Fixboot/FixMBR-???

Discussion in 'Windows 64 Bit' started by Tony Sperling, Jun 9, 2006.

  1. I have a situation where I'm told that IDE-0 has a boot record, then booting
    fails - will fixboot or fixmbr be the proper action right now? Please.

    I can re-install, all that is lost will be lots of polishing done to the
    system. I'd rather have it back!


    Tony. . .
     
    Tony Sperling, Jun 9, 2006
    #1
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  2. Tony Sperling

    John Barnes Guest

    Is this your system drive, and what partitions are on it. What did you do
    that caused this problem, or was this just a random startup problem when no
    system changes were made.
     
    John Barnes, Jun 9, 2006
    #2
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  3. Yes, it [was] the system drive, I was taken aback by Vista not creating a
    boot menu when installed to a primary partition, so I removed it and
    expected to have it back the way it was - actually, Win2K on C:\

    Tony. . .
     
    Tony Sperling, Jun 9, 2006
    #3
  4. Tony Sperling

    John Barnes Guest

    Seems like from Charlie's post that you need to restore the ntldr and
    boot.ini files to your system drive. Hopefully you have an easy backup, or
    do it from your Recovery Console. Seems like a good first step.

     
    John Barnes, Jun 9, 2006
    #4
  5. Well, this is not a critical machine - I have kept some of the games and
    things that didn't work on x64 and I used it for dual booting with try-out
    linux'es and stuff, I ran the installation from CD and had it try and repair
    it and it tested and copied stuff for quite a while but in the end only
    gives the error I described.

    The files you mention I guess would be among those copied from the CD in
    this process and I have not made any copies myself, I usually put away a set
    of ERD's but apparently forgot this time.

    I will rummage around a bit and see if I can find the bits and pieces - how
    was that, ntldr in 'system' and boot.ini in root?

    Ah, well - the worst that can happen is I won't be bored between the
    football events.

    Thanks - Tony. . .


     
    Tony Sperling, Jun 9, 2006
    #5
  6. Tony Sperling

    John John Guest

    It should fix it. This is a question that is bound to be asked more
    often when Vista is officially released. Vista installs its own
    completely different boot loader.

    Ways of restoring the ntldr loader:

    1- Use the BootSect.exe utility found in the Boot folder or on your
    Vista DVD.

    Use option /nt52 to restore the ntldr boot loader

    2- Use fixntfs.exe (in the boot folder) to remove the Vista boot
    loader. You should be able to access the tool from a command prompt
    while in XP. Issue command:

    fixntfs.exe -xp

    The command has to be run from the C:\boot folder.

    3- Boot to the XP Recovery console and issue commands:

    fixmbr
    and if necessary fixboot

    That should restore the XP ntldr boot manager. After doing the fix
    clean up the boot.ini file if necessary. One could also use the Bootcfg
    /rebuild command in the Recovery Console to rebuild the boot.ini file.

    4- This is the long way out if nothing seems to work. On some sites I
    have read that the other methods don't work and that this alternative
    has worked for these folks. Simply boot with your Windows XP cd and
    install a new copy of XP on another free partition (like where Vista
    was). DON'T INSTALL IT WHERE YOUR CURRENT XP IS INSTALLED! You can
    then, from your first XP installation, format the new installation edit
    the boot.ini file accordingly.

    Please let us know how you fixed the problem as I am sure that the
    question will be asked frequently once Vista is officially released to
    the general public.

    John
     
    John John, Jun 9, 2006
    #6
  7. O.K. Thanks!

    I like number four but I think I will ponder the options a little. It is
    Win2K so some of these commands will not exist or have other names. But I
    like a parallel installation, that way I can get to see it the way I'm used
    to.

    And yes, I'll be back!

    Tony. . .
     
    Tony Sperling, Jun 9, 2006
    #7
  8. The trouble about all this stems from the fact that Vista re-ordered the
    boot configuration and installed itself as C:\ and the original Win2K as
    D:\ - the FIXMBR command is relatively harmless if you know what you are
    doing, but the FIXBOOT command I gather, could bring you into more trouble
    and often do not work at all, I've heard.

    I removed Vista so my Win2K should be back on C:\ but something in the
    bootsector must be poining it to D:\, which doesn't exist any more?

    I am prepared to re-install so would running the FIXBOOT now not be at least
    somewhat 'smart'?

    Tony. . .
     
    Tony Sperling, Jun 9, 2006
    #8
  9. Tony Sperling

    John Barnes Guest

    Fixboot is harmless, fixmbr is the one with the warning, if I remember.
    Creating a boot.ini using the /rebuild command should get you the required
    boot entries for currently installed windows systems.
     
    John Barnes, Jun 9, 2006
    #9
  10. Tony Sperling

    John John Guest

    I don't understand how installing Vista on a second partition when
    Windows 2000 was already installed would have caused Windows 2000 to
    then shift its boot volume from C to D. On any Windows multi-boot
    scenario there is only one System Partition and it is always enumerated
    as drive C. The System Partition can also be a Boot Partition for one,
    and only one operating system. From what I understand in your post it
    looks like the Windows 2000 boot volume was on the System Partition,
    that is perfectly normal and usually the way Windows is installed when
    you install it on an empty drive. Installing a second Microsoft
    operating system doesn't change the System Partition drive letter! If
    Vista did indeed change the Windows 2000 boot volume drive letter from C
    to D then you are bound to have serious problems with the Windows 2000
    installation unless you take the necessary steps to restore the boot
    volume drive letter through a registry edit or by returning the
    partition to its active status!

