Cannot access my profile. (Windows XP SP3) Problem apparently due to Windows Installer.

I cannot log into my profile, apparently due to a problem with Windows Installer.  It starts logging on and when I try to access my documents I get a message that my profile can't be accessed and so I'm logged on in a temporary profile: "Details: access refusedowever, everything seems to be there except for my usual desktop background and I can access my files.  In msconfig Services tab, Windows Installer shows as stopped. I have tried reinstalling it, but it won't download because of windows installer error. The keyboard has started doing funny things like key assignment has got muddled. My admin profile works except for the Windows Installer problem that stops me removing or updating Java. I've checked for malware and viruses (none) run "sfc /scannow" ad "chkdsk /f".  All system restore points have disappeared.  Though I can access my files, the system asks me for my full name and initials before giving access. I now have the temp profile open in safe mode and note that a file I saved when previously logged into the temp profile has been saved correctly in the new folder I created. Also, when logged in in normal mode, I found that I couldn't access Mozilla Firefox, opened MS Internet Explorer and clicked a link to something (can't remember what) and Mozilla Firefox opened as normal.

Things I did immediately before this problem appeared: installed and ran Malwarebytes and Superantispyware, tried to update Java and VLM media player using AVAST! interface, then without using AVAST! interface. Both failed, but something else I updated OK. Tried downloading and installing Windows Installer 4.5 (unsuccessful). So I then tried to repair/reinstall using regedit and regserver commands from the Run command screen.

I am wondering whether to follow the instructions in However, as this asks me to backup the registry before altering it. As all my previous restore points disappeared, I don't trust it to backup the registry. How can I backup the registry to my external HD?


You have a damaged or corrupt user profile.  One way to recover from this condition is to perform a System Restore but since you have no restore points, you will need to recover with an alternate method.  The usual way to recover is to create a new user profile and then copy data from the corrupted user profile to the new profile.  This procedure is not generally difficult.  Pick from the selection below:


" How to recover the Damaged User Profile in Windows XP"

  < >


" How to copy data from a corrupted user profile  to a new proflie in Windows XP"

  < >


Almost always, profile corruption is accompanied by, if not caused by, corruption in the file system.  At a convenient point in time, it is highly recommended to perform a "chkdsk" operation with the "/R" or "Repair" option.  Note that this operation will occur at next reboot before Windows completely loads, can't be interrupted, and can take upwards of a couple of hours depending on hard disk size/speed and amount of errors found....  Occasionally, this operation in-and-of-itself can solve the problem.


"How to perform Disk Error checking in Windows XP"

  < >


To answer your question about backing up your registry -- try the freeware "ERUNT" to create a backup.  It's been used and recommended in this forum for years.

ERUNT:  < >





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Question Info

Last updated March 26, 2018 Views 1,936 Applies to: