Unmountable Boot Volume (Dell, Fix)

Recovery Console

So you’re using your Dell laptop (in this case a Dell Inspiron 1501 running Windows XP Professional) with no problems, turn it on one day and you get that gorgeous blue screen of death telling you that you’ve an unmountable boot volume. You call Dell support and they take you through diagnostic tests, get you to boot in safe mode (which won’t work by the way) and then they tell you to launch the recovery console or reinstall Windows.

Reinstall? No sirree!

Getting around this problem today (see previous post) here’s what I did (not my laptop as the MacBook Pro doesn’t throw up those kind of errors)…

  • With the laptop on the blue screen, grab your Windows XP CD (might be branded as a Dell Reinstallation CD), pop it into the CD drive and reboot the laptop.
  • When prompted, press any key to boot from CD, allowing a minute or so for drivers to load in the background.
  • From the first menu you see, press ‘R’ to launch the recovery console. This will launch a dos-prompt driven recovery console allowing some basic disk commands.
  • Enter your first command: “chkdsk /r” (give about 20-30 minutes to run).
  • When completed, follow up with “chkdsk /p” (give about 2 minutes to run).
  • Finally, follow up with “fixboot c:”. This will quickly test the boot sector and prompt you to write a new one. It is likely that the boot sector on your drive has become corrupt, once you agree to write a new bootsector, allow a half minute or so for the task to run until prompted with a success message.
  • Type ‘EXIT’ to quit the recovery console and restart the laptop.

That… should be that. It helps to have the original Dell XP disc though. A standalone version wouldn’t display the recovery console menu on launch but the Dell OEM version does (purple coloured CD including Service Pack 1a – it’s been a while). Of course, if the disc doesn’t boot when you restart the computer it may be possible that you’re BIOS is looking to the hard drive before the CD. In that case you’ll need to enter the Dell BIOS (pressing F2 for setup on immediate restart). See here (Dell support) for specific details.


  1. Zach October 28, 2007 at 1:39 pm

    Any suggestions on how to repair this if I can’t use the CD-rom. I’m manually telling it to boot from CD but it isn’t recognising it. (i.e. is there anything do to load files onto an external hard drive and use them to repair my dell.)

  2. Dez November 26, 2007 at 2:48 pm

    THANK YOU!!! That screen scares the S**T out of me whenever I see it. YOU GEM!

  3. Ken McGuire November 27, 2007 at 9:11 pm


    No problem, hope it worked out for you!

  4. Ken McGuire January 16, 2008 at 4:43 pm

    Who’d have thought I’d be following my own advice today!

    Fix also applies to a Dimension 3100C that refuses to boot (with no obvious error message on the blue screen)

  5. Johnny B January 17, 2008 at 5:57 am

    You sooooo ROCK!!! I even got to keep all of my files. How is it that you know this but the 4 Dell Techs I spent weeks with just say… The Hard Drive is fried. WITHOUT EVEN SUGGESTING THIS FIX.

  6. Ken McGuire January 17, 2008 at 9:43 am

    Glad I could be of help πŸ™‚

  7. Karina Rivas January 21, 2008 at 8:56 pm

    I get the Unmountable_ Boot _volum screen, reboot and gives me options to select Safe mode, safe mode with promts,ect, however when i select one of them, I still get the blue screen.. I tried putting in the purple dell cd and still get the same thing

  8. Ken McGuire January 21, 2008 at 9:58 pm

    You’ll have to make sure that your CD is set to boot before your hard drive.

    This can be done by going into your BIOS, pressing F2 at the Dell screen when your machine is starting up.

    Find your boot options (will list CD drive, hard drive, network drive, USB etc.) and make sure that your CD drive is at the top of the list. If it’s not at the top of the list then put it to the top of the list, save your changes and exit with the CD still in the drive.

    Reboot the machine and it should give you the option to boot from CD (the CD will start before your hard drive, thus skipping the hard drive error).

  9. Karina Rivas January 22, 2008 at 12:29 am

    I got it!! you are the bomb!! thank you so much, I was so worried I had to buy another laptop!

