This error usually means the boot.ini file is corrupted somehow and rebuilding it may do the trick. The error message is usually misleading - the hal.dll is often not really missing or corrupt.
Rebuilding the boot.ini is a good idea if the problem persists after the integrity of the file system has been verified.
After you boot on your Recovery Console CD, what folder is showing? It should be:
From the command prompt window run the chkdsk command on the drive where Windows is installed to try to repair any problems on the afflicted drive.
Running chkdsk is fine to run even if it doesn't find any problems.
Assuming your boot drive is C, run the following command:
chkdsk C: /r
Let chkdsk finish and correct any problems it might find. It may take a long time to complete or appear to be 'stuck'. Be patient. If the HDD light is still flashing, it is doing something. Keep an eye on the percentage amount to be sure it is still making progress.
Remove the CD and type 'exit' to leave the RC and restart the computer.
You do not have to adjust the BIOS again to boot on the HDD since the CD will not be present.
Before rebuiling your boot.ini file, read these articles:http://support.microsoft.com/kb/291980http://support.microsoft.com/kb/314477
Edited by joseibarra, 15 November 2009 - 08:00 AM.