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Windows 7: Problems booting W7 Ultimate

19 Dec 2011   #1
Microsoft MVP

Problems booting W7 Ultimate

I’m not sure what happened. I have a Dell XPS 8300 that was running fine this morning. Windows 7 Ultimate is installed. The hard drive is partitioned asfollows:

- OEM Partition 39 MB
- Recovery 35.44 GB
- OS 300 GB W7 Ultimate
- OS#2 300 GB Empty
- DATA 1227.54 GB

I left it running and returned this afternoon to the following screen:

Drive 0: primary 01 Win Vista/2008 NFTS Recovery
Drive 1: primary 1: linux NTFS OS

Insert startup disk in floppy drive & press F2 to run setup

The “Win Vista/2008” is highlighted. ”NTFS” is in Blue. “Recovery” and “OS" are in Red.

If I press F2, it tries to load from a non-existent floppy drive. If I press "Enter", the correct OS loads.

I did have Paragon Backup set to run a full backup of all partitions on Drive 0. The program shows it as succeeding, but I don't see the backup files.

This is sounding like the boot loader is wacked. Anyone seen this and/or have a solution?

Hank Arnold
Network Administrator - Hospice, Inc.
MVP (Windows Server - Directory Services)

My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Dec 2011   #2
Microsoft MVP


Hi Hank -

Access System Recovery Options to run Startup Repair a few times, after assuring the Active flag remains where Dell put it - possibly on the Recovery partition.

Partition - Mark as Active (Method Two)
Startup Repair - Run 3 Separate Times

If this fails, try moving the Active flag to the Win7 partition itself and run the Repairs again.

You can get a GUI using free Partition Wizard bootable CD which can also Modify>Set to Active, then click on HD to highlight it, from Disk tab select Rebuild MBR, Apply. This might preclude the need to run the Repairs.

Startup Repair should automate all tests and fixes if run enough times, including System Restore. If not run it from System Recovery Options manually to a point before you installed the Paragon app.

Physically unplug any floppy drive you still have.

Check for infection by attempting to boot into Safe Mode with networking
to install and run a full scan with Malwarebyte. If this fails download, burn to CD or write to flash stick Microsoft Standalone System Sweeper, boot to run a full scan. Then try repairs again.

You can copy out files using Win7 DVD or System Repair Disk: Copy & Paste - in Windows Recovery Console

Then if all fails run full factory Recovery from its partition, disks you made or order from Tech Support, or use a Win7 DVD to clean reinstall following these steps to get a perfect reinstall: Reinstalling Windows 7
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Dec 2011   #3
Microsoft MVP


Thanks, gregrocker. Some good leads here. I'll post back as soon as I have a chance to work on it some more.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

23 Dec 2011   #4

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient


F2 is the Dell BIOS setup.

I would reset the BIOS, clean & reseat all cards.
The BIOS may have found a bad card.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Problems booting W7 Ultimate

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