After fresh XP install I get "ntldr is missing"

Archived from groups: alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt (More info?)

I "Googled" this error but what I dug up doesn't make any sense to me,
so I thought I'd ask for help here.

My dad's motherboard failed after we had a series of power fluxuations
in our town. I replaced it with a MSI KM4M-V motherboard. Dad had a
SATA WD GB Raptor, and an old 17gb WD IDE drive. I did a clean install
of Windows XP (and service pack 2) on the Raptor (w/NTFS file system).
Windows XP assigned the older drive as the C: drive and the newer Raptor
as D: drive. I didn't do anything to the older drive (it had a bunch of
old files backed up on it). It's also NTFS.

When the machine boots I get "ntldr is missing" prior to Windows XP
loading and it asks me to "control alt del". When I do this 2nd boot I
get a clean boot into Windows XP. Everything seems to work fine from
this point on (until I turn the machine on the next time and then I get
the "ntldr is missing" error again.

When I "Googled" on this error it appears that this happens when someone
is working with a "ghosted" drive. But I haven't ghosted anything.

Everything seems to work fine once I do the 2nd boot. Any ideas as to
what is messed up? Is there an easy way to fix this (without having to
reinstall XP again?).

Thanks in advance for any help you can give me.

- David Kistner
9 answers Last reply
More about after fresh install ntldr missing
  1. Archived from groups: alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt (More info?)

    On Sun, 02 Jan 2005 02:00:08 GMT, David Kistner
    <spamcatcher1@verizon.net> wrote:

    >I "Googled" this error but what I dug up doesn't make any sense to me,
    >so I thought I'd ask for help here.
    >
    >My dad's motherboard failed after we had a series of power fluxuations
    >in our town. I replaced it with a MSI KM4M-V motherboard. Dad had a
    >SATA WD GB Raptor, and an old 17gb WD IDE drive. I did a clean install
    >of Windows XP (and service pack 2) on the Raptor (w/NTFS file system).
    >Windows XP assigned the older drive as the C: drive and the newer Raptor
    >as D: drive. I didn't do anything to the older drive (it had a bunch of
    >old files backed up on it). It's also NTFS.
    >


    Wonder what would happen if you went into the disk administrator
    (right click on my computer and select manage and then click on disk
    management) and changed the d: to c: and c: to d:


    -
    --
    cnewton.remove-this@akaMail.com
    Anti-Spam filter in place--
    <delete .remove-this to respond to email>
  2. Archived from groups: alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt (More info?)

    This happens to the WinXP install disk once in a while.
    When you first start the install and hit F6 to load the
    SATA driver(s) .. and then you get to the point where
    it sees the 2 drives ... you have to carefully note whether
    they are assigned the proper drive letters C for the C-
    drive, and D for the D-drive. Note, you can't undo this
    later after the install because you can't reassign the
    c-drive. What you have to do is .. right then .. delete
    the new primary drive which has accidently been
    assigned the drive letter D. Again create the partition,
    and it should come back as the C-drive. Also, remember
    this, don't put that IDE drive on IDE #1. You have to
    leave that blank in order for the SATA to be the
    primary drive. You don't need that 17gig drive either
    unless you are trying to slave it, and recover data ??
    You have to put it on IDE #2 at any rate, and there
    goes your cd and zip drives, unless you don't need
    a zip anymore. Then you are OK with IDE and CDRW
    slaved to it. Also, something else to watch for. A lot
    of times the mobo will be marked as SATA drives
    #0, and #1. Several times I have put the SATA on
    #1 thinking that was the primary controller. That will
    get goofey for sure.

    johns
  3. Archived from groups: alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt (More info?)

