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Reboot and select proper boot device

Last response: in Windows 7
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August 1, 2012 6:55:03 AM

I'm sorry, I'm new to the whole forum thing so I'm hoping I didn't post this in the wrong area. I'm just hoping someone can help. I'm fairly sure people have posted about this problem before but I can't seem to find any threads or help regarding my problem specifically.

As the topic title suggests I'm getting the message " Reboot and select proper boot device or insert boot media in selected boot device and press a key" upon starting up my computer. This happened randomly after I was torrenting something, I heard the torrent finish, fell asleep for an hour and when I woke up my computer was off. Don't know why. Turned on the computer and got this message.
I've tried a few things based on the advice of others like clearing CMOS, tinkering with the BIOS and using Diskpart to make a specific partition "active" which is where I ran into some weird problems.

First off, it seems like according to my BIOS my computer recognizes both of my SATA hard drives and my DVD drive. The boot device priority was in the correct order and I tried tinkering with that to no avail. But it does show up. I've been running my computer and trying things out now with rather only the primary SATA HD hooked up or with the DVD drive as well (when trying to use the recovery disk).

The odd part though is when I tried using the recovery disk to access the command prompt and try out diskpart, I found out that I had no partitions? I was following steps to make it "active" and when I got to typing "list partition" after "selecting disk 0" I got a message saying the disk had no partitions which I found odd cos I was using the computer a few hours ago off of that very hard drive...

Is this off or am I missing something? Does anyone else have something I can try cos this is driving me nuts.
a b $ Windows 7
August 1, 2012 6:58:57 AM

My first thought, is that you downloaded something nasty. You can try booting off your OS disc, and repairing your install. Your boot files may have been damaged.
August 1, 2012 7:09:06 AM

I was trying to repair those as well via "bootrec" I think? I can't do anything about it cos there's nothing there to fix according to the command prompt. Again, for some reason it seems like any and all partitions are missing from my primary HD....
I figures I could've DLed something wicked, my fault for being hasty and unsafe but still I'd like to get this resolved and I don't want to attempt a clean reformatting until it's absolutely necessary....
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August 1, 2012 7:13:11 AM

Plus I can't find my Win7 disk.........I had to make a repair disk from a different computer. So yeah that option might be out for now...
a b $ Windows 7
August 1, 2012 7:14:29 AM

You don't need to do anything via command prompt. Boot off the Win7 disc, and run the startup repair. It'll repair your boot files.
a b $ Windows 7
August 1, 2012 7:20:26 AM

If you don't have a win7 disc, can you at least boot to safe mode with command prompt? If yes, run:
rstrui.exe

If you have system restore enabled, this will allow you to restore to before your OS was damaged.
August 1, 2012 7:24:57 AM

I think I've tried a system restore with the repair CD (which failed, I got some error and it didn't even start) but I've never tried booting to safe mode through the command prompt (mainly cos I don't know how and the only way I know how to access the command prompt is through the repair disk)
August 1, 2012 7:28:11 AM

And I've never touched system restore before...another mistake I realize...so unless Win7 automatically creates system restore points for me I doubt I'd have anything to go back to. I'm try to find a copy of Win7 but until then, anything else I can try would be extremely helpful.
a b $ Windows 7
August 1, 2012 7:41:23 AM

You can try to use the command prompt off the recovery CD. You'll need to change the directory to the C: drive, and then use the command listed above.

To access safe mode with command prompt, you usually have to tap the F8 key during startup. However, if it's not recognizing your install, it's not likely going to boot into any of the safe mode options.

Bottom line, is you really need a win7 disc.
a b $ Windows 7
August 1, 2012 7:55:23 AM

As i remember system restore is automatically enabled in win 7, as long as u didn't disable it manually...

the one concern me is "no partition part" it only happen if MBR is broken (some virus can do that) or the hdd is failing
August 1, 2012 8:11:20 AM

rdc85 said:
As i remember system restore is automatically enabled in win 7, as long as u didn't disable it manually...

the one concern me is "no partition part" it only happen if MBR is broken (some virus can do that) or the hdd is failing



Pretty sure I didn't disable it, and I don't know if mbr is broken but I have tried a command prompt line: "bootrec/fixmbr" and it didn't do anything. I can't remember exactly what happened but I believe it had something to do with it just no being there.
I'm hoping the Hard drive isn't crapping out on me...that would suck.
a b $ Windows 7
August 1, 2012 8:31:52 AM

rdc85 said:
As i remember system restore is automatically enabled in win 7, as long as u didn't disable it manually...

the one concern me is "no partition part" it only happen if MBR is broken (some virus can do that) or the hdd is failing


You are correct on the system restore. But yes, the problem is if the boot files are damaged. The hard drive could be damaged, but being that it was just after downloading a torrent, my bet is that it's damaged system files.
August 1, 2012 8:40:50 AM

Okay so I got a hold of a Win7 OS disk and when I went into the repair option it was no different than the repair/recovery disk I used earlier. I get the option to repair windows but it asks me to select an operating system to repair (with what I'm assuming is a list underneath) but there's nothing there. Nothing to select, as if there was no OS installed in the first place....(I'm guessing this goes hand in hand with me not being able to find a partition with diskpart)

I can try to do a clean install but I'm hoping to avoid that just cos I don't want to lose most of what I have on that hard drive. (Or at least what WAS on there before...)

