Lost boot.ini and MBR

Microsoft Windows xp home edition eng 3p...
February 25, 2010 at 09:55:23
Specs: Windows XP
Trying to get a partition done in an external HD, the software (Partition Commander) froze and forced a restart upon which the PC would not boot, saying "non-system disk or disk error". It could not find the boot.ini. Apparently the partition software messed up the MBR so the computer won't boot. Is there any way to fix this? I don't want to lose the data on the computer. Thank you.

See More: Lost boot.ini and MBR

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#1
February 25, 2010 at 10:02:40
... put your glasses on and click here

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#2
February 25, 2010 at 10:16:17
Unfortunately I don't have a XP CD. When I got this CPU it didn't come with one. I do have the DVD's I made when I first started it, following the prompts, but AFAIK they would only restore the PC to the state on which it was factory shipped. And, if possible, I don't want to lose the programs I installed later.

Is there any way to restore boot.ini without the XP CD? or using those recovery disks?


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#3
February 25, 2010 at 10:34:00
... never used this it states:

... "This utility will allow you to edit \BOOT.INI in an NTFS partition from DOS or Win9x."

http://www.terabyteunlimited.com/do...

... so you'll either need to put it on a bootable floppy or cd

... I'm going to try it on a cd for fun might even send you an "iso" (BrB)

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Related Solutions

#4
February 25, 2010 at 12:37:11
... sorry about delay "Merjolie"

... did'nt work for me my pc kept on rebooting there is a warning in the "guff" about certain bios's causing reboot ...ah well!

... not to worry try this >> download 4.45MB scroll to bottom of page wait 40 sec's click download.

... you can burn it with this: Mirror 8 - Provided by ImgBurn

... download, burn, bootup with created cd using "r" console

... once @ command prompt type:

FIXMBR C: [press enter]

FIXBOOT C: [press enter]

BOOTCFG /REBUILD [press enter]

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

... the video in "Response Number 1" should help.

********************************************************
... boot.ini (sample)

[boot loader]
timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Windows XP Home Edition" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect

... (the bottom two lines should be all one line)

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#5
February 25, 2010 at 17:22:20
Thank you for your help. I got it and boot the computer, but the only Windows installation that it found is the one in the CD that booted. Apparently the problem is worse than I thought it was. I tried forcing it to go to C:, but it couldn't find it.

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#6
February 26, 2010 at 03:10:48
Re' your natural concerens about your data... Before proceeding further.. boot with a Knoppix or Ubuntu disk and copy it all to optical-media - and ideally verify copies are truly accessible on at least one other system... Then set abut resolving your current dilemma?

Post back when you have done that bit?

Knoppix.com

Ubuntu.com

for freebie downloadable image at each site which burn to dvd; boot with that dvd; access drive contents (data) and copy to opticals...


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#7
February 26, 2010 at 04:38:17
"...Apparently the partition software messed up the..."

... please post back here your pc make and model number so we can check if there was ever a recovery partition (...has doubts).

... maybe you know(?)

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#8
February 26, 2010 at 09:37:39
Yes, there is a recovery partition. Strangely, when I boot from CD it's not found, but there is one.

I used Symantec Recovery Disk and it could identify 3 partitions on the hd. c: (which is where windows is) but listed as a QNX partition type. d: (HP recovery partition) as Hidden FAT32 and e: HiddenFAT32 (data partition I made).

I guess since c: is listed as QNX and not NTFS, is not bootable. Thing is, I don't know how to change the partition type back to NTFS.


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#9
February 26, 2010 at 09:44:32
... do'nt alter the recovery partiton or it might not work.

... tap <F11> key @ bootup to see if it works(s), guess you can stop it if you want to(?)

... selecting non-destructive is meant to back-up yourfiles depending how its configured, HP also had a system file option I believe, might not be any good to your set of circumstances if it works "full recovery" might but you lose all your data hosing love letters etc.

.

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#10
February 26, 2010 at 10:25:59
F11 goes into bios setup utility. Downloading ubunto to try to make copies of data files.

No love letters, but a lot of digital pics!


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#11
February 26, 2010 at 10:40:05
The hidden partition is just that - "hidden" and thus it won't be seen etc. via a standard boot floppy/usb-stick, CD etc...

Again - before going any further - safeguard your data - as above via Knoppix/Ubuntu?

Then consider options to get a working installation again...

What make/model PC is this?

And also do a little research into how to use the Partition Commander utility; and how to remove it... Presumably you have a manual for it - or if not then perhaps locate one on their web-site - or elsewhere?

This link does discuss it to some degree; includes a list of error issues too; and how to remove it...

http://www.math.ucla.edu/~baker/pdf...

and this the actual source/site for the manual (download)

http://www.v-com.com/product/Partit...

Again - DO NOTHING to the drive at this stage other than copy data to opticals...; especially do not (re)format anything at this time.

