(Last Resort!) How to fix a missing or broken Windows 7 Boot Manager/Loader - Overclock.net - An Overclocking Community

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(Last Resort!) How to fix a missing or broken Windows 7 Boot Manager/Loader

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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 05-18-2012, 07:05 PM - Thread Starter
Hey I get one of these!
KyadCK's Avatar
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So last night, I figured I'd install OpenSuse and dualboot. Nothing special right? Just install, use grub... but wait. It didn't work. I don't know why. And since when I tried to boot Windows, it said the bootmgr is missing, I don't care why. I'm sure there are people around here who have experienced this, but I managed to fix it when the internet's help couldn't, and I remembered to document it. The "Try this first" solution I linked just below did not work for me.

Before you try this guide, see if this helps.

You will need the following things for this guide:
"Visual BCD Editor", latest version
A second computer, with working Win7 install.
A hot-swap bay of any kind

First we'll get it so you can boot onto your drive at all.

Put broken disk in a working computer, and boot up that computer normaly. Start Visual BCD. Take a look around, though you will only have to touch a few small things to get this working. I would advise against messing around, because VisualBCD works just like the registry: all changes are instant, and there is no undo button.

Right-click on "Loaders" and select "Create Missing Windows Loaders.

It should have created a new loader with the name "New Windows 7/Vista Loader". This is good. That is your broken drive. What you have just done is added an option to the working drive's boot menu so it can boot your broken drive.

This is all we want to do on this computer. You have just made is possible to boot onto your broken drive by using your extra drive. You can now use your broken drive all you want assuming you boot off the other ones boot manager. But we aren't done yet, this isn't a good solution.

Put your broken drive back into the computer it came from, and close it up. Next, plug in the "working" computer's harddrive in a hot-swap bay attached to the same computer. We'll need it to boot your broken drive in a moment.

Boot up and do whatever to make it boot off the drive in the hot-swap bay. It should come up with a menu for 2 different installs. Select the one named "New Windows 7/Vista Loader" (hey, sounds familiar). You should now be booted onto the broken drive. Install VisualBCD here too, we're going to need it.

Before starting BCD, pull out the working drive. All we wanted it for was to boot this one, and if we leave it in it will just make problems. Assuming all goes well, you won't need it again, so put it aside.

Now when you start VisualBCD, you'll notice that under {Bootmgr} the \Device\HarddiskVolume*** is replaced with "UnknownDevice ***". This is because VisualBCD can't find the other drive's Bootloader, which is good.

Under {Bootmgr}, Double click on the line that says "0x11000001 ApplicationDevice UnknownDevice", and it should bring you to a new window.

Change "Type" to PartitionDevice" and "Drive" to whatever letter your broken drive is. I assume C:\. Delete whatever is in the Path line, you don't want it. Click OK.

As of now, you should have a fully functional Boot drive again. Time for some clean up. Delete all loaders that aren't the one you just made. So everything but "New Windows 7/Vista Loader".

"New Windows 7/Vista Loader" is a hell of a name, right? So lets name it something more recognizeable, just in case.

We're done with VisualBCD (hopefully) so go ahead and close it. Now we're going to play with MSConfig. Start, type "msconfig", press enter. Go to the boot tab, and make sure your new loader is set to be the default boot.

Click Apply/OK. Reboot the system. Your "broken" drive should now work again, and boot normaly on its own. If it does, great! You're all done. If not, re-read, see if you did something wrong.

When you're completely done, go remove the "extra" boot option from the other harddrive too, same process. Delete the loader via VisualBCD, make sure the other one is the default boot, etc.

Anyway, this is what it took to fix my drive. Hopefully, its one more thing you can try before re installing if your BootMgr craps out too.

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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 05-19-2012, 09:08 PM
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Hey mate, used this to un effup my SSD after I tried to PING image it. +rep!

Have a use for 3d printing? Laser Cutting? Laser Scanning? 4/5 axis CNC Milling? Give me a shout! Want to figure out how to make something yourself? Still give me a shout!
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