MBR problem or loader problem?

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

The WinXP boot manager on my archive HD says it can't find an
operating system to load, but the primary partition that contains it
is visible and it looks intact, and the boot.ini file in the active partition
"points" to the partition that contains the OS. Is this an MBR problem
or a ntloader problem. How can one fix it? Basically, I have this
archived WinXP system that I can't boot load.

*TimDaniels*
6 answers Last reply
More about problem loader problem
  1. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

    There are two messages in the MBR: Error & Missing operating system. Both
    indicate problems with the partition boot sector, or perhaps CHS incorrect.

    "Timothy Daniels" <TDaniels@NoSpamDot.com> wrote in message
    news:WsydndX9X99jAT_cRVn-2w@comcast.com...
    > The WinXP boot manager on my archive HD says it can't find an
    > operating system to load, but the primary partition that contains it
    > is visible and it looks intact, and the boot.ini file in the active partition
    > "points" to the partition that contains the OS. Is this an MBR problem
    > or a ntloader problem. How can one fix it? Basically, I have this
    > archived WinXP system that I can't boot load.
    >
    > *TimDaniels*
  2. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

    What utitlity can one use to restore the MBR, and where can one find it?
    (I have the WinXP Pro CD that I used to install the original OS.)

    *TimDaniels*


    "Eric Gisin" wrote:
    > There are two messages in the MBR: Error & Missing operating system. Both
    > indicate problems with the partition boot sector, or perhaps CHS incorrect.
    >
    > "Timothy Daniels" wrote:
    >> The WinXP boot manager on my archive HD says it can't find an
    >> operating system to load, but the primary partition that contains it
    >> is visible and it looks intact, and the boot.ini file in the active partition
    >> "points" to the partition that contains the OS. Is this an MBR problem
    >> or a ntloader problem. How can one fix it? Basically, I have this
    >> archived WinXP system that I can't boot load.
  3. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

    The MBR is fine, the active partition has a bad boot sector.

    "Timothy Daniels" <TDaniels@NoSpamDot.com> wrote in message
    news:KPSdnRCUPIXhRz_cRVn-rQ@comcast.com...
    > What utitlity can one use to restore the MBR, and where can one find it?
    > (I have the WinXP Pro CD that I used to install the original OS.)
    >
  4. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

    "Timothy Daniels" <TDaniels@NoSpamDot.com> wrote:

    > What utitlity can one use to restore the MBR, and where can one find it?
    > (I have the WinXP Pro CD that I used to install the original OS.)

    Top posters usually deserve capital punishment. Thus losing access to
    partitions is a light sentence, compared. ;) There is no need to "restore the
    MBR" if you can see all partitions. Unless you insist on risking to lose
    access.

    > "Eric Gisin" wrote:
    > > There are two messages in the MBR: Error & Missing operating system. Both
    > > indicate problems with the partition boot sector, or perhaps CHS incorrect.
    > >
    > > "Timothy Daniels" wrote:
    > >> The WinXP boot manager on my archive HD says it can't find an
    > >> operating system to load, but the primary partition that contains it
    > >> is visible and it looks intact, and the boot.ini file in the active partition
    > >> "points" to the partition that contains the OS. Is this an MBR problem
    > >> or a ntloader problem. How can one fix it? Basically, I have this
    > >> archived WinXP system that I can't boot load.

    Would you mind repeating the exact phrasing of the error message? I can't
    remember a message "can't find an operating system to load", unless you use some
    obscure boot manager. Would you mind telling us what boot manager do you use?
    Also, why do you use a boot manager? Do you have dual boot, or multiple OS boot
    capability? To what operating systems? Under which one you can "see" the
    primary partition? How many partitions are there? Do you see them all (except
    the primary one, which you already informed us that you see)? Under what boot
    conditions / OS?

    The XP repair console has a couple of tools, FIXMBR and FIXBOOT, but I wouldn't
    recommend trying them before having fully assessed your problem, as these tools
    could easily transform a simple problem into full blown disaster, given the
    appropriate conditions.

    Zvi
    --
    NetZ Computing Ltd. ISRAEL www.invircible.com www.ivi.co.il (Hebrew)
    InVircible Virus Defense Solutions, ResQ and Data Recovery Utilities
  5. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

    "Zvi Netiv" wrote:
    > [.....] Would you mind telling us what boot manager do you use?

    Windows XP's.

    > Also, why do you use a boot manager?

    I boot between various WinXPs with different configurations.

    > Do you have dual boot, or multiple OS boot capability?

    Multiple.

    > To what operating systems?

    All WinXP.

    > Under which one you can "see" the primary partition?

    The one in the HD that doesn't have the booting problem.

    > How many partitions are there?

    1 on the "good" HD, 3 on the "bad" HD.

    > Do you see them all (except the primary one, which you already
    > informed us that you see)?

    I see them all using the OS booted from the "good" HD.
    They are all primary partitions.

    > Under what boot conditions / OS?

    When I use the "good" HD (which runs WinXP).

    > The XP repair console has a couple of tools, FIXMBR and
    > FIXBOOT, but I wouldn't recommend trying them before
    > having fully assessed your problem, as these tools could easily
    > transform a simple problem into full blown disaster, given the
    > appropriate conditions.


    Thanks for your questions to clarify the situation. I fixed the
    problem. The "active" partition had been the one that I had
    deleted from the 2nd HD, and I hadn't designated another partition
    on the 2nd HD to be the "active" one. Once I set one of the
    other partitions to be "active" and also adjusted the parameters
    in the boot.ini file on that partition, I could load the OS from any
    partition on the 2nd HD.

    In all this, though, I had never been able to locate the repair
    or recovery console on the WinXP installation CD. How does
    one access it:?

    *TimDaniels*
  6. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

    "Timothy Daniels" <TDaniels@NoSpamDot.com> wrote:
    > "Zvi Netiv" wrote:

    > > [.....] Would you mind telling us what boot manager do you use?
    >
    > Windows XP's.
    >
    > > Also, why do you use a boot manager?
    >
    > I boot between various WinXPs with different configurations.

    Since they all run under XP then it's much simpler to create several "users",
    each one with its own profile. It's also more economical disk-space wise (no
    need for separate XP installations).

    [...]

    > > The XP repair console has a couple of tools, FIXMBR and
    > > FIXBOOT, but I wouldn't recommend trying them before
    > > having fully assessed your problem, as these tools could easily
    > > transform a simple problem into full blown disaster, given the
    > > appropriate conditions.
    >
    > Thanks for your questions to clarify the situation. I fixed the
    > problem. The "active" partition had been the one that I had
    > deleted from the 2nd HD, and I hadn't designated another partition
    > on the 2nd HD to be the "active" one. Once I set one of the
    > other partitions to be "active" and also adjusted the parameters
    > in the boot.ini file on that partition, I could load the OS from any
    > partition on the 2nd HD.
    >
    > In all this, though, I had never been able to locate the repair
    > or recovery console on the WinXP installation CD. How does
    > one access it:?

    Pay attention to the messages displayed when booting XP from the setup CD-ROM.
    At some stage you'll see something of the sort "press "R" to repair .... etc.".
    Pressing the R key will bring you to the repair console (command line). This is
    from where you can run FIXMBR and FIXBOOT.

    Regards

    --
    NetZ Computing Ltd. ISRAEL www.invircible.com www.ivi.co.il (Hebrew)
    InVircible Virus Defense Solutions, ResQ and Data Recovery Utilities
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