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XP boot problem

XP boot problem

XP boot problem

Took my XP Pro desktop out of retirement. Worked when I put it away in my closet but now, I get the following error messages:

XE-E61: Media test failure   Check cable

XE-M0F: Exiting Intel boot agent

TLDR is missing

Press Alt+Ctrl+Del to restart

All cables are securely connected. Unless anybody has some ideas as to what's causing this, I plan on pulling the HD & hooking it up via a USB connection to another PC.

Thanks again, Bob

RE: XP boot problem

Right - either the hard drive is turned OFF as one of the possible boot items or it has died, therefore the other available items are trying to be booted from.

Just saw this earlier this summer.  If it's a SATA drive, make sure the SATA port that the hard drive is plugged into is turned ON.

RE: XP boot problem

The obvious route would be to try a different cable as it suggests.
Something may have happened to the cable in the intervening time.

Other than that, check that the drive is in good condition. Run a scan on it on another PC yes.


Phil AKA Vacunita
Ignorance is not necessarily Bliss, case in point:
Unknown has caused an Unknown Error on Unknown and must be shutdown to prevent damage to Unknown.

Web & Tech

RE: XP boot problem

Vacunita - the mentioning of the cable is only due to the fact that the network card couldn't find anything to boot from.  The "check cable" comment would refer to a faulty network cable not the hard drive cable, though checking that it also smart.

This is totally secondary to the fact that the real boot device (hard drive) is not responding, had died or has been turned off in the BIOS

It shouldn't matter that the PXE is enabled or disabled as long as the hard drive is part of the boot sequence and it is functioning.  Whether it was first or last on the last, if functioning, it would be tried as a boot device.

RE: XP boot problem

I know its trying to boot from the network. Just implying that the drive cable may have some issues now.

Checking that the hard drive is being recognized by the BIOS would be the first step.

If it isn't the next step would be to see if its actually spinning up.

Other than that, I doubt the boot sequence would mysteriously change on ts own.

If the drive is recognized by BIOS, but still won't boot, perhaps using a BOOT CD to run some tests on the drive would be in order.

Phil AKA Vacunita
Ignorance is not necessarily Bliss, case in point:
Unknown has caused an Unknown Error on Unknown and must be shutdown to prevent damage to Unknown.

Web & Tech

RE: XP boot problem

I was able to get into BIOS settings by booting from the OS disk.

I diabled PXE to boot from network but forgot to reset BIOS to defaul values, Will try that later.

Removed floppy disk drive from boot order. Boot order is Master HD, DVD drive, CD Drive & last is slave drive.

Checked HD for any errors, none found. Also tested RAM: no problems there either (as well as scanning for virus/scumware using MBAM, Spybot & Avast - nothing found there either).

Booted from HD, got single BIOS beep but them got same error message: TLDR is missing.

Replaced ribbon cable to HD's with no help.

Leaning toward bad HD no matter what test say. Fortunately, I have all my app disks to reinstall all & have all files backed up to various places. Wished I didn't have to go thru the pains/time of reinstalling & updating all.

Any Other ideas?


RE: XP boot problem

"NTLDR is missing" is a windows corruption error (missing file) and not related to bad hard drive or mobo not seeing the hard drive.

From getting that error, we KNOW the motherboard is seeing the drive and trying to boot from it.

RE: XP boot problem

HD spins & can view & copy files thru a connection to my laptop. Barring any other ideas, I'll try a repair install & see if that resolves the issue. If not, will buy a new HD & do a clean install. If that works, I'll update Windows & if all goes well still, I'll copy all my files over to that HD. I'll let all know how this worked.


RE: XP boot problem

Here is what I've done so far & the results (each done individually):

Did a repair install of Windows--good boot from HD (no error messages & single BIOS beep)

Installed SP2--still good boot from HD

Installed SP3--still good boot from HD other than a problem updating Flash Player

Updated AV & AS apps--still no problems

Updated IE 6.0 to IE 7.0-- PC booted, got the Gateway splash screen, Windows set-up screen, Welcome page then Windows home page with taskbar, Start button, clock & AV icon. As soon as I try to run something, Windows freezes.

Tried booting Windows in Safe mode but freezes before it loads completely

Reran Memtest--no problems found

Reran chkdsk /r--not sure what it found/fixed but all seems to be running right; PC not freezing, all icons in takbar, now updating Windows for all critical patches (over 100)

All critical patches installed--still good boot

Noticed, once more, plugged ribbon cable for slave drive connection to master drive by accident. If all continues to go well, I'll buy a new ribbon cable before adding slave drive & closing up the tower.

Did notice a few errors in Device mgr, but will check those out later

RE: XP boot problem

Errors in Device Mgr... Drivers for the system??

One of the updates should be IE8.  See if it freezes after that update.  Also, did you manually update IE7 or let Windows Update do it?

"You don't now what you got, till its gone..
80's hair band Cinderella or ode to data backups???"

RE: XP boot problem

IE 8.0 yes is an option but not one I'm willing to try until all is running good for a while (all other critical patches have been downloaded & installed inc. a few optionals). Manualy updated to IE 7.0 as I had it saved. Corrected 2 errors in Dvc. Mgr. but still have the following issues:

neither ethernet controller or multimedia audio controller have drivers installed (driver for this device is not installed: Code 28).