I recall having a version of this an age ago; removed it by a simple fdisk /mbr as I recall - but not entirely sure about that.... (and it was on a '98SE systsem).. Don't suggest you try that yet... Again first safeguard data...; then concern yourself with resolving boot problem(s).


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#12
February 26, 2010 at 10:41:58
The actual F - key (or combination of keys) varies across make/models; thus pholks need to know make/model of the PC in question in order to help there...

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#13
February 26, 2010 at 13:20:53
... let us know when you've recovered your pic's

... we can still have a go @ revitalizing and evoking your recovery partition ... (done it before) we still have to know pc make and model number... the more info the better!

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#14
February 26, 2010 at 16:25:08
HP Pavilion a650y

I haven't been able to get in the c: in order to make copies of data. Trying again.


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#15
February 26, 2010 at 16:59:45
... so then its (click >>) <F10> key for recovery for HP Pavilion a650y

.

edit\.... click the blue link F10

.

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#16
February 26, 2010 at 17:07:49
Are you using a Knoppix or Ubuntu CD/DVD to boot up and access the hard-drive and thus your data?

Again do nothing to the drive at this stage of events; certainly do NOT run the Recovery Process (as in DO NOT use the F10 option to start and run it...) Otherwise it's highly likely you will lose all data on the system...


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#17
February 26, 2010 at 20:48:28
I tried to run Ubuntu from the CD, the computer boots but after a while, while loading, the screen fills with colors and nothing else happens. I verified the CD on another PC and it's OK, so something is preventing Ubuntu from loading.

Should I try Knoppix or would I have the same issue?


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#18
February 27, 2010 at 00:29:34
... "Merjolie" I'd just discovered this program (freeware) might be worth a bash if you have no luck! ...see #Response number 1 in link below

http://www.computing.net/answers/ha...

... you'll have to hook-up the drive to another pc!

... there is also a data recovery program for pic's called "photorec_win.exe" you could run.

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#19
February 27, 2010 at 16:01:35
There are versions of both Ubuntu and Knoppix; each version is somewhat dated in terms of hardware etc. with which it will work...As I recall there are options you can use for each version to accommodate a given system If you get the latest version of either/both (and you will need a dvd for either - a cd will not be enuff space - certainly for Knoppix) you may well find it will be OK?

Likewise if you check the help files for whichever you use (probably on their web-site is best for those) you may find the instructions as to what to press (which keys) or syntax to use when the disk first boots up - so as to load properly. Been a while since I used either variant but I do recall having a similar problem to the one you describe; and finding both the info re' what option to select, and also a later/more current version which did it all for me...

A kwik trawl re' your screen problem brings up the following...

http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread....

and this is from the ubuntu site itself - worth to check if your copy (ubuntu disk) is actually OK:

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/LiveCD

and this is where current and recent versions are:

https://help.ubuntu.com/

Equally how does Knoppix do - have you tried that? And again get the more/most recent version (and it will need a dvd).

Ubuntu also has data recovery software too. But note the caveats/warnings re' its use..., all in the above community/Live CD link/reference...

There is also the Bart Ultimate boot disk which may allow you recover data etc.?

http://www.ubcd4win.com/


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#20
February 28, 2010 at 09:19:03
Finally, was able to boot w/ Knoppix, but the c: is not found, not the other CD drive or the USB external HD. Knoppix finds a partition that was made to the HD and I'm able to recover those files. But the C: drive is not recognized, like it doesn't exist.

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#21
February 28, 2010 at 13:20:00
... another download: http://www.hirensbootcd.net/

... then click (blue) "details"... by the selection box

... scroll down to "Download Hiren's BootCD ..."

... its a "zipped" 180MB iso file @ bootup select mini xp

... from the "HBCD" menu on the mini xp desktop go to Partition/Boot then partition wizard


.......get it while you can

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#22
March 1, 2010 at 13:01:52
Tried that. I booted w/ Hiren's BootCD and opened Partition Wizard. Partition Wizard can see the C: drive, but I cannot do anything to it. When I try to explore the file, the only option available is to format the drive. In the explorer says it cannot show the contents of c: since it's a raw drive.

What can I do to fix it?

Thanks again for all your help!


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#23
March 1, 2010 at 13:08:17
... in the menu try - Recovery Tools- "Partition Find and Mount" software is designed to find lost or deleted partitions.

... you'll have to experiment a little, you have the tools there to do it.

... there's enough of them!


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#24
March 2, 2010 at 12:42:11
Success! I couldn't fix the MBR w/ any of the tools. All gave invalid messages. But I saved my pictures w/ GetDataBack.

Thank you!!!


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#25
March 2, 2010 at 13:34:40
... you should be able to revive the recovery partition try "Acronis Disk Director" in recovery tools ... experiment!


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