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XP Home won't start - hal.dll is missing or corrupt

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XP Home won't start - hal.dll is missing or corrupt

Old 06-05-06, 10:18 AM
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XP Home won't start - hal.dll is missing or corrupt

so a friend of mine rebooted, and is now getting this error, and lucky for me, i'm that guy in our circle of friends, and i get to deal with it.

i've done some research on it, and i've tried a lot of things. nothing seems to be working:
  • i was told to boot from the XP Home CD into the Recovery Console and run FIXMBR to fix the master boot record. however, doing so can cause data on the hard drive to become inaccessible, so i first wanted to copy everything off the hard drive to be safe.
  • i removed the drive from the computer, and put it in a USB enclosure and plugged it into my computer to copy the data off. however, i get 'access denied' errors on SEVERAL files and folders, and i was only able to copy about 1/3 of the drive.
  • my buddy told me to go ahead and do the FIXMBR anyways, and he'd deal with any data loss. so i ran FIXMBR, and it did nothing.
  • i can't even get a DIR listing in the recovery console, as i get the error, "An error occurred during directory enumeration".
  • from the recovery console, i tried copying hal.dll from the XP Home disc to the hard drive - access denied.

and i'm stuck. i'm guessing he's looking at a clean install, which is fine if that's the case, but i NEED to get him backed up first. suggestions??
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Old 06-05-06, 11:21 AM
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the quick/easy fix?
boot off the cd, follow the steps as if your going to install xp, but chose the option to repair rather than installing (fast repair, dont use the console unless that doesnt work)
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Old 06-05-06, 11:28 AM
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Run hard drive diagnostics first.
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