Saw mention on this list a while back (10/5/01) that it's a good
practice to delete the 'repair' directory after making an Emergency Repair
Disk, because some directory traversal exploits will try to extract the SAM
from the %systemroot%\winnt\repair folder. That seems to be good advice
for NT systems. However, I blindly carried that practice over to the
Windows 2000 servers. That was a decidedly BAD idea. Once the repair
folder is gone on a W2K system, any subsequent attempt to make an ERD will
result in a "diskette is unusable" error message. There is, of course, no
apparent connection between the error message and the problem ...
The recovery process is fairly simple, but not particularly
intuitive. If you create an empty %systemroot%\winnt\repair folder, the
ERD process with the box checked to "Also back up the Registry" will create
a RegBack subfolder under %systemroot%\winnt\repair but will still fail to
create a recovery diskette. The solution that worked for me was to copy
the three files (autoexec.nt, config.nt, and setup.log) from the previous
ERD to the repair folder. At that point the "unusable" diskette
experienced a full recovery.
Going forward, one option might be to manually copy SAM to the ERD and
delete it from it's new location of %systemroot%\winnt\repair\RegBack. Any
thoughts from those more knowledgeable about this?