Windows only boots with my external hard drive

By Zack Attack ยท 7 replies
Sep 7, 2007
  1. Hi i have this little problem. windows xp wont boot unless my external hard drive is on. its odd with out it on all it does is show windows cp logo then goes to a black screen. Im not sure why this is happening it was fine before....?? can any one help

    thank you
  2. iss

    iss TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,994

    Go into the bios and set the internal hard drive as first boot device, save and exit. and see if that solves the problem.
  3. Zack Attack

    Zack Attack TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I have tried both these options ........ the thing is. it either wont work with the hard drive not plugged in. or some times work with it plugged in. most of the time it will almost load but freeze up. either way after restarting like 30 times, it eventually loads normal. but i cant work like this.... im lost because i tried every thing in the book. even the fixboot options in recover console.
  4. AlbertLionheart

    AlbertLionheart TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,026

    I am assuming this is a USB drive and not an Iomega, external SATA or NAS drive.
    The point at which it is locking up is about when windows would be loading drivers. Connect the external drive. Boot into safe mode and see if you can identify which driver matches the device and remove it. Disconnect the drive.
    Reboot as normal and then reconnect the drive and reinstall drivers as necessary.
    Do a backup before you do anything else!
  5. Zack Attack

    Zack Attack TS Rookie Topic Starter

    thanks for responding......hmmm ... i didnt think of that... just one question. were would i be able to finde these drivrs to match my device.

    thank you
  6. AlbertLionheart

    AlbertLionheart TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,026

    Go > control panel > system > hardware > device manager and you will see a listing of devices. Depending on what it is, you should be able to find it. If it is a USB device, it has to be connected for it to show on the list.
    Windows should replace the drivers without you having to do anything more than approve the process.
  7. Zack Attack

    Zack Attack TS Rookie Topic Starter

    ughhh didnt work ...... im at my wits end. without the hard drive on it goes to the logo then a black screen. this doesnt make sense at all. i never had this problem before.
  8. AlbertLionheart

    AlbertLionheart TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,026

    Is it possible that the external hard drive as acquired drive letter c:?
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