Server 2008 install loop

By sethbest
Feb 20, 2009
  1. Building a server, figured i'd try out windows server 2008, but during install, after going through its loading bar for all the install stuff it auto resets then just loads the installer again from the begining.

    disabling boot from cd after install brings up "BOOTMGR is missing" error. Since this is a fresh install on brand new drives there are no backups to restore the drive's bootsector from, and seem's like the least of my problems anyways if this immediately follows install.

    several formats and repartitions have not changed this situation.

    The only x-factor involved is that I am tryin to install this to a mirrored RAID-1 array of 2 western digital 500gig drives. The array is shown as healthy, but server has no option to load RAID drivers, and see's the drives as 2 seperate drives. Looking at some install guides this seems to just be how the install goes and the array continues to function after install, at least for other people.

    I did load the drivers for the mobo's raid and sata during install but it dosn't change anything, and install progresses the same whether i load them or not.
  2. mflynn

    mflynn TS Rookie Posts: 2,655

    Not enough info but do the below.

    Boot from CD again, chose to repair using Recovery console.

    When it arrives at C:\WINDOWS> (if it stops at only C:\> then it is not recognizing the HD)

    But if it is C:\WINDOWS> then

    bootcfg /rebuild

    Hit enter key

    Back at prompt
    hit enter key

    will continue or reboot.

    Let me know.

  3. sethbest

    sethbest TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 79

    Server dosn't realy have a repair console, only a command prompt, which loads to a X:\sources. I can change to c: and it shows some directories in place.

    By the method you described though, after navigateing to the windows directory, i get "error:cannot open boot.ini file."

    When i tried it from my xp cd it analyzed the drive for a while then reset.
  4. mflynn

    mflynn TS Rookie Posts: 2,655

    Nope that is just the CMD prompt. This command is only valid in Recovery console!

    Try this.

    First are there any printers flashdrives or ANY external USB devices connected to this computer. If so unplug.

    Lets try to install the Recovery console as a boot option.

    At the CMD prompt as you mentioned above.

    Type in the following command (I am assuming from above x: is the CD drive letter and you have the Server 2003 setup disk in the drive.

    x:\i386\winnt32.exe /cmdcons.

    If this gives problems, stop, its not working.

    But if it completes reboot without the Install cd in the drive and if it gives an option to enter Recovery console then chose that.

    If it automatically ends up in C:\WINDOWS> then type the bootcfg /rebuild

    If it is not exactly C:\WINDOWS> then the windows folder is not fully installed and it will not work!

  5. sethbest

    sethbest TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 79

    couldnt get any of my windows disc's to get to the point where i could load repair utility. Tried loading manualy as described, but kept getting errors, such as no operating system found, but if i try to install it says theres already a OS installed.

    Ended up fixing this problem by disabling my RAID array, and just installing on one drive, then rebuilding the array afterwards, Now for all the fun of playing with this new OS.

    Thx for the help though Mflynn, taught me some new tricks.
  6. mflynn

    mflynn TS Rookie Posts: 2,655

    That'll doer!

    I would do the below!

    Add a redundent Reg backup, get and install ERUNT let it add itself to startup and do a backup on install check all boxes.

    Yes! Even if you use system restore and other backups Registry and Images.

    Good luck,
  7. sethbest

    sethbest TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 79

    Will do mflynn, thanks for the help.

    This system is highly redundant, every drive is mirrored, and will be hotswapping once a week as a backup, but no harm in a better system restore utility.
  8. dskwared

    dskwared TS Rookie

    I know this post is a little old, but I thought I would share something that worked for me and my team. We were experiencing this BOOTMGR missing error on a Windows Server 2008 64-bit edition. (The OS was installed on a Dell PowerEdge 2950 using a RAID 1 HDD configuration).

    I tried several commands in the Server 2008 Recovery Console command line [bcdedit /fixboot; bcdedit /fixmbr; etc.] but none of them seemed to work. The command bootcfg /rebuild didn't work for me either, as it said "/rebuild" wasn't a valid switch or command.

    What ended up working for me was running the Recovery Console from a Vista (x64) DVD. At the very top is an option titled "Startup Repair." It ran through a series of steps, finished, rebooted my server, and voila!! The boot manager was repaired. I realize not everyone running Server 2008 has a Vista installation DVD simply lying around, but it might be a good idea to get one for just such a situation.

    I'm sure the same would apply in the case of an x86 OS environment using the x86 Vista DVD.
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