You can automatically solve most startup problems with the Startup Repair tool. If you prefer a more manual approach, you can use the BootRec.exe tool in the Windows Recovery environment.
First, follow these steps to load the Windows Recovery Environment:
1. Restart the computer from the Windows Vista DVD (the computer must be configured to start from CD/DVD), and start setup.
2. Configure your language preferences.
3. When prompted, click Repair your computer.
4. Startup Repair will automatically detect a problem. When prompted, click Repair and restart, and then restart your computer from the Windows Vista DVD. If Startup Repair does not automatically detect a problem, continue to the next step.
5. When prompted, click Repair Your Computer.
6. Click Command Prompt from the System Recovery Options.
BootRec.exe provides the following command-line paramters:
- /FixMbr. Re-writes the master boot record (MBR) of the system partition to start Windows Vista. This won’t overwrite the existing partition table.
- /FixBoot. Writes a boot sector onto the system partition to start Windows Vista.
- /ScanOs. Scans all disks for Windows Vista installations and displays them to you. Oddly, this didn’t work for me, even on a test system that was starting just fine.
- /RebuildBcd. Scans all disks for Windows Vista installations and prompts you to pick the ones you want to add to the BCD.
For more information, read Chapter 30 of the Windows Vista Resource Kit.