Windows XP - invalid boot.ini

Original TTitle : HELP ME PLEASE :''( - No end of frustration
Hi,

I am currently having probelms with an old Dell Latitude D610 (My sisters old computer) running Windows XP. I purely want to use this as a computer to run iTunes on in order to keep my iPhone updated as my other laptop is a works machine and I am unable to have iTunes installed on.

Anyway, after updating it to the latest iTunes last night and dwonloading the new software update for my phone i proceeded to run the update this morning. This started fine until it was noted that there wasn't enough disc space on the computer in order to carry out this opperation.
So i could continue with updating my phone i decided to free up some space on the hard drive I first used the disk cleanup utility and then the add/remove programs wizard to remove a selection of unwanted software.
After removing all the unwanted software (mostly drivers and programs for an old phone and TomTom) I proceeded to restart the computer as normal.

On start up i recieved the error message:

Invalid Boot.ini

and then:

Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt:
Windows\System32\Hal.dll


Ok, i thought, there must be a way to get round this. after trawlling the internet to find out what i needed to do to get over this initiall hick-up i discovered that I will need a Windows XP CD to start the recovery console. I didnt have a disk available so created a new one on my other laptop and used this on the machine i was experiencing problems with.

The setup started as expected and I hit 'R' in order to repair the Windows XP installation using the recovery console.

I followed the steps as detailled here:
"Invalid Boot.ini" or "Windows could not start" error messages when you start your computer

but when it came to typing bootcfg/list I was told that this command is not reconised. This has happened with every /cmd. When i inserted simply bootcfg as expected it gave me a list of bootcfg/ commands but when tried no onf these commands work.

After failing this I attempted to completely re-install windows XP onto the machine and just start over but when reaching the setup screen and hitting 'enter' to start the set up i get:

"Setup cannot find End User Licensing Agreement"

This is the point where I'm stuck and really don't know where to go next. someone please help as i'm just

Thank You
Answer
Answer
According to your manual:


... you need to use the Dell-branded Windows XP Home Reinstallation CD if you want to reinstall Windows.

If you downloaded a Recovery Console CD .iso, it is certainly handy to have. But it won't do what you need (assuming your goal is to lay down a fresh install of Windows).

Perhaps your laptop has a hidden recovery partition on it accessible by the Ctrl+F11 key combination. (I don't think it does, but it's possible.) This would be PC Restore by Symantec. If so, the CD is not necessary:


If that's a no-go, you might have Dell factory Image Restore (F8):

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Last updated December 22, 2017 Views 756 Applies to: