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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    Hi everyone. I am putting pen to paper on this for a few reasons. Firstly, I'd like to share my nightmare stories with you so you might avoid making my errors.



    Secondly, I am after some help to get this completely sorted, cos at the moment, I am working in Safe Mode with network connections. It's taken me four days to get there.

    I am running a Toshiba Satellite laptop, the one with twin 320g HDD (so my data is safe). The OS is Vista Home Pro with SP2, I use AVG Free for my virus protection, and have Office Pro 2007, Mindjet Manager, Snagit, VLC, Google Earth, But Torrent, Lime Wire,ITunes, etc. Nothing too out of the ordinary.

    The Laptop is about 14 months old, and aside from one period about 6 weeks ago when I couldn't get it to flash up, it hasn't missed a beat.

    A while ago, I downloaded Smart Defrag, and I think that I inadvertantly downbloaded and installed the accompanying Toolbar (IOBIT.com Toolbar). Google it - there are all sorts of unflattering things out there about this toolbar. There is some stuff about uninstalling it, too. Some if it worked, others didn't.

    Shortly after I brought it I created the 3-set recovery disks. Despite my religiously creating restore points about every month, when the laptop crashed on Thursday last week, it tried to do a system restore, but all my restore points had vanished. So what I tried to do was to just let it run in System Restore mode. Each time, it seemed to get a little further, and eventually it ran up in safe mode. At that point there were about four restore points available, all of which had been created since the great crash.

    In Safe Mode, I tried all the diagnostics I could think of including going to Dos and doing sfc\scannow. I also scheduled a check disk on C when next booted.

    All my apps opened up fine.

    I took a deep breath and shut down. When I restarted, it gave me the option to boot into safe mode with networking, so here I am. It did take a long time (About 1.5 hours) to boot, but I have at least got this far.

    My problem is that I don't know where to go from here.

    If I boot with the recovery disks I made after I brought the laptop, I will basically lose all software etc installed on C:\ since that date - is that correct?

    I just tried to open MindJet Manager and got the attached error:

    As I say, the data is ok, so I am not worried about that.

    My issue is that I don't know where I stand with the OS in its current state.

    Can anyone advise me if I should go and download any Windows updates, or whether I should get this professionally checked out. Most grateful for any suggestions.
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  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    I hate to say this but it sounds like a system reinstall may be needed. You could try a repair install with your installation disk. Generally a repair install maintains your apps and just fixes boot info, etc. This may or may not be successful in your case. It sounds as though reinstalling your apps would not be a great labor, and this may install updated versions of some. Since your data is safe, clean install may end up taking less time than T/S your present OS.

    This may be a great time to look into Win 7 as well. The increased stability and security could be worth the effort.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


    Sony Vaio Laptop, 2.53 GHz Duo Core Intel CPU, 8 GB RAM, 320 GB HD
    Win 8 Pro (64 Bit), IE 10 (64 Bit)


    Complete PC Specs: By Speccy

  3. #3
    5 Star Lounger
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    the one with twin 320g HDD (so my data is safe).
    Unprompted advice here but that doesn't make your data safe. What if you drop the laptop? Theft? Natural disaster? You need a seperate copy of your data that is seperate from your laptop and to be really safe, another copy off site managed either personally or by employing an online backup service.

    The loss of restore points and 1.5 hour boot time could be caused by three things in general, viral infection, failing hard drive/hardware component or a corrupted OS. Ted's course of action is pretty sound because you aren't going to be able to troubleshoot effectively without getting increasingly OS and App. unfriendly in order to determine if the long boot time is software or hardware related. I might try cloning the drive first just in case it was dying and hopefully still get all the sectors before advancing on with the other things but that's about all.

  4. #4
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Dump the os, it's not worth saving. I hope you have an image to restore to or a bootable os disk.
    Clean Install.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
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  5. #5
    New Lounger
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    Hi everyone. Thanks for your advice. Byron, don't get me wrong, I am not at all smug about the security of my data - it is fully backed up, my comments here were simply a "sigh of relief" - lose the apps ok, but not the data.

    How do I know if my laptop will support Win 7 - I'd much rather install it than continue with Vista - I really hate Vista.If I decide to reimage, will my recovery disks do the trick?

    Cheers and thanks for your advice.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    If I decide to reimage, will my recovery disks do the trick?
    As in OEM full image restoration disk?
    If so, yes it will return your os to the factory default state.

    Windows 7 upgrade advisor should help. You can also visit the manufacturer's site to see if they
    have driver support for Windows 7.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
    Latest Build:
    ASUS X99 Deluxe, Core i7-5960X, Corsair Hydro H100i, Plextor M6e 256GB M.2 SSD, Corsair DOMINATOR Platinum 32GB DDR4@2666, W8.1 64 bit,
    EVGA GTX980, Seasonic PLATINUM-1000W PSU, MountainMods U2-UFO Case, and 7 other internal drives.

  7. #7
    New Lounger
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    Hi Clint. Don't know if they'd be full OEM Recovery disks - these are the ones I built not long after buying the laptop.

  8. #8
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Give them a try, I don't see that you have too much to loose at this point.
    Is your OEM factory operating system image on a hidden partition?
    Go through your documentation and visit the vendors site as well for more info on "factory" restorations.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
    Latest Build:
    ASUS X99 Deluxe, Core i7-5960X, Corsair Hydro H100i, Plextor M6e 256GB M.2 SSD, Corsair DOMINATOR Platinum 32GB DDR4@2666, W8.1 64 bit,
    EVGA GTX980, Seasonic PLATINUM-1000W PSU, MountainMods U2-UFO Case, and 7 other internal drives.

  9. #9
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    Since you will probably not be able to run Win 7 upgrade adviser, unless it will run in safe mode for you, a visit to the manufacturer site may be your only recourse to check on Win 7 compatibility. Listing some other of the specs for your system (CPU, Ram, HD, video, etc.) may help to determine if Win 7 should work, but ultimately getting drivers that work with Win 7 is important. Fortunately many drivers that work in Vista will work with Win 7.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


    Sony Vaio Laptop, 2.53 GHz Duo Core Intel CPU, 8 GB RAM, 320 GB HD
    Win 8 Pro (64 Bit), IE 10 (64 Bit)


    Complete PC Specs: By Speccy

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