Startup Repair

How to Do a Startup Repair in Vista
Startup Repair is a Vista recovery tool that can fix certain problems, such as missing or damaged system files, that might prevent Vista from starting correctly. When you run Startup Repair, it scans your computer for the problem and then tries to fix it so your computer can start correctly.
How to Do a Startup Repair in Vista

information   Information
Startup Repair is a Vista recovery tool that can fix certain problems, such as missing or damaged system files, that might prevent Vista from starting correctly. When you run Startup Repair, it scans your computer for the problem and then tries to fix it so your computer can start correctly.

For more information, see: Windows Help and How-to: Startup Repair FAQs

Note   Note
Startup Repair Process

Startup Repair will try to repair computers that are unbootable because of the following reasons:

  • Registry corruption
  • Missing or damaged system and driver files
  • Disk metadata corruption (MBR, partition table, and boot sector)
  • File system metadata corruption
  • Installation of problematic or incompatible drivers
  • Installation of incompatible Windows service packs and patches
  • Corrupt boot configuration data
  • Bad memory and hard disk hardware (detection only)

Startup Repair will not repair unbootable systems caused by the following issues:

  • Malfunctioning firmware and other hardware components
  • Problems with clean Windows installations or Windows upgrades (for example, from Windows XP to Windows Vista)
  • Windows logon errors
  • Viruses and malicious software

After Startup Repair has run, a text log with diagnostic information and repair results is generated. The log file is located at: C:\Windows\System32\Logfile\Srt\SrtTrail.txt

For more information, see: How Windows RE Works

Tip   Tip
If you only have a OEM Recovery DVD or Recovery Partition, then you can also create a recovery disc that will let you boot into the System Recovery Options screen (see screenshot below step 6 below) to run a Startup repair with the download from here: How to Create a Vista Recovery Disc. It cannot be used to reinstall Vista.

Here's How:
1. Boot into the System Recovery Optionsscreen.​
2. Click on the Startup Repair option. (See screenshot below)​

3. The Startup Repair tool will attempt to fix your computer and get it booting up again. (See screeshot below)​
NOTE: Startup Repair might prompt you to make choices as it tries to fix the problem, and if necessary, it might restart your computer as it makes repairs. If repairs are not successful, you'll see a summary of the problem and links to contact information for support. Your computer manufacturer might include additional assistance information.

Note   Note
Sometimes it may take running Startup Repair up to 3 times with a restart after each time to fully repair startup issues.
Note   Note

That's it,

Related Tutorials

Last edited by a moderator:
Shawn Brink


Hello Blackhawk,

You have a OEM recovery cd that is not capable of doing a Startup repair, only a clean install of Vista to factory defaults instead.

Hope this helps,
You can do a startup repair by booting in to the recovery by hitting F11 for HP or whatever the key is to boot into the recovery partition and do a startup repair.
Oh, nice to know that. Thank you Mansrm81. :geek:

Just want to say a big thanks to shawn. Having just purchased a new laptop found it wouldn,t boot at the second time of asking so i rigged up my old system(good job i hadn,t sold it)found this thread and made a repair cd and it worked at the 1st attempt,so again many many thanks and an excellent forum:D
You're welcome Case, and welcome to Vista Forums. I'm happy to hear that you got it sorted.

Whent to restart and same bios screen came back again, booted from the repair disk but why wont it boot from hdd,this is a brand new 64bit vista home premium version and it started up ok 2 days ago when i recieved it, i think i might after look at sending it back to acer :cry: now tried again and opted not to repair from 1st option so canceled that and then noticed the diagnostic tool had not detected any o/s (COULD IT BE LOOKING IN THE WRONG PARTITION)clicked next anyway as posted earlier and got the full diagnostic screen, clicked repair and when it came to boot i never hit any key to boot from cd and it booted up fine. I then changed the boot options back to hard drive removed the repair disk and restarted the computer and hey presto all was well untill the next time when it went back to the bios screen so what the hells going on here i dont know. Any ideas greatly appreciated before i top myself or mi head self explodes.
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I have added Method One to help as well since you have a OEM Vista, but it's pretty much the same method with a different way of getting there.

Do you have more than one physical hard drive installed? I had this happen to me one time where my system was trying to boot off the wrong hard drive that Vista was not installed on. I had to unplug the other hard drive, ran Startup Repair for the Vista drive, then plugged back in the other drive to fix it.

If this is not the case, then double check to make sure that you are selecting the correct partition with Vista on it in step 5 (Method Two).
OK will give that a go, its defo got 2 partitions c and d and there a windows icon at the c side and nowt at the d side if yer see what i mean. Thanks for the reply. Oh ive been on it all day and its purring along nice when it boots up:DIts not detecting any vista o/s,as in method 2 step 5 why is that do you think?
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Hi -

For step 5: What if there isn't an operating system listed?

I hope you can help me. I have the same issue but when I click NEXT and Select Startup repair it says that it performed fixes and that I have to restart. When I do I still have a blue screen after load bar but prior to log on screen.

I perform regular restore checkpoints and backups but I can access none of them in the Repair Tool. I don't know why as the Backups are kept on a separate external drive (Striped).

The command prompt does not allow me access to the C: drive. It just stays hanging on X:\sources

Here's how the problem first occurred:
I left my house this morning and left the PC on. Upon my return the computer had a black screen. When I rebooted it asked me to run chkdsk and started the countdown so that I could stop it. I figured I would allow it since it had been a while and it found corrupt indexes and made corrections. Upon completion. It could no longer boot into the OS.

Thanks to anyone in advance for a reply. I realize the thread is a bit old but I really need the help. My home business relies on this PC.

im having similar issues, however, when I startup my laptop it comes up with system restore options, as you have posted on the first page. when it comes to selecting an operating system, there are none displayed. I've been working with it for a few days now, and even though I click next 'without worrying', it goes to attempt repair but fails.

any ideas?
Hello Stone, and welcome to Vista Forums.

Usually if you cannot do a system restore or startup repair, then you may need to do a clean install of Vista instead. :(
Hello MJB, and welcome to Vista Forums.

Sorry, but no. Please do post the exact problem and any error messages in a new thread in the "General Discussion" forum on this though so that you can get specific help on it. :)