    Unlike previous NT version which use ntldr and boot.ini to boot, Vista
    doesn't use these files and removing Vista does not remove the boot
    loader it installed, you MUST use one of the methods mentioned to
    restore the ntldr boot manager. I can't put my finger on it, lack of
    information, but if what you report is correct there is something not
    right that happened when you tried to install Vista. It sounds like the
    partition active flag was changed from one partition to another, that
    never happens when you install multiple operating systems the Microsoft
    way. You should verify the active status of the partitions and if
    needed return the active flag to the original System Partition.

    John
     
    John John, Jun 9, 2006
    #10
  11. Thanks a bunch, to both of you - I shall investigate this more this
    evening - right now, I have a hungry father with Alzheimer's to tend to and
    then some ball play!

    Wow!

    Tony. . .
     
    Tony Sperling, Jun 9, 2006
    #11
  12. Tony --
    Vista will put its partition as C: - But only when Vista is the OS. When
    you go back to XP it should have the original drive letters.

    There are several ways to fix this, as you've seen earlier in the
    thread. The one I happen to like is doing a repair install of XP x64. You
    won't lose anything of your current settings, or shouldn't. But you'll need
    to reapply any security updates since release, so don't do ANYTHING else
    until you've done that on the system. Oh, and you'll need any F6 drivers
    available, of course.
     
    Charlie Russel - MVP, Jun 9, 2006
    #12
  13. Yes, but this machine is the Win2K one - I tried doing the closest you get
    to a repair install, it churned and did some copying, but to no avail.

    Perhaps I would not have taken this action had I known about the partition
    shuffle, but it's what I always do when I get cornered by the likes of an
    ill behaving Linux Beta, take away the offending partition and if necessary
    do a FIXMBR. It always works.

    Like I said above, this is not a critical machine but if there is an easy
    way out I would prefer some kind of salvage operation. This drive letter
    shuffle, does it not have to be something written to the boot sector? I fail
    to see how the system boot files could be responsible. As things are
    standing, regardless that I asked for this - would FIXBOOT not be an option?

    I am really more pressed for time than anything else with this, next I will
    probably do a parallel installation to have a quick look at what happened,
    and if nothing else turns up in the mean-time, I'll simply install it clean
    from scratch. Everything is reproducible but the time factor is a problem.

    Tony. . .
     
    Tony Sperling, Jun 9, 2006
    #13
  14. Tony Sperling

    John Barnes Guest

    FWIW The bootup process goes as follows and it should make no difference
    what Drive letter has been assigned within any of the installed operating
    systems.

    The BIOS reads the MBR (first in boot priority) and transfers control to the
    MBR (so if you create the MBR from your 2K, this should work fine). The MBR
    reads the boot sector (on the active partition, so if you fix that partition
    with fixboot, same) You need ntldr on this partition (root) along with
    ntdetect.com and boot.ini (can be created with the x64 recovery console and
    bootcfg /rebuild command). After this, when you boot up, the selection of
    the 2k system (which should have the proper ARC paths from the rebuild)
    ntldr will gather the hardware information and using the boot.ini path finds
    the boot partition and loads the core files (ntoskrnl.exe and hal.dll in XP,
    don't know 2k), registry, etc. and should fininsh booting up.


    I would do this with the drive with 2k on it connected and the others
    disconnected to make it cleanest. You can add back the other drives one by
    one later to see if you have conflicts (usually the old acptible.dat (if I
    remember))

    Good luck. Should be relatively easy and not too time consuming.

    All of this is probably mute if the 'repair' of 2k didn't complete
    successfully.
     
    John Barnes, Jun 9, 2006
    #14
  15. I appreciate this, John - it's reassuring to have it all in one place - I
    can say this, now: I made a parallel installation, and the C:\ partition is
    fully visible and the ntdetect; ntldr and boot.ini are all in the root and
    boot.ini has the failing installation on partition 1 and the parallel on
    partition2 so everything seems to be in order but no boot, and I'm kicking!

    Ha!


    Tony. . .
     
    Tony Sperling, Jun 10, 2006
    #15
  16. Tony Sperling

    Carlos Guest

    Football, football, football!
    That's the only thing that matters.
    Tomorrow Argentina vs Ivory Coast
    Forget computers for the coming weeks!
    Dump x64!
    Dump wife!
    Well... sort of.
    Carlos :)

     
    Carlos, Jun 10, 2006
    #16
  17. Oh, oh! This is peculiar, After making the parallel installation the other
    one is actually booting, but in a Upgrade Setup state - as if it had never
    finished the installation at all.

    I've never before seen anything remotely like this - I don't know what it
    means, but probably I may just as well re-install from scratch?


    Tony. . .
     
    Tony Sperling, Jun 10, 2006
    #17
  18. Yeah! And Andre will be glad he has a keyboard in the morning, because he
    will not be able to speak a word. What?

    Statistically, though, SA usually isn't all that succesfull when it's played
    in Europe - watch out for Sweden this year, they will need to have their
    directions mixed up to miss the final! (They play Trinidad &Tobago
    tomorrow - that may be eventfull)

    Tony. . .


     
    Tony Sperling, Jun 10, 2006
    #18
  19. Tony Sperling

    John Barnes Guest

    Could be the result of the attempted 'repair' earlier. Sounds like the
    reinstall will be a good idea. At least you can copy your data etc. off
    before you wipe it.
    Good luck.
     
    John Barnes, Jun 10, 2006
    #19
  20. Ah, yes! That sounds like a resonable explanation.

    Right now I need to examine the inside of my eyelids, in the morning I'll
    examine the data. Should fit on a flash drive.

    Nite'all! And thanks!


    Tony. . .
     
    Tony Sperling, Jun 10, 2006
    #20
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