Booting From Mirror After Primary Partition Is Lost Windows 2003 server

Posted on 2006-03-25
Last Modified: 2007-12-19
I have a windows 2003 std with sp1 and the SCSI disk that is 4 months old has failed. I also have a SATA HDD in the system that I set up software RAID 1 to mirror the 2 partitions on the SCSI disk. How do I go about making the SATA HDD the bootable mirror while I wait for Dell to get me the replacement SCSI HDD.
Question by:angrylemon
    LVL 8

    Expert Comment

    You need to modify the boot.ini on the disk that remains or create a boot floppy with a modified boot.ini.

    Format a floppy in Windows 2003.  Copy to a floppy from another windows 2003 install:  NTLDF,, boot.ini  (you can also get these files off of the Windows 2003 CD by expanding them out of the i386 directory  type from a command prompt "expand ntldf._ ntldr")  Next, create a boot INI.  It is just a text file that should look like this:

          [boot loader]
          Default= multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\Windows

          [operating systems]
          multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\Windows="Windows 2003 Server"

    You should be able to then configure your bios to boot first off of floppy and then that floppy will tell it to boot windows off of the hard disk 0, parition 1, windows directory (if your server was an older upgrade you may need to change \Windows to \Winnt

    Here is also a microsoft article on doing this:;en-us;325879


    Author Comment

    I have done all that you suggest, created a bootable floppy by copying from a working server - the expand ntldf._ntldr command did not work. I even tried expand ntldr._ntdr
    I copied your boot.ini code and tried different partitions with no luck - the error I get back is non-system disk or disk error - replace and press any key when ready.
    LVL 8

    Accepted Solution

    does it go to the floppy beforee the message about non-system disk or does it go straight to the hard disk?  If you don't see the floppy light go on it could be that its attempting to boot off of the hard drive instead.

    Also, there should be  a space in your expand command.  expand sourcename destinationname  

    Author Comment

    Managed to make a successful boot floppy but used this boot.ini code :-

    [boot loader]
    [operating systems]
    multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="First harddisk, first partition" /sos
    multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS="First harddisk, second partition" /sos
    multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(3)\WINDOWS="First harddisk, third partition" /sos
    multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(4)\WINDOWS="First harddisk, fourth partition" /sos
    multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(1)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Second harddisk, first partition" /sos
    multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(1)partition(2)\WINDOWS="Second harddisk, second partition" /sos
    multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(1)partition(3)\WINDOWS="Second harddisk, third partition" /sos
    multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(1)partition(4)\WINDOWS="Second harddisk, fourth partition" /sos
    C:\="Previous Operating System on C:\"

    You helped me to go in the right direction and it has sucessfully booted up. Thanks

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