files are corrupted files

Suppose you could try booting from the DVD, choose repair, navigate to command prompt and try running SFC /SCANNOW although not sure if that will run from the repair console

chkdsk /f

you could try too

Last edited by Extraordinary; 06-13-2013 at 12:38.
   
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mbk1969
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Default 06-13-2013, 14:39 | posts: 1,298 | Location: Moscow, Russia

Quote:
Originally Posted by Solinari View Post
Thanks for the reply,

I was really hoping for more, I was hoping there was someone who has came across this before and knows what it is. I am sure it's something silly that is stopping it from starting up and as I said it can't be a coincidence that this happened after I prematurely switched the system off.

I'm going to search Google to see if I can find anyone who has experienced this and find a solution, there must be a way without reinstalling. If I do a repair install I fear I will lose all my installed programs and games and it won't be the same.
I have used the repair install couple times. All data and apps have survived.
Obviously you did corrupt file system or file contents. While file contents can be compared with another storage with the same OS, file system can`t. Imo, the easiest way of repairing is namely repair install.
   
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Solinari
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Default 06-14-2013, 15:19 | posts: 3,213 | Location: Creative Audigy

Thanks for there replies,

Yea, Extraordinary I know I shouldn't have switched it off but there were no updates installed that day and I can't think of any reason why it would be configuring anything. I didn't quite catch what it said but it certainly looked like the sort of thing it does when it configures updates, it was just a guess when I said it probably told me not to turn it off.

Well a repair install looks like the best option. I haven't tried SFC /scannow but I was able to run Chkdsk fully and while it did find some errors and repaired them it didn't help my current situation. I have now tried all System Restore points and all points failed except the oldest one which won't stop, again no freezing or crashing, the activety indicator just doesn't stop.

I was really hoping someone had encountered this before and had a solution. Ah well Repair Install it is, thanks again for the replies.
   
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Darren Hodgson
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Default 06-14-2013, 16:24 | posts: 11,624 | Location: England

I hope you get everything back, Solinari, and although it won't help you now, I would strongly suggest buying a second hard drive and relocating your Music, Documents, Videos and Pictures onto there as well as installing games on it too. Just use your C: drive for Windows and non-essential applications and so on.

You should also consider buying some kind of external hard drive to do backups onto, either with the built-in Windows tool or, better still, something like Acronis True Image, which is what I use. It has been a life saver on many occassions, I can tell you.

Anyway, I hope you get it sorted out.
   
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Pill Monster
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Default 06-14-2013, 17:00 | posts: 23,747 | Location: NZ

If you had another drive you could install W7 and have access to the other disk and pull your data from it, but you only have one HDD which is kinda a problem...

Even a PE disk like Barts or Winternals prob won't help.
However you can run a file recovery prog which should get most of the data back intact as long as you don't overwrite the drive....

Having the OS on a separate partition/drive is always a good idea so the OS can be reinstalled without losing other data. Idk why MS doesn't do this by default tbh.....
   
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Pyro the Dragun
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Default 06-14-2013, 19:29 | posts: 381 | Location: Manhattan, Kansas

Sounds like a Repair Install is your only option, you've done just about everything else.

Some tips for the future:

Keep good system-image backups.
As Darren mentioned you can use Acronis True Image, I personally prefer Clonezilla. If you do a full system backup every two months or so then you'll have an option to fall back on if something like this happens again. Saved me from losing everything numerous times.

Install Ubuntu or some other Linux distro for a dual-boot setup.
This will ensure that you always have a functioning OS that you can use if Windows decides to crap out. Its nice being able to access & backup files and still have a working computer even if Windows isn't booting.
   
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dk_lightning
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Default 06-15-2013, 03:37 | posts: 1,049 | Location: North Wales

You can install a fresh copy with out losing your files.

Just boot from the Windows disk and go and install windows. Select your drive and click next or install (what ever the option is) Windows will then tell you that there is an install already there and that it will be moved to a folder called Windows.old.

Once windows is installed you can then go into the windows.old folder and get any files there back.
   
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