  10. Tonya G January 30, 2008 at 1:32 am

    Ohhh My Gosh! Ken McGuire, I’m going to kiss you in the mouth! Be sure to open wide! My son and his friend played games on my laptop and corrupted it. I spent 2 hrs, (78 mins on hold), with Dell Support, only to be transferred 4 times, hung up on once and told I would have to restore my computer back to when I received it to fix the error. I was going to give it to Geek Squad tomorrow, but decided to search the internet again for the fix. Your steps above worked PERFECTLY! Open your mouth wide, because I’m going to bend you backwards and kiss you sooooo hard in your mouth!!!!!!!!!!SMOOCHES!

  11. Ken McGuire January 30, 2008 at 8:32 am

    Tonya, delighted I can be of some help!

  12. Steven February 14, 2008 at 3:56 pm

    I usually dont leave comments on web sites. I usually dont see the need and find it pointless. But let me tell you bud, you are a life saver. All the files from me and my wife, the birth of my new born child, everything was on there. That stuff is just priceless and irreplacable. So i now find it necessary to thank you and let everyone know hown great this is. THANK YOU

  13. Ken McGuire February 14, 2008 at 4:13 pm


    No worries mate, glad I could be of some assistance to you! There’s nothing worse than the fear of losing everything you’ve got on your computer – particularly when it comes to irreplaceable photos and videos!

    Might be handy to back them up now too πŸ™‚


  14. Dave February 22, 2008 at 10:20 pm

    Thank You. I just fixed my Dell unmountable boot volume with your above instructions you are a life saver.

  15. Ty February 28, 2008 at 3:13 pm

    How about on a desktop? It won’t even let me go into safe mode or any mode for that matter. Please help!!!!

  16. Ken McGuire February 28, 2008 at 3:51 pm

    Ty, have you tried following the same steps above if you’re getting that same error? They are also applicable to desktop models.

  17. Linda March 1, 2008 at 2:38 am

    Hey Ken, this would be fantastic if only I could ever get a screen that asks me to boot from disc! I put in the disc, and the same screens come up. Try to start in some kind of safe mode, but it brings up the files, then the blue screen of death…with the unmountable boot volume.

    I pressed F2 and got the dell dimension 4400 setup screen—which gave me no options!

    Can you help me?

  18. Ken McGuire March 1, 2008 at 3:23 am

    The Dell Dimension screen should give you some options by letting you into the BIOS? or Do you have a different keyboard button for the BIOS? You’ll see a note when you first boot up your computer.

    In the BIOS screen you’lll need to find the option to set your boot configuration, a list of drives / devices that are checked in order when your computer boots up (starts up). In your case I’m guessing your hard drive is at the top of the list as it’s skipping the CD. If this is so, find your CD ROM drive in the list and place it at the top (usually by highlighting it and pressing the + key to move it up the list). If the CD is at the top of the list, your computer will check for bootable CDs first before starting Windows.

    As your Windows XP CD is a bootable CD you’ll be able to follow the steps above as normal.

    Hope that helps!

  19. Linda March 1, 2008 at 11:48 am

    You deserve an award! Thank you so much…I never would have figured out that bios thing, if not for you. It was set to boot from the floppy first, then the C drive, and the CD was disabled! Darn kids! I can only think that they messed with it, and that is how it happened.

    Thank you so much. I was doing my taxes and praise the Lord I was getting a refund, when this thing went out! So, bless your heart for helping fools like me! I pray that God will bless you, truly.

    Right now, I am waiting for the recovery disc to do it’s job. Even if I still have problems, I think you are the best!!

  20. Melissa March 2, 2008 at 7:05 pm

    Any ideas on what to do if you only have a regular Win XP Cd? Can’t find my Dell recovery cd, but I do have a regular admin Win XP disc. I tried your steps but it doesnt seem to work because of the diff cd. Either that or my cd drive is bad now too. I could burn something to a USB thumb drive if that helps. I dont even care at this point if I have to reformat, at the moment all I have is a paperweight.

    My info: Dell inspirion B130, got the blue screen out of the blue, and it isnt budging (my guess…my teenager did it somehow, she tried to install the SIMs and that was the last I saw this laptop work)

    Any help would be appreciated, I am about giving up on it.

  21. Ken McGuire March 2, 2008 at 7:29 pm


    How far along the steps did you get? Can you bring up the recovery console as outlined above?

  22. Melissa March 2, 2008 at 9:00 pm

    Couldn’t get the recovery console up, but I did reboot holding down Fn key when powering up to get to the diagnostics, it passed through all the immediate quick tests, I went to the tree to choose to test just ‘windows blue screen’ options, and I am 98% through that with everything passing. I guess thats good but doesnt help much, and I see no options to repair or restore, just diagnose and test.

