Operating System not found

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Microsoft Windows
Operating systems
Window XP Home
Windows errors
Windows XP
I recently installed XP Home Edition SP3 (build 2600) on a repurposed machine. Every morning when I boot up the machine, I get an "Operating System not found" message. Ctrl+Alt+Delete is enough to bring it up properly afterwards, and I have no problems throughout the day if I need a restart for updates, etc - but I am puzzled why this occurs. Boot sequence is set properly, everything works fine other than this one glitch. Any ideas welcome....?
ASKED: December 12, 2008  6:03 PM
UPDATED: February 4, 2009  6:10 PM

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  • Technochic
    Can you provide more details please? What type of machine is this, who is the manufacturer, is it under warranty, does it meet the minimum requirements, is this an IDE HD or a SATA HD, how old is the PC? KNowing a little more about this PC would help a lot, and if it is under warranty I would suggest you call for support.
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  • AndreaF
    This is an issue that I have previously run across during my years in the IT field. I was not the person who corrected the issue, so am hoping that there is an answer other than reinstalling the operating system. The computer has long since passed any warranty coverage, or I would happily pass this along to be fixed elsewhere - I am merely looking for someone who may be familiar with this particular problem, and might have a suggestion on what could be causing this.
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  • mshen
    This may be a long-shot, but check the boot.ini file. Make sure there are no extra entries and that the disk and partition are correct. But this sounds more like a Bios issue. Update the bios firmware and try changing the boot sequence to only include the primary hard drive.
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  • Colin Smith
    I think this sounds like an issue with the boot.ini file. Since the machine was re purposed perhaps there is an invalid first entry. That is where I would start.
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  • Robert Stewart
    As a last resort if you have an XP install CD or boot CD you can boot to it and try to repair the boot record through the recovery console with commands such as bootcfg /r, FIXMBR, FIXBOOT, but if your not familiar with this I would let a professional look at it, it can be dangerous, since you can still use the OS you might want to check for other options. I hope this helps
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  • petkoa
    It sounds to me as a "cold soldering"-type problem - some element on the MB, or on the boot harddrive is not working properly until is not heated several degrees above the room temperature... Unfortunately, it's not easy to find the culprit until its total failure, it's not easy even to prove the hypothesis (at least until the summer, and only if you are not in a air-conditioned environment ;o). Good luck Petko
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  • Pressler2904
    Along the lines of what petkoa says, make sure that all internal connections (expansion cards, hard drive cables, internal USB cables, etc...) are properly inserted and well seated (and yes, they do occasionally come loose all by themselves: call it the perversity of inanimate objects...)
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  • AndreaF
    Thank you all for the input. I started working my way through the suggestions - and did indeed find some settings in the boot.ini that needed to be changed. The machine unfortunately gave up the ghost altogether before I ever found "The" cure - but I did want to come back and say "thanks" for the effort, and let you know the outcome.
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