Format & reinstall XP problem?

Discussion in 'Computer Information' started by Kenny, Oct 1, 2003.

  1. Kenny

    Kenny Guest

    Have fully formatted, not quick option, HDD and reinstalled XP. At bootup I
    now have 2 XP's in boot menu! I thought a full format removed everything so
    why have I got this? I have successfully resolved similar situation before
    by following the steps here:
    Only difference then was that the 2nd XP was on a different partition, this
    time they're on the same one, drive's not partitioned. The file "boot.ini"
    does not exist on this PC and yes I have searched hidden system files. I
    have an almost identical PC and "boot.ini" is on that in the root folder of
    C:, only real difference in the PC's is that this one has 2HDD's and a
    number of partitions.
    I have only installed XP, no chipset drivers or anything as yet. Selecting
    the 2nd XP PC boots normally, selecting 1st XP the PC boots slowly but to
    the new XP install, the old one doesn't exist. I don't know what's going on
    here and any advice appreciated, in particular why I have no "boot.ini".
    Kenny, Oct 1, 2003
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  2. Kenny

    Thor Guest

    If you have WinXP installed there *has* to be a Boot.ini file on there
    somewhere. Check again, and make sure you have windows set to display hidden
    and system files. Don't rely on merely the search tool. Go into windows
    explorer, go to tools, then folder options, then view, and enable hidden and
    system files as well as protected operating system files. You should then
    find the boot.ini file in the root folder. Alternatively, go to the MSconfig
    utility, and it will show you what your boot.ini file looks like.

    Thor, Oct 1, 2003
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  3. Kenny

    ImhoTech Guest

    In Xp you access Boot.ini differently. Click Start, right click My Computer,
    choose properties, click Advanced tab, click Settings under Startup and
    Recovery, click Edit.
    ImhoTech, Oct 1, 2003
  4. Kenny

    Kenny Guest

    Thanks, never thought of checking msconfig! It was there and I used the
    "check all paths" option and it told me:
    "it appears the following line in boot.ini does not refer to a valid OS,
    (long line here), would you like to remove it from boot.ini. Clicked yes,
    restarted and it started normally. Funny thing is I still can't find
    boot.ini yet I can find a backup of the unmodified boot.ini in PSS folder.
    I have enabled "show hidden files" and "show system files". General tab of
    msconfig says I'm now using a modified boot.ini. Still curious as to how
    the problem arose in the first place, format and reinstall went very
    Kenny, Oct 1, 2003
  5. Kenny

    Billy Guest

    Your boot.ini file will be on the system drive as a hidden file. Open
    Disk Management and see which partition is your system drive. The Boot
    drive will be the currently loaded OS drive/partition.
    With XP you may even have a different active drive.
    Billy, Oct 1, 2003
  6. Kenny

    Kenny Guest

    Thanks, that works and I can access boot.ini from there but why is it that
    on another almost identical PC I can find and open it from the Find command?
    Kenny, Oct 1, 2003
  7. Kenny

    DaveL Guest

    You should have blown away the partition and then boot with the XP cd, then
    do a normal install where it partitions and formats for you. XP is more
    user friendly this way. You have to get out of the old mode of thinking
    where you first had to fdisk then format and then run setup.

    DaveL, Oct 1, 2003
  8. Kenny

    Kenny Guest

    I booted from XP CD and formatted/reinstalled from there.
    Kenny, Oct 1, 2003
  9. Kenny

    DaveL Guest

    Are you familiar with fdisk?

    DaveL, Oct 1, 2003
  10. Kenny

    ImhoTech Guest

    First check your search preferences. Open a search, click the All Files and
    Folders, click More advanced options, make sure "Search system files" and
    "Search hidden files and folders" both are checked. Even if you have folder
    options set to show all files, etc, Search still bypasses system files and

    Did you manually check the root of C: for the file? You should have been
    able to find it there
    ImhoTech, Oct 1, 2003
  11. Kenny

    JBS Guest

    Check your folder options in the Tools menu. There are two separate
    settings that need to be set to view system files. Check the circle in
    front of "Show hidden files and folders" and uncheck the box in front of
    "Hide protected operating system files." You should be able to see
    everything in your root directory now.
    JBS, Oct 1, 2003
  12. Kenny

    Kenny Guest

    Yes, have used it many times installing Win98 but know with XP to do it
    booting from CDROM.
    Kenny, Oct 1, 2003
  13. Kenny

    Kenny Guest

    Are you suggesting using the FDISK and FORMAT commands from a Win98 Startup
    disk then running format & reinstall from the XP CD? I can see your
    reasoning but still don't see why formatting from XP CD didn't do a
    completely clean wipe before installing, it obviously left some traces of
    the old XP.
    Kenny, Oct 1, 2003
  14. Kenny

    DaveL Guest

    I'm suggesting you use a win98 startup disk to run fdisk and remove all
    partitions, then boot off the XP cd and let the XP setup program make a new
    partition and then format it with NTFS and then install XP. XP install
    likes to start with a clean, bare drive. Removing all partitions makes it
    clean and bare.

    DaveL, Oct 1, 2003
  15. Kenny

    Kenny Guest

    Will give it a go, thanks.



    Kenny, Oct 2, 2003
  16. Kenny

    JimW± Guest

    This is entirely normal. The boot.ini is read & remembered throughout the new install (If you had other installations on other drives, would you not want them to be remembered?) Then a line is added for the new installation & the file is saved - including earlier lines from the file. Just delete the old line from boot.ini if it turns out you have only one installation
    JimW±, Oct 4, 2003
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