I reported this problem in another thread, and thanks to cowtown
, I was able to come up with a solution for my configuration. To reiterate the problem: I had a Maxtor 160GB as master and a DVD ROM as slave on IDE bus 1. Windows XP was happy and booting happily until I installed a Western Digital 200GB drive on IDE bus 2 (my motherboard, ABIT NF7-S, supports large drives) and used the WD disk drive utilities to format the drive. When I rebooted (w/o the XP CD in the DVD drive), I received the "NTLDR is missing" error. I could only get around this by disconnecting the WD from IDE bus 2 and connecting it to an Ultra ATA PCI controller card.
Now, here is the solution, as I posted it on the Western Digital support site:
I figured out the problem: the WD utility disk was creating a primary partition and *not* giving a choice to create an extended partition instead. Since the WD 200GB is a secondary drive, NT/Win2K/XP will *expect* a bootable drive there (as in dual boot configuration). To remedy this, I did the following:
1) With the WD 200GB drive still connected to the Ultra ATA card, I started Windows XP, and using Drive Manager, I removed the primary partition from the WD drive.
2) Shutdown XP and PC and disconnected the Ultra ATA card.
3) I re-connected the WD 200GB drive to IDE bus 2. (Since my motherboard, ABIT NF7-S, supports drives > 137GB, and I have Windows XP Service Pack 1, XP recognizes the full size of the drive without the need of driver installations or special drive formatting.)
4) I re-started Windows XP and in Drive Manager I added an _extended_ partition to the WD drive, followed by adding a logical drive, and finally, formatted the drive (as NTFS, in my case).
5) I re-booted and the "NTLDR is missing" error no longer occurs.
As an alternative--if you don't have or can't use the Ultra ATA card and your large WD drive is hooked up to IDE bus 1 or 2--you can try the following:
1) In your BIOS, place your CD/DVD drive ahead of your HD(s) in boot order.
2) With the XP CD in the drive boot into your C: drive (do not press key when prompted to boot into CD). For some reason, having the XP CD in the drive while booting into the primary HD bypasses the "NTLDR is missing" error.
3) In Windows XP, use Drive Manager to remove the primary partition from the WD drive.
4) [Same as step 4 above]: re-start Windows XP and, in Drive Manager, add an _extended_ partition to the WD drive, followed by adding a logical drive, and finally, format the drive.
5) Take out the XP CD and reboot. The "NTLDR is missing" error should disappear.