How to Repair Windows Vista Installation Using Startup Repair


10.10.2009

If you are having problems with your Windows Vista and want to fix them without formatting the hard drive, you can turn to the diagnostic and repair tools. Learn about the options you have as well as read a guide on how to use Startup Repair.

One of the cool things about Windows Vista is that the diagnostic and repair tools are really useful and really can provide a solution if you are having problems with your computer. In fact, these tools can provide some help even if Windows Vista is so badly damaged it cannot boot. The first thing you should do before attempting more advanced and complicated methods of repairing your computer is to use the Start-up Repair option. If you ever want to use the Startup Repair option in Vista but are not sure how things work, read the following tutorial and you should get the hang of it.

Here is a quick guide on how to use Startup Repair for an automatic repair of Windows Vista.

1. Go to the BIOS and make sure that the DVD/CD drive is the first drive your computer will try to boot off from. Insert the Windows Vista DVD into the drive and restart. When you see a “Press any key to boot from CD or DVD” message, you should press a key and the wait for Windows to load the necessary files.

2. When the Windows Setup environment is fully loaded, you will be taken to a screen where you will be able to choose the installing language, the “Time and currency format” and the “Keyboard or input method”. Make these settings and press “next” to continue.

3. At the next screen, look in the lower left part for the “Repair your computer option” and click on it. Now the setup will identify all the Windows Vista instances on your computer. These will be displayed in a window called “System Recovery Options”.

4. At this stage, if you have a special drive that you need to load the drivers for so Vista can access the information, select the Windows Installation and press “Load Drivers”. When this is complete or if you don’t need any drivers, click on “next”.

5. Now the wizard will analyze your drive to find any problems with Vista. If these problems are not found, a list of advanced recovery tools is displayed. These tools are discussed later in this guide so you should skip ahead. For now choose the “ Startup Repair” option (it should be at the bottom of the list). IMPORTANT: Note that if the wizard detects problems with the Vista startup, you will be automatically taken to the Startup Repair.

6. All you can do at this stage is wait for the automatic repair process to complete its task. The computer might restart during the process so don’t worry, it is absolutely normal. However, if the wizard asks you if you want to restore your computer using System Restore, you should press cancel as there is a better way to do this and we will talk about it a little later.

7. If the Startup repair did not find a way to repair your computer, you will be taken to a screen that states exactly that and that gives you the option to send or not to send the information to Microsoft about the problem. You should click on “Don’t send.”

If the automatic repair option did not fix your problem, we advise that you should try the advanced tools. Don’t worry; we will cover them a little bit so you won’t be entirely in the dark on this one.

The System Restore option will restore the configuration (driver information and programs) of your computer to a previous state, eventually before the damage was done. If you are not having a hardware problem, this should pretty much fix the problem. The only thing is that the System Restore feature should have been turned on in Vista for this method to work.

The Windows Complete PC Restore works a lot like the System restore, only that a backup image that was previously created is needed for this to work. In addition, a backup image can be created only with Vista Business, Ultimate or Enterprise. This is a good way to come back to a previous, working state of your computer (if the hardware is not damaged, of course).

If you believe that your RAM memory might be the source of your problems, then you can check that memory for errors using the Windows Memory Diagnostic Tools.

Perhaps the strongest tool of them all is the Command Prompt. This little guy will give you access to the files, registry information and you will find it a great way for removing worms, viruses, rootkits and others.

This is it. These are the options that Windows Vista comes with. If you did not manage to solve your problems with any of these options, chances are that you are having a hardware problem and should contact a specialist for consultancy.

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