How to Find Recovery Manager in Windows XP

By Nick Davis

Your Windows XP-based system is a collection of applications and settings. Normally, the start-up process goes without any problems. The operating system loads, the drivers are all OK and your computer boots to the “Desktop” within minutes. But problems can occur and your computer may not start up correctly. When this happens, Windows XP has a program, Windows Recovery Manager, that will recover your computer and bring it to a working state. Once your computer is working again, you can troubleshoot the reason why the system failed to start up.

Things You'll Need

  • Computer running Windows XP
  • Windows XP CD-ROM

Finding Recovery Manager – Stored On Your Computer

Step 1

Turn your off your computer, if the computer is on. Wait 30 seconds.

Step 2

Turn your computer on.

Step 3

Select “Recovery Console” from the “Startup Options Menu” during start up if your system already has Windows XP Recovery Manager installed on the hard drive. If you have a dual-boot/multi-boot system, select the installation that you want to access from the Recovery Manager.

Step 4

Enter your “Administrator” password when prompted.

Step 5

Type “Help” when the command prompt (“C:\\”) appears on your computer screen to obtain a list of available Recovery Console commands.

Step 6

Type “bootcfg /rebuild” to see recovery options available on your Windows XP computer.

Step 7

Type “Exit” at any time to exit the Windows Recovery Console.

Finding Recovery Manager--Windows XP CD-ROM

Step 1

Turn on your computer, if it is off, and press the “Open” button on the system's CD-ROM drive.

Step 2

Insert the Windows XP CD into your computer's CD-ROM drive. Use this option if your computer does not have Windows XP Recovery Manager loaded on its hard drive.

Step 3

Turn off your computer by press the system's power button, if you can't properly shut down the system through Windows XP.

Step 4

Select “Boot from CD” or similar wording if prompted.

Step 5

Press “R” for “Repair,” “Recovery” or similar wording when the text-based portion of the “Setup” process begins. If you have a dual-boot/multi-boot system, select the installation that you want to access from the Recovery Manager.

Step 6

Enter your “Administrator” password when prompted.

Step 7

Type “Help” when the command prompt (“C:\\”) appears on your computer screen to obtain a list of available Recovery Console commands.

Step 8

Type “bootcfg /rebuild” to see recovery options available on your Windows XP computer.

Step 9

Type “Exit” at any time to exit the Windows Recovery Console.

Tips & Warnings

  • To add Windows XP Recovery Manager to your system so you don't have to use the Windows XP CD, insert the Windows XP CD into your computer's CD-ROM drive while your computer is running correctly. Click “Start” and then “Run.” Type “X:\\i386\\winnt32.exe /cmdcons” in the box next to “Open:” (“X” is the CD drive on your system, usually “D:\\” or “E:\\”). Click “OK” and follow the prompts to complete the setup process. The Windows XP Recovery Manager will install on your system. To use the Recovery Manager, complete the steps in “Finding Recovery Manager--Stored On Your Computer.”