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cliffhanger9 05-21-2006 10:22 AM

Dual boot w/FC4/WinXP - hal.dll is corrupt or missing
Hi all-

New to linux - tried to install FC4 on my windows xp laptop. When I boot presummably linux screen comes up saying somehting along the lines of press any key in 3...2...1... seconds or Windows XP will boot as default. This is expected since during the fedora install I said I wanted to use XP as the default OS. I press a key and am greeted with a blue fedora screen that gives me two options: FC4 and WinXP Pro. Fair enough. If I select FC4 it loads linux as expected and everything is fine. If I select WinXP Pro I get the following message:

Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt:
<Windows root>\system32\hal.dll.
Please reinstall a copy of the above file.
I dont know what that means or how to fix it so that I have the best chance of saving my windows setup. Yes I have the data backed up but I'd rather spend a few hours trying to fix the issue at hand rather than reformat everything, reinstall windows and rebuild my entire windows setup (probably a weeks worth of work) and then on top of that break it all again by installing linux on top of it.

I put in the windows xp disk and rebooted and the same process as mentioned above re-cycles as if there was nothing different.

Please help - Thanks in advance!!


XavierP 05-21-2006 01:38 PM should answer the question. And since it's more about Windows than Linux, I have moved this thread to the General forum.

Launchpad_72 05-21-2006 02:33 PM

Oh, wow. Somehow you managed to corrupt your Hardware Abstraction Layer. The easiest way to fix that is to insert your WinXP setup disks and perform the recovery install, or whatever it's called. It will re-install your system core, as simply copying the file cannot be done. (It's re-compiled for every computer it is installed on.)
Keep in mind, that depending on your version, you may need to re-install SP2 afterwards.

-Good Luck.

dhirsolo 05-23-2006 02:53 PM


One more point

probably u will lose Linux because the XP will overwrite MBR resulting to boot only to to xp
so be cautious.


sundialsvcs 05-23-2006 03:40 PM

You definitely want to have your Linux boot-disks set up and to know how to restore the proper MBR record.

Also... it's extremely curious that the HAL library would be "gone." Much more likely that it's not in the right place. Or that you somehow forgot to copy it.

HAL is basically "the device-driver for the motherboard." During the install process, WinXP goes through much the same hardware discovery process that a Linux distro does, and it puts together this library. The rebuild is done at no other time.

cliffhanger9 05-24-2006 09:01 AM

thanks guys

I booted from the windows disk and rebuilt the boot file via C: prompt.

Now when i start the computer it comes up with the same press anything to go to the menu otherwise windows will come on. then if i press nothing i get the windows boot menu and it has two entries for windows since i think i created a new one by rebuilding the boot file. the one i recreated works and boots windows fine. the old one still gives me the hal error. weird. i guess i ll just use the one that works


dhirsolo 05-24-2006 12:10 PM


Take a look into boot.ini situated on ur xp partition u can delete the wrong entry easily and next time u will see only one option which is working.

But be cautious while editing it.


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