I have a wierd problem....For a friends computer, (XP Pro) It will boot up, show the welcome screen and start to go in like normal. Then it shows "Saving your settings" and goes back to the welcome screen. You click on his user ID and it acts like it is going in but it doesn't show anything on the desktop..no taskbar... nothing...but the background pic. The drive doesn't show any activity. I tried CTRL-ALT-Delete, but no response. Task manager won't come up. I tried Safe mode and entering the admin password, it does the same thing. No desktop icons or taskbar. I pulled the drive and externally hooked it to my laptop and scanned it with McAfee...it found nothing.
I tried to do a REPAIR but it only gives me a DOS prompt with minimal commands but does nothing else. I tried a Rebuild of the boot.ini....still nothing.
I am lost...any thoughts? I am trying to avoid having to wipe and rebuild. Now I can get to the folder structure so would putting a shortcut into the startup folder to explorer.exe work enough for me to fix it? Or is there a way to get to the registry on the drive as a secondary drive from my laptop to fix the startup problem?
You need to do a repair/install - not a repair. As you found the repair option has a limited number of functions.
This will reinstall Windows XP and keep your applications. Follow the instructions at this web site: