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Errors when launching HL2Ep1

[Model models/props_junk/metal_paintcan001b.mdl not found and models/error.mdl couldn't be loaded]
owned by paintcan...

update: Oh hey, now I'm down to a single error message reading:
[The instruction at "0x10813e2c" referenced memory at "0x0e5ca1a0". The memory could not be "read".]
I used to assume the popup came as a result of the not finding the metal_paintcan001b... apperently not

update#2: wow, second update in one day! I'm really moving forward!...kinda. now I only get
[failed to lock vertex buffer in CMeshDX8::LockVertexBuffer]

My computer isn't technically fit to run any form of HL2 and on...but it ran HL2, HL2EP2 and Portal almost without fail. EP1, however, deems the menu page unloadable.

update#3(also known as downdate#1): Back to paintcan failure.