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How to Fix Error "Can't Find NTLDR"

You attempt to start your PC and you receive the error message: "Can't Find NTLDR".

With Windows operating systems previous to Visa, one of the first files the operating system looks for is NTLDR (New Technology Loader). One of the first things NTLDR does is read the file boot.ini. The boot.ini file defines the disks, partitions, and operating systems on the PC. So if Windows can't find NTLDR, it can't start.

Windows Vista and later operating systems (including Windows 7) don't use NTLDR or boot.ini. Instead they use the Boot Manager.

If you receive the error message "Can't Find NTLDR", use the following steps to fix the error.

1. Make sure that you're not trying to boot from a non-system disc, for example a CD or DVD left in the drive.

2. Turn off the computer, power down, and then try to restart the computer. The PC could have made a bad disk read or was subjected to electrical noise the first time you attempted to start it. However, if this problem reoccurs frequently, the PC's hard drive or power supply may be failing.

3. Use the Recovery Console to restore the NTLDR file from your Windows installation disc. The Recovery Console is a utility on the installation disc that provides you with a command prompt so that you can use DOS commands to troubleshoot and repair your PC.

To access the Recovery Console, boot from the Windows installation disc. When you see the "Welcome to setup" screen appears, press [R] to use the Recovery Console.

When asked to, type the Administrator password.

At the c:\WINDOOWS>_ prompt, type:

copy d:\i386\ntldr c:\

d being the letter of your disc drive, and c being the letter of the drive on which Windows is installed.

Press the [Enter] key.

After the file has been copied, at the command prompt type exit. Then remove the Windows installation disc and restart the PC.

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