Software & Apps Windows How to Restore NTLDR and Ntdetect.com From the Windows XP CD Use the recovery console to restore NTLDR Share Pin Email Print alengo/Getty Images Windows The Ultimate Laptop Buying Guide By Tim Fisher General Manager, VP, Lifewire.com Tim Fisher has 30+ years' professional technology support experience. He writes troubleshooting content and is the General Manager of Lifewire. our editorial process Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Tim Fisher Updated December 05, 2019 22 22 people found this article helpful The NTLDR and Ntdetect.com files are important system files that are used by your computer to start the Windows XP operating system. Sometimes these files can be damaged, corrupted or deleted. This is usually brought to your attention by the NTLDR is Missing error message. Follow these steps to restore the damaged, corrupted or missing NTLDR and Ntdetect.com files from the Windows XP CD using the Recovery Console. How to Restore NTLDR and Ntdetect.com Restoring the NTLDR and Ntdetect.com files from the Windows XP CD is easy and usually takes less than 15 minutes. Here's how to enter the Recovery Console and restore NTLDR and Ntdetect.com in Windows XP. Boot your computer from the Windows XP CD and press any key when you see Press any key to boot from CD. Wait while Windows XP begins the setup process. Don't press a function key even if you are prompted to do so. Press R when you see the Windows XP Professional Setup screen to enter the Recovery Console. Choose the Windows installation. You may only have one. Enter your administrator password. When you reach the command prompt, type the following two commands, pressing Enter after each one: copy d:\i386\ntldr c:\ copy d:\i386\ntdetect.com c:\ In the two commands, d represents the drive letter assigned to the optical drive that your Windows XP CD is currently in. While this is most often d, your system could assign a different letter. Also, c:\ represents the root folder of the partition that Windows XP is currently installed on. Again, this is most often the case, but your system could be different. Substitute your drive information in the code if necessary. If you're prompted to overwrite either of the two files, press Y. Take out the Windows XP CD, type exit, and then press Enter to restart your PC. Assuming that missing or corrupt versions of the NTLDR or Ntdetect.com files were your only problem, Windows XP should now start normally. That's it!