Suggestions? :T
August 1, 2012 8:46:38 AM

I kind of jumped the gun on my last post, it seems I was able to use "System Repair" on a window that comes up after the previous mentioned window (where they ask me to select an operating system). I assumed it would be no different cos this window (which is the same window I used to access the command prompt before) didn't take me anywhere with the recovery disk even after selecting System Repair. I'm running System repair now as I type, I guess it had something the recovery disk didn't? Maybe it'll work this time, I'll keep this thread updated on how it turns out.

*crosses fingers*
August 1, 2012 7:23:34 PM

So update:
I fell asleep part way into the startup repair and it apparently kept running all night (I was positive nothing should take that long) so I turned the computer off, ran it again and got the message :
"Startup repair cannot repair this computer automatically" Within two minutes of starting no less......

Any other suggestions? Or is it time I try installing a clean copy of my OS?
a b $ Windows 7
August 1, 2012 9:34:30 PM

Try running it manually with the steps here:
Put the Windows Vista or Windows 7 installation disc in the disc drive, and then start the computer.
Press a key when you are prompted.
Select a language, a time, a currency, a keyboard or an input method, and then click Next.
Click Repair your computer.
Click the operating system that you want to repair, and then click Next.
In the System Recovery Options dialog box, click Command Prompt.
Type Bootrec.exe, and then press ENTER.


It it will recognize and run that command, then you can use the recovery options here to try to manually repair the BCD.
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/927392
August 1, 2012 9:46:09 PM

aford10 said:
Try running it manually with the steps here:
Put the Windows Vista or Windows 7 installation disc in the disc drive, and then start the computer.
Press a key when you are prompted.
Select a language, a time, a currency, a keyboard or an input method, and then click Next.
Click Repair your computer.
Click the operating system that you want to repair, and then click Next.
In the System Recovery Options dialog box, click Command Prompt.
Type Bootrec.exe, and then press ENTER.


It it will recognize and run that command, then you can use the recovery options here to try to manually repair the BCD.
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/927392



I'm going to try this but I'm not hopeful. Like I've said before the windows that pops up asking to select an OS comes up with nothing below it. No OS to select but I have been able to get past it to the menu that has the command prompt. I'll get back to you in a few minutes after I try this out.
August 1, 2012 10:25:00 PM

I tried what you recommended aford10, and typed in bootrec.exe. It gave me a list of options/lines so I type in bootrec/rebuildbcd and I got a message telling me there were no copies of windows even installed.

So I said eff it, maybe whatever happened to my computer just wiped the drive. So I gave in and tried to initiate a clean install, when it asks me where to install windows 7 it says that no drives are detected....
a b $ Windows 7
August 1, 2012 10:50:49 PM

No drives are detected, but the BIOS recognizes your hard drive?
August 1, 2012 10:59:47 PM

aford10 said:
No drives are detected, but the BIOS recognizes your hard drive?


Yeah...weird, huh? Recognizes it's model and everything.
August 1, 2012 11:01:28 PM

When I try to go back into diskpart via the commandprompt I'm getting similar results now. Says there's no disk.
August 1, 2012 11:08:20 PM

Started actually getting this message on boot. Goes to a AMI screen and says at the very bottom:
"4th Master Hard disk: S.M.A.R.T. Command Failed
Press F1 to resume"
a b $ Windows 7
August 1, 2012 11:12:13 PM

If it's failing the SMART test, your HDD has failed. You can go to the manufacturer's website, and download their HDD tool, to test it.
August 1, 2012 11:19:15 PM

aford10 said:
If it's failing the SMART test, your HDD has failed. You can go to the manufacturer's website, and download their HDD tool, to test it.


I looked up a test program for my HDD and was only given a .exe download, which I'm guessing can only be used if I can even boot up in the first place? Is it safe to assume this Hard drive has crapped out on me and that I need to replace it or is there a chance to recover whatever was on it?
a b $ Windows 7
August 1, 2012 11:53:47 PM

If it can't run off a flash drive, you would need another HD to boot up, to then check your HD.
August 2, 2012 12:36:10 AM

aford10 said:
If it can't run off a flash drive, you would need another HD to boot up, to then check your HD.


Installed the testing tool or whatever onto a different computer, hooked up the faulty HD to said computer and it didn't recognize it. Meaning when it went to scan for the HDs it found the HD the OS on this computer was installed on which was made by a different company and that was it. Meaning it seems that the only time I can get a computer to recognize this HD is when I go into the BIOS. Other than that it doesn't show up when looking for it in "My Computer" when hooked up to a problemless computer nor does it find it when I'm trying to repair it or newly install windows via booting with a Win7 DVD....

Best solution

a b $ Windows 7
August 2, 2012 12:43:21 AM
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Unfortunately, it sounds like it's borked.
a b $ Windows 7
August 2, 2012 12:44:20 AM

If you replace it with another hard drive, you could still try to connect it as a slave drive, and see if it will recognize it, and let you pull anything off it.
August 2, 2012 12:45:32 AM

I figured as much...sigh. Gonna dig around and see if I have a spare HD I can use. If everything looks okay afterwards i'll probably be heading out to buy a new HD. Will keep ya updated.
a b $ Windows 7
August 2, 2012 1:11:34 AM

Good news is, you can pick up a fairly decent sized SSD for $150.
August 2, 2012 9:20:25 AM

Best answer selected by xbigbryan.
August 2, 2012 9:21:26 AM

Thanks a bunch, I'm using an old slave drive for the time being which is proving to be sufficient. I hate that I have to start from scratch but whatever, my computer works for now.
Thanks again for everything!
!