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Computer Q&A Board  /  Questions  /  missing operating system
Posted by: hikergirl (Guest), February 11th, 2014, 3:15pm
I have an HP e-pc40 w/MS XP Pro & SP3, FF
Although I have a recovery CD, I prefer to have the PC boot from the HDD.
At boot, too many times, I get: missing operating system.
I have to manually boot by pressing F8 and choosing HDD.
But this method does not ensure that the PC will boot. Quite often (today it happened 3x) the boot will stick on the Welcome window.
Does anyone have any suggestions that are not too complicated?? I do not speak computer-eze. Thanks.
BTW: I am aware I will not have an OS in 2 months and also aware that there are no finances to change that or the fact that I have a small PC (an external HDD holds lots of software). :'(
Posted by: Ray, February 12th, 2014, 12:36am; Reply: 1
   Your operating system is WinXP.  The easiest thing to do would be to reinstall WinXP or a different version of Windows.  I assume that you cannot do that.
   It sounds like the boot sector on your C drive is missing or not pointing to Windows.  If you added a harddrive or switched their locations, that may be responsible for that.  If so, you need to change things back.
   Or maybe you changed the settings in your computer's setup to boot somewhere other than where it is supposed to boot.  If so, you need to change the settings back so that it boots to the correct place.
   Or the boot sector of C may be messed up.  If this is the problem, you may be able to find software out there that will fix the boot sector but you also run the risk of losing everything on the harddrive in doing so.  So if you do that, be sure that you back up the harddrive before doing anything with the boot sector.
Posted by: hikergirl (Guest), February 12th, 2014, 5:38am; Reply: 2
Many, many thanks.
I will go with the assumption that the boot sector of the HDD is "messed up".
I back-up on the external HDD.
Questions: Assuming I do lose everything with software that repairs the boot sector, how do I reinstall the back-up information? Do I just choose *move* to put it back on the HDD and assume it all will know where to go? Or, do I have to know where all the information goes, one piece at a time?
Thank you for your help.
Posted by: Ray, February 13th, 2014, 3:06am; Reply: 3
   If you are using a backup program on the recovery CD to back it up, the backup program should know where it all goes.
   If you are using a backup program on the harddrive, the backup program will no longer be there when you lose everything.  So that is not a way to go.
   You can just copy everything over at once from the harddrive to your external harddrive and put it in a new folder on the external harddrive.  It should keep the directory structure that was on the harddrive and put it all in the new folder.  Then if you lose everything, you would copy it all back to the harddrive in the same way you copied it to the external harddrive except that you are copying everything in the new folder (but not the new folder itself) and putting it on the harddrive.
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