Formated HDD and now can't boot XP

April 7, 2009 at 12:16:36
Specs: Windows Vista
I've had Vista on C drive and I installed XP on my second HDD but now I formated my C drive and removed Vista since I only wanted XP but now can't boot in it at all. I reinstalled vista and I can see my XP still on HDD and all but I just can't access it.

Worst thing is I lost my damn XP cd and don't know what to do.

Can anyone please help, I think it's just some simple thing where I need to make it so XP can be booted.


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#1
April 7, 2009 at 13:28:36
When you installed Windows XP the system files, boot.ini, ntdetect and ntldr went onto drive C: where Vista was installed. In fact it used the same files as Vista. When you formatted drive C: you deleted these files. Now there is nothing to get Windows XP started.

You can modify boot.ini and add an entry to point to the Windows XP installation and it will come up as a dual boot configuration. You will find boot.ini in the root folder of drive C:/ It is a hidden file. XP has a facility to modify boot.ini without messing about with unhiding boot.ini. I imagine Vista has something similar.

If you want to get red of Vista just boot Into XP and delete the Vista installation leaving the system files intact.

If you had the Windows XP CD this would be a five minute job from the recovery console.

Stuart


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#2
April 7, 2009 at 14:24:25
Yeah, I get it now how screwed it up but...

I can't find boot.ini in C or on XP's D.
I have no idea how to make it dual boot again.
Is there way to create boot.ini or just how to do dual boot now from Vista with XP installed on other HDD?

Also if I manage to find XP cd just run fixmbr right?
And once I get it up and running I'll want to format C again lol and how exactly do I format it then?

Thanks for help, much appriciated.

P.S. Trying to get XP cd now but will take a whiiiileeeee so been googling for past few hours but :(


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#3
April 7, 2009 at 14:58:31
boot.ini is just a plain text file. You can make one with Notepad. This should give you some pointers.

http://vlaurie.com/computers2/Artic...

>. Also if I manage to find XP cd just run fixmbr right? <<

No, fixBoot

You can copy the system files to drive D: then make drive D: your boot disk from the BIOS. Then you can format drive C:

Stuart


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Related Solutions

#4
April 7, 2009 at 15:30:58
"...I've had Vista on C drive and I installed XP on my second HDD..."

... Two different hard drives? OR . .2 partitions? on one drive?

... it'll be worth reading "Step 5" on link below:

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/933...

Grrrr
"...pentathol makes you sing like a canary"
... got brain freeze


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#5
April 7, 2009 at 15:32:25
Vista does not have a boot.ini file. It uses a different method of booting. If you want to dual boot Vista and XP having Vista already installed, check out this website:

http://www.syschat.com/dual-boot-vi...

The first post has multiple pages, so be sure read them all.


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#6
April 7, 2009 at 16:41:25
"You can modify boot.ini and add an entry to point to the Windows XP installation and it will come up as a dual boot configuration."

This file would be erased when C: is formatted.

"I imagine Vista has something similar."

No, Vista's bootloader is completely different from XP's.

">. Also if I manage to find XP cd just run fixmbr right? <<

No, fixBoot"

Actually, both fixmbr and fixboot. You run fixmbr first, then fixboot.

If you want to boot into XP, download Vista Boot Pro or EasyBCD.

EasyBCD: http://neosmart.net/dl.php?id=1

Vista Boot Pro: http://www.vistabootpro.org/

EasyBCD is free, Vista Boot Pro used to be but isn't any longer. Like Stuart said, this would be done in 5 minutes with the XP CD.

WinSimple Software


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#7
April 7, 2009 at 18:40:16
Ok guys, I managed to find XP cd.

I put it in, boot, press R and go to repair, wait and when it comes to choosing windows there are 2 options

C\Windows
D\Windows.0 < XP here

When I type 2 I can access it just fine, i did fixmrb and fixboot but nothing happens.
But when I try to access C and and it asks for password I can't continue since I don't have it. And I didn't even put damn password. Just pressing enter doesn't work. Tried admin, 123456 and easy ones but nothing works.
Think I have to access that windows folder and do fix stuff there right?

Also I do have EasyBCD but from Vista I can't make XP boot file. When I go to add partition is grayed and cant switch from C so it says it loads from C\ntldr, and later at boot it gives me error when I press that windows instead of vista.

Gaah, this all got too complicated, I've been killing myself to fix this for past couple(more like half of day) hours.

What to do next?


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#8
April 7, 2009 at 19:13:59
If the Recovery Console didn't respond to any passwords you entered, how were you able to do fixmbr and fixboot?

