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WinXP help - lost files

zhen_roguezhen_rogue Registered User regular
edited August 2009 in Help / Advice Forum
I'm running a PC with WinXP SP3 installed.

I loaned the system to a family member, who somehow deleted the "C:\WINDOWS\PCHealth\" folder.
Don't ask.

Anyway, the msconfig file lived in there, which I was able to find a copy of elsewhere on my system and copy back into the correct directory to restore its functionality.
Now, i'm concerned about what else is normally stored in the \PCHealth\ folder that I might be missing?
Maybe there's nothing I need to worry about, or maybe there's a few other critical files like msconfig...

Can anyone clarify what I should do here, or what I might be missing?

Thanks!

EDIT:
I'm noticing that my system restore menu won't pop up anymore.
In that, I go to program files -> system tools -> system restore, click it, but nothing happens. No error, nothing. The system restore service however is set to automatic and reads as 'running' under services.msc.
I'm now wondering if perhaps part of the system restore interface/program was contained in my missing 'PCHealth' folder?

zhen_rogue on

Posts

  • t_catt11t_catt11 Registered User
    edited August 2009
    Love it when people delete files for no reason. If you didn't put it there, don't frigging delete it!

    My pchealth folder has the following subdolders:
    ERRORREP
    helpctr
    UploadLB


    Hope that helps.

    Santa4Me.com: Personalized letters from Santa Claus!
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • elfdudeelfdude Registered User
    edited August 2009
    I'd suggest either hiding your windows folder and disabling 'show hidden folders' or finding a program to lock out folders they can screw shit up with. I had problems with a guys' computer that I was repeatedly fixing who liked to 'clean out' things he though he didn't need. Eventually, I hid the folders from him so he couldn't find and delete them.

    Every man is wise when attacked by a mad dog; fewer when pursued by a mad woman; only the wisest survive when attacked by a mad notion.
  • PeregrineFalconPeregrineFalcon Registered User regular
    edited August 2009
    He pretty much just hosed System Restore and the online components of Windows Help.

    Might be able to pull a rabbit out of your ass with sfc /scannow off the command line. Failing that, you're doing a repair install/reinstall, then finally a nuke from orbit and build from scratch.

    Or you can try an undeletion tool, downloaded to and run from a USB drive. Make sure to save recovered files to there. Or check the Recycle Bin to see if they're still in there. :P

    I'd suggest backing your shit up and never lending this machine to that family member again.

    Oh, and family member, if you're reading this over his shoulder, stop deleting random stuff off computers that aren't yours.

    Looking for a DX:HR OnLive code for my kid brother.
    Can trade TF2 items or whatever else you're interested in. PM me.
  • TrentusTrentus Registered User regular
    edited August 2009
    zhen_rogue wrote: »
    I'm now wondering if perhaps part of the system restore interface/program was contained in my missing 'PCHealth' folder?

    Don't you generally access system restore through help center? Seems a lot (all?) of help center's files are in pchealth.

    Here's a tree view of my pchealth folder anyway, spoilered for huge. Also, a few things about it. \helpctr\DataColl was full off .xml files containing seemingly random info about my machine. There was some stuff about printers, some stuff about CDBurnerXP. I doubt it's important. Trimmed the list to save scrolling. Also, in \helpctr\OfflineCache\Professional_32#0409 there were a buttload of .query files, ranging from 00000000 to 000002cb (counting up in hex), again trimmed for hugeness.
    Spoiler:

  • zhen_roguezhen_rogue Registered User regular
    edited August 2009
    He pretty much just hosed System Restore and the online components of Windows Help.

    Might be able to pull a rabbit out of your ass with sfc /scannow off the command line. Failing that, you're doing a repair install/reinstall, then finally a nuke from orbit and build from scratch.

    Or you can try an undeletion tool, downloaded to and run from a USB drive. Make sure to save recovered files to there. Or check the Recycle Bin to see if they're still in there. :P

    I'd suggest backing your shit up and never lending this machine to that family member again.

    Oh, and family member, if you're reading this over his shoulder, stop deleting random stuff off computers that aren't yours.

    So make me smart on a 'repair install' here - is windows smart enough to simply repair/replace ONLY the files that are damaged/missing? Or does it essentially 'overwrite everything' which is basically like a re-install.
    Can I simply direct the repair installation to ONLY replace the PCHealth folders/files? Or can I pull the needed folders/files right off of my WinXP disc, like a copy/paste?

    I'd really like to avoid a re-install here if possible, i'd almost prefer just backing up my data and flying without system restore (and online help, as i've never ever even considered using it).

  • PeregrineFalconPeregrineFalcon Registered User regular
    edited August 2009
    zhen_rogue wrote: »
    So make me smart on a 'repair install' here - is windows smart enough to simply repair/replace ONLY the files that are damaged/missing? Or does it essentially 'overwrite everything' which is basically like a re-install.

    Option #2.
    Can I simply direct the repair installation to ONLY replace the PCHealth folders/files? Or can I pull the needed folders/files right off of my WinXP disc, like a copy/paste?

    You could use a .cab extraction tool and the list above (thanks Trentus) to re-populate the folders, but there's no way to tell if they'll be the same version as those expected. Plus that's likely a bigger pain in the ass than backup/nuke/reinstall.
    I'd really like to avoid a re-install here if possible, i'd almost prefer just backing up my data and flying without system restore (and online help, as i've never ever even considered using it).

    Go for it, but reinstalling isn't that hard once you've got your backups completed.

    Looking for a DX:HR OnLive code for my kid brother.
    Can trade TF2 items or whatever else you're interested in. PM me.
  • ErandusErandus Registered User
    edited August 2009
    I would highly recommend the sfc /scannow option first. It will hopefully detect the missing files and replace them from a WinXP disk.

    The files on the disk itself cannot be copy/pasted. They exist in a .cab file and will need to be expanded. Also, some windows files, especially DLL's and the like, really don't like to be simply pasted in to replace the missing ones.

    If the sfc /scannow does not work, pop in the xp cd, reboot the machine, boot from the cd, and you should be presented with several options, one of which is a repair install. I don't believe it's quite as destructive of an option as a full wipe and flush is, but you'd want to back up things you'd rather not lose - documents, pics, music, bookmarks, etc.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • underdonkunderdonk __BANNED USERS regular
    edited August 2009
    This is going to sound ridiculous... but did you check the Recycle Bin?

    Back in the day, bucko, we just had an A and a B button... and we liked it.
  • zhen_roguezhen_rogue Registered User regular
    edited August 2009
    I indeed checked the recycle bin, which was emptied (unfortunately).
    Apparently my in-law thought the "PCHelp" folder was related to some form of malware she'd heard of before, and thought she was doing me a favor by deleting it.

    Regarding the "sfc /scannow" idea, I ran it, and of course was asked for my original XP disc multiple times so it could install a .dll. Before I insert the disc and let it have its way with my OS - does this program take into account windows updates? I'm worried that it will compare existing (updated) files to what's originally on the disc, and essentially overwrite my entire OS just like a repair install would.
    Or, is this program smart enough to ignore/accept/verify updated files and only monkey with things that are damaged/missing?

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