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How to fix : UNMOUNTABLE BOOT VOLUME : (XP)

EyedeaLab Team
unmountable_boot_volume

This is a very common issue, but is very easy to fix. There are in fact two ways that you can resolve this problem: The Quick Way, and The Long Way. Either one works.
The Quick Way

1.) Start your computer with the Windows CD-ROM if your computer can start from the CD-ROM drive.
2.) When the Welcome to Setup screen appears, press R to select the “Repair with Recovery Console” option.
3.) Select the Windows installation that you want to access from the Recovery Console.
4.) Type the administrator password when you are prompted to do so. NOTE: If no administrator password exists, just press ENTER.
5.) At the command prompt, on the drive where Windows is installed, type CHKDSK /P, and then press ENTER. Your hard drive is then scanned for File System errors. This process shouldn’t take more than 5 minutes.
6.) At the command prompt, type FIXMBR, and choose YES to all the scary warnings that you see regarding rebuilding the MASTER BOOT RECORD.
7.) At the command prompt, type EXIT, and then press ENTER to restart your computer.
8.) When the system reboots, choose “Go to windows”
9.) If the Windows Advanced Startup Menu appears, choose NORMAL MODE.
10.) Remove the Operating System CD.
11.) When you reach the desktop you can be assured that your issue is resolved.

The Long Way

1.) Start your computer with the Windows CD-ROM if your computer can start from the CD-ROM drive.
2.) When the Welcome to Setup screen appears, press R to select the “Repair with Recovery Console” option.
3.) Select the Windows installation that you want to access from the Recovery Console.
4.) Type the administrator password when you are prompted to do so. NOTE: If no administrator password exists, just press ENTER.
5.) At the command prompt, on the drive where Windows is installed, type CHKDSK /R, and then press ENTER. You can now go take a break for about 45 minutes or so while your entire hard drive detects & repairs all file system errors.
6.) At the command prompt, type FIXMBR, and choose YES to all the scary warnings that you see regarding rebuilding the MASTER BOOT RECORD.
7.) At the command prompt, type EXIT, and then press ENTER to restart your computer.
8.) When the system reboots, choose “Go to windows”
9.) If the Windows Advanced Startup Menu appears, choose NORMAL MODE.
10.) Remove the Operating System CD.
11.) When you reach the desktop you can be assured that your issue is resolved.

This worked for us in most cases, and we are sure you will also benefit but if the problem still persists please contact your Computer Vendor.

Last modified on August 13th, 2011 at 5:20 pm.

Eyedea Lab is a Web and Graphic Design Studio at Kolkata, India. We offer multimedia design solutions at affordable price for corporate, small business and professionals. Please check our about us section for more details.

28 Comments

  • The quick way worked for me.
    Thanks very much

  • It worked perfectly for me, thanks.

  • Not a comment….but a question…??? What is SAFE MODE ..??????
    It is NOT SAFE but very dangerous as my boyfriend almost killed me last night! He was so pissed off about his Laptop not working (only he uses it). Anyway, if anyone knows what it is used for maybe we can undo it. Anyone with any info please email me-thnks

  • cheers mine works thank you

  • Both suggestions have not worked for me, though it runs through properly but starting again, same rebooting loop after the windows logo. I was running Windows XP. Please suggest for another option… I strongly believe that you guys can sort me out of this mess!

  • Nothing has worked for me so far. In fact, I hope the CD/USB cable I bought at best buy didn’t corrupt my old drive permanently. I’ve got a friend whose said he’ll help me, he lives quite far away, and I have not been able to get out there. I ran diagnostics in the BIOS and it gave me a fault code for the hard drive…not good. Well, I went over ten years without crashing a computer, I’ve got an old Asus/Gigabyte machine upstairs that I might be able to recover my old music (hundreds of cds on there and pics)

    I believe it is now saying HP recovery section on the old hardrive, I’m really hoping that crappy software/USB cable thing didn’t put some kind of new cabinet on my old drive, and have it keep me from recovering old data…..

