NTLDR is missing

I recently 'upgraded' an old P4 home-built system with a faster but older MSI K8T mainboard with PC3200 memory and a Western Digital Caviar Blue 640GB 7200 RPM SATA HD. I installed the SATA software so the system could see it, then proceeded to do a WinXP Home slipstreamed install using nLite software. The install failed because it could not unpack a file (sorry- did not write down the error), and when it rebooted, I had the error 'NTLDR is missing- press Ctrl-Alt-Del to reboot'. CMOS, of course, does not see the HD since it's SATA and not IDE. I attempted another install using the OEM Windows CD. When it boots to CD and the XP installation blue screen dialog comes up, it tells me that I do not have a hard drive installed. All cables are correctly connected and it's correctly jumpered because the SATA BIOS sees the drive on POST, before the CMOS displays. Microsoft's advice is to make a NTLDR boot disk and copy the files to the drive, but obviously I can't do that if Windows XP Setup does not see it. I don't know how to get around this problem at this point.
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  1. Dekeman said:
    I recently 'upgraded' an old P4 home-built system with a faster but older MSI K8T mainboard with PC3200 memory and a Western Digital Caviar Blue 640GB 7200 RPM SATA HD. I installed the SATA software so the system could see it, then proceeded to do a WinXP Home slipstreamed install using nLite software. The install failed because it could not unpack a file (sorry- did not write down the error), and when it rebooted, I had the error 'NTLDR is missing- press Ctrl-Alt-Del to reboot'. CMOS, of course, does not see the HD since it's SATA and not IDE. I attempted another install using the OEM Windows CD. When it boots to CD and the XP installation blue screen dialog comes up, it tells me that I do not have a hard drive installed. All cables are correctly connected and it's correctly jumpered because the SATA BIOS sees the drive on POST, before the CMOS displays. Microsoft's advice is to make a NTLDR boot disk and copy the files to the drive, but obviously I can't do that if Windows XP Setup does not see it. I don't know how to get around this problem at this point.


    When you booted from the Windows XP CD, did you press F6 to provide a SATA driver? XP setup won't see the drive unless you do so.

    Casey
  2. The other option you can do is go into the BIOS, and set the SATA from AHCI to IDE. When the SATA is set to IDE, XP sees it as an IDE drive, so don't need to worry about drivers.
  3. cklaubur said:
    When you booted from the Windows XP CD, did you press F6 to provide a SATA driver? XP setup won't see the drive unless you do so.

    Casey


    I did not use the F6 option the first time, as Windows found the drive. It's the aborted install that messed up the drive contents, so there's an incomplete install on there, and I imagine it's missing some necessary files. What do you think of running the recovery console within the setup disc? I'm not sure it'll even see the drive.

    runswindows95- is the SATA set from AHCI to IDE in the motherboard BIOS or the SATA BIOS? If I do that, do I lose SATA throughput rates since the BIOS thinks it's a PATA IDE?
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