I Can't find MSCONFIG (?)

hi guys!
not sure if this really applies to this forum, but im giving it a shot.
I am running Windows XP and I keep getting an error message saying “your system has recovered from a serious error… to send an error report blah blah blah”. I have already made sure (by unclicking the box in Local disc C:/) that my systme does not shut down when it comes to an error, so i am still able to use it. However i recently fixed (or so i thought) a blue screen error i got, because the boot order had been changed and my computer was looking for a Floppy disc that it didnt have. BUT NOW
i am trying to find the error and get rid of it so it doesnt happen again.
I’ve googled solutions and 99% of them tell me to go to
but when i type MSCONFIG or msconfig.exe i get a message saying windows cannot find it,
i have already used windows search to try and find it and i get search results of three files:
msconfig (the path is C:\windows$NtUninstallKB906569$) its an application
msconfig (path is C:\WINDOWS\help) its a HTML file
msconfig (path is C:\ ServicePackFiles\i386) its also an application

i have no idea why i cannot find my system 32configuration. please help!

oh, i have also searched for MSCONFIG in C:\WINDOWS\pchealth\helpctr\binaries (because one of the forums somewhere told me to look there also, and there is no MSCONFIG
i have multiple files there, but the closest is msinfo

okay, so i fixed the part about me not being able to find MSCONFIG (had to download a new one & its saved onto the desktop, but i still have no idea why i get these error messages.
the last one was about a month ago, and i thought it was fixed.
apparently not.
also thismorning, when i turned my computer on, at the sign in screen i got little pink lines in the corner, like something was wrong with the video card. (??)
they are gone now though, and a restart stopped it, but still…


seems there is either something seriously wrong with your hardware or your Windows is severely messed up.

I would start with checking RAM (Memtest86+) then check the HDD using the diagnostic tool from the HDD manufacturer.

And it is a good idea to back up your data right now.


format HD, re install xp, sometimes the more you play with it the more damage is caused.

Do some malware scans, this may be indicative of some infection.

[QUOTE=MysticEyes;2302353]Do some malware scans, this may be indicative of some infection.[/QUOTE]

My thoughts too. :iagree:

I’d immediately wonder what removed it.


okayy guys,
ive run all the scans humanly possible, and nothing comes up.
I have never backed up my hard-drive before, do i need a external drive or something to back it up to?
also, reinsatlling windows, and reformatting HDD… running the diagnostic tool… HOW DO I DO THIS?
my computers never gone wrong like this before so ive never really had to do anyhing like this before…?

To start with I’m not a XP expert.This is from information I Googled & put together.
I don’t have XP so I can’t test this information .I hope it helps.
Since you have already ran AV & antispyware scans it shouldn’t be those if the programs you used were able to find any virus or spyware on your OS.
For now I will assume they did & removed them.
Hopefully the original msconfig.exe can be restored from your OS.I would like to get rid of the downloaded one if possible.
So at what ever locations you placed the downloaded msconfig.exe replace it with the one that will be expanded into C:\WINDOWS\PCHEALTH\HELPCTR\BINARIES .
So here goes:
From an administrator command prompt type( you can copy & paste this):

Hit enter.
I made this from the path you posted so make sure the MSCONFIG.EX_ file is in C:\ ServicePackFiles\i386,
You may have to :
Click on My Computer. Go to Tools > Folder Options. Click on the View tab and make sure that “Show hidden files and folders” is checked. Also uncheck "Hide

protected operating system files" and “Hide extensions for known file types” . Now click “Apply to all folders”.
Click “Apply” then “OK”.
If you don’t already have your files unhidden.Reverse to hide them again.
EXPAND -r C:\ ServicePackFiles\i386\MSCONFIG.EX_ C:\WINDOWS\system32\dllcache
Hit enter.
In the C:\ ServicePackFiles\i386 I beleive the MSCONFIG will be a compressed file named MSCONFIG.EX_ .
Once it is expanded into the C:\WINDOWS\PCHEALTH\HELPCTR\BINARIES & C:\WINDOWS\system32\dllcache folders the file should be MSCONFIG.EXE or

any of these files may have small case letters so they may be msconfig.exe.Usually this doesn’t make any difference to the command prompt.
Now time to check the registry.
This should be the key:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\App Paths\MSCONFIG.EXE

