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TSF Team Emeritus, Microsoft Support
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15,478 Posts
Hello and Welcome to TSF

It sounds like you either didn't activate windows within the
30 day grace period or you ran into some spyware and it corrupted
a registry key or file.
Try a repair installation if you forgot to activate Windows within the 30 day grace period. This will reinstall Windows XP to your computer and your programs
and most of your settings will be just like you left them.
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?kbid=315341

In some cases the spyware has corrupted a registry value on
clean up.

Now you will need to boot with the Windows XP CD to the recovery console, and copy userinit.exe to wsaupdater.exe. And then you may be able to boot back normally and repair the registry entry.

So boot from your WinXP CD and when you reach the setup screen, press R to start the Recovery Console.

Choose the installation to log on to (if there's just one, hit enter). When prompted for password, just hit enter unless you have set a password for the user "Administrator" (it's blank by default in XP)

When you get logged onto the Recovery Console, go to c:\windows\system32 (or wherever Windows is installed).

Use the following commands.
cd \windows\system32
copy userinit.exe wsaupdater.exe

Take the CD out of the drive, and type exit to quit the recovery console and restart Windows normally

Next if your booted up normally go to Start, Run, type regedit and navigate
to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon\Userinit
the key value should be your_drive_letter:\WINDOWS\system32\userinit.exe,
and yes the , should be on the end.

Worked4me
 
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