Do you know a method to rescue my info in encrypted folders?

I have a home computer with Windows XP Home Edition pre-installed on it. Yesterday morning I received a message that hal.dll was missing or corrupt. So first I tried to repair my XP installation, but I was asked for an administrator password that was totally unknown to me. Therefore, I reinstalled XP again on my machine, but now I have problems accessing some folders that I have set up as private. Do you know a method to rescue my info in those encrypted folders?
The administrator password is blank by default. That said, once you've reinstalled XP, the keys used to encrypt what's in those folders is destroyed -- they're generated unique with each installating of Windows XP. I strongly recommend not using XP's encryption for this reason.
This was first published in March 2002

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