Cannot install ,Net Framork (any versions). Get this error code when trying to: 25015. Also can't install it thru Windows Update. Cannot install Realtek audio driver as I'm told I need to install M$ Bus driver 1st which seems dependent on Net Framework.

Any ideas?



RE: XP boot problem

what are the VEN&DEV numbers of the devices missing drivers...

Microsoft UAA Bus Driver for High Definition Audio, this should be part of SP3...

take a gander:

List of fixes that are included in Windows XP Service Pack 3

Scroll down to 888111

also worth reading:

Fixing the "Microsoft Bus Driver" error message when installing a RealTek sound card

as to the NET.Framework install:

Navigate to "C:\Windows\assembly" and rename the folder to "C:\Windows\assembly_old", and then attempt to reinstall the NETFramework again...

the above is gleaned from:

Error 25015 while installing .NET Framework 2.0


"If it works don't fix it! If it doesn't use a sledgehammer..."
How to ask a question, when posting them to a professional forum.
Only ask questions with yes/no answers if you want "yes" or "no"

RE: XP boot problem

Thanks Ben for those sites. I was beginning to think I would have to roll back to SP2 to install fixes. Wil try these 1st & let you know the outcome.


RE: XP boot problem

Was finally able to install .Net Framework 3.5 & finished installing all critical updates (cannot update to optional 4). Microsoft Bus Driver installed as well thru hot fix e-mailed to me from M$. Multimedia Audio Controller installed. Sounds & Audio devices still show no audio devices installed. Audio device is Realtek AC'97 (Realtek High Definition Audio Driver R1-23); repeated tries to download & install it fail, get about 99% thru & PC shuts  down & reboots. Get the following error message in Device Manager:.NetRuntime Optimization Services reached limit of transient errors. Will shut down. Last error returned from service Manager 0x80029c4a. Event 1111. Device Manager gives me the following: Service Status: This device is not configured correctly (Code:1).

Also tried new speakers (getting frustrated here). Multiple AV & AS scans show no problems. Any other ideas?


RE: XP boot problem

Step 1: Rule out hardware issues. Windows Repair will only fix software problems. Hardware issues can also cause boot problems (i.e. bad hard drive, memory, CPU, or power supply).

Step 2: Backup. It's always a good idea to backup your important data before making changes to Windows XP. Relax, if you follow these instructions your data will be perfectly safe.

Step 3: Boot from your Windows XP CD. Insert the Windows XP CD into your computer's CD-ROM or DVD-ROM drive, and then restart your computer. When the "Press any key to boot from CD" message appears on the screen, press a key to start your computer from the Windows XP CD. Can't boot from your CD? Please see the note at the bottom of this page (Configuring Your Computer to Boot from CD).

Step 4: A blue screen will appear and begin loading Windows XP Setup from the CD.

Note: RAID/SCSI/Unsupported UDMA users:
You will be prompted to "press F6 to install any third party SCSI or RAID drivers". Most users will not have to press F6, but if you are running RAID, SCSI or unsupported UDMA controllers, then you will have to have your controller drivers on a floppy disk. If you are unsure whether you have RAID/SCSI, then simply let the CD load without pressing F6.

When completed loading files, you will be presented with the following "Windows Setup" screen, and your first option. Select "To set up Windows XP now, press ENTER". DO NOT select Recovery Console.

When presented with the screen below. press the F8 key to continue.

Next, Windows Setup will find existing Windows XP installations. You will be asked to repair an existing XP installation, or install a fresh copy of Windows XP.

If no installations are found, then you will not be given the option to repair. This may happen if the data or partition on your drive is too corrupted.

Note: If you install a fresh copy, all data on that partition will be lost!

Your almost finished! Windows XP will appear to be installing itself for the first time, but it will retain all of your data and settings. Just follow the prompts, and have your CD-KEY ready if needed.

Do you have more than one system, or lost your CD-KEY? Visit the keyfinder page to retrieve your CD-KEY.

Update: Due to the proliferation of the Blaster and Welchia Worm/Virus be aware that a Repair Install will leave your system vulnerable. You can get infected within seconds. Do not go on line until you have enabled XP's firewall first.

Remember to run Windows Update! (install critical updates first)


Configuring Your Computer to Boot from CD

Many computers are not configured to boot from the CDROM. If you cannot boot from the CDROM, this is probably due to the boot order of your devices being incorrect. You can change this in the BIOS.

You enter the BIOS from the first screen you see when you turn your computer on. To enter your BIOS, most users here will press the DEL key.

Most Dell, Toshiba, Gateway, Sony & HP systems will press F2.

Compaq users will usually have to press F10.

IBM typically uses F1 or F2.

Other brands may have different keys to press to enter setup, F1, F2, Del, Tab and CTRL+S. If possible see the manual for your computer or motherboard. Also, the BIOS will usually display which button to press to "enter setup" during POST (if it flashes by too fast, press the Pause key).

When you enter the BIOS setup, you need to change the boot order. The CDROM should be setup before the Hard Drive. Each BIOS is different, but here is an example.

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