In the right pane, next to Default, it should show:

As in image below.
I hope this does post if you need more explanation & if it fixes your msconfig.
If there is still a virus or spyware on your OS it will probably remove it again.Or prevent this from putting the msconfig.exe files in these locations.
If the MSCONFIG.EX_ doesn’t expand from the command prompt you may need to manually Extract it & do a copy & paste to the locations.

Have you tried using the System Restore option?

Usually you just need to press the F10 key during system boot up.

You certainly can go ahead and try the suggestions provided by cholla and MasterVillain…I’m not meaning to sound critical of their advice. They offer sound advice.
FYI, you can also access system restore from
[I]Start > All Programs > Accessories > System Tools > System Restore[/I]
Hopefully system restore is enabled and you have restore points.

Your system sounds unstable as hell and and since you’re running XP, it’s been around awhile.
I’d do as co21 suggested.
Time to wipe the hdd and start fresh…JMO

thanks for all this guys, will try all the above. im kinda leaning towards just doing as co21 says and reformatting n starting again. I may sound stupid, but if i do this, i will loose all my info on my HDD correct?
so do i need an external hard-drive or something to back up my system to so i dont loose anything (PS have never backed up HDD before)

Hi,[QUOTE=TyndallTkd;2303659]thanks for all this guys, will try all the above. im kinda leaning towards just doing as co21 says and reformatting n starting again. I may sound stupid, but if i do this, i will loose all my info on my HDD correct?[/quote]Yes, you will lose all the data on the HDD.

so do i need an external hard-drive or something to back up my system to so i dont loose anything?
Yes, this is highly recommended. :iagree:


awesome, thanks. if i dont have an external HDD can i burn to a disc, or UBS all of it or something (just so i can save money on buying an external HDD)
thanks so much for all this!

You can backup all data to disc.I certainly recommend doing this for all images,documents,music & video you have & want to keep.
If you have software installers you want keep those too.
You might want to scan these with an AV again before burning to disc.
If you don’t burn the installers for software you want at least make a list of them.
Extra important make sure you have a copy of all registration keys for software that needs them.A written hard copy is a good idea.
That’s just part of it.
More than likely you don’t have a set of Windows discs but have the restore discs that came with your computer these will install all the junk software the computer manufacturer put on: that you have gotten rid of.
If you go the wipe the hdd route in the future to save you having to go this far get a backup software like Acronis True Image or Norton Ghost.& eventually get an external HDD for keeping at least 3 backups on.

Just to confuse you here are two more options.

  1. Put your windows disc in the drive and go to run and type sfc/scannow
    follow the prompts.

    This will check for missing or corrupt system files and repair or replace them.
    If this still gives problems then go to option 2

  2. Start up the computer in dos mode and delete the windows folder.

    This is not for the faint hearted but all you have to do is install windows anew.
    This has the advantage that all your data files and programs are still on the C drive, but be aware many of them will not run until you have re-installed them, as the new windows does not know they are there until there is a registry entry.
    I have used this method to recover operation of computers without loss of data, it also has the advantage of keeping the options set on this software configured as you last used it.
    I wish you luck whatever you decide to do.

2. Start up the computer in dos mode and delete the windows folder.
[/QUOTE]This won’t work with NT based flavours of Windows :wink:

As I have not had much to do with Windows NT I would not know. As far as I remember there are far fewer people using NT although I understand from the few times I have come across it, it appears more stable.
I have used method 2 a number of times on XP and once on 98se, all with success.
I then get the owners to back their systems up with Acronis and have not had to save their systems since.