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  1. #1
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    Default multiple os screwup

    Man, I really messed it up this time. My original operating system-xp home upgrade from 98. Upon startup I get the message- file missing or corrupt(\windows\system32\config\system) boot to disc and hit r to repair. I tried this but it would only go so far and stop. Thus I rebooted to 2000 profressional, now the nutty part, when it told me I was booting over xp I got the crazy idea once I was back up I could repair xp. Well I found out that just wasn't that easy. Now I have tried various ways to reformat the hard drive to no avail. When I boot up to dos, type in format C:, it tells me another process is using the system and can't lock it out. Any help you can give me is greatly appreciated. Little Mike

  2. #2
    Member DSR17's Avatar
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    I think it will not let you format C: in dos because the Dos you are using is the version of Dos that runs from windows. This basically means you are trying to format a drive that is currently being read. This means after getting so far it will have erased the data telling it to format, get very confused and will probably crash, hence it won't let you do so.
    You need to boot Dos from a floppy disk. You can download the files from here: http://www.bootdisk.com Just copy them onto a floppy and insert it into you floppy drive. When you boot up choose to boot from floppy. Try the "format c:" command again and it should work.

    Bear in mind in doing this you will erase all the data stored on your hard disk, all programs and data files. You will need the original install disks to get everything reinstalled. You might be better off either cleaning up your computer or just reparing XP with the reinstalation disks that came with your computer.

    Just another point, how is your computer set up, ie. what partitions and operating systems do you have. You say you booted from Win 2000 but I was under the impression that you can't dual boot Win 2000 and XP as they use the same boot sector.

    A little more info would be useful before you do anything drastic.

    Cheers, Dave.

  3. #3
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    Thank you for your assistance. There is one partition, SYSTEM_SAV[D] contains files CPQDRV, CPQS, AND DATA. My first attempt to work in Dos was indeed in windows, but I have also gone into Dos in safe mode which is when it tells me another process is using the system, I then opened task mgr finding three processes running one of which is system idle. I am not sure if I can safely shut down any one of these, thus I reach a dead-end there. Upon my next reboot I will write down the other two processes and let you know what they are. I have tried to boot to several startup floppies, including Dos 5 which I got from the site you refered me to, but it tells me non system disc or disc error, when I try windows 2000 boot floppy 1 I get a missing file, when I try McAfee emergency start up disc I get disc error or non sytem disc, I don't recall which message I got when trying the XP boot disc. I am going to see if I can find out which version of Dos I am using and go back to the site you refered to. When booting to the hard drive it asks which OS I would like to use, XP or 2000, so both OS are definetly on there, but I still get the corrupt file message if I try to boot up to XP. The operating systems are Windows 98 upgraded to XP home and Windows 2000 Profressional. If there is any more information you might find useful please specify. Thanks, Littlemike

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    Member DSR17's Avatar
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    Have you successfully used both XP and 2000 together in the past or did your problems arise when you upgraded 98 to XP?

    When you boot to the Dos in safe mode, it is still running Windows (ie. form off your hard drive) but without the Graphical User Interface (GUI). This is why you still get the error message. You need to boot from a floppy (as Dos is only a small file with no GUI it can be stored on a floppy) so you are not reading the hard drive at the same time.
    When you use the Win 98 Boot Disk, it extracts the files on it to your RAM, creating a temporary hard drive (called a Ram Drive) which it then uses to carry out your commands.

    With regards to the floppy boot disk, try the Windows 98 one, that is the one I have always used. http://www.bootdisk.com/bootdisk.htm I would go for the "Windows 98 SE OEM".

    Are you sure you only have one partition as it is very inadvisable to run multiple operating systems on the same logical drives as there will be confusion between them. When you open up my computer how many hard disks are displayed? Alternatively you can run fDisk from the Windows 98 boot disk (located on the Ram Drive I think) to check your partition table. Change to your Ram Drive (by typing "E:" at the "A:\>" prompt) and then typing "fdisk".

    Make sure your BIOS is set up to boot to floppy before Hard Disk otherwise it will not boot to the floppy first.

    Hope this makes sense, please post back if you need any further assistance or indeed you resolve the problem as we would like to know for future reference.

    Cheers, Dave.

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    When I try to boot to windows 98 se oem I get the message NTLDR is missing. :?:

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    Ola Mike, see if the link below is helpful.


    http://www.tinyempire.com/shortnotes...dr_missing.htm
    Comptia A+ and Network + Certified. Microsoft MCP in Windows 2000 Pro. Server, Advanced Server and Data Center Sever.

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    Default recap

    I appreciate everyones help. Unfortuneatly I still have not solved the problem. Let me start from the beginning. I am using Compaq model 5BW130 which is about 5 years old. Processor-GenuineIntel 498MHZ,Internet Explorer 6.0 Service Pack 1, hard drive WDC WD400EB-00CPFO, SYSTEM BIOS DATE 04/18/2001(version not found) 191 MHZ RAM. The system came with windows 98, about three years ago I upgraded to windows xp home. This was an upgrade, not a new install. I have never had a problem with it until recently upon a restart a message came up that a file was missing or corrupt, run recovery console and repair. I tried this but the system froze. After a couple of attempts I decided to install windows 2000 profressional. A message came up that if I installed with xp still on the machine I may experience some problems with some programs, which I did but simply had to reinstall them. I left xp on the machine in hopes that once I got back to the desktop I may be able to repair xp. I still can't get to xp. Now I have the opportunity to upgrade my motherboard/processor/memory but must format my drive to do so. I have tried windows 2000 boot disk 1, windows xp emergency disk, McAfee, 4 versions of DOS boot disc, and an fdisc program. I either get the message "disc error or non system disc" or NTLDR is missing. I even downloaded a version of DOS boot disc and 2000 boot disc 1 on another machine running 2000 Pro with the same results. Any other ideas will be appreciated. Thanks, LittleMike P.S. I have converted to NTFS and when I download a boot disc it says the file system is FAT. Could this be where the problem lay and if so how do I download in NTFS. The alternate machine I used also is NTFS but the download came through as FAT. :cry:

  8. #8
    Member DSR17's Avatar
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    I think your problem stems from having remnants of three operating systems on the same partition. As the PC is Compaq, I severely doubt that it came with more than one partition so when you installed the new operating systems I think you installed them on the same partition. This means Windows is know very confused when trying to boot as there are duplicates and even substitutes of files in the boot sector so Windows does not know where to look properly.

    As you can no longer get to Windows I suggest you completely erase the hard drive and clean install Windows XP. Find out how to do so using this article: http://www.help2go.com/article91.htm...rder=0&thold=0
    Remember this will erase EVERYTHING so only proceed if you have backed up all your data and have full install disk of all the software you need.

    Once you have done this insert your Windows XP CD and follow the prompts (or even this excellent article by partie: http://www.help2go.com/article238.html

    Hope this solves your problems,
    Cheers, Dave.

  9. #9
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    Default Success at last

    I went to the site recommended by DSR17 but believe it or not I did not have the needed blank 700 mb disc available. However I found Iolo Technologies Disc Scrubber(free trial) which only required one 1.44 mb diskette. It was fast(about 2.5 hours for three passes) and the interface was easy to understand and work with. Note: have your back-ups and OS ready. Once again I thank those whom have contributed and hope this helps anyone that gets as goofy as I can.