Ignorantly deleted ntldr


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ricohflex

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Feb 24, 2005
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#1
This is a heads up to members.
Just to share with you.

The value of buying and using a PC backup program. And to do full backup from time to time. (incremental backup not much use in my opinion)
I used Acronis 11. You can choose other software. Previously I used Cyberlink but switched to Acronis for simpler interface.


Yesterday afternoon, I ignorantly deleted the file named "ntldr" (no extension) from my C:\ root directory. (I did not remember deleted from which directory - until after I rescued the PC and checked where this thing was residing)
Somehow, Windows does not protect this file from accidental erasure or make it a hidden file.

The next time I tried to turn on the PC this morning, the PC refused to boot.
It says
"ntldr missing"

Trying to recover using the original Windows XP CD was useless.
It made you try to key in Administrator Password, etc....
Make you go round in circles......

Resinstalling the XP does not work. The next time restart the PC, it just loops from start to Windows start up screen non-stop and never proceed beyond.

How did I cure it?
Luckily got Acronis 11 Backup and made an Acronis Boot Rescue disk.
And Luckily I backed up the C: and D: drives (full backup) as recently as 15 Nov 09.
Phew!

So this is how to restore from Acronis.
Connect up the USB cabling to the PC and the portable hard disk that I back up drive C to.
Then put in the Acronis Boot Rescue CD into the drive A:
Turn on the PC.
Choose from the menu, Restore.
Then follow the menu to restore from the portable hard disk.
It is shown as E: (in my system)

Just do a full backup of C:

After that, remove the portable hard disk and the Acronis Boot Rescue disk from drive A:

Restart the PC.

It will log on beautifully, as though nothing happened as from 15 Nov 09.
Did not lose much in 6 days. Not from drive C: anyway.

Drive D: is unscathed.

Finally, don't erase ntldr.
 

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Lolrence

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Oct 15, 2006
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#2
I've Acronis installed too, but that's because I've installed XP 64 on a Dell that shouldn't support it for whatever reason :bsmilie: I've had times when the com just went bonkers and refused to boot... but I think it was partly due to a HDD with bad sectors which I've replaced..

The program is good, it loads before Windows start loading, so as long as your com is able to go past the boot loading screen, Acronis is able to recover a saved image of your com. :thumbsup:

I didn't need to use the a: rescue disk though... you had to use a floppy? :think:
 

Limsgp

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Dec 16, 2005
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#3
ntldr is required for the OS to read NTFS formatted HDD.

If the HDD is fat32 formatted, this issue would not arise.

Also, how is the XP re-installation done?

If it is boot from CD then "install", there should be no issue as the installer will write the necessary files to the Boot sector, including the ntldr.
 

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ricohflex

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Feb 24, 2005
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#5
Just boot from the XP CD and copy the NTLDR (from another machine) back to your old machine.
Cannot boot.

Type in [ntldr is missing cannot boot] and Google.
Many other people have same experience.

Anyway, there is no "other machine" in my home to copy ntldr from.
Not sure if one machine's ntldr can be used in another machine, especially if they have different brand/type/model/capacity hard disks.
I have no idea where it resided in hard disk because the stupid error message did not say.
Not sure if can access the hard disk anyway.
 

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ricohflex

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Feb 24, 2005
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#6
Also, how is the XP re-installation done?

If it is boot from CD then "install", there should be no issue as the installer will write the necessary files to the Boot sector, including the ntldr.
I tried.
It failed.
After insert original XP disk into CD drive, it will ask you whether you want to install XP (all over again) or you want to repair.

Trying to repair will just make you angry. Silly Windows ask for Administrator Password. I did not even know I was supposed to be the Administrator and that I was supposed to have an Administrator Password. Without that you cannot even start the Repair process. See how stupid it gets......

Re-installation will take a long time and when it is over, it failed.
The PC merely enters an endless loop it beeps, starts to log on to Windows, the opening screen appears, then it goes right back to the start, beeps.....screen appears again, ....beeps... screen appears again........continue doing so non-stop.
 

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ricohflex

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Feb 24, 2005
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#7
The program is good, it loads before Windows start loading, so as long as your com is able to go past the boot loading screen, Acronis is able to recover a saved image of your com. :thumbsup:

I didn't need to use the a: rescue disk though... you had to use a floppy? :think:
I used a Boot Rescue Disk created from a CDRW that I made according to advice from the Acronis software.
It is not a floppy. CDRW is better. Floppy will grow fungus over a long period of time. When you most need it, a floppy may not be readable due to fungus.

You should make a Boot Rescue CDRW right away. Keep it aside. One day it may save your whole system from having to be re-installed, and save all your programs and data.

My journal recorded that I bought Acronis for $69 from Challenger at IMM. Money well spent.
 

