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Thursday, July 3, 2008

Repair Master Boot Record In Windows XP

Getting Windows XP should to start normally by repairing a corrupt master boot record.

Using the Recovery Console:

Note To start the computer from the Windows XP CD-ROM, you must configure the basic input/output system (BIOS) of the computer to start from your CD-ROM drive.

Commands to fix:
FIXMBR grabs the original MBR code from the drive's EEPROM chip and restores it, effectively wiping out anything that might be in there.
FIXBOOT restore the native ability for Windows to boot with the NTLDR file and bootloader. FIXMBR first, then FIXBOOT right after that, then type exit and press Enter to reboot

To run the Recovery Console from the Windows XP startup disks or the Windows XP CD-ROM, follow these steps:
1. Insert the Windows XP startup disk into the floppy disk drive, or insert the Windows XP CD-ROM into the CD-ROM drive, and then restart the computer.

Click to select any options that are required to start the computer from the CD-ROM drive if you are prompted.
2. When the "Welcome to Setup" screen appears, press R to start the Recovery Console.
3. If you have a dual-boot or multiple-boot computer, select the installation that you must access from the Recovery Console.
4. When you are prompted, type the Administrator password. If the administrator password is blank, just press ENTER.
5. At the command prompt, type the fixmbr command to write a master boot record to the hard drive that you're currently using to boot into Windows XP. This will repair any corruption or damage that the master boot record may have.
6. Type fixboot C: command to write a new startup sector on the system partition.

fixboot c:
In the above example, the boot sector is written to the partition that's currently labeled as the C: drive - most likely the partition you are currently logged on to. If that is the case, this command could be run without the c: option.

Install the Recovery Console on Your Computer

With Windows XP running, insert your Windows XP CD in the drive, and click Exit when the installation options are displayed.
Click Start, click Run, and then type D:\i386\winnt32.exe /cmdcons Where D: is the CD-ROM drive letter, and then press Enter. (There is a space between .exe and the slash.)

How to delete the Recovery Console
To delete the Recovery Console:
1. Restart your computer, click Start, click My Computer, and then double-click the hard disk where you installed the Recovery Console.
2. On the Tools menu, click Folder Options, and then click the View tab.
3. Click Show hidden files and folders, click to clear the Hide protected operating system files check box, and then click OK.
4. At the root folder, delete the Cmdcons folder and the Cmldr file.
5. At the root folder, right-click the Boot.ini file, and then click Properties.
6. Click to clear the Read-only check box, and then click OK.

Warning: Modifying the Boot.ini file incorrectly may prevent your computer from restarting. Make sure that you delete only the entry for the Recovery Console. Also, change the attribute for the Boot.ini file back to a read-only state after you finish this procedure. Open the Boot.ini file in Microsoft Windows Notepad, and remove the entry for the Recovery Console. It looks similar to this:
C:\cmdcons\bootsect.dat="Microsoft Windows Recovery Console" /cmdcons
7. Save the file and close it.

For a list of commands that are available in Recovery Console, type recovery console commands or help at the command prompt, and then press ENTER.

For information about a specific command, type help commandname at the command prompt, and then press ENTER.

How to install and use the Recovery Console in Windows XP

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