XP and W7 ntldr missing

Ray

New Member
#1
I did a clean install for Windows 7 on G:\ and kept XP on C:\. Everytning worked fine until the following morning when w7 did an automatic update. After I did a restart; got error msg; ntldr missing. After many tries, finally changed BIOs to boot from DVD first. Worked fine; boot takes me to menu screen to choose between w7 and older windows os. W7 is shown as default and I am able to load either os with no problem. I can also use my XP install cd and get the same result.
Added ntldr, NTDETECT.com and Boot.ini to G:.
Used EasyBCD 2.0 to change order of settings so that w7 is first.

Settings are as follows:

Default: Windows 7
Timeout: 30 seconds
EasyBCD Boot Device: C:\

Entry #1
Name: Windows 7
BCD ID: (current)
Drive: G:\
Bootloader Path: \Windows\system32\winload.exe

Entry #2
Name: Earlier version of Windows
BCD ID: (ntldr)
Drive: C:\
Bootldr Path: \ntldr

Questions:
1. Why is EasyBCD Boot Device C:\ ? Is this relevant to my problem?
2. How do I change things so that I can boot without using a cd or dvd?
 
#2
I did a clean install for Windows 7 on G:\ and kept XP on C:\. Everytning worked fine until the following morning when w7 did an automatic update. After I did a restart; got error msg; ntldr missing. After many tries, finally changed BIOs to boot from DVD first. Worked fine; boot takes me to menu screen to choose between w7 and older windows os.
Hi Ray, welcome to NST.
If there's no CD or DVD in the drive, then having the DVD drive first in the boot sequence wont make a difference, and the BIOS will end up chainloading to the first HDD's MBR.
W7 is shown as default and I am able to load either os with no problem. I can also use my XP install cd and get the same result.
This does not make any sense, unless W7 and XP are on separate HDDs, and you changed which one was first in the boot sequence. Don't know what you mean by "I can also use my XP install cd and get the same result" as the XP install cd is not intelligent enough to detect the bootmgr/BCD, and bring up the boot menu. It is not forward compatible at all, since Vista/7 uses a different MBR, boot sector code, and a completely different bootloader.
Added ntldr, NTDETECT.com and Boot.ini to G:.
Used EasyBCD 2.0 to change order of settings so that w7 is first.
Is G: your W7 HDD/partition, and is XP on a separate HDD?
Settings are as follows:

Default: Windows 7
Timeout: 30 seconds
EasyBCD Boot Device: C:\

Entry #1
Name: Windows 7
BCD ID: (current)
Drive: G:\
Bootloader Path: \Windows\system32\winload.exe

Entry #2
Name: Earlier version of Windows
BCD ID: (ntldr)
Drive: C:\
Bootldr Path: \ntldr

Questions:
1. Why is EasyBCD Boot Device C:\ ? Is this relevant to my problem?
2. How do I change things so that I can boot without using a cd or dvd?
Seems your C: partition, which is apparently XP, is "system" according to Disk Management (meaning it contains the boot files of both systems, and it is where you're booting from, not G). Did you put the XP HDD (if its separate than W7) first in the boot sequence?
 

Ray

New Member
#3
Sorry I wasn't clear.
1. I have only one hard drive. C:\ and G:\ are separate partitions on the same drive. C:\ is the original XP partition and W7 was installed on G:\ a week ago.
2. If I set HDD as the first boot device in the BIOS, I get error msg NTLDR is missing. Please press CTRL+ALT+DEL to restart.
3. Change first boot device to CDRom. No cd/dvd in drive, get same error msg.
4.First boot device: cdrom. XP install disk in dvd reader. Get msg 'press any key to boot from cd'. Booting continues to menu to select W7 or Older Windows OS.
5. First boot device: cdrom. W7 install disk in dvd reader. Get msg 'press any key to boot from cd or dvd'. Booting continues to menu to select W7 or Older Windows OS.
 
#4
Sorry I wasn't clear.
1. I have only one hard drive. C:\ and G:\ are separate partitions on the same drive. C:\ is the original XP partition and W7 was installed on G:\ a week ago.
2. If I set HDD as the first boot device in the BIOS, I get error msg NTLDR is missing. Please press CTRL+ALT+DEL to restart.
And this is after selecting XP in the boot menu, and pressing Enter?
3. Change first boot device to CDRom. No cd/dvd in drive, get same error msg.
4.First boot device: cdrom. XP install disk in dvd reader. Get msg 'press any key to boot from cd'. Booting continues to menu to select W7 or Older Windows OS.
And what happens when you try to boot the "Older Windows OS" entry that way?
5. First boot device: cdrom. W7 install disk in dvd reader. Get msg 'press any key to boot from cd or dvd'. Booting continues to menu to select W7 or Older Windows OS.
Are the results the same booting from either the XP or W7 install disks?
 
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Ray

New Member
#5
answer on scenario 2
can't get to OS selection. can only do a restart.
answer on scenario 4
if I get to boot menu, I can select either XP or W7. Behavior is the same for either XP disk or W7 disk in dvd reader.
 
#6
Ok, to scenario 2, that means you overwrote the W7 MBR/PBR with the XP version which looks for "ntldr". Boot from the W7 DVD, select "Repair My Computer", then "Startup Repair", and run it 3 times to fix everything. Then W7 will boot as normal with no disk in the drive, and probably XP will also be available to boot that way as well.

(Don't know why you get to boot menu with XP disk, you shouldn't; can you boot W7 that way?)

Addendum:

Everytning worked fine until the following morning when w7 did an automatic update. After I did a restart; got error msg; ntldr missing.
Are you sure this was an W7 update, and not an XP update? I've never heard of a W7 update that downgrades the boot code to XP versions...
 
Last edited:

Ray

New Member
#7
My memory may be faulty, but as far as I remember, I was in W7. I don't have automatic update enabled in XP. Quien sabe? In any case, the Startup Repair did the trick. Now getting to boot menu without disk in dvd reader. Thanks again for the quick and effective assistance. Great job!