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Limsgp

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#8
Using the original XP CD, it is able to install windows on a new, empty HDD and make it usable, so there is no reason that it cannot re-install windows on an existing HDD.

Maybe you have selected the wrong option. You should used a clean install, so that it will make another working copy of the windows, and after that you can delete the old windows folder. Of course this will remove any programs, settings etc.. but the HDD will be bootable.

If you want to restore it to previous condition, a proper backup program will be necessary.

BTW, for ntldr, Normal copying from anywhere will NOT work. Same as IO.sys etc..




I tried.

The PC merely enters an endless loop it beeps, starts to log on to Windows, the opening screen appears, then it goes right back to the start, beeps.....screen appears again, ....beeps... screen appears again........continue doing so non-stop.
 

Lolrence

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Oct 15, 2006
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#10
I used a Boot Rescue Disk created from a CDRW that I made according to advice from the Acronis software.
It is not a floppy. CDRW is better. Floppy will grow fungus over a long period of time. When you most need it, a floppy may not be readable due to fungus.

You should make a Boot Rescue CDRW right away. Keep it aside. One day it may save your whole system from having to be re-installed, and save all your programs and data.

My journal recorded that I bought Acronis for $69 from Challenger at IMM. Money well spent.
I just backup the image on my com, as well as on another harddisk... it feels safer than backing up on a cdr... btw, cdrws are unreliable. ;)
 

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Feb 6, 2006
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#11
True, I used the Acronis software to juz clone my bootup drive C: to another backup hdd weekly
Any time my C: drive encounter strange issue(once in a blue moon), unable to boot up
I just go to BIOS and change my bootup drive to my backup hdd, its works exactly like a charm w/o much hassle w/ all my settings intact

Then I juz clone back the backup hdd data again to my main bootup drive again..
Minimum downtime :angel:
 

tokrot

New Member
Jun 2, 2003
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#12
True, I used the Acronis software to juz clone my bootup drive C: to another backup hdd weekly
Any time my C: drive encounter strange issue(once in a blue moon), unable to boot up
I just go to BIOS and change my bootup drive to my backup hdd, its works exactly like a charm w/o much hassle w/ all my settings intact

Then I juz clone back the backup hdd data again to my main bootup drive again..
Minimum downtime :angel:
Well, my best friend will format his pc and reinstall OS when he can't fix a simple prob. So far, I guess he has done 50 times or more? :bsmilie:
 

NovJoe

Senior Member
Feb 15, 2009
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#15
Copy NTLDR does work (using the same OS)... http://support.microsoft.com/kb/318728
The "NTLDR is missing" is a simple issue, format the whole pc just for that is an overkill.
Totally agree. Just take the HDD and put into another PC as slave drive, then copy the ntldr from the working PC in the slave drive root directory and you are done ;).
 

ricohflex

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Feb 24, 2005
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#16
I just backup the image on my com, as well as on another harddisk... it feels safer than backing up on a cdr... btw, cdrws are unreliable. ;)
The CDRW is only for the Boot Rescue Disk. 20MB of code only.
I used Imation CDRW. Which I think is not good. Fortunately it worked.
Actually prefer Maxell CDRW.
If DVDRW, use Verbatim.

The backup of drives C: and D: are on two separate portable Maxtor hard disks.
 

ricohflex

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Feb 24, 2005
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#17
....You should used a clean install, so that it will make another working copy of the windows, and after that you can delete the old windows folder. Of course this will remove any programs, settings etc.. but the HDD will be bootable.

..
I have about 300 programs on the PC. (many are good well written freeware for XP) Imagine reinstalling them. Register the codes for the original softwares again.
Tweaking the customised toolbars and icons....again
Not something that I like.
 

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Limsgp

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Dec 16, 2005
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#18
Well, not to say that it is the recommended way.. just to point out that the "re-installing" doesn't work because it is not a clean install. If you do a clean install, should not get the error and the looping issue.

Of course, in your case, a clean install is maybe not practical and also not done. hence you got the errors as you encountered and so on althou you boot from the XP CD.
 

tokrot

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Jun 2, 2003
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#19
The "NTLDR is missing" is a simple issue, format the whole pc just for that is an overkill.
Nono.. I mean some issues like Can't play games.. it's actually the directx prob or video card driver prob.. and he also installed some software from anonymous sites. Didn't work and mess up his system, so he formatted... :bsmilie:
 

Anson

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Jul 31, 2006
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ansonchew.com
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#20
Nono.. I mean some issues like Can't play games.. it's actually the directx prob or video card driver prob.. and he also installed some software from anonymous sites. Didn't work and mess up his system, so he formatted... :bsmilie:
There is an option called System Restore in XP. Did he tried it?
 

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