Downloaded August 2010 Vista Updates Got BSOD


I am running a Gateway desktop DX4800 dual core 64-bit NVIDIA® GeForce® 9200 (MCP7A-O) Vista Home Premium system.

My computer was running fine until Friday.

Friday, I finally downloaded a group of MS "critical" updates. When the system called for a restart, I did, and got the BSOD.

The error code is STOP: 0x0000007B (0xFFFFF98000A069E0, 0xFFFFFFFFC0000034, 0x0000000000000000, 0x0000000000000000)

Unfortunately, I do not have the Vista OS on cd, and did not make recovery disks when I first got the computer last August.

I have a laptop, so could still get to the Internet, and entered the error code, which among other places led me to NeoSmart, where I downloaded, burned and used the recovery disk, to no avail. The recovery disk was unable to see the OS on my Gateway, and I couldn't get past that problem. None of the other options on the recovery disk did anything.

I have downloaded and tried the ultimatebootdisk, Hirens11, contacted Microsoft, Gateway, and gotten no results. The computer will not get into safe mode, will not boot using last good setting, none of the options found in F8 or BIOS do anything. Nothing that I have used has been able to get to the hard drive.

I have read posts about using Ubuntu to try to gain access to the HD to rescue data, and I have downloaded it, along with Easy BCD as I saw that Easy BCD might have a boot repair ability. I'm at work now, so will try these programs this evening.

I haven't looked throughout the site, but if anyone can point me to where the details are on how Easy BCD might repair the boot file that would be helpful.

Also, I have read about resetting the BIOS by pulling the battery, but I am not sure if that will affect the boot error problem, or if I should even try it.

If anyone has a suggestion on what to try next, please do. I am not an advanced computer user, but I can follow directions.


Super Moderator
Staff member
Press F8 as you try to boot and select Last Known Good Configuration or Safe Mode. If Safe Mode try system restore (start typing that into the search box of the start menu until it appears).
I have tried that--no joy.

Is is possible to remove the HD with the OS on it, insert into a USB cradle and plug into another Vista computer (my laptop), and copy over the needed files to make the OS boot again? If it is possible , what files would I need to copy over and to where?

Or , can I try to recreate the BCD from scratch as in the instructions given on this site to do so?

Is this even on the right track?

My worry is that with everything I have tried, I can not access the HD with the OS on it. I tried using Ubuntu last night, It recognized one of the HD's on the computer, but not the HD with the OS. Perhaps I didn't use the correct software on Ubuntu, but I could not see both HD's with the file manager in Ubuntu.

Same in using the recovery environment cd from this site--no recognition of the OS or the HD with the OS on it.
Tried last night to read HD using USB SATA cradle using laptop. In explorer, the drive was not assigned a letter, unrecognized.

I opened computer management, which saw the disk, but not the contents.

Dowloaded Western Digital's diagnostic program, let it check the drive. No errors on drive that WD recognized.

But, still cannot access the HD to try to repair it.

Any suggestions at this point?
Thanks Kairozamorro for the link to the recovery instructions.
I am waiting for the Gateway recovery CD I ordered before doing anything nuclear, but I don't have much hope that the Gateway disk will work.
I once again fired up Ubuntu this afternoon, was able to run diagnostic tests on the non performing HD, and nothing came back as alerting me to any damage to the HD itself. It is just that nothing can read the files on that drive.

If the Gateway disk doesn't work, I'll try the Ubuntu to save what files that are on the HD that I cannot recover from other sources, then probably try to install Windows 7. I hate to have to do that, but I don't see any other options. Yes, it is (or was) running Vista, but I can't see buying Vista when W7 is supposed to be better.

Last question (i think) -- If I do get to the point of installing W7, would using Ubuntu to format the HD affect the W7 OS install, or does W7 format the drive itself? I'll get the home premium version of W7, full OS, not upgrade.


Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
Search the web for "TestDisk" and use a copy to see if it can spot (and fix) any problems with your partition table, filesystem, boot sector or file table.
Found it. Looks like it needs to be run within an OS to work. I'll try Ubuntu and put Testdisk on a flash drive and see if Ubuntu can open it.


Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
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