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The Blue Screen of Hive Death

Strangely, Microsoft's solution is to run software on a PC that won't run...

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Topic: PCs
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1 of 7 Matt Conner/ZDNet

This is photograph of the PC that won't boot. The message says:"Stop: c0000218 {Registry File Failure} The registry cannot load the hive (file): \SystemRoot\System32\Config\SOFTWARE or its log oralternate. It is corrupt, absent, or not writable.Beginning dump of physical memory Physical memory dump complete Contact your system administrator or technical support group for further assistance"There isn't much time to read this message which is why I took a picture of it. Within a second or two of this flashing on the screen, the message disappears and the computer attempts to restart itself. So, I Googled the error message which led to a Microsoft knowledge-base entry(seen in the next image)

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2 of 7 Matt Conner/ZDNet

Here is the knowledge-base article Microsoft has on its Web site. At first, I thought the Guided Help section was a joke because it talks about installing software on a PC where you have administrative privileges while the title clearly acknowledges that the PC can't be booted. But it wasn't a joke. In case it meant "Install it on another PC," I went along with it and did exactly that.

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3 of 7 Matt Conner/ZDNet

When you first run the Guided Help utility that the knowledge base article provides to you for download, the first choice you are given is to run it on "this computer" or "another computer." I picked another.

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4 of 7 Matt Conner/ZDNet

the next screen in the utility is a bit confusing. I didn't realize that pressing the NEXT button would actually begin the process.At first, I began hunting around my hard drive for an exe file called Guided_Help.exe. Eventually, I just clicked NEXT button to see what would happen and....

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5 of 7 Matt Conner/ZDNet

Voila. I was presented with save-as dialog. So, I saved the file to a USB memory key. And then....

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6 of 7 Matt Conner/ZDNet

The utility presents the final set of instructions to me... to take the "removable medium" to another computer and run the "Guided_Help.exe"file on that computer. But what if the computer doesn't boot?

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7 of 7 Matt Conner/ZDNet

For good measure, I reran the utility and tried the "run it on this computer" option. This is the screen I got. Obviously, this isn't the right choice. I do not want to automatically recover a registry on a functioning computer.

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