    Curtis Newton wrote:

    > On Sun, 02 Jan 2005 02:00:08 GMT, David Kistner
    > <spamcatcher1@verizon.net> wrote:
    >
    >
    >>I "Googled" this error but what I dug up doesn't make any sense to me,
    >>so I thought I'd ask for help here.
    >>
    >>My dad's motherboard failed after we had a series of power fluxuations
    >>in our town. I replaced it with a MSI KM4M-V motherboard. Dad had a
    >>SATA WD GB Raptor, and an old 17gb WD IDE drive. I did a clean install
    >>of Windows XP (and service pack 2) on the Raptor (w/NTFS file system).
    >>Windows XP assigned the older drive as the C: drive and the newer Raptor
    >>as D: drive. I didn't do anything to the older drive (it had a bunch of
    >>old files backed up on it). It's also NTFS.
    >>
    >
    >
    >
    > Wonder what would happen if you went into the disk administrator
    > (right click on my computer and select manage and then click on disk
    > management) and changed the d: to c: and c: to d:

    What'll happen is there won't even be the option to change drive letter and
    path for whichever drive is the system drive and the other one(s) will be
    changeable to anything other than the system drive.
  4. Archived from groups: alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt (More info?)

    > (right click on my computer and select manage and then click on disk
    > management) and changed the d: to c: and c: to d:

    I wish. You get an error message that WinXP can't
    reassign the primary boot partition.

    johns
  5. Archived from groups: alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt (More info?)

    David Kistner wrote:

    > I "Googled" this error but what I dug up doesn't make any sense to me,
    > so I thought I'd ask for help here.
    >
    > My dad's motherboard failed after we had a series of power fluxuations
    > in our town. I replaced it with a MSI KM4M-V motherboard. Dad had a
    > SATA WD GB Raptor, and an old 17gb WD IDE drive. I did a clean install
    > of Windows XP (and service pack 2) on the Raptor (w/NTFS file system).
    > Windows XP assigned the older drive as the C: drive and the newer Raptor
    > as D: drive. I didn't do anything to the older drive (it had a bunch of
    > old files backed up on it). It's also NTFS.
    >
    > When the machine boots I get "ntldr is missing" prior to Windows XP
    > loading and it asks me to "control alt del". When I do this 2nd boot I
    > get a clean boot into Windows XP. Everything seems to work fine from
    > this point on (until I turn the machine on the next time and then I get
    > the "ntldr is missing" error again.
    >
    > When I "Googled" on this error it appears that this happens when someone
    > is working with a "ghosted" drive. But I haven't ghosted anything.
    >
    > Everything seems to work fine once I do the 2nd boot. Any ideas as to
    > what is messed up? Is there an easy way to fix this (without having to
    > reinstall XP again?).
    >
    > Thanks in advance for any help you can give me.
    >
    > - David Kistner

    Hard to tell without having seen how everything was done but it sounds to
    me, because of the 'old' drive, like the system is confused about which is
    the boot and system drive.

    Btw, the 'ntldr is missing' typically means it can't find whatever it
    thinks it's supposed to be booting. That can be caused by the boot pointing
    to the wrong partition, the partition not being primary, the partition not
    marked active, missing driver for the disk controller, or a problem with
    the boot/system files. So the first thing would be to check for those
    'normal' kinds of problems.

    What concerns me is the 'old' drive, which I imagine has a bootable system
    for the old motherboard, and how you did the fresh install. It's apparent
    you had the old drive in the system when you did it, since it was detected
    as C, and that, an existing system drive, can cause problems because
    Windows NT/XP serializes the drives and they remain the drive letter
    they're initially given even when moved from master to slave, or from one
    IDE channel to another (although I'm not sure how that plays out when the
    motherboard has changed). Also, I don't know how you did the install, or
    what XP decided to 'automatically figure out' about the old and new drives
    but an existing installation of some sort in there may have caused XP to be
    confused about which is boot and system, not to mention your motherboard
    may be booting 'the wrong one' (although I'm not sure why, or if, that
    would change for the subsequent reboot).


    Point is, there's a lot of 'possible problems'.

