Windows 7 dual boot - "BOOTMGR is missing"

Hi all,

Wish I was making my first post under better circumstances! I have run into what seems to be a severe problem, and am having a hard time fixing.

Background: I had a fully functioning Win7 32bit and XP 32bit dual boot going on my machine. I got a new motherboard from a friend and some more ram, and I decided I wanted to install it and, in turn, reinstall Windows 7 64-bit, but wanted to keep my XP installation intact, as it has some pretty ancient software on it. I have my machine set up as such: 80GB IDE drive with 2 partitions, Windows 7 on one partition and XP on the other. Then I have 2 SATA drives which I use for larger program installations, media, videos, etc.

Anyway, I install the new motherboard and such, and then installed Win7-64 without a hitch. Everything is up and running, but my dual boot menu was erased, and the computer was now booting directly to Windows 7. So, I installed EasyBCD 2.0 beta, newest build, and added my XP installation to the boot menu, which went without a hitch (I had done this a couple years back when I used Vista & XP).

Next, I restart and boot into XP, which of course goes into panic mode because there's a new motherboard. I put in the windows XP dvd to do a repair installation, and everything goes ok, however it overwrites the prior dual boot menu. After booting into XP, I'm noticing it is having a really hard time identifying my SATA drives with the new motherboard and all.

I tried a few methods to get the bootloader back (I couldn't connect to the internet in XP due to driver issues), and then things just went haywire. I can't recall exactly how I got to the place I am now, but I was using the Windows 7 DVD to "repair" the installation, as I read on several forums that was the way to go. It hasn't repaired anything -and now when I boot, I just get "BOOTMGR is missing, press CTRL+ALT+DEL" . Can't boot into anything now, just get that message every time.

I've tried booting the Win7 dvd multiple times and using the repair/recover install (like this )

but it's not working, and now I really don't know what to do, short of reinstalling everything (which I really don't want to do!!). I feel like there has to be a way to fix this, as there is a perfectly functioning Win7 installation on the hard drive that I just can't boot into. Assuming I get the bootloader fixed somehow, I will wipe and reinstall XP, then use EasyBCD to set up dual boot.

Anyway, sorry for the long post. Does anyone have any sort of suggestions for me? Anything is absolutely appreciated.



This might help diagnosis; this is from the system recovery command prompt via the Win 7 dvd.

Went to c:\windows\system32, and typed "bcedit /enum all"

Windows Boot Manager
identifier {bootmgr}
device partition=E:
description Windows Boot Manager
locale en-us
inherit {globalsettings}
default {default}
identifier {blah blah blah}
displayorder {default}
toolsdisplayorder {memdiag}
timeout 30

Windows Boot Loader
identifier {numbers and letters}
device partition=F:
path \Windows\System32\winload.exe
description Windows 7
locale en-US
inherit {bootloadersettings}
osdevice partition=F:
systemroot \Windows
resumeobject {numbers and letters}
nx OptIn
I really think the problem lies in here somewhere!! There's another "Windows Boot Loader" entry that lists the partitions as C: - which I find strange. Another one "Resume from Hibernate" lists partition F, then another one lists C.

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Hi Dirk,welcome to NST.
Windows 7 has an annoying habit of playing "hide the boot files" when you install it.
Chances are the BCD is on one of the SATA drives.
Disconnect all the HDDs except the one with the W7 OS on it and try the "boot the W7 DVD", "repair your computer", "startup repair" sequence again (3 times)
Make sure that the W7 HDD is first in the BIOS boot sequence when you reconnect all the HDDs
Hi Terry,

I appreciate the response. Would it matter that I am using a USB stick w/ Win7 to boot from? (Have been using USB to install Win7 due to the speed increase).

I don't see why if it installed OK from the flashdrive in the first place, but I haven't done that myself.
(W7 is pretty fast - only about 25 minutes to install completely from the DVD)
Ntsdl is missing then bootmgr is missing then dual boot is missing

I have a partitioned drive one partition is installed with xp home the other windows 7 ultimate, in system properties i made w7 my active partition, after reboot i received an error ntldr is missing press ctrl+alt+del after doing so, i received the same message, i inserted the recovery cd for xp, and instigated a recovery from the advanced menu with file back up, so i didn't lose any files. Then i recovered rebooted and received bootmgr is missing press ctrl+alt+del pressed it and same problem, now this error has to do with w7, i inserted windows 7 dvd (change boot order in your bios to cd\dvd first) and did a repair, the system detected that it was a problem with the start up asked me to reboot started boot up from the dvd again, it recognized the error, repair error, reboot. Now dual boot is missing and just boots into win7 automatically, used Easybcd added winxp, reboot and everything worked properly, i just had to reactivate and reinstall software in windows xp again :smile:
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The solution is easier. I have also 2 OS (Win 7 and Win XP) and 6 hard drives. I removed one drive from the computer to replace it and the problem starts. I had the same error... and I had no idea what to do. Nothing helped...