  23. Linda March 2, 2008 at 10:36 pm

    Melissa, that is all I had, was the recovery CD. Do what Ken suggested I do, and make sure your bios are set to run from the cd first.

    Ken, I have another problem. Everything works fantastic! But, now I have a “freeze” problem. When the screensaver comes on, it freezes. And when I right click on the desk top to get the properties to come up, it freezes and I can not do anything. It will not shut down, won’t move. Like the keyboard and mouse are disconnected. I have to shut the computer off, and sometimes it won’t even let me do that! I have to turn off the power to the computer. But, it boots up and works just beautiful!
    Computers are so much fun, eh?

  24. Ramy March 3, 2008 at 5:15 pm

    Hi Ken,
    Thanks for the advice but I would like to ask for some further assistance. I’ve run the steps you outlined (console, chkdsk /r, chkdsk /p, fixboot c:, exit). My machine now starts up and goes to a black screen with the mouse pointer in the middle (mouse is operational) and the “safe mode” text in the corners as well as the os with build number at the top.
    Have you had any experience with anything like this? I also ran the dell diagnostics and got an error, but I don’t recall the code. I can rerun and provide that if needed.

  25. Ken McGuire March 3, 2008 at 5:58 pm

    If you can re run the test, or flag which diagnostic run it actually fails in?

    Anything of note from the chkdsk tests and fixing the boot record?

  26. Linda March 4, 2008 at 1:24 am

    Hi Ken, trying to redo…but, when I get to the recovery console, I can not type the command, “chkdsk”…anything. Because it only lets me type one letter. IN the dos promt, it asks “which windows installation would you like to log onto”

    above the prompt, there is:

    1: C:\WINDOWS

    I pressed the #1 and hit enter, and it asked for an administrator password. I do not have one.

    Now what?

  27. Linda March 4, 2008 at 1:24 am

    Hi Ken, trying to redo…but, when I get to the recovery console, I can not type the command, “chkdsk”…anything. Because it only lets me type one letter. IN the dos promt, it asks “which windows installation would you like to log onto”

    above the prompt, there is:

    1: C:\WINDOWS

    I pressed the #1 and hit enter, and it asked for an administrator password. I do not have one.

    Now what?

  28. Melissa Kip March 4, 2008 at 6:37 pm

    Woohoo! Ok thanks very much Ken, you’d be rich if you were Dell’s Tech Support Center I am sure πŸ™‚

    It passed ALL tests for hard drive, blue screen…who knows? I swear it was the SIMs that killed it. Anyway, end result, I went back & tried to get into that recovery things again and it worked, it was very picky about me first holding down CTRL, then adding in the F11, then letting them both go at exactly the same time, but it worked, I just reformatted the darn thing, so now I am back to having my laptop back, all squeaky clean too. All is well, thanks to you some tech guy over here didn’t get half my paycheck πŸ™‚

    So Ken, should you ever find yourself in Virginia, US, I owe you a pint or three πŸ™‚ Thanks again! Cool blog by the way.

  29. rah March 4, 2008 at 7:25 pm

    i also got the blue screen i tried everything but it goes back to the blue screen i heard of the chkdsk thing but it wont work for me because my cd-rom drive does not read any disk and my laptop does not support floppy disk…………any help please…..is there a way to do it without the disk or floppy if not then i guess will have to send it in to get repaired but i dnt want to loose my files please help………………

  30. Ken McGuire March 4, 2008 at 8:33 pm

    @Melissa If I ever find myself in Virginia I’ll give you a shout about the pints!

  31. Ken McGuire March 4, 2008 at 8:36 pm

    @rah It may be possible to remove your hard drive from your laptop and access it from a PC, possibly with a 2.5″ IDE laptop drive to pc mounting kit, a tricky process but any repair shop should be able to do it for you, using the PC to access and repair your laptop’s HD.

    Is the CD Rom drive broken or is it set to boot AFTER your HD? If you look in the BIOS setup menu for your laptop, make sure your CD Rom drive is set to boot up first and try again with the CD.

    You shouldn’t have to lose your files at all.

