Windows XP repair with CD

By JADavis9 ·
Ouch. I think I caused a big problem on my tablet! I found 4 misc (system?) files (in My Docs?) and moved them into a folder in My Docs called Windows since they wouldn't delete since they were "being used", it said. I wasn't thinking! I should have left them alone but I was in some kinky clean-up mood. Now when I attempt a restart, it won't start Windows XP. It says NTLDR Is Missing. That is probably one of those files that I moved. I have found info on this at but I have no idea how to run a Recovery Console which it mentions using. My tablet keyboard is sometimes ignored since it is a usb keyboard. I have the operating system CD and have tried the Recovery Console. But I have no idea what I am doing. I hoped to start it up with the CD, move those 4 files back out of that Windows folder, and it would just restart as it did before. But I don't know how! Can someone help me with specific instruction?

I put the operating system CD in and started my pc, thinking that I could just run a repair or something. But I have no idea what to do. When it starts up, it says Press any key to boot from the CD. So I hit Enter. It has a blue Windows Setup screen which keeps saying Setup is loading files, and the CD keeps running and I see it "loading files". Then a Welcome To Setup screen appears and as one of the choices it says To repair a Windows XP installation using Recovery Console, press R. But when I hit R, nothing ever happens, even after a long wait. Another choice, To quit Windows setup without installing Windows XP, press F3. If I hit F3, a box pops up that says Windows XP is not completely setup on your computer. If you quit Setup now, you will need to run Setup again to setup Windows XP. To continue setup, press Enter. To quit setup, press F3. Pressing Enter just sends you back to the same Welcome screen. Pressing F3, reboot pc and you start all over and you end up back at the Welcome screen. Then I hit R and for some reason now it changes to a new black screen that says Microsoft Windows XP Recovery Console. The Recovery Console provides system repair and recovery functionality. Type EXIT to quit the Recovery Console and restart the computer. 1: C:\WINDOWS, Which Windows installation would you like to log on to? I hit a 1 and then Enter. It says Type the admininstrator password:. I type nothing (the admin password) and hit Enter. It now says C:\WINDOWS, and I don't know what to do.

What must I do to start up Windows using this CD?

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start reading here

by PurpleSkys In reply to Windows XP repair with CD

if you haven't botched your system too bad, it should work

But honestly, if you don't know what you're doing, research it before you go muddling around in your system. I've seen over the course of the last few months that you continually have issues of some sort; you may have nackered your system enough by now that you may have to do a complete backup/wipe/and reload.

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Your advice is taken well!

by JADavis9 In reply to start reading here

I appreciate your insight. I must get out of this habit of fiddling. I am interested in the technology but I must leave it alone. I may have a bad sector issue on this tablet and that may be why I find myself constantly with issues that don't make any sense. Now my tablet won't even boot up and I am very scared. I am pretty sure that I caused this problem. I must fix it and then leave it alone. Thanks for showing me some advice and patience!

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Geez....I'd say it looks like you're going to have to

by Darryl~ Moderator In reply to Your advice is taken well ...

do a total wipe & sounds like you have multiple installations sort of half way begun.

Probably the best thing to do it just totally wipe the partition...recreate it & install Windows.

Here's the "quick" instructions on doing that (I think you've seen the install process enough that you don't need it too detailed)

Boot to the XP CD & say you want to install windows

When it says there is an existing/partial installation there....say you want to do a new installation (it will probably list the installations)
It will ask you where you want to install it...
at this point, you should be able to "highlight" the "C" drive (or whichever drive letter is being used.
At the bottom of the screen, you should see "Press D to delete the partition"...
Press D
Then it should say "Press L to confirm"...
Press L
Now you should have no partitions...
Press C to create a new partition & use the default sizes....

now you're working with a totally blank hard drive...

This is where you want to install a fresh copy of Windows.

Format it NTFS

When done, you'll have to go get all the Windows updates....that will take a while & you'll have to reboot many times.
After each reboot....go check for more updates until you get them all.

You may have to get drivers also....

Right click My Computer & select Manage
goto Device Manager
Right click any devices with a yellow exclamation mark & select update driver.

It's usually a lot quicker to totally reinstall XP than it is messing around for 4 or 5 days trying to fix a messed up version.

It'll take you the best part of a day to do this....

Have fun :)

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I'm getting close to doing this total reload

by JADavis9 In reply to Geez....I'd say it looks ...

Once I can get my Outlook back on with my data, which is saved on an e: drive, I will just need to find a note that I made in Outlook with a list of all the installed programs and how or where to get them to install. I just reimaged this pc a few weeks ago and still have this note with the details. I'd sure rather keep trying to figure out this repair first. I even had an idea which may make some sense. Could I possibly hook this tablet to another of my pcs and use the other pc to move the file (that I moved that Windows can't find) back to where it was, which is just outside of the folder that it is in? I am not sure if what I am saying could actually be done with firewalls and non-sharing things. Is this idea too wild? Or could an expert help me with a repair with the CD? I would be so grateful ...

