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Oops I've destroyed windows on my new build

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Hi guys,

I just recently built my own PC and when it came to installing XP I decided to create two partitions, one for normal use - 210gb and one for gaming 40gb.

However, unfortunately i created the gaming one as C: and my main partition as E - as of yet I hadn't got round to installing XP on C:.

Today I was trying to patch a program (don't ask) and the patch needed the directory to be in C: so I wanted to swap the name of the partitions. Couldn't figure how to do it so I got hold of partition magic and decided the best thing to do would be to merge E: into C: and then create a new E partition later. Right? Ahem.....

So now I find myself at the wrong end of the boot command manager asking me to choose between two 'default' partitions - so do I take the red pill or the blue pill?

Well the red pill gives me -

I/O Error accessing boot sector file

Which I presume is my C: drive that never had anything on it...

and the blue pill gives me - <Windows root>\System32\Hal.dll missing or corrupt.

Which I think is my main E: drive.

So, If I boot from my XP cd it says 'setup is inspecting your hardware configuration'

And then it doesn't say anything.... ever

So my questions are - considering I can't boot from XP cd or even get into its Setup do you think I can repair windows?

Or if not how do I reformat my HDD from BIOS or DOS?

Cheers for any suggestion,

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The easiest fix for your situation is to reinstall XP, only this time install it to the C: partition.

Boot your XP CD.
When you get to the part where you choose where to install XP, delete all existing partitions.
Create two new partitions of 210GB and 40GB (in that order)
Format and install XP to the 210GB partition which should now be C:
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