When you are in your windows OS, say windows xp,vista, windows 7, server 2003 server 2008 and you try run one of the standard applications in control panel or anything that is installed by default and it fails to load you may have corruption with that particular applet ( for a list of applets see the bottom of this artice from wikipedia. ). There is a way of fixing this without doing reinstall or anything particularly invasive.This solution may also help fix a corrupt xp,vista or windows 7 installation as it looks for problems with your operating system install.
So lets say for instance you wanted to remove an application but Add/Remove programs fails to load then we would need to fix this. The instructions below show how. You will need your OS cd or a copy of the i386 directory or AMD directory. We are going to use a little known add on for windows called System File Checker. This looks for corrupt files in windows the copies a fresh one from cd or your file store.
First here is a list of the flags that SFC ( System File Checker can use).
SFC [/SCANNOW] [/VERIFYONLY] [/SCANFILE=<file>] [/VERIFYFILE=<file>]
[/OFFWINDIR=<offline windows directory> /OFFBOOTDIR=<offline boot directory>]
/SCANNOW Scans integrity of all protected system files and repairs files with
problems when possible.
/VERIFYONLY Scans integrity of all protected system files. No repair operation is
/SCANFILE Scans integrity of the referenced file, repairs file if problems are
identified. Specify full path <file>
/VERIFYFILE Verifies the integrity of the file with full path <file>. No repair
operation is performed.
/OFFBOOTDIR For offline repair specify the location of the offline boot directory
/OFFWINDIR For offline repair specify the location of the offline windows directory
sfc /SCANFILE=d:\windows\system32\kernel32.dll /OFFBOOTDIR=d:\ /OFFWINDIR=d:\windows
So in whatever OS you are in click on start and run then enter the below
Then hit return the system will then whir away for a while looking for corrupt files and you will also see the screen below.
Now if system file checker finds a problem it will delete the corrupt file then replace with a clean new file. Reboot your pc and you should have no issues.
If system file checker finds no problems then the window will close.
For information on how and what causes data corruption try wikis information http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Data_corruption