    What I'd suggest is to remove the old drive and see how the system boots to
    try and eliminate it from the potential problems list. If it boots up
    'right', first time and every time, with the old drive removed then that
    wold suggest the motherboard (BIOS) is not set properly and is trying to
    boot from the old one when it's there. If it won't boot at all, giving the
    same 'ntldr is missing' message all the time when the old drive is out of
    the system, then that would suggest XP thinks at least part of the system
    is ON the old drive and that's why it's confused during bootup. If it
    behaves exactly the same way then that could suggest a spin up time delay
    problem on the SATA channel so that it fails on the first 'fly through'
    boot attempt because the SATA drive is not yet up to speed but by the time
    you get around to ctrl-alt-del it's had time to spin up.
  6. Archived from groups: alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt (More info?)

    David Kistner <spamcatcher1@verizon.net> wrote:

    >I "Googled" this error but what I dug up doesn't make any sense to
    >me, so I thought I'd ask for help here.
    >My dad's motherboard failed after we had a series of power
    >fluxuations in our town. I replaced it with a MSI KM4M-V
    >motherboard. Dad had a SATA WD GB Raptor, and an old 17gb WD IDE
    >drive. I did a clean install of Windows XP (and service pack 2) on
    >the Raptor (w/NTFS file system). Windows XP assigned the older
    >drive as the C: drive and the newer Raptor as D: drive. I didn't
    >do anything to the older drive (it had a bunch of old files backed
    >up on it). It's also NTFS.
    >When the machine boots I get "ntldr is missing" prior to Windows XP
    >loading and it asks me to "control alt del". When I do this 2nd
    >boot I get a clean boot into Windows XP. Everything seems to work
    >fine from this point on (until I turn the machine on the next time
    >and then I get the "ntldr is missing" error again.
    >When I "Googled" on this error it appears that this happens when
    >someone is working with a "ghosted" drive. But I haven't ghosted
    >anything.
    >Everything seems to work fine once I do the 2nd boot. Any ideas as
    >to what is messed up? Is there an easy way to fix this (without
    >having to reinstall XP again?).
    >Thanks in advance for any help you can give me.

    First, make sure you have a backup of all important files. If you
    don't already, take the time to do that immediately after you get
    into Windows next time.

    You might have to reinstall on the new drive before hooking up the
    old drive. That's more or less a guess. I have done some tricky
    things with a disk manager (PartitionMagic) in Windows XP and have
    run into such errors. They are tricky errors.

    You might get a great answer here but you might want to ask in the
    storage group also.

    Good luck.
  7. Archived from groups: alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt (More info?)

    johns wrote:
    > This happens to the WinXP install disk once in a while.
    > When you first start the install and hit F6 to load the
    > SATA driver(s) .. and then you get to the point where
    > it sees the 2 drives ... you have to carefully note whether
    > they are assigned the proper drive letters C for the C-
    > drive, and D for the D-drive. Note, you can't undo this
    > later after the install because you can't reassign the
    > c-drive. What you have to do is .. right then .. delete
    > the new primary drive which has accidently been
    > assigned the drive letter D. Again create the partition,
    > and it should come back as the C-drive. Also, remember
    > this, don't put that IDE drive on IDE #1. You have to
    > leave that blank in order for the SATA to be the
    > primary drive. You don't need that 17gig drive either
    > unless you are trying to slave it, and recover data ??
    > You have to put it on IDE #2 at any rate, and there
    > goes your cd and zip drives, unless you don't need
    > a zip anymore. Then you are OK with IDE and CDRW
    > slaved to it. Also, something else to watch for. A lot
    > of times the mobo will be marked as SATA drives
    > #0, and #1. Several times I have put the SATA on
    > #1 thinking that was the primary controller. That will
    > get goofey for sure.
    >
    > johns
    >
    >
    Thank you very much (and thanks to everyone who responded to this thread).

