NTLDR is missing. XP CD Cant find a drive!

Dell Vostro 1400 notebook
September 9, 2009 at 00:57:54
Specs: Windows XP Pro, ...
Ok so today I borrowed my parents lap top since my house computer fried. It had worked fine and I was using it today just browsing the internet. So I turn it off and plug it back in, I come back to check on it. It has a wierd screen on it, something about dell media I think, i'm then forced to restart, where the NTLRD file is missing, press any key to restart. I have looked into the problem quite a bit. I have a xp cd, and I can boot off the cd, the only problem though is it starts loading components on the cd, and then says it cant find a formatted partition. Soo basically it cant find that the hard drive is even there. I know some fixes for this problem, but I cant even acess the freaking xp cd. Does anyone know anything I could possibly do, short of burning a seperate cd with those files?(dont have acess to a burner right now). Please, anything helps. Thanks a lot.

See More: NTLDR is missing. XP CD Cant find a drive!

Report •


#1
September 9, 2009 at 00:59:58
Also I tried taking out and reseating the hard drive. That didnt do anything. And no there are no usb devices, or any type of cd's in the laptop causing these problems.

Report •

#2
September 9, 2009 at 05:40:56
Did you use correct procedure when shutting down the laptop? Look at the link below or Google for the phrase "NTLRD file is missing".

http://www.computerhope.com/issues/...


Report •

#3
September 9, 2009 at 06:59:43
It's been mis-spelled twice so far - NTLDR, not NTLRD
(NT LoaDeR)
........

You don't have to do this, but I recommend you do this. If your hard drive is failing you need to do something else rather than the procedure after this.

Check your hard drive with the manufacturer's diagnostics.
See the latter part of response 1 in this:
http://www.computing.net/windows95/...

(thanks to Dan Penny for this link:)
Hard Drive Diagnostics Tools and Utilities
http://www.tacktech.com/display.cfm...

If you don't have a floppy drive, you can get a CD image diagnostic utility from most hard drive manufacturer's web sites, but obviously you would need to make a burned CD, preferably a CD-R for best compatibilty, on another computer if you need to.

If the hard drive itself tests okay, any data problems found can be fixed, one way or another.

If you don't know which diagnostics to pick, Seagate's SeaTools will check any drive brand, but it can only attempt to repair Maxtor or Seagate hard drives.
................................................

It would be a good idea to print the rest of this.


If the hard drive tests okay...

If your hard drive is SATA and the mboard's bios is running the SATA controller(s) in SATA or AHCI mode, the XP CD will NOT find the SATA drive(s).
In that case, if you set the mboard's bios Setup to run the SATA controller(s) in IDE compatibilty mode or similar, then Setup / the CD / Recovery Console WILL find the SATA drive(s) and the Windows installation on the SATA drive.
.....

I'm assuming XP Pro is the version on both the laptop and the XP CD you're using.

Boot the laptop with the XP CD and choose to Repair Windows (press R) at the first screen you see after the initial files are loaded from the CD, which takes you to the black screen interface called the Recovery Console.

Recovery Console looks for Windows installations.
On a laptop usually it finds only one.
Type the number if the one you want to access.
E.g.
Usually it's 1. C:\Windows
(In some cases, it's C:\WINNT)
type 1, press Enter.

Then you see
Administrator Password:

- If there are no asterisks - "stars" - *'s - the upper case of 8 on your keyboard, there is no password - just press Enter.

- If there ARE asterisks, the password is the same as you normally use when you boot the computer into Safe mode and choose Administrator, then press Enter.
The case of the characters - upper or lower case letters - in the password has to be correct.
...

The commands used in the following fix several possible problems.


Type: chkdsk /r c: (press Enter).

That takes longer to run than chkdsk /f C: does in Windows itself (there is no chkdsk /f in the Recovery Console).

Type:

FIXMBR (press Enter) (answer Y for Yes)
FIXBOOT (Press Enter) (answer Y for Yes)
COPY x:\I386\NTLDR C:\ (Press Enter) (should say file copied or similar; I in I386 is captital i - you can use i386 instead)
COPY x:\I386\NTDETECT.COM C:\ (Press Enter) (answer Y for Yes) (should say file copied or similar)

(a space between COPY and x:, and the file name and C:\)

I'm assuming your Windows installation is on C: . If it isn't, change the COPY lines to the drive letter Windows is on at the end of the line.

x is the drive letter of the CD drive the Windows CD is in - usually it's the next one higher than it normally is in Windows, when you boot with the Windows CD.
If you're not sure which drive letter that is, type the drive letter you think it might be, followed by a colon, press Enter; then type: dir , press Enter. If the drive letter is correct you will see about 6 files and 5 folders listed , including a \i386 folder (\I386).

