Two weeks ago I turned on my WinXP notebook and it wouldn't boot. It stopped at a DOS screen with this error message:
Windows XP could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt: \WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\CONFIG\SYSTEM
I have no idea what caused this - my Norton Anti Virus keeps my sytem virus free and I had not done anything major or unusual like reinstalling an operating system etc.
I couldn't use any of the recovery tools like system restore, recovery console or safe-mode. Furthermore, because I had an OEM system my installation CD would only reinstall the original system - deleting everything first!
I ended up having to take my computer to a store specializing in data recovery - because I foolishly hadn't backed-up my hard disk. It cost me a fortune to get my data (including students' grades etc.) saved.
Now I want to backup my data regularly, and I am wondering if there are any pointers as to a good way to do this. What about good open-source or other software that does this job well? And hardware?
I don't want this disaster to happen again. Any tips or advice will be very much appreciated.