    I'll try this and report back to this thread with the results (in case
    someone else ever runs into the same problem). The reason I want to use
    the older drive is for keeping a backup. My dad mostly uses this
    computer for browsing the Internet, and he creates a few (very few) Word
    documents. He uses web mail too. For backups I thought I'd store an
    Acronis drive image of the primary drive on the old 17gb drive, and then
    disconnect it (but leave it in the drive cage)and then periodically back
    up his documents on CD-Rom. Then if his computer ever died like it did
    recently due to the power fluctuations, I should have a good image to
    use to restore from, and then I could simply copy his Word documents
    from the most recent CD-Rom backup. I thought that if the older disk
    drive was disconnected entirely from the mb and power it should be
    pretty safe).

    Does this sound ok to you? Or am I missing something? Thanks again for
    your help.

    - David Kistner
  8. Archived from groups: alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt (More info?)

    > Does this sound ok to you? Or am I missing something?

    Sounds fine to me. It's just that I prefer doing the
    simplest thing. If you split the new drive C and D,
    making the C drive where you do most of your
    work, and push images to the D drive, then in the
    case of a crash or virus, you can restore the D image
    with floppies. If you also push the docs over there,
    they will be fairly safe too. I keep my favorites, email
    and downloads over there too. I like a 160 gig drive
    with the C set to 60, and D to 100. Right now, I have
    about 20gigs of program and data on C, and I update
    my image about once a month to D ( at about 12 gig ),
    and copy over backups of email and docs too.
    I've done this for the last 4 years, and I've recovered
    from every screwup I've encountered ... so far. Also
    I maintain several CAD labs, and I use imaging in those
    labs to recover from what the average college student
    can do to a computer :-) I can reimage my way out
    of vandalism at 300 meg / min ( total 15 minutes ) at
    work, and on my AMD64 I can reimage at 1500 meg
    per minutes ... 20 gigs in less than 15 minutes. Nice!
    I use PowerQuest Drive Image 2002 .. which has
    gone out of business ... sold to Norton. So I suppose
    Norton Ghost is the way to go now.

    johns
  9. Archived from groups: alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt (More info?)

    "johns" <johns123xxx@xxxmoscow.com> wrote:

    >> Does this sound ok to you? Or am I missing something?

    >Sounds fine to me.

    What sounds fine to you johns.

    >It's just that I prefer doing the simplest thing. If you split the
    >new drive C and D, making the C drive where you do most of your
    >work, and push images to the D drive, then in the
    >case of a crash or virus, you can restore the D image
    >with floppies.

    You can do that on the same drive too. I don't think any virus
    writers consider other partitions, especially not hidden partitions.

    >If you also push the docs over there,
    >they will be fairly safe too. I keep my favorites, email
    >and downloads over there too. I like a 160 gig drive
    >with the C set to 60, and D to 100. Right now, I have
    >about 20gigs of program and data on C, and I update
    >my image about once a month to D ( at about 12 gig ),
    >and copy over backups of email and docs too.

    Backups off of the hard disk drive should be more frequent than one
    month, in my opinion.

    >I've done this for the last 4 years, and I've recovered
    >from every screwup I've encountered ... so far. Also
    >I maintain several CAD labs, and I use imaging in those
    >labs to recover from what the average college student
    >can do to a computer :-) I can reimage my way out
    >of vandalism at 300 meg / min ( total 15 minutes ) at
    >work, and on my AMD64 I can reimage at 1500 meg
    >per minutes ... 20 gigs in less than 15 minutes. Nice!
    >I use PowerQuest Drive Image 2002 .. which has
    >gone out of business ... sold to Norton. So I suppose
    >Norton Ghost is the way to go now.

    Lots more people should do that, parents too, in my opinion. I use
    PartitionMagic on Windows XP for the same thing, except the
    backup is hidden on the same drive. The restore can quickly be done
    using the original bootable program CD. However, it is (for me) a
    little tricky in Windows XP though.


    >
    >johns
    >
    >
    >
    >
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    >From: "johns" <johns123xxx @xxxmoscow.com>
    >Newsgroups: alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt
    >Subject: Re: After fresh XP install I get "ntldr is missing"
    >Date: Sun, 2 Jan 2005 14:12:04 -0800
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