My friend told me,
You have to set in BIOS bootdrive that was on the boot list before changes (in my case that was Win7). Check via EasyBCD where is you Bootfile - in my case it was not on drive C.... it was on K and that was the whole problem because I've tried to fixboot, fixmgr and other things and it didn't work.

When you change in Bios first boot device to correct disc drive with Bootfile ... it should work.

EasyBCD is not a good software for this because any changes in hard drives configuration and the problem will appear again.
EasyBCD is not the bootloader. It's just an app for managing the bootloader.

If you alter your BIOS, (or physically change your hardware so that the BIOS boot sequence is now wrong) of course the boot is going to fail.
That's got nothing to do with EasyBCD or the Microsoft boot manager.

If you move the position of the drive containing your OS (any OS, not just Windows), then you must tell the BIOS where it is if you expect it to be able to boot.
Since I am having this same problem "BOOTMGR is missing, press CTRL+ALT+DEL" when I try to boot from the hard drive, I must be making some progress. For some reason I can only boot from the flash drive into XP. EasyBSD doesn't seem to do all the things the instructions say it will, but now I installed all my drivers and updated to SP3 on the XP part I'll try reinstalling EasyBCD again. Is the only way I am going to be able to fix this is by using an external drive?
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I just had (and recovered from) a bad problem caused by easybcd.

I tried to find and fix a problem with windows not wanting to start if I had a flash drive plugged in that was partitioned with ntfs for most of it and 2gb partition for a linux swap file when I want to use linux.

I went through the steps ok.

But here lies the problems with the program:

1) it does not run from CD/DVD in order to make repairs if you hve something go wrong, especially for UEFI configurations.
2) It does not automatically make an exact copy of the boot configuration file before making changes. I tried to make one and it supposedly did. But when I tried to put it back and restart, windows refused to boot.
3) No safeguards to prevent such problems - such as a scan to see if the boot path is correct (comparing it to the original boot path)

Fortunately I had my wife's computer to make a recovery disk and I was accidentally smart enough when I bought the laptop to make a system copy on my system.

About 2 minutes from the time I put i the recovery disk and windows said & fixed the problem the computer was running like it did before.

The purpose of having such a program for me is s I can dual boot from different versions of linux from different flash drives.

But apparently this is not easily done nor possible for most people due to the unnecessary UEFI that Windows forced down upon us.
And UEFI wasn't needed to run Disks larger than 2TB. A simple fix could have done the job nicely in XP.

The developers might want to make a program to add to easybcd to search for backup files and automatically make a system restore disk before allowing any changes to be made.

FYI: at the present time Geek Squad charges $146.00 and higher to reload a computer. Fixing easybcd to the above would help ensure that people don't get stuck paying for a factory reload that wouldn't normally be necessary.

I still cannot find out why windows 7 has problems with any flash drive that has a windows partition and linux swapfile partition on the same drive.

If linux supported my usb prepaid internet dongle I would pull the hard drive out put in an ssd drive and install linux. No more worries about uefi then. Longer battery life (SSD's use 1/10th the power of a regular hard drive), faster computer, and less heat. Linux Mint, Ubuntu, and Linux puppy all work great except for that internet dongle issue. I have to keep the OS that came with the computer for warranty reasons.

I am running Win7 Home Premium, 64bit, UEFI, 500GB HD (5400 rpm) partitioned into multiple factory partitions, 4gb ram, on and ASUS K55a laptop.
What I thought was a problem with EasyBCD was really because I had not set the partition where my boot files (BCD) to "active" so the computer was not finding it when it tried to boot up. Now I just need to find the right Windows XP compatible ACHI driver for my chipset so I can startup in that instead of IDE.
  • We have CDs that do just that, available from They are, in many ways, bootable EasyBCD CDs. *However* they do not have UEFI support just yet.
  • EasyBCD 2.2 creates backups automatically and saves them in My Documents.
  • EasyBCD is a power user tool. It has some limited safeguards (it'll warn if you try to exit without any entries, for example), but in all honesty, we give you enough rope to hang yourself with.