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Windows could not start because...


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#1
Ken Gash

Ken Gash

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My computer has 2 hard disks, C with Windows XP Professional and D with Windows XP Home Edition.
Up until this morning, I could select either as an option on my bootup screen. Now when I select the second drive, I get the following error message and have to reboot into the first drive.
"Windows could not start because of a computer disk hardware configuration problem.
Could not read from the selected boot disk. Check boot path and disk hardware."

I have not added any hardware, the D drive works fine - all programs and files are intact - and CHKDSK reports no errors. The boot.ini file is not corrupted and is correctly formatted. I have read the info in MS KB/314477 and it was no help.
I really don't want to do a Restore Install or especially a clean install so I hope that someone will be able to help.
Thanks,
Ken
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#2
Ztruker

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Hi Ken.

The boot.ini file that is being used is on the C: drive. Is that the one you checked? You can validate the boot.ini file by starting msconfig (Start then Run, type msconfig and press Enter), clicking on the boot.ini tab and clicking on Check All Boot Paths button.
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#3
Ken Gash

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Hi Ken.

The boot.ini file that is being used is on the C: drive. Is that the one you checked? You can validate the boot.ini file by starting msconfig (Start then Run, type msconfig and press Enter), clicking on the boot.ini tab and clicking on Check All Boot Paths button.

Thanks for your response. Here is a copy of my boot.ini file and the results of checking boot.ini in msconfig:
I have 2 separate drives.

[boot loader]
timeout=10
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /fastdetect /noexecute=optin
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(1)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition" /fastdetect /noexecute=optin
C:\CMDCONS\BOOTSECT.DAT="Microsoft Windows Recovery Console" /cmdcons

When I checked BOOT.INI in MSCONFIG, I got the following message:

It appears that the following line in the BOOT.INI file does not refer to a valid operating system:
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(1)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition" /fastdetect /noexecute=optin
Would you like to remove it from the BOOT.INI file?


Does this mean that my Windows Home installation on drive 2 (D) is shot?
Ken
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#4
Ztruker

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Ken, boot the Recovery Console (I see you have it installed) and once you get to the command prompt, enter

fixboot x:

where x: is the drive letter of the XP Home partition. Reboot and see if you can boot to it.

Google gets lots of hits on fixboot, this one is pretty straight forward: http://pcsupport.abo...f/p/fixboot.htm
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#5
Ken Gash

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Thank you all for your help and patience. The problem is fixed! After exhausting all of the boot.ini edits, fixmbr, fix boot, etc., I opened the computer and removed the connection to the sata drive that worked leaving only the problem one. When I booted the machine it came up fine. Then I reconnected the drives back to the way they originally were, rebooted and selected Drive 2 (D:) and it worked. I have no idea why it is now fixed but it appears to be stable.
Thanks again all.
Ken
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#6
Ztruker

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Computers = smoke and mirrors = magic = fate = phases of moon :)
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