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knelly74, Computer Support Specialist
Category: Microsoft Office
Satisfied Customers: 2056
Experience:  Certified Microsoft MCSA and MCP applications support specialist with over 20 years of PC experience.
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we lost our Microsoft bundle when I tried cleaning my PC through

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we lost our Microsoft bundle when I tried cleaning my PC through one of those online "clean my pc" deals and then deleted Norton so I could use the security from Hudson Street. Can't remember exactly the name of the software, but could find it if needed. Anyway, how do I reinstall the operating system, which the computer says is now missing. Even our printer is no longer hooked up! Not sure how this got so messed up, but my kids have been without their computer for a month because I've given up trying to figure out what is wrong with it. I guess I need to reinstall the driver for this as well.

Hello and thank you for using JustAnswer. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will be assisting you today.

Can you tell me the brand and model number/service tag of your computer please?

Just to be sure - you said the operating system needs to be reinstalled?

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I'm sorry. I shouldn't have tried to contact an expert until I was able to get to my son's computer. He's got friends over and they are seriously into playing their dumb games. I told them I'd work on the computer later. I don't spoil my kids but I'm really too tired to deal with it today anyway. Can I contact you tomorrow and ask for you? Hopefully, it will be more quiet around here then.

Of course - if you want to reply back with the brand and model number, I can certainly help.

To get back to me, either add this page to your favorites or log back into and click My Questions at the top of the page. There should also be a link in your email.

Thank you and I will watch for your reply :)

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
It is a Compaq Presario PC SR 5410F I know, I guess Compaq is now HP. Maybe this computer is older than I thought. Time is going by so fast. But, it still worked until I tried to download the new security program. I have the computer on now. It is slower than you know.

I am only able to pull up the internet and it tells me I have an error (duh) "an unauthorized change was made to Windows" was included in the Windows Activation window. The error code says: 0xC004D401. Along with loosing the Microsoft windows software program, I can't print either. The printer is on, copies ok but there is no communication between it and the computer. I can't get to the computer's program files to check on this either. Help. I only have until 3 and then my kids come home and its a madhouse.


Thank you :)


It sounds like whatever program was ran damaged part of the registry of the computer - that is likely why it is running so poorly. Reinstalling the operating system, like you were wanting to do, will correct this. Here is how to do it:


  1. Click the Windows Vista start button, All Programs, PC Help & Tools, and then click Recovery Manager.
  2. In the Recovery Manager Welcome window, click the Advanced options button.
  3. Choose the system recovery option that recovers your computer to its original factory condition, and then click Next.
  4. Click Next at the next screen that prompts you to do so. Your computer restarts.
  5. In the Welcome window, click Next.
  6. When prompted to perform a system restore, click No, and then click Next.
  7. Click Yes to perform a system recovery, and then click Next.
  8. If you are prompted to back up your files (optional), and you have not done so, click Yes. Otherwise, click No, and then click Next.
  9. System recovery begins. After system recovery is complete, the computer restarts.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
What if I don't have that option? Meaning, when I turn on my computer, I am given the "enter password" to sign on and then automatically the error window comes up that says it is the Windows Activation and an unauthorized change was made...

I can't get to the start button at all! I can't get to the program files or anything or I would have figured this out a long time ago!

I'm just sorry I haven't done it before now but I'm tired of sharing my computer with the kids so I'm trying to repair it myself if I can.

There should be another way - let's try this method:


  1. Restart the computer.
  2. As soon as you see the initial company logo screen appear, repeatedly press the F11 key on your keyboard until the Recovery Manager window opens.
  3. Click Advanced options.
  4. In the Advanced options window, click System recovery, and then click Next.
  5. If you are prompted to back up files, and you have already done so, click No, and then click Next.
  6. System recovery begins. After system recovery is complete, the computer restarts.




Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Hey, this back up thing is taking forever. I'm thinking some things I don't need, can I cancel the backup and return to the menu item to recheck the things I want backed up? The back up process just started and I'm on my first disc. don't want to cancel and screw anything up. It says it will take 11 DVDs to back up!
You can cancel - just power off the computer and start over. Just keep in mind everything will be gone (pictures, music, etc.). Programs can be reinstalled.
knelly74 and 2 other Microsoft Office Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Wow! You are good! I accidently pressed the button that cancelled the recovery and then clicked to begin without getting all the way out. Oh, well. Lost a bunch of files but it is the kids computer. So, if there was stuff on there it was probably game related and needed deleting!

Right now, it is setting up just like a brand new computer! Thank you so much! You are awesome! Now, do you know how to make my internet speed faster?

I don't know if there is anything that can be done. I have a MAC. I also have the Airport, which I use for backup as well as my wireless network. It is in my kids room and hooked up to the modem there. We have ATT high speed internet, supposedly. I found out the slow speed is a problem with the Airport, not their modem. I've tested the speed both with Airport and without and there is a difference. Problem is, I can't live without the Airport. I have a bunch of stuff on that. My internet speed is fine. My son is perturbed and states he gets disconnected from his xbox games which is also hooked up to the internet, wirelessly, and the speed is slow. Yes, I sometimes find myself in a slow patch on the internet, but not like my son's complaining of.

ATT told me I needed to configure the settings for the Airport, but I don't know how. Do you know how to configure the airport settings?

Thanks so much again

I do, but networking questions are set for a different category - it looks like you have a question opened with another expert here:


Customer: replied 5 years ago.
That's okay. I forgot I had another open question! See, I'm trying to do too many things today! Anyway, I finally got everything done! It sure took a while but it was worth it! You are awesome!

I can't thank you enough for your help! I will ask for you again whenever I have computer needs! I have to tell my friends how easy this is to work with people who know what they're doing! One of my friends went through the exact same thing I did today but took her computer to a shop. It cost her over $100! She had a cow when I told her how you helped and I didn't even have to unplug a wire!

Happy Holidays to you and your family!

Happy Holidays to you too - $100 is typically about what it costs (through my business), if not more. With JustAnswer, we work by dollar amounts for questions and bonuses if our clients feel we deserve them.


Thank you again and take care :)