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Windows 7: Windows 7 dual boot to XP but ntldr missing during install


14 Dec 2012   #1

Windows 7 pro 64 bit
 
 
Windows 7 dual boot to XP but ntldr missing during install

Hello all,

So I've made a huge mess of my father in law's laptop. He asked me to install windows XP 32 bit on his laptop which already had Windows 7 home 64bit. I followed a tutorial on here but somewhere along the way I screwed up. I then decided to just format the entire drive and go at it again with a fresh windows 7 install.

Win 7 installs and loads up fine. When I load up XP to install it hangs on the ntldr is missing error during the first installation reboot. Once this happens I can't get back into Windows 7.

Each OS is being installed on a separate partition. I can't figure out how to get passed the ntldr is missing error during the XP installation. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance!

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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14 Dec 2012   #2
Microsoft MVP

 

Wish you'd asked earlier as we could have easily saved your relative's Windows 7 installation if you didn't overwrite it.

Since you chose to reinstall, you should have done so in order of OS age so that Windows 7 would configure the Dual Boot Menu when installed last. But if you have Windows 7 installed now, don't bother doing it over as we can help you start it at any time, then manually add XP to a Dual Boot menu using EasyBCD (click Download - no Name or Email required) .

Since XP when installed last always takes away Windows 7 ability to boot until repaired, let's work on getting XP installed.

Boot the XP CD now. Does it prompt to Press Any Key when you boot the CD, then if so do you see it loading the files. If you get to the drive selection screen can you create and full format the XP partition and begin install?

If not post back the full error message.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Dec 2012   #3

Windows 7 pro 64 bit
 
 

Hi and thanks for replying.

Ok so I'm starting from a freshly formatted drive that has a system reserved partition for Acer recovery. The remainder is unallocated.

I inserted the XP cd and booted into it. The setup files load and I'm able to create and format partitions. Once install begins it continues normally through the blue set up screen. After it reboots it hangs on the ntldr is missing.

Actually I just ran it again and it's not looking for ntoskrnl.exe

"Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt: <windows root>\system32\ntoskrnl.exe Please re-install a copy of the above file.

Also I was able to reinstall win 7 with the recovery partition and boot into it but when I go to install XP, the above errors appear and it locks me out of win 7.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


14 Dec 2012   #4
Microsoft MVP

 

How does a freshly formatted drive have a System Reserved and Recovery partition? Do you mean you ran Factory Recovery and this is what resulted?

Is this a retail copy of XP and not OEM? Is the XP CD clean and unscratched? Are you full formatting the target XP partition first?

You may be running up against conflicting boot code that requires actually wiping the HD first of boot code using Diskpart Clean Command . This is a destructive process so I would make my Acer Recovery Disks first, but I would not use them except as a backup. Instead I would install XP first to the wiped HD which you partition and full format, then after XP install do the superior Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7 last so it configures a Dual Boot menu. The Windows 7 installer for your licensed version is provided in Step 1.

If you're in Windows 7 now, type Snipping Tool in Start search box to take a rectangular snip of your maximized Disk Mgmt drive map and listings. Attach using paper clip in Reply box.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Dec 2012   #5

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

ME/XP/Vista/Win7
 
 

1)
Quote:
I then decided to just format the entire drive and go at it again with a fresh windows 7 install.

2)
Quote:
Ok so I'm starting from a freshly formatted drive that has a system reserved partition for Acer recovery. The remainder is unallocated.
Which one did you do?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Dec 2012   #6

Windows 7 pro 64 bit
 
 

Right now there's no installed OS on the laptop. When I just let it boot up it gives me the following error:

"Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt: <windows root>\system32\ntoskrnl.exe Please re-install a copy of the above file."

If I run the XP install, it works up until the first reboot after the blue setup screen, it gets stuck on the same error as above.

Does the disk part clean command wipe the entire HDD or just a selected partition?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Dec 2012   #7

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

ME/XP/Vista/Win7
 
 

Quote:
Does the disk part clean command wipe the entire HDD or just a selected partition?
All partitions.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Dec 2012   #8

Windows 7 pro 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gregrocker View Post
How does a freshly formatted drive have a System Reserved and Recovery partition? Do you mean you ran Factory Recovery and this is what resulted?

Is this a retail copy of XP and not OEM? Is the XP CD clean and unscratched? Are you full formatting the target XP partition first?

You may be running up against conflicting boot code that requires actually wiping the HD first of boot code using Diskpart Clean Command . This is a destructive process so I would make my Acer Recovery Disks first, but I would not use them except as a backup. Instead I would install XP first to the wiped HD which you partition and full format, then after XP install do the superior Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7 last so it configures a Dual Boot menu. The Windows 7 installer for your licensed version is provided in Step 1.

If you're in Windows 7 now, type Snipping Tool in Start search box to take a rectangular snip of your maximized Disk Mgmt drive map and listings. Attach using paper clip in Reply box.
Alright so I did the diskpart clean command and partitioned the drive. Booted the XP install and so far so good. I'm passes the reboot error. Once installation completes I'm going to clean install windows 7 and hope it configures the boot properly. I'll report back if something goes wrong. Thanks for the help everyone!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Dec 2012   #9
Microsoft MVP

 

Study these steps now for getting a perfect Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7 so you understand how to install the first driver-complete OS. It will remain a perfect install as long as you stick with the tools and methods given.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Windows 7 dual boot to XP but ntldr missing during install




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