Download PDF Geeks On Call Windows XP: 5-Minute Fixes

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How to Fix Windows XP Boot Problem?

Show related SlideShares at end. WordPress Shortcode. In most cases, the boot manager of the last operating system installed is the one that will be used for all operating systems. Some other operating systems, such as FreeBSD and Windows , have boot managers of their own and can therefore be installed either before or after XP is installed with little additional fuss.

But what if you already have a Windows XP system and you need to add the dual-boot capability to it? Fortunately, there is a way to install other operating systems on top of an existing Windows XP installation, although it takes a little extra preparation. The following procedure assumes that you already have a working installation of Windows XP:. Each operating system must have its own partition, assuming you have only one hard disk.

Note that since resizing partitions can be difficult without the proper third-party tools, you can simply add another hard disk instead of repartitioning your existing drive. Create a bootable floppy, as described in Chapter 6. The key is to back up the ntdetect. See the next section for more information on the boot. Be extremely careful not to install it into the same folder or partition as the existing copy of Windows XP.

When installation of the other product is complete, try starting the system. In some cases, the other product will have a suitable boot manager, and everything will work fine. To repair the boot manager here, just copy the files ntdetect.

Easy File Associations Repair for Windows XP & Vista by Britec

Although the files ntdetect. This is done by starting the Windows Recovery Console described in Chapter 6.

Account Options

Each of these Unix flavors comes with its own boot manager that, for the most part, appears to be compatible with Windows XP. The Windows XP boot manager is responsible for loading Windows XP, and, optionally, allowing you to boot into any other operating systems you may have installed. The boot.

If you screw up your boot. The structure of boot. You can view and modify boot. A typical boot. The Boot Manager configuration file boot. This section determines the default operating system — loaded automatically if no selection is made — and the timeout, the amount of time in seconds the Boot Manager waits before said selection is made.

This section lists each of the individual operating systems installed on the computer. The aforementioned pointer can appear in one of several different ways. The first two entries shown in Example point to Windows NT installations XP and , respectively ; the numbers in parentheses specify the disk and volume numbers of the respective partition, followed by the folder in which Windows is installed. The third entry points to a DOS partition Windows Me in this case , where the syntax is merely the drive letter of the volume containing the OS.

To change the default OS and the timeout without editing boot. Product Activation is the euphemistic name given to the new system in Windows XP intended to curb software piracy. It effectively requires every Windows XP user to call Microsoft or connect via the Web to obtain a long product activation key for each installation of the product. This is either done transparently over a network connection or manually over the telephone.

CD drive or DVD drive is missing in Windows XP or Vista

The hardware ID, a unique number based on values obtained from hardware in your computer, distinguishes one computer from another. The specific devices used are as follows:. Processor serial number [ 8 ]. The machine is officially activated when the confirmation ID is received, cross-checked with the hardware ID and product ID, and finally stored on your computer.

It should be clear that since the confirmation ID is based upon the unique CD key and the unique hardware ID, it represents a single, unique combination of hardware and software. Change any of these components, and the confirmation ID will no longer be valid. If you attempt to activate Windows with the same CD Key and a different hardware key effectively installing the same copy of Windows on a different computer , the copy protection will kick in and the product activation will fail. The gray area is what happens when you upgrade part or all of your system.

Now, there is some margin for error built in, so upgrading only one or two of the aforementioned components should not cause a problem. It remains to be seen how much hassle reactivation will be; suffice it to say that those who upgrade often will bear the brunt of that hassle.

Troubleshoot Windows XP Wireless Network Connection Problems

Note that if your system crashes, or if you simply need to wipe everything and reinstall for some reason, the confirmation ID from the previous activation should still be valid. Many users may not be confronted with the hassle of product activation at all, for one of several possible reasons.

Those systems purchased with Windows XP preinstalled may be preactivated as well, in one of two possible ways. Either the manufacturer may choose to activate Windows before shipping using the method described above, or by a separate mechanism called System Locked Pre-installation SLP. The resulting system may be upgraded more freely, but if the motherboard is replaced or the BIOS is upgraded see Appendix B , the owner will have to reactivate the software.

Stay ahead with the world's most comprehensive technology and business learning platform. With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, tutorials, and more. Start Free Trial No credit card required. Installing Windows XP. Tip Since a significant percentage of Windows XP users will obtain the OS preinstalled on their computers, many reading this will be fortunate enough to not have had to endure the installation of an operating system.


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Warning Anyone installing Windows XP on a hard disk that has data on it would be wise to back up the entire system before starting the install process. Installing on a New Clean System.


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Warning Repartitioning your drive involves deleting one or more existing partitions so that one or more new partitions can be created. Upgrading from a Previous Version of Windows. Perform Additional Tasks This page contains links to several, mostly self-explanatory, tasks. Check system compatibility This runs the Microsoft Windows Upgrade Advisor, which looks for potential problems, such as incompatible software and hardware, and lists them in a report. Installing from the Command Prompt. Reinstalling Windows XP. Warning If you try to repair Windows by pressing ESC here to start a new install, it may not work as expected.

Dealing with Potential Problems During Setup. Video card Another common stumbling block to a successful Windows XP setup is your video card display adapter. Hardware inconsistencies and other problems Windows XP is a little more touchy about improper hardware configurations than previous versions of Windows. Driver roadblocks Windows XP attempts to install drivers for all detected hardware towards the end of the setup process. Setting Up a Dual-Boot System.

What does it mean then?

Tip In most cases, the boot manager of the last operating system installed is the one that will be used for all operating systems. Windows or Windows NT 4. Editing the Boot Manager configuration file boot. Warning If you screw up your boot. Activating Windows XP.