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ok so i have downloaded mepis and mandrake and burned both onto cds and iso images, and both of them wont work with my comp.
its my old one and i just want one linux on it, and no windows
comp specs are:
processor type: intel(R) pentium(R) 4
processor speed: 1.40 GHz
system bus speed: 400MHz
cache RAM: 256KB
total memory: 128MB
HD: 40GB western dig.
the hd has one partition, and is clean. everytime i stick the first cd in and have bios set up as "1st boot device [atapi cdrom] 2nd boot device [ide-hddi] 3rd boot device [disabled]" the comp will start up, and then when it needs to try to boot, it just goes to "NTLDR is missing, CTRL+ATL+DEL to restart". it doesnt matter waht i do it always does this, what am i doing wrong.
no thats not it, i buned it as image. do i have to have windows installed first? someone tell me waht to do step by step once i dl it. it is a single file right, then i burn that onto the cd as image, yes or no.
To help answer your question, let's review the first few stages of the boot-process.
The first program to get control is the built-in BIOS, which is fixed into the ROM of your computer. It will perform self-tests, then it will begin searching for a device to boot from. That list of devices is specified on one of the "setup" screens. The first device, and only the first, that appears to have an acceptable Master Boot Record (MBR) is selected.
The MBR is a short program, whose sole purpose is to find and then load the "real" boot loader, which, in turn, selects and loads the operating system. In the Windows-NT system, that boot-loader is named NTLDR. In Linux, it's named Grub or LILO.
So, I conclude that what is happening is that your computer is finding and loading the MBR of a Windows installation. That MBR is searching for NTLDR; it's not there; and it stops. The question de jour is, "why?" And there are several possibilities:
The order of devices-to-check may include a hard-disk before the CD-ROM, or you may need to press a special key like "C" at startup to select the CD-ROM. So, in that case, the CD-ROM is not being referenced at all.
The CD-ROM might not be "bootable." It does not have a MBR, so the BIOS skips it. (Note: if you successfully burned a "canned" ISO-image from somewhere that's supposed to be "bootable," undoubtedly it is "bootable.")
Certainly, the current contents of the MBR on the drive are not appropriate: they're looking for NTLDR. You need to replace the contents of the MBR, which is one of the normal steps involved in installing a new boot-loader such as GRUB.
So, review this list and see which one(s) apply to you. Once you clearly understand what is happening now, you can see your way to fixing it.
Did you have windows xp on the system before? Because ntldr is windows nt loader. Boot with a disk that has fdisk, run fdisk to totally remove the ntldr. Had to do that on a sys for my nephew that was given him from the high school that had win 2k. hope that this helps
This is a mighty confusing thread. I saw the OP say that he put the one iso file onto the CD, but did anyone point out that this is the problem?
What is on the disk is of no consequence--if the install CD is bootable, then you can install regardless of what was there before.
As someone already pointed out, the "NTLDR missing" message means the CD is not booting, the Windows boat loader has taken over, but it cannot find NTLDR. We don't know why but, if we are installing Linux, we dont care.
PS--you make the boot floppy during install--it is not what you start with
First, get a good boot CD--when burned from an ISO file , there should be **many** files on the CD.