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Windows Recovery Console: Step to Step Guide


The Recovery Console is a feature of the Windows 2000, Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 operating systems. It provides the means for administrators to perform a limited range of tasks using a command line interface. Its primary function is to enable administrators to recover from situations where Windows does not boot as far as presenting its graphical user interface.

How to invoke the recovery console

The recovery console may be entered in one of two ways:

  • From the operating system installation CD-ROM
  • Via the boot-time menu presented by NTLDR (provided that the computer starts to the point where the boot menu is displayed)

Option 1: Invoking the recovery console from the installation CD-ROM

The recovery console is always available from the operating system installation CD-ROM.

To invoke it, an administrator simply boots the computer from the CD-ROM.


After entering the BIOS, your PC will find any bootable device; you must boot into your Windows XP by press any key of your keyboard.


Setup is inspecting your computer’s hardware configuration…


Wait while setup is loading some files, it take about 2 minutes depend on your computer speed

From the operating system setup utility, Windows XP users have to select just one "To repair a Windows XP installation using recovery console, press R."


Press R to enter Windows Recovery Console to start repairs your windows.


While you in the Windows Recovery Console, your window background is black with white font, same as Command Prompt window, choose the windows you want to fix, generally most people only have 1 windows, so press 1 and hit enter. If you have any administrator’s password just type in, if not just hit enter.


To start repair, type in chkdsk /r /p then hit ENTER and the Recovery Console will start checking your physical hard disk.

Wait until the process. Then restart your PC and go back to Recovery Console again and do the next step: to repairing Master Boot Record by using command fixmbr


In the prompt line C:\WINDOWS>

Type this command: fixmbr

Type Y and hit ENTER and recovery console will fix your master boot record by written a new Master Boot Record.

Wait until the process complete and restart your PC and go back to Recovery Console again and do the next step: to write a new partition boot sector by using command fixboot


In the prompt line C:\WINDOWS>

Type this command: fixboot

Type Y and hit ENTER and recovery console will write a new partition boot sector

Wait until the process complete then restart your PC and go back to Recovery Console again and do the next step: to rebuilt boot.ini files by using command bootcfg /rebuild


In the prompt line C:\WINDOWS>

Type this command: fixboot

Now hit Enter and allow it to scan for Windows Installations.

Add installation to boot list? (Yes/No/All): Type: y and then hit Enter.

Enter Load Identifier: Type: You can type anything you want that identifies this installation of Windows in this case I put “Windows XP Home Edition”

Enter OS Load Options: Type: /fastdetect and then hit Enter.

This will then rebuild the boot configuration.


Option 2: Invoking the recovery console from the NTLDR menu

To install the Recovery Console so that you can select to enter the Recovery Console when you first start your computer.

To do this first insert your Window XP CD in the CD/DVD-ROM drive.

Click, Start and then choose Run.

Type: *:\i386\winnt32.exe /cmdcons

[Where is * is the letter of your CD/DVD-ROM drive]

Hit Enter and this should start the install of the Recovery Console.


When the installation has completed, restart your computer. You should now be given the option to start the Recovery Console or to start Windows.

Pssstt…If you find this post is help, be please to write back something - MrTipsO

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