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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone.
I am back from college right now and after using my dad's laptop to check emails and social networks, I decided to clean it up because it was running too slow to only be a couple of years old. He has an HP Pavillion Entertainment Series dv9650 (if I'm not mistaken). It's running Windows Vista. I CCleaned it, cleaned the registry, Spybot'ed it, and got rid of that annoyance of a program, Vango. I then noticed that he had some Windows Updates to do. I checked what was to be updated and it was SP1 for Vista. Come to find out, he doesn't update his computer because when he's tried in the past, it's messed up the computer. I wish I knew that at the time...

Anyways, I installed SP1. It was a very lengthy install. After an hour or so it was just on a blank, black screen with text being displayed. It was running through the registry I believe and doing something. I closed the lid and went about doing other things. When I came back and opened the lid, nothing would display. The screen wouldn't even turn on. I didn't want to tamper with anything so I left the computer for another 45mins or so. It was still not displaying anything after the 45mins. So, I turned the computer off by holding down the power button, partially knowing that the computer would be screwy afterwards, but I didn't know what else to do. Not to mention he didn't know I was even on the darn thing, so I wanted to get everything squared away immediately. Well, it happened... the computer won't boot properly. The HP screen displays on startup, then it goes to the green task bar that's displayed before Vista is booted up. After that, it just goes to a black screen for a minute or two, then a blue screen (I hate blue screens), then reboots.

I've tried to do the System Restore and it doesn't work. It just says "Finalizing Restore..." for as long as I'll let it sit, which has been almost 2 hours so far. I turned the computer off manually and tried the Startup Restore and got the same result. I'm not sure if those two are the same thing, but I tried them both. Now I'm stuck and I don't know what to do. My dad doesn't create backups of his data because he's stubborn so I need to get this thing working again, whatever it takes. He has hundreds of pictures he's taken (being a photographer hobbyist) and business stuff, neither of which he can afford to lose.

Come to find out, HP's running Vista have this issue where you need to update the BIOS before installing SP1. If you don't, you run into issues like the one I'm having. Who in the world decided that that would be a good idea??

Can somebody please lend me a hand? I don't know where to go from here and I don't want to do anymore damage. Please help!!
 

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Team Manager - Networking , Moderator - Micros
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You are going to have to either go back in time to an earlier Windows restore point or uninstall Service Pack 1.

Turn on the computer and tap the F8 key once per second. When you come to a text menu on a black screen, see if there is an option called System Recovery. If you don't see that option, you can boot up to a Windows Vista DVD and get to the System Recovery console. Here's an illustration.

From there you can try going back to an earlier Windows restore point. If that doesn't work, you can try uninstalling the service pack. Installing and uninstalling the service pack will take a while and you shouldn't power it off thinking it's stuck, in most cases.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I tried the System Restore overnight. The computer made a restore point right before I installed SP1 conveniently. When I started the System Restore it ended up saying "Finalizing File Restore..." from the time I fell asleep until noon today. That was a solid 12 hours that the restore was running. I just turned the computer off again and am going to try and fix it in another way. I'm not sure what that way is but the System Restore didn't appear to be working.

I have been trying to uninstall SP1 using a command prompt using the following guide: How to uninstall Windows Vista service packs as a troubleshooting step. However, it appears my C:\temp folder is empty so the method there isn't working. Dose anybody have any insight on where to go from here?

Since it's an HP I was able to make a backup of C: on the computer. If all else fails I can restore the computer back to factory settings and just reupload the backup data. But, like I said, my dad needs his computer ASAP, and that's going to take forever to reinstantiate the backup and install the software that he had originally. If there's no other way to do then I'll get going on that, but I'd rather wait to see if anybody has any suggestions on where to go from here. Thanks ahead of time.
 

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Team Manager - Networking , Moderator - Micros
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Yep, 12 hours is way too long. Go back into the Recovery Console and see if you can select an earlier restore point, before the one set for SP1. If that doesn't work, I'll try and give you a couple other options through the console.
 
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