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I am a little confused

by JADavis9 In reply to start reading here

I read that XPrepairinstall article and have questions. I see that it says to make sure all docs are backed up (mine are backed up on an external e: drive), then he says to do the install and not the repair at first. Here is his text:
3.Press Enter to start the Windows Setup.
do not choose "To repair a Windows XP installation using the Recovery Console, press R", (you Do Not want to load Recovery Console). I repeat, do not choose "To repair a Windows XP installation using the Recovery Console, press R".
4.Accept the License Agreement and Windows will search for existing Windows installations.
5.Select the XP installation you want to repair from the list and press R to start the repair. If Repair is not one of the options, END setup. After the reboot read Warning#2!
6.Setup will copy the necessary files to the hard drive and reboot. Do not press any key to boot from CD when the message appears. Setup will continue as if it were doing a clean install, but your applications and settings will remain intact.

So I chose the install by hitting enter and I accepted the license. But in his #5, it says Select the XP installation you want to repair from the list and press R to start the repair. I didn't get to select the system after that and never got to hit an R. But I have seen this installation choice before. Just not this time.
Then it ran for a while and a new screen displayed that said CAUTION: A \WINDOWS folder already exists that may contain a Windows installation. If you continue, the existing Windows installation will be overwritten. All files, subfolders, user accounts, applications, security and desktop settings for that Windows installation will be deleted. The "My Documents" folder may also be deleted.
o To use the folder and delete the existing Windows installation in it, press L
o To use a different folder, press ESC.
o To quit Setup, press F3.
I am not sure what it wants if I just want to reinstall, so I hit F3, but again it ignored my tablet's usb keyboard. So I unplugged the CD drive and then held down the power switch on the tablet to force a shut down. Hope I did the right thing. It rebooted and gave me that familiar NTLDR Is Missing note just like before.
This is not in the article and probably is not what I want. I am confused. Does this make any sense to you? I really need some guidance as I am out of my league and desperate to find a correct solution.

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i think i'm with Darryl on this one

by PurpleSkys In reply to I am a little confused

it may be the best choice for you to make at this point...back up, wipe and reload. This is one of my favorite sites for instructions on how to do a format if you're uncertain, see if a tech savvy friend can lend you a hand.

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Here are M$ Directions for doing a Repair/In Place Install of XP

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to I am a little confused

Look at Method 2

Method 2: Repair install of Windows XP by starting your computer from the Windows XP CD
Note If Windows XP was preinstalled on your computer, you may need the installation CD to reinstall. Contact your computer manufacturer to make sure that you have the installation CD for a repair installation.

To reinstall Windows XP by starting your computer from the Windows XP CD, follow these steps:
Insert the Windows XP CD into your computer's CD drive or DVD drive, and then restart your computer.
When you receive the "Press any key to boot from CD" message on the screen, press a key to start your computer from the Windows XP CD.
The following message on the Welcome to Setup screen will appear:
This portion of the Setup program prepares Microsoft Windows XP to run on your computer: To setup Windows XP now, press ENTER. To repair a Windows XP installation by using Recovery Console, press R. To quit Setup without installing Windows XP, press F3.
Press ENTER to set up Windows XP.
On the Windows XP Licensing Agreement screen, press F8 to agree to the license agreement.
Make sure that your current installation of Windows XP is selected in the box, and then press R to repair Windows XP.
Follow the instructions that appear on the screen to reinstall Windows XP. After you repair Windows XP, you may have to reactivate your copy of Windows XP. For more information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
310064 ( ) How to troubleshoot Windows XP Setup problems when you upgrade from Windows 98 or Windows Millennium Edition
If you successfully completed the reinstallation, congratulations. You are almost done. Please continue to the "After you reinstall Windows XP" section to finish.

If you received an error or if the reinstallation did not finish, unfortunately, this article did not resolve your problem. For your next steps, you may want to ask someone whom you know for help. Or, you may want to contact Microsoft Support to help you resolve this problem.

However if you have a System Makers Recovery Disc not a M$ OEM Install Disc you will not be able to do a Repair/In Place Install of Windows.

You need a M$ Branded OEM Install Disc to perform this procedure and the System Makers Recovery Disc's do not have this option available. Instead of being a M$ Install Disc with a Complete Version of XP they are a Cut Down Slipstreamed Disc with just the Drivers required for your Hardware.

So you can install XP and not need to load any dedicated Drivers after you load Windows.

By your description you have a System Makers Recovery Disc and this lacks the ability to do any Repairs/

As for the Repair Console it's should go to a blank screen with a DOS Prompt on the top left hand corner. You then enter DOS Commands to do things. This is good for Window Command Line Users and fairly useless for anyone else as the command line isn't used by many and those who do Command Lines find that Windows Command Line way too limiting.

But if you type Help Enter you should see a list of available commands.

edited to add As you are using a USB Keyboard it lacks support during the Install process so use the Tablets Keyboard not a plug in External Keyboard.


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I do not have the Microsoft CD

by JADavis9 In reply to Here are M$ Directions fo ...

The CD that I have is from the tablet manufacturer. Can you give me the DOS commands that I will need to use to perform this repair and any instructions on using them?

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go to

by PurpleSkys In reply to I do not have the Microso ...

the tablet's manufacturers website and look for the instruction manual on how to do a system repair

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by JADavis9 In reply to go to

On the mfg site at, in the repair section of Chapter 3, it says "On the Set Up screen, select ENTER to set up Windows XP. NOTE: Do not select R=Repair before you accept the End User License"
Someone on this site told me to do this but I was afraid that it would overwrite everything on my drive with a new installation of Windows XP. I will try it now!

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