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critical system driver missing

#1
My vista 64 machine decided to no longer boot yesterday. It kept giving me a message that a critical system driver is missing, or corrupt. Said:
Windows failed to start. A recent hardware or software change might be the cause. To fix the problem:
1. Insert your windows installation disk and restart your computer.
2. Choose your language setting, and then click "next."
3. Click "Repair your computer."

When I put my original Vista64 disc in the drive it sometimes loads and sometimes not. Even when it loads files it still locks with the same message, but with different drivers corrupt each time. It will not get to any screen where I can actually work with windows. I disconnected my hard drive thinking that might be the problem but no difference.

This computer is a couple of years old and had a lot of problems at first with vista 64 but has been working very well for over a year.

I don't even know where to start on getting this running again. I was going to just install a new hard drive but that obviously is not going to work since I cannot get my vista install disk to even boot well.

I have an EVGA nForce 790i Ultra SLI motherboard with 4 megs ram, qx9770 quad core processor, and MSI 280 GPU.

Any ideas? This was expensive to build and was supposed to last me a lot longer than a couple of years.
Thanks
 
#3
I have, I just noticed, an "anytime upgrade" OEM of Vista 64, with SP1 on it. My computer has SP2 installed so I don't think my Vista disc will help me at all. I did actually set the CD as the number one device a while back in this problem.

I just received Win7 Home Premium 64 anytime upgrade disc. It also will not load and work.

Could it be a problem with my motherboard? Or do I need to buy a retail version of win7? Or Vista64?
 
#4
My other question is: My Vista64 is Ultimate. Does that mean I need to get the Win7 Ultimate upgrade or full version to be able to fix this? Or will any of the retail versions of Win7 64 work?
 

stoneys-nutz

Gamerholic
Vista Guru
Gold Member
#5
I have, I just noticed, an "anytime upgrade" OEM of Vista 64, with SP1 on it. My computer has SP2 installed so I don't think my Vista disc will help me at all. I did actually set the CD as the number one device a while back in this problem.

I just received Win7 Home Premium 64 anytime upgrade disc. It also will not load and work.

Could it be a problem with my motherboard? Or do I need to buy a retail version of win7? Or Vista64?
My other question is: My Vista64 is Ultimate. Does that mean I need to get the Win7 Ultimate upgrade or full version to be able to fix this? Or will any of the retail versions of Win7 64 work?
Have you tried to boot in to safe mode ?.
Also can you check in the Bios to see if all your drives are being recognised, HDD/DVD/CD.
Your Vista disk should work as all it will be doing is to repair the start up portion of your OS.
It could be your MB, DVD, DVD/CD drive, or even your HDD.
The upgrade will work regardless of which OS you have at the moment. It will just overwrite it.
If there is a Bios update i would try that first, if there is a problem with the MB this will sometimes give it a kick start.
Unfortunately there is no easy fix for this.
 

Submarine

Member
Vista Pro
#6
Noorguard,

You could try open up the computer and make sure all cables are properly attached, and blow out some dust at the same time.
 
#7
I have tried to boot to safe mode but get the exact same message, only the corrupt or missing file changes. The computer does indeed recognize all of my hardware. I have tried both DVD drives to hold the installation disc. The installation disc will load some files then lock, or sometimes load all the files then whenever it seems like it wants to try to do something I get the blue screen. Every time.

I have opened the computer, blown out the dust, unplugged and replugged the drives. No difference.

I have not tried to update the bios. I have always been afraid to do that, and I cannot download any info to this computer.

I appreciate the replies and am listening to any and all advice.
 

stoneys-nutz

Gamerholic
Vista Guru
Gold Member
#8
You have not mentioned any overclocking so I'm guessing that nothing is overclocked.
You need to start eliminating hardware problems.
Remove all the memory and try one stick at a time. Give that a go and post your results. Good luck.
 
#10
Thank you very much, Stoneys. That worked. Turns out one of my 2gb memory sticks had corrupted the memory slot. Works fine now. Thank you very, very much. This was so frustrating.....