Windows XP won't boot up

First, thanks for taking the time to read this.

Last night I shut off my computer, come back this morning turn it on an it heads to the windows XP setup menu. Im thinking what the heck? I reboot and it brings me back to the same menu. I try booting without the XP Disc in the drive (kept it in there from the last time I reformatted lol) and it tells me I need to install an OS.

Tried to do an in place reinstallation but it didn't recognize there already being an OS installed, after rebooting from that failed attempt im now getting an NTLDR is missing error, which im being old is the boot.ini and can be fixed by going into windows repair console except since this error I can not access that console no matter what I tell it to boot from.

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  1. I would check the BIOS settings to verify that it still sees your HDD, and that the boot HDD is selected as the first boot device. If it doesn't show those settings, reset them, save and exit the BIOS. If it boots to XP, then something happened that reset your BIOS, and you should be good to go. If it doesn't boot to XP, then your HDD may be failing, or has failed.
  2. I got this problem figured out, after I tried a couple of things I somehow got an NTLDR error message, when I fixed that it also fixed my main problem. Of course once I got back on, my seagate hard-drive was not showing so I figured out it was a problem with the 7200.11 series or something and im trying to update the firmware but its not going very well.

    Got the other HD unplugged and burned it to a disc and booted from it, I have he 6 options

    download firmware to (then the hard-drive serial #) x 3

    Scan ATA devices
    Read documentation and license agreement

    last time I selected A, it crashed.
  3. I solved the initial problem but im more trying now to find out what caused it so it doesn't happen.

    Woke up, turned on my computer and when I came back it was at the windows XP installation screen (had the windows disc in from when I reformatted) after some initial wtf I tried a few things like the recovery console etc but nothing seemed to work. Tried to do an in place reinstallation but it wasnt recognizing me even having XP installed. I rebooted once again and this time I got an NTLDR is missing error. Looked around and turned out its something to do with boot.ini

    Look around some more and figured out how to fix it, once this was fixed I could boot up into windows and everything was normal until I noticed my D: was missing (seagate barracuda, 7200.11 500GB) someone was telling me about firmware issues with that specific series of harddrives so I tried to update it but by that time it was gone and nothing I try has been able to get it recognized.

    Put it into another computer which left that computer unable to boot (could be because I used cables for my motherboard on that computer?) Is there anyway to save the hard-drive I have right now? Its still spinning.
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