Learn how to deal with problems like missing files, frequent crashes, a PC that won't boot, and more
Your PC won't boot
If turning on your PC doesn't bring you into Windows, try booting from a Windows 7 DVD or a recovery disc. You may already have the DVD. If Windows 7 didn't come with your computer but you installed it yourself, you have the disc. If you don't have it, you can borrow someone else's disc. Alternatively you can borrow someone else's Windows 7 computer and use it to create a System Repair Disc (you can also do this on your own PC before it has a problem). To create the disc, click Start, type system repair, select Create a System Repair Disc, and follow the prompts.
If your computer won't boot from the CD, go into its setup screen and change the boot order so that the optical or CD/DVD drive comes before the hard drive. I can't tell you exactly how to do this because it differs from one PC to another. When you first turn on the computer, look for an on-screen message telling you to press a particular key "for setup." When the CD boots, follow the prompts. Likely the utility will tell you very soon that there's a problem, and it will ask if you want to fix the problem. You do.
If it doesn't ask you, or if the disc can't fix the issue, you'll see a menu with various options. Startup Repair and System Restore are both worth trying.
If your PC fails before you can enter setup or boot from a CD, you have a hardware problem. If you're not comfortable working inside a PC, take it to a professional.
- Get all the details you need on deploying and using Windows 7 in the InfoWorld editors' 21-page Windows 7 Deep Dive PDF special report