"Missing Boot Mgr" message

#1
I was running both Windows XP and Vista Business with no problems until I decided to "clean up" the root directory. Unfortunately I apparently deleted some key files that were part of the Vista Boot Manager. I was able to get XP running by using the repair console on the XP CD. I used FIXBOOT AND FIXMBR. I also rebuilt the Boot.ini file. The system currently boots up with the XP dual boot function. If I choose XP, it loads normally. If I choose Vista, it does not. From what I have read, this is normal. Vista cannot be loaded using XP's boot loader.

When I use EasyBCD to reinstall the Vista Boot Loader and then reboot, I get the Missing Boot Manager message. The only way to get back to XP is to run the Repair console again.

Are there some files missing for the Vista boot loader? If so, what are they and how can I get them back?

BTW - XP and Vista are on the same physical drive. XP is installed on logical drive C and Vista is listed as being on logical Drive E.
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#2
Hello Ralph,

Yeah, that probably wasn't such a good idea.. :wink:

EasyBCD 1.6 will have tools to recreate all missing files and reinitialize the BCD storage - right from within Windows XP or Vista!

For now,
Boot with the Vista DVD and select advanced startup repair.
run this command:
Code:
Bfsvc c:\windows\boot /nosetupcheck
Then reboot.
 
#3
Similar Boot Manager problem

This is pretty complicated, but I will try to be as clear as possible.

I had two hard drives on my computer, one IDE HDD, and a SATA HDD (SATA#1). Originally had XP on the SATA HDD (no OS on the IDE, just backup files and documents). Installed Vista over XP on SATA#1 Drive and it worked fine (given my computers limitations).

Bought a new, larger SATA Drive (SATA#2). Since I use a SATA PCI Expansion Card for my SATA#1 Drive and it only had one internal SATA port, I had to buy an external SATA HDD enclosure that could plug into the eSATA slot on the exterior of the expansion card. I moved SATA#1 into the external case, and installed the new, larger SATA#2 internally.

I installed Vista onto the SATA#2 (meaning I had two Vista's installations on my computer; the original one on SATA#1 and the other, newer, one on SATA#2). The goal was to transfer all the files and partitions from SATA#1 to SATA#2 and then to format SATA#1 and remove it from my computer. Since the external enclosure for the SATA#1 had a power switch, I turned it off after I finished transfering all the files and replicating the partitions to SATA#2. When I started the comp, I got the error message "Missing Boot Mgr". I quickly realized that my SATA#1 had to be turned on in order to load Vista. I kept SATA#1 on (even though I wouldn't be using it) for a couple of weeks until I figured out how to fix this issue. Soon after I discovered EasyBCD.

I read enough to convince myself that I understood how to use EasyBCD. Using this tool, I erased the Boot Loader for the original Vista installation (on SATA#1). I used my computer without incident after doing this... UNTIL I had to do a restart. At that point the computer would go through CMOS get to the point where it would normally show the OS boot menu and give an error that mentioned something about winloader.exe being missing or corrupt.

Searched for hours on how to fix it and ended up trying to use the Vista disc to repair the BCD. The first problem I encountered was that the repair disc could never find my Vista installations even after loading my SATA drivers. I read so much about using bcdedit.exe and it's options to fix the BCD. I tried almost everything you can imagine and nothing would get rid of the winloader.exe error. I realized, after all this reading, that although I had installed a version of Vista on my new SATA HDD, the actual Bootmanger resided on SATA#1 and I had probably corrupted it when I erased the bootloader info for the original Vista installation. Eventually I just started a reinstall of Vista on the SATA#1 thinking that this would at the least give me the option to see the boot menu and then I could log into my SATA#2 Vista installation and fix the problem. This "sorta" worked... as I accidentally discovered that if I didn't press a button to boot from the CD it sent me to the boot menu and so I was able to luckily get to my intended new Vista installation. But I've had no luck in trying to fix the bootmanager and anytime I restart I have to go through the same run around to get into my new Vista installation.

What I need to know is how to move (or create) the bootmanager on SATA#2 where my newer Vista installation is so that I can finish formatting my SATA#1 and unplug it from my machine.

I want to avoid the unattractive option of simply reinstalling Vista on SATA#2.

Again, I've tried every option using bcdedit and the repair disc. Sometimes the repair disc will identify the two Vista installations (although it can't give details on location) and then when I load the disc drivers it shows the location of each installation. I still can't use the disc or bcdedit to fix the issue. So I'm looking for any help I could possibly get to create the Boot Mgr on SATA#2 and clean it up so that it just shows the newer Vista installation that I'm currently using.

Sorry for this being so long, but I hope it gives enough background to assist.

jw.
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#4
Hi jw, sorry for the late reply - always a good idea to open a new thread for new queries. :smile:

Anyway, stick your Vista DVD in the drive and boot from it.
Repair Options -> Command Prompt:
Code:
bootrec.exe /fimbr
bootrec.exe /fixboot
bootrec.exe /rebuildbcd
exit
That should do the trick.
 

Billw

New Member
#6
Easy To Fix It Solved In Seconds Here

I was running both Windows XP and Vista Business with no problems until I decided to "clean up" the root directory. Unfortunately I apparently deleted some key files that were part of the Vista Boot Manager. I was able to get XP running by using the repair console on the XP CD. I used FIXBOOT AND FIXMBR. I also rebuilt the Boot.ini file. The system currently boots up with the XP dual boot function. If I choose XP, it loads normally. If I choose Vista, it does not. From what I have read, this is normal. Vista cannot be loaded using XP's boot loader.

When I use EasyBCD to reinstall the Vista Boot Loader and then reboot, I get the Missing Boot Manager message. The only way to get back to XP is to run the Repair console again.

Are there some files missing for the Vista boot loader? If so, what are they and how can I get them back?

BTW - XP and Vista are on the same physical drive. XP is installed on logical drive C and Vista is listed as being on logical Drive E.
I posted this page to show people exactly how easy it is to repair the cannot find bootmgr start problem. Follow the instructions on this page and you can fix it in seconds every time, and understand why it happens. Lots people have come with all manner of complicated reasons and fixes but its not necessary
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#7
That wouldn't have helped Ralph Bill. The reason it couldn't find the boot manager in his case was that he'd deleted it. No amount of fiddling with the BIOS boot sequence can undo that.
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#9
lol, just be careful to have all the tools you need when it becomes time to restore it.