Hello, I'm hoping someone can help.
I have an old Dell Dimension 3000 PC that was given me. It worked but I couldn't update the OS (Windows XP Home) suggesting a bogus system had been previous installed.
I have a XP Pro disc that I have used successfully elsewhere so I decided to try and install this OS and delete the existing.
All went well with the disc installation (included a complete hard drive disc re-format) but when it comes to the boot of the OS the system gets caught in a loop and a messages flashes up that reads
Invalid BOOT.INI file
Boot from C:\Windows\
so the bootup rejects the boot.ini and keeps trying and ends up in a loop.
I've got to Recovery using the installation disc again and to the prompt
C:/Windows> (slash might be other way around..)
and tried to edit 'bootcfg' using 'bootcfg /rebuild'.
I've now got four boot options under 'bootcfg /list' partly because of my fumbling, but there's only the one OS on the disc ie: XP Pro.
I don't understand why the bootup process doesn't stop and ask me which of the four boots I wish to use.
Your suspicions are correct! There is an option to delete all partitions before re-formatting and I didn't take this option, but rather the one that still appeared to re-format the whole disc but it's obviously not doing the same thing! My apologies. I've now got past the problem I had so I'll see how I get on now that the OS is installing.
Looks like that tiny partition was the cause of the problem. Once I deleted it and re-formatted the complete disc (raw) all went well and the PC is up and running and after a great deal of updating is now good!
The small partition that was on the HDD fooled me as the option to 're-format the disc' didn't remove it and as it was so small it looked to me like I was indeed re-formatting the whole disc not just 99.5% of it! Live and learn I guess.
My next challenge is another PC I have that works but HDD is very small and I have another to put in as a slave - both older PCs and both HDDs are IDE variety.
Many thanks for your help. I appreciate it. J.