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  1. #1
    2 Star Lounger
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    Windows 7 failed to start because of missing system files

    When I started our Dell Windows 7 PC a few days ago, a message appeared which said something like “Windows could not start - click here to attempt repair” This PC has worked fine for months, and I had never seen that screen/message before. So I clicked the “repair attempt” button and after some time, the system did come up properly. This PC has now continued to run without problems for several days.


    In addition Dell has hardware diagnostics that automatically run occasionally. These diagnostics ran successfully without reporting any errors on any hardware including the hard disk. Then I checked Perfmon /rel and found the message “Windows failed to start because of missing system files” several days ago when the problem occured.


    Is there any way to find out which system files were missing, and why they were missing?

    Thanks in advance for any comments or suggestions.

  2. #2
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    Have you checked the Event Logs?

    Joe

  3. #3
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    Most likely the files were still there, but either the index pointer telling Windows where they are or the files themselves became corrupt and could not be read so appeared to be missing. Computers make errors all the time and most of them are corrected or occur in non-critical areas.
    Probably won't find any clues to the exact file or files since Windows didn't know they were corrupt until it needed them, but its obviously something in the Windows repair toolkit so that avoided the much more time consuming repair install or image restore if one was available, so that was a darn good outcome.

  4. #4
    Super Moderator satrow's Avatar
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    Also check your security software logs, it might have been that a potentially dangerous malware was detected and removed - see the MSRT logs too, a new version is downloaded and run silently monthly during Windows Update.

  5. #5
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    I will check the Event Logs and the MSRT log, but I'm not sure how or where to look for "security software logs." Can you give me any more direction for that? Thanks !

  6. #6
    Super Moderator satrow's Avatar
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    I don't know what software you have installed; open your Antivirus software and check the logs, if you have any other full time anti malware software like Malwarebytes, check the logs there too.

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