It can be difficult to determine what exactly caused this problem. Bootup failure can be due to a variety of issues to include application faults, hardware failures, loose pin connections or malware. Startup failures that occur before
the OS loader (Ntldr) starts could indicate missing or deleted files, or damage to the hard disk master boot record (MBR), partition table, or boot sector. If a problem occurs during
startup, the system might have incompatible software or drivers, incompatible or improperly configured hardware, or corrupted registry/system files. However, the first thing to do is check all your hardware connections and ensure they are fitted properly.
If you cannot
bootup or logon in normal or safe mode, then your options are limited
You may be able to use a Windows XP bootable Floppy Disk
to boot from a diskette instead of your hard drive. If your hard drive's boot sector or Windows' basic boot files have been corrupted, this disk will circumvent the problem and boot you into Windows. If you don't have an emergency boot floppy, you may be able to use one created on another PC running Windows XP but there's no guarantee that it will boot your machine.
Another option is to create a Bootable CD
You can try doing a "Repair Install with Recovery Console
". The Recovery Console is a Windows utility that provides a DOS-like command line from which you can run some repair programs. If you have a Microsoft Windows CD-ROM, you can get to the Recovery Console by booting from that CD and pressing any key when you told to 'Press any key to boot from CD'. At the 'Welcome to Setup' screen, press r
If you don't have your XP CD you can download an ISO of the Recovery Console files:
Burn it as an image to a disk to get a bootable CD which will startup the Recovery Console for troubleshooting and fixing purposes. This is especially useful for those with OEM systems with factory restore partitions or disks but no original installation CD. If you are not sure how to burn an image, please read How to write a CD/DVD image or ISO
and Creating A Windows XP Recovery Console CD Image
You can start a new topic in the Windows XP
forum if you need assistance with this. Important Note
: If this is a virus/Trojan related issue, you should know that some types of malware can result in a system so badly damaged that a Repair may NOT help!
. Reinstalling Windows without first wiping the entire hard drive with a repartition/format will not
remove the infection. The reinstall will only overwrite the Windows files. Any malware on the system will still be there afterwards. Starting over by wiping your drive, reformatting
, and performing a clean install of the OS or doing a factory restore with a vendor-specific Recovery Disk/Recovery Partition
removes everything and is the safest action
. Please read: