Common Boot Error Messages
Below are common error messages for Windows NT-based operating systems during the boot process...
Invalid System Disk (or similar):
A disk (CD/Floppy/HD) has been inserted, but has no bootable files/image on the disk.
>No bootable files/image found
>Nothing on the disk
>Corrupt boot sector
>Write a bootable image/files to disk
>Check disk for damage
>Recover/repair boot sector
NTLDR is missing:
One or more required startup files are missing/corrupted. Required startup files are: NTLDR, NTDETECT.COM, Boot.ini.
>Booting to HD after format
>Deleted/corrupted startup files
>Copy NTLDR & NTDETECT.COM from x:\i386 to C:. Rebuild the boot.ini through RC (Recovery Console) using the bootcfg command.
Windows could not find [blahblahblah]:
A required driver/system file/registry hive is missing/corrupted.
>A user/app/virus has corrupted/deleted a required file
>Copy the most recent backup file from one of the CAB files in x:\windows\driver cache to the directory shown in the error message. If it is a registry hive (SYSTEM, SECURITY, DEFAULT, SOFTWARE, SAM) attempt to copy the backup hive from x:\windows\repair to x:\windows\system32\config
>Run virus scan and do the above
>Use ASR to restore the system state (if you have backed up the system state)
>Repair the installation (last resort)
STOP Error - Unmountable Boot Volume:
The operating system is unable to access/mount the file system for use.
>Occasional error in HD caching routines
>Run chkdsk /r or chkdsk /f in RC
"strike [x key] to continue, [y key] for setup" (with no preceding message):
The BIOS could not fully load the boot sector... It failed to transfer control to the OS.
>The partition table was corrupted
>Physical media damage
>Rebuild the partition table using boot sector/partition table rebuilders
Boot Failure. System Halted (or similar):
The BIOS could not find a boot device with bootable files/image.
>Incorrectly set BIOS settings
>Missing/corrupted boot sector
>Check BIOS settings (Boot Devices)
>Repair/create boot sector