Windows installer Service error

I am new to this forum and have found it after 3 days of trying to overcome some frustration. I am not an expert at this but my daughters computer is playing up massively. I have googled this error and done just about everything that has been suggested.
I can;t start the Windows installer manually, I can only download some programs, (SpeedMax PC, Malware bites, Avast freeAntivirus and some of these load but don't start up. I can't open word, McAfee but I can open up firefox and internet explorer. I even got desperate and managed to get important files onto USB. Tried reinstalling Windows from the CD that came with the computer (Dell vostro 3550) It goes halfway through the set up thing and comes up with the following error: Windows could not retrieve information about the disks on this computer.
I can't restore, remove programs (it says they are already removed); I can get to the window but the smaller link doesn't open.
Is this just a massive virus or is something else wrong? I have run avast Free Antivirus and nothing was detected but I know that doesn't mean much.
I have tried to cover as many of the errors as I can. I'm just looking for some advice as to what to try. If you need any further specific details as to errors or problems, please ask and I'll do my best.


Excellent Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
Have you tried running Chkdsk on the drive? It might show up some problems, or perhaps repair some corruption.

How old is the system?

Thanks very much for this suggestion but I can get to the cmd window and type in chkdsk but nothing happens. The computer is around 18months old if this helps.

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