You can use Windows Recovery Console to fix a missing, damaged or compressed Boot Manager. First boot from your Windows boot DVD. We recommend you use a version that matches the OS service pack installed on your system (i.e. if you have Vista SP2, use a Vista SP2 DVD).
Windows provides tools to install a new partition boot record. Doing this does not erase any operating system files or your personal data. If this is the only damage, it has a good chance of fixing the problem, but if additional system sectors are damaged, recovery will be very difficult if not impossible.
To reset the Windows boot sector, boot from your Windows installation CD/DVD.
Follow the instructions in our guide under recovery console, command prompt to repair the boot record (instructions differ between Windows 7/Vista and XP).
Exit and reboot.
FaultWire Staff Posted: 6-Oct-2008
Check Hard Disk and Cables
If you had changed, added or removed hard drives, or changed or removed drive cabling, likely something is wrong. Recheck that the drives are properly installed and the cabling has not changed. Switching cables to different motherboard connectors or changing the master/slave drive jumpers (on old ATA drives) can cause this problem. In some systems, the cables were not plugged into the drive or motherboard securely and may have worked loose. Reseat all drive connectors.
It's also possible a hard drive is failing. Use a system diagnostic to validate the drive or swap to another hard disk.
If you skipped any of the prior solutions, you may want to return and try them out. These next options are when all else fails!
Remove the system hard drive and replace it with a blank drive. Install a fresh copy of Windows. If this works, it's unlikely to be a hardware issue. At worse, it may be time to start over with a fresh copy of Windows, although reinstalling your applications may make the problem reoccur.
Send the PC in for repair - someone else can deal with it!
Time for a new PC?
Consider a MAC, but wait - they can have similar hard-to-solve issues and you'd have to buy all new applications.
Use your PC as a boat anchor and go for a drink.
FaultWire Staff Posted: 5-Oct-2008
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