    Another thing is…I used to have an OLD Alienware, like circa 2001 In fact I remember the chipset because the thing crashed so much, worst computer I’ve ever had, and paid the most for it. It was the DMV850 Intel chipset, which was known for being crappy..ugh…I paid over 2k for that thing, all my friends came over to see it, it had the first 100gig hard drive they’d every seen. Memories….but I DID SO MANY re-installs of XP, that on a few of them it did the “Wow…You’re so lucky to have this new OS from Microsoft! Here’s all the new great stuff it will do for you…read about this while we transfer your files from your old OS..” or some such stuff, essentially when I did the re-install, for whenever I’d get any of the MANY viruses that XP had for the first few years (god did that suck until SP2…) that I’d have a new clean drive, but all my old pics. docs, and music files were there. I guess that will have to be my option of last resort unless someone has another option for me. I’m really thinking somehow it got damaged in a fall, but I can hear/feel the platters spinning when I put that silly cable on it.

  • My dell came pre-loaded and without a cd…
    what do I do now?

  • with either chkdsk /p or chkdsk /r all i get in ‘the volume appears to contain one or more unrecoverable problems.

  • superb i fix my issues…….

  • I have an old dell, w/tons of picks and music, it crashed after it fell….and I got the BSOD, I got hold of an XPsp3 disc, and put it in, it doesn’t even give me the Recovery option, just if I want to format and delete the old drive, it says the partition is corrupted. I tried using the backup partition but it only sees the whole hard drive, not the separate partitions. What to do???

  • When I put in the XP disc and it comes up it says that C drive has become corrupted, there is no option for recovery, it just wants to delete the data. I think I’m heading to Best Buy with the baby tomorrow for one of those usb cables…..it’s going to be a long recovery process, I’ve got so much music and more on that drive, pictures up the whazooo….oof.

  • Excellent solution. This worked just fine. Thank you Jesus

  • Worked 1st Time – fantastic instructions Cheers :)

  • Excellent, just fix my friend pc after he attempt to update windows on his sister PC,
    JD is on the way..~~

  • This was amazing. I am not great at fixing my own computer, and this helped me. Thank you SO SO much! I was literally jumping around the house exclaiming “I fixed my computer myself!” over and over.

  • My blue screen of death or whatever happens before I can even get to the welcome screen or am I doing something wrong help please you can email me at Francisco.gwapo@yahoo.com

  • You guys ROCK!!! Worked like a charm, thanks.

  • THANK YOU!!!! I always thought the blue screen was the kiss of death. I’ve never tried to fix it in the past – this morning I was NOT going to be defeated! Your instructions made fixing this SO EASY! Thank you so much!

  • Cool! SHort way – i got my windows working! Thanks a lot!

  • Great TUT. Fixed My Problem. I tried the Short fix but it did not work. BUT Long fix DID

  • I have an Asus netbook with windows XP and don’t have a cd drive. The UNMOUNTABLE_BOOT_VOLUME error comes up about halfway through the windows start up screen. It basically puts it into an infinite startup loop. Please help.

    • If you don’t have a CD drive then it’s pretty difficult to assist you. But we have three suggestions for you. First: If you have a floppy drive and your Windows XP startup disks, insert the Windows XP startup disk into the floppy disk drive. When the “Welcome to Setup” screen appears, press R to start the Recovery Console.

      Second:Booting the Windows Recovery Console from a USB Drive. Check this article if that helps. http://blog.emptycrate.com/node/386

      Third:Purchase an external CD drive and do all the procedures above.

      If nothing works.1. You could do a system restore to reinstall but you would loose your all your documents, photos etc from the C: drive if your XP is loaded in C. To do a system restore restart your computer and hold down the R key until “system restore” comes on, before the windows symbol comes. Then click “full system restore with no back up”.

      2. Get an UBUNTU(linux) USB disk to retrieve all your existing documents from the corrupt hard disk. Send the laptop for repair to your local systems provider or ASUS. Please Note: Delete all personal files etc. before you give the laptop for repair.

  • Thank you for your post. I tried chkdsk /r first and it keep telling my I had an unrecoverable error, so then I tried the chkdsk /p and it worked. I then ran a chkdsk /r, and it completed. Followed the rest of your suggestions and I am up and running. Thanks again!

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