When you did fixboot, did you type fixboot c:?

WinSimple Software


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#9
April 7, 2009 at 19:18:23
When I selected first windows it wouldn't take password but second one with XP went with just enter...

Anyhow I had another smart idea -_-
I formatted C and deleted that partition and then did fixmbr and fixboot and it still wouldn't work. It said to put boot device or something like that.

I don't get it, whats the problem now? It still needs to have stuff on C for it to work?

Do I have to reinstall XP even though its there and it worked up to few hours ago?


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#10
April 7, 2009 at 19:45:59
Ok you deleted the C: partition and formatted it, and then did the fixmbr and fixboot and it still didn't work?

Try this, assuming that C: is partitioned and formatted and that Vista no longer exists on that partition.

At the recovery console, type fixmbr and press enter. Confirm all warnings, etc.

Next, type fixboot C: and press enter. Confirm all warnings again.

Next, type bootcfg /rebuild. It will scan your hard drive and will look for Windows NT 4/2000/XP and will ask you if you want to add what it finds to the boot.ini file. Select the Windows XP folder that it displays. When it says to add an item identifier, just type Windows XP and press enter. When it says "Enter Operating System Load Options" type /FASTDETECT and press enter.

WinSimple Software


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#11
April 7, 2009 at 21:45:42
Tried all that, only thing I managed to pull is to have ~5 stuff I can choose at that menu, but each give same error messege, 3 in fact. Don't quite remember it all, says something about configuration etc etc

Now I'm going to reinstall windows without loosing data if I can and see if that helps, if not I'll just install another XP on that C partition and see what happens...

Oh and another thing, my first HDD where C is located ( where vista was) is split in 2 partitions, C and E. Can I delete C there and add that extra space to E? Couldn't add with vista installer. Is it possible?

Bah, this got way too complicated, shouldn't have touched anything... Will post results later


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#12
April 8, 2009 at 00:17:11
"Can I delete C there and add that extra space to E? Couldn't add with vista installer. Is it possible?"

Not with the XP Installer. A livecd like GParted or a program like EaseUS Partition Manager would though.

WinSimple Software


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#13
April 8, 2009 at 06:31:18
Here's what I did so far

I installed windows again but it did not replace old one, it installed new one.

I found boot.ini file finnaly and edited it out.

Now when I try to log in my old windows my past "fixes" haunt me.
When it passes Windows loading screen it starts installing, or well it asks for ASMS file which cant be accessed from anywhere and Im stuck there. Cant cancel installation/
What am I supposed to do now?


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#14
April 8, 2009 at 08:34:35
New post since I fixed everything from previous and it's new question:

Ok guys, I finnaly managed to fix it all!
Edited boot line, somehow passed repair and it's all working now, no errors so far.

But now I want to fix this:

How do I safely delete the other Windows I installed on same HDD and partition without causing problems?
Now my C drive is gone, how do I make my D > C
Also all the stuff that is supposed to be on C(system files, boot etc) are on E.
How do I make it all normal, as in windows drive(d) becomes C with all system files and my 2nd hdd remains independent data storage?


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#15
April 8, 2009 at 12:37:49
"How do I safely delete the other Windows I installed on same HDD and partition"

Having 2 or more Windows installations on the same partition always causes problems unless one of the installations is Windows 9x.

Am I correct in saying that you no longer have a C drive, but just D and E drives?

"How do I make it all normal, as in windows drive(d) becomes C with all system files"

The only way I know of that this can be done is if you reinstall Windows, yet again. :( But in your current XP installation that you say works, go to Start>Control Panel>Administrative Tools>Computer Management. In the left hand pane, left-click on Disk Management. In the bottom pane, do you see "Unallocated Space" anywhere? If you did, it would probably be on the left side of D:. If you do, that means that whatever occupied your C drive is not formatted, which is why it doesn't show up as a drive letter in My Computer. Right-click on it and click Format... Go through the wizard and format it as NTFS. But to have Windows installed to C:, you'll have to reinstall XP again.

WinSimple Software


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#16
April 8, 2009 at 15:35:08
One more thing, now that I deleted extra windows when logging in I again have option screen and it got

MS Win XP pro and Windows default, with 2nd option leading to restart.

How do I make it just boot up without that menu? In boot file it's only 1 windows.


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#17
April 8, 2009 at 19:55:24
Boot into Windows, go to Start>Run, type msconfig and press enter. Click the BOOT.INI tab and click Check All Boot Paths.

WinSimple Software


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