NTLDR is missing

By Bimmerknut
Aug 6, 2010
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  1. Before you jump to conclusions about this issue please consider the symptom/s and what I've done so far.

    Senario: Windows XP
    My wife's old HP PIII on held 374 mb ram. My daughter had a 933mhz PIII Gateway that had a smaller hard drive (20mb) also with XP on it. This was creating a problem with space since my wife does a lot of music and graphic downloads for our church.

    My idea was to take the hard drive out of the HP and put it in the Gateway. I get this message about NTLDR is missing. So, I put the original hard drive back in and then I SLAVE the wife's 40mb hard drive in and it works. Problem is, the boot drive is too small. I just want the 40mb to work as the boot drive.

    So, I boot up to windows and I put the XP cd in and I browse to 2 files. NTLDR and NTDETECT. I copy them both from the XP cd to the hard drive I'm having issues with getting to boot. Isn't this pretty much the same thing as extracting a file?

    I shut everything down, I put the larger hard drive back as a MASTER drive by moving the jumper and connecting the IDE cable at the end connector to the drive.
    Turn on the power and nothing has changed.

    So, I don't get it. The hard drive was working fine in the HP. The hard drive IS being seen in the BIOS. I even did a reset config in the BIOS just for the hell of it to see if that would help. Would it help if I cleared NVRAM also?

    The motherboard is a Intel PPGA 370 FEDORA Gateway motherboard which I've also maxed the ram out at 512mb.

    Thanks everyone!
  2. Sharam

    Sharam TS Rookie Posts: 509

    You can not just replace hard drives with XP already installed on them specially from a different system, the only time this works is if at least the motherboards are identical or same Chipset at the least, then again the video card will be forced in to VGA mode.

    When you install XP, it installs itself on the hard drive according to your configuration meaning it gathers information as it detects your hardware so it is specific to that system.

    You can not copy the files you mentioned and expect it to work, will not happen, you can remove some entries from the registry and hope Windows would load then detect all the new hardware changes but still, fresh install or at least a repair install is needed.

    My suggestion, use the 40GB for storage as Slave if you don't have the install CD.

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