Type: BOOTCFG /rebuild (press Enter) (a space between BOOTCFG and /)
(this takes takes a few minutes)

8. At the command prompt, type bootcfg /rebuild, and then press ENTER. This command scans the hard disks of the computer for Windows XP, Microsoft Windows 2000, or Microsoft Windows NT installations, and then displays the results. Follow the instructions that appear on the screen to add the Windows installations to the Boot.ini file.

For example, follow these steps to add a Windows XP installation to the Boot.ini file:

a. When you receive a message that is similar to the following message, press Y:

Total Identified Windows Installs: 1

[1] C:\Windows
Add installation to boot list? (Yes/No/All)

b. You receive a message that is similar to the following message:
Enter Load Identifier (my note - type something or you will see no label when you boot)
This is normally the name of the operating system. When you receive this message, type the name of your operating system, and then press ENTER. This is either Microsoft Windows XP Professional or Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition.

c. You receive a message that is similar to the following:
Enter OS Load options
When you receive this message, type /fastdetect, and then press ENTER.

Note The instructions that appear on your screen may be different, depending on the configuration of your computer.

If there was more than one Windows installation detected on your computer, you will now see:
[2] D:\Windows (or similar)
Add installation to boot list? (Yes/No/All)

Repeat steps a, b, c for all Windows installations found.
If you are not sure what to type for Load Identifier, type any text - you can correct that later by editing boot.ini (see My Note: below).

If there was only one Windows installation detected on your computer, or if you have done a, b, c for all Windows installations found if there was more than one, continue with these instructions.
If any Windows installations are definately not XP or 2000, you don't need to enter anything in step c - just press Enter.


9. Type exit, and then press ENTER to quit Recovery Console.
Your computer will restart.
DO NOT press a key to boot from the XP CD

The updated boot list appears when you receive the "Please select the operating system to start" message.

Choose the TOP one.

Windows should boot normally.

Remove the Windows CD if it does.
....

My note:
Bootcfg does not delete the existing boot.ini - it adds one or more new entries that are listed before (above) the older ones.

You can remove the old entries, at least one of which may now be invalid.
Control Panel - System - Advanced - Startup and Recovery - Edit - you MUST maximize the window - delete the entire line(s) below the first line below [operating systems] that were not detected by bootcfg.
(e.g. if there only two lines below [operating systems], delete only the lower one)

Choose File in the top left corner - Save.

If after editing boot.ini there is now only one operating system listed after [operating systems] in boot.ini, after you reboot, your computer will now boot without prompting you to select operating systems.



Report •

Related Solutions

#4
September 9, 2009 at 08:46:21
Ok I'm about to get started on this procedure. But let me correct myself. When trying to boot the windows cd, when it should be going to the install, repair screen after it loads, it doesnt. Instead it says it cant find a hard drive at all. Not just a partition. I dont know if that makes a difference. But apparently it cant see the hard drive at all. Thanks for the in depth help though. Hopefully it works.

Report •

#5
September 9, 2009 at 08:50:10
Ok I changed the bios to run sata, then the windows cd brought up the different partitions to format. I noticed that media direct was the C: drive. I dont know what I just did, I think I tried to boot it up with media direct, and now I'm in. I'm still confused though as far as whether or not I just reverted it back to the normal drive FROM media direct. Or if thats what I'm in right now.

Report •

#6
September 9, 2009 at 13:13:38
What do you mean by media direct?

MCE is XP Pro with a few features Pro has that most people don't use omitted, plus the Media Center and programs related to it, plus more multimedia support.
The Recovery Console interface looks identical in Home, Pro, and MCE, and the loading of files from the CD before you see the first screen where you can choose to Repair Windows and go to the Recovery Console is probably identical in Home, Pro, and MCE.

Did you do this?:

"Boot the laptop with the XP CD and choose to Repair Windows (press R) at the first screen you see after the initial files are loaded from the CD, which takes you to the black screen interface called the Recovery Console.

Recovery Console looks for Windows installations.
On a laptop usually it finds only one.
Type the number if the one you want to access.
E.g.
Usually it's 1. C:\Windows
(In some cases, it's C:\WINNT)
type 1, press Enter."

etc.

In most cases you see 1. C:\Windows

type 1, press Enter

etc.



Report •


Ask Question