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How to repair Windows Vista installation in
order to recover personal data
Due to various reasons after a restart or when you want to start your system it doesn't start anymore.
The resolution is usually operating system reinstallation. A correct reinstall requires to format the system
partition, but this way all your personal data which were saved on this partition will be lost. We recommend
first to try out various troubleshooting steps to repair your operating system and depending on system's
condition after repair you can decide if the system can be used further or if the reinstall is absolutely
Note: Before starting a system reinstall please backup all data saved on the C:\ partition.
These issues can appear because of these causes:
- Inappropriate computer shutdown
- A power outage which can lead to inappropriate computer shutdown
- Driver Install or Uninstall ( installation of incorrect drivers )
- Programs Install or Uninstall ( installation of programs that aren't compatible with the system)
- Virus infection (After a virus infection in most cases the system is heavy affected and system files are
corrupt or even deleted. This causes the system to malfunction and even not start properly)
In this kind of situation first step will be to Press the F8 key ( or F5 key) before your windows start in order
to have access to Windows Advanced Options Menu.
First option that should be chosen from this Menu is Last Known Good configuration(your most recent
settings that worked).
If this didn't fix the issue and the system it's in a continues restart loop and you aren't able to determine
the error choose Disable automatic restart on system failure. This will help you identify the error and then
the cause of the system failure.
Second step is to boot in Safe Mode and from here you are able to uninstall any driver or installed
software which caused the system failure. Within safe mode you have good chances to disinfect the system
of viruses .
Note:In order to be able to download and install security software to disinfect the system access Safe mode
with Networking.This way you will have internet access.
If the system is still not able to start, use your windows installation disk, start an installation and choose
Repair your computer option to go in System Recovery Options Menu
- First options which should be tried once you are in the recovery menu should be Startup Repair.
- If Startup repair fails to fix the issue, try to restore the system to a previous working state with the help
of System Restore.
- Next steps is to repair boot , mbr and disk errors using cmd .
- After applying these commands, restart the system and check if you are able to access your system. If it
fails again, try another system restore but to an earlier point when the system was in a working state.
If all above steps have failed to repair your system do a Custom install ( the system partition will nor be
deleted and the current windows will be saved in windows.old directory . We recommend this type of reinstall
because you will be able to recover your data from the windows.old folder and once you have recovered them
you can prepare for a clean install.
If you are able to access your system and you have succeeded to disinfect it we recommend a repair install.
What is Last Known Good Configuration (Advanced)?
It's a Windows startup option that uses the most recent system settings that worked correctly. Every time
you turn your computer off and Windows shuts down successfully, important system settings are saved in the
registry. You can use those settings to start your computer if a problem occurs. For example, if a new driver
for your video card is causing problems, or an incorrect registry setting is preventing Windows from starting
correctly, you can restart your computer using Last Known Good Configuration.
What is Disable automatic restart on system failure ?
Disable automatic restart on system failure prevents Windows from automatically restarting if an error
causes Windows to fail. Choose this option only if Windows is stuck in a loop where Windows fails, attempts
to restart, and fails again repeatedly.
Safe mode is a troubleshooting option for Windows that starts your computer in a limited state. Only the
basic files and drivers necessary to run Windows are started. The words "Safe Mode" appear in the corners
of the display to identify which Windows mode you are using. If an existing problem does not reappear when
you start in safe mode, you can eliminate the default settings, programs and basic device drivers as possible
Note: Safe mode with networking starts Windows in safe mode and includes the network drivers and
services needed to access the Internet or other computers on your network.
What is Repair your computer ?
Repair your computer shows a list of system recovery tools you can use to repair startup problems, run
diagnostics, or restore your system. This option is available only if the tools are installed on your computer's
Startup Repair is a Windows Vista recovery tool that can fix certain problems, such as missing or damaged
system files, that might prevent Windows from starting correctly. When you run Startup Repair, it scans your
computer for the problem and then tries to fix it so your computer can start correctly.
System Restore helps you restore your computer's system files to an earlier point in time. It's a way to
undo system changes to your computer without affecting your personal files, such as e-mail, documents, or
Sometimes, the installation of a program or a driver can cause an unexpected change to your computer or
cause Windows to behave unpredictably. Usually, uninstalling the program or driver corrects the problem. If
uninstalling does not fix the problem, you can try restoring your computer's system to an earlier date when
everything worked correctly.
Select a restore point and press Next.
Confirm disks to restore and press Next.
Press Finish to continue.
You can use Command Prompt to perform recovery-related operations and also run other command line
tools for diagnosing and troubleshooting problems.
What is bootrec /FixMbr ?
The /FixMbr option writes a Windows Vista -compatible MBR to the system partition. This option does not
overwrite the existing partition table. Use this option when you must resolve MBR corruption issues, or when
you have to remove non-standard code from the MBR.
What is bootrec /FixBoot ?
The /FixBoot option writes a new boot sector to the system partition by using a boot sector that is
compatible with Windows Vista. Use this option if one of the following conditions is true:
- The boot sector has been replaced with a non-standard Windows Vista or Windows 7 boot sector.
- The boot sector is damaged.
- An earlier Windows operating system has been installed after Windows Vista or Windows 7 was installed.
In this scenario, the computer starts by using Windows NT Loader (NTLDR) instead of Windows Boot
What is bootrec /ScanOs ?
The /ScanOs option scans all disks for installations that are compatible with Windows Vista or Windows 7.
Additionally, this option displays the entries that are currently not in the BCD (Boot Configuration Data) store.
Use this option when there are Windows Vista or Windows 7 installations that the Boot Manager menu does
What is bootrec /RebuildBcd ?
The /RebuildBcd option scans all disks for installations that are compatible with Windows Vista or Windows
7. Additionally, this option lets you select the installations that you want to add to the BCD store. Use this
option when you must completely rebuild the BCD (Boot Configuration Data).
What is chkdsk ?
Chkdsk (Chkdsk.exe) is a command-line tool that checks volumes for problems. The tool then tries to repair
any that it finds. For example, Chkdsk can repair problems related to bad sectors, lost clusters, cross-linked
files, and directory errors.
Note: We recommend to use chkdsk with the attributes /f /r and pay attentions to the letter of your
operating system in this case is C:
Use this command chkdsk /f /r c: