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Recovering XP from a crash

By ndveitch ·
Hi There,

I'm not to sure if I am at the right place but I need to ask a question. I have a Dell Inspiron 1525 which crashed on me yesterday. I poured over forums to try and see if there was a way for me to recover without losing settings. My laptop would not boot into XP (Safe mode or Normal). I had to find a way to recover without losing my settings as I have a few programs on there that I don't have the registration information for anymore or the install files. I have the latest Hirens boot disk which has a mini windows XP interface which allowed me to check that all my files were still on the hard drive. I tried to run chkdsk /p /r in recovery console and that didn't help at all.

I decided to boot back into mini Win XP and copy off my data just in case and while I was doing that I got an idea. I made sure that I copied the Windows, Program Files, Documents and settings and System Volume Information folders to an external hard drive. Then I ran a repair install from the Windows CD to see if that would work and still nothing. In the end I had to format and reinstall. It was the only way I was able to get the computer to boot.

After the installation had run, I restarted my laptop and booted back into the Mini Win XP. There I copied all the files in the original System Volume information folder to the new System volume information folder and rebooted the machine. Once XP had loaded I went to System restore and ran the restore from my old installation and then rebooted my laptop. Again I went into the Mini Win XP and this time I put .old next to the Windows, Program Files and Documents and Settings folders, and then copied my original Windows, Program files and Documents and Settings to the root drive. Crossed my fingers and rebooted into Windows.

To be honest I was very surprised that it booted, I honestly didn't think it would work, cause with all the sites I had been to I hadn't seen it mentioned anywhere.

Now my question is, was I just very lucky or is this a possible way to recover a machine that has crashed unexpectedly yet is in good working order?

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It booted

by The 'G-Man.' In reply to Recovering XP from a cras ...

but I bet all the applications failed to load.

The main issue you have is not having the registration information or the install files for your apps.

Why do you not have them considering you must have paid for them at some point.

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It worked

by ndveitch In reply to It booted

Everything is working as if the crash never happened at all. I just think I was very very lucky. I thought nothing would work, but then I thought, surely if the registry information is correct and the system files are in the correct place it should work.

I still just think i was very very luck.

The reason I don't have the install files is that this is a work laptop and I have just taken it over from the previous administrator and I haven't found all the places where they stored install files.

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It worked

by ndveitch In reply to It booted

Everything is working as if the crash never happened at all. There were 1 or 2 programs that i have had to run repairs on but in all everything seems to be working. I just think I was very very lucky. I thought nothing would work, but then I thought, surely if the registry information is correct and the system files are in the correct place it should work.

I still just think i was very very luck.

The reason I don't have the install files is that this is a work laptop and I have just taken it over from the previous administrator and I haven't found all the places where they stored install files.

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