What would cause a functioning computer to suddenly give a "disk boot error"? No new software or hardware has been added anytime recently. Computer was working fine. Sometimes the computer will boot up just fine and other times we get the "disk boot error" message. Cant seem to narrow this one down as the error does not occur 100% of the time. Also the boot up time is VERY slow. It does POST every time. Gets just past the post screen and gives error message before it can load windows. IF windows loads, everything seems to run smoothly.

My husband has a custom built computer that we have been running for about 6 months. Yesterday morning he tries to launch a game and the computer reset itself. When booting back up he gets a "disk boot error" message. Opened the case, cleaned it out, checked connections and cables, checkd the cmos battery, and then tried booting from the windows CD. Finally did a format and reinstall of windows on the C: partition. Still getting intermittent "disk boot error"

Disconnected every non essential piece to try and isolate the problem. Any ides of what we should be looking at? Very frustrating.

Running windows xp Pro
480 watt power supply
ASUS P5ND2-SLI LGA 775 NVIDIA nForce 4 SLI Intel Edition ATX Intel Motherboard
Intel Pentium 4 650 Prescott 3.4GHz LGA 775 Processor Model BX80547PG3400F
Kingston 1GB 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 667 (PC2 5300) x 2
EVGA 256-P2-N386-RX GeForce 6800GS 256MB GDDR3 PCI Express x16 Video Card (running in SLI mode)
Western Digital Cavlar 200 GB IDE hard drive
Western Digital 160 GB SATA hard drive

Be happy to provide any other information if anyone can give some help.

It's a hard disk drive problem.

1. Make sure the hard disk power connector and ribbon cable are properly connected. Sometimes, loose connection is the problem.
2. Check the boot drive is chosen in the bios.
3. Try to swap the hard drive.

Replaced the cable just to be sure.
Bios is set to boot from the HD

Had an old 10 gig hard drive still laying around. Pluged it in, did a clean install of windows on it. At first it looked like the problem was gone. Computer booted properly several times (although seemed still slower than normal) Now getting same error message, but again not every time.

Did a chkdsk on the original hard dirve and it DID detect errors so very possible that part of the problem was with the Hard drive.

Anything else that would cause this error or do we just have incredibly bad luck that both hard drives are going bad? Husband picking up a new hard drive after work today, just not sure if it is going to fix the problem.

Concentrate to the power connector of your boot hard drive. Vibration from the cpu unit may cause loose connection especially to the power connector of your hard disks so sometimes, it failed to load up to windows. Try to swap or plug another power connector to your boot hard drive. Sometimes, the terminals of the power connector are slightly bigger than the terminals of the hard disk. You can use long nose plier to tighten the power connector terminals. I think your all hard disks were okay unless no bad sectors were detected.


Unplug your unit before doing the above procedure.

Might (keeping fingers crossed) have gotten it fixed.
Replaced cable with brand new one.
Tried to boot computer and came up with a NTLDR is missing error.

Tried a repair on the boot and master boot record and unpluged an external hard drive.

Seems to be working now. At least has booted properly 4 times in a row. Plugged back in external hard drive and has succesfully booted 3 more times.

Hopefully this is a fully fixed issue. Still not sure exactly what happened but Thanks for the tips and suggestions!

Hope you solved the issue. Do scandisk and check all possible options in the Check Disk Options and defrag. It helps to improve system performance. Good luck.