NTLDR missing - a real mess

By doc w · 5 replies
Nov 22, 2010
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  1. I am getting the famous NTLDR missing message with Windows XP. I think there are a lot of damaged files on the C drive from a messy erase. In any case, I don't really care if I get that computer going, but I WOULD like to get my files.

    I thought I could just put a memory stick in and use DOS to copy my files to it. I have a very basic understanding of DOS. However, when I go into the repair mode and use DOS, I get "access denied" on just about everything. The computer also has two drives.

    Can I reinstall XP on the OTHER drive and get Windows running just to save my files?

    Any suggestions would be helpful. I am a real hick when it comes to stuff like this so assume I am an ***** who needs basic help.
  2. pjamme

    pjamme TS Enthusiast Posts: 208

    Pull the hard drive and borrow or purchase (around $20) an adapter to connect it to another computer as a D: or E drive.
    Here are several at Newegg. We have used ours for years and it is great.
  3. jamesodriscoll

    jamesodriscoll TS Rookie Posts: 91

    Hi Doc W,

    Welcome tp Techspot!

    Yes you can install Windows onto the second drive and provided the files on the origional drive are not corrupted you should be able to copy across your personal files.

    Otherwise you could do what pjamme has suggested and plug the drive into another PC using the IDE cable and setting the jumpers on the HDD to set the drive to slave.

    Hope this helps
  4. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184

    Also see [post=766270]How to recover your folders/files when Windows won’t boot[/post]
  5. doc w

    doc w TS Rookie Topic Starter

    pjamme, I got the adapter and retrieved everything I needed. I then formatted the drive and put it back in the old pc. I get a goofy error message which says the computer doesn't find a proper hard drive, but it works anyway. I just F1 through it. I re-installed XP on the old PC and I now have two computers!

    Thanks a bunch guys.
  6. pjamme

    pjamme TS Enthusiast Posts: 208

    When you reused the old hard drive, did you make it a master?
    You probably had to make it a slave to use the adapter.

    Just a thought.

    glad it worked out.

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