  32. Ramy March 5, 2008 at 2:48 pm

    Hey Ken,
    A little more information about my earlier comment. The test that fails is labeled :
    “–Start DST Short Test–”
    and the output is as follows:
    “Test Results : Fail
    Error Code : 1000-0146
    MSG : Unit 0: DST Log contains previous error(s).”
    I’m not sure how to get to the “DST log”. I continue with the test after this one fails (after being prompted) and come to this prompt:

    “No Diagnostic Utility Partition found. To run diagnostics, insert your Dell “Drivers and Utilities” CD, then select OK to restart the system and boot off the CD.”

    Unfortunately, I don’t have the Drivers and Utilities CD.

    Nothing of note after running the chkdsk /r aside from one “error found, now recovering” type of message (i don’t remember the exact terms). The console works till completion though.

  33. Ryan April 10, 2008 at 2:46 am

    Thanks a lot Ken. You’ve been a big help man! Now i got all of my pics from all my deployments thanks to you!!!

  34. Ken McGuire April 10, 2008 at 9:04 am

    @Ryan Glad to be of assistance

  35. Neil Posner April 11, 2008 at 11:13 pm


    My wife has a dell dimension 8400 and received this same error. We’ve been trying to boot from the cd, but the cd can’t be read in either the cd or dvd drive. We hear it trying to read/the light goes on, but then it stops and no boot. It says boot device is not available. Any suggestions?


  36. Heather April 23, 2008 at 12:28 am

    Hi Ken,
    I wish I read your fix on this website earlier. I had the Unmountable Boot Volume erro. I called DELL support. They are nice. But I finally was instruced to reinstall every thing on my labtop. I have XP home editon and MediaDirect reinstallation CDs. The machine has just out of warranty. I am afraid, I may not be able to reinstall every thing on my laptop. I am wondering, do you have any tip for that?
    Thank you.

  37. Stephen Martin April 23, 2008 at 12:31 am

    Hi Ken,
    I had been having problems with the blue screen error and used your fix – worked to perfection.

    Couple days later during reboot i have a message telling me C:WINDOWS missing or corrupted file

    It advises me to access Windows Setup and press R.

    I have done this and gone through the steps again of chkdsk etc.

    At each stage of the chkdsk it stops at 50% and gives the message that I have unrecoverable errors.

    Doesn’t sound good – any ideas where to from now?

  38. andrea April 30, 2008 at 12:49 pm

    hi ken, found this site and have the same problem with the blue screen. When I do try to do a repair it asks me for what installation I want to repair and it only gives me f:\minint does that mean I wont be able to save any of my files because my hard drive is dead?

  39. Alashia May 27, 2008 at 5:18 pm

    Ok , so what if you dont have the Windows XP CD anymore and not only that but your CD ROM DRIVE wasnt working in the first place. One day my laptop fell off the coffee table and the CD ROM DRIVE came out. Ever since then it hasnt worked. It runs at least i think it does it makes the normal noise but it doesnt run the cd. Do you know how to fix that and also where to get the Windows XP CD? Please help!

  40. krish June 4, 2008 at 9:56 pm


    ok, Ken I am already in the command prompt screen but when I type “chkdsk/r” it tells me “The command is not recognized”. What do I do?

  41. nefrets June 5, 2008 at 8:49 am

    Hey Krish,
    you gotta make sure you have a space before /r. should be ‘chkdsk /r’

  42. Javier June 12, 2008 at 10:57 pm

    Hey man.. any suggestions if what you suggested DOESN’T work?

    Cuz it didn’t work … I’m using (or trying to use) a Dell Inspiron E1505…. I’m about to R.I.P. this laptop…. please help!

  43. Wayland June 13, 2008 at 8:29 am

    Ken, I have an Inspiron E1405. This is not working for me. This is the SECOND time I have faced this. The first time ended with me starting completely over. I don’t want to do that again. If you can offer anymore of your sage advice, I would appreciate it very much.

  44. Julie Keaton July 12, 2008 at 5:57 pm

    Hey! I got the error msg unmountable boot volume. I have followed your directions but it never goes into the repair mode. It just brings up the partitions and ask if I want to delete reinstall. When I try reinstalling it goes through the steps but does not work…it keeps rebooting. Please help!

  45. MadM July 31, 2008 at 10:40 pm

    I just tried this fix on my Dell Inspiron E1505 and it went through all of the procedures fine and succesfully written the new bootsector but when I restart it just goes back to the blue screen with the unmountable boot volume error.
    Any suggestions on what else to try?

  46. dinesh m August 4, 2008 at 2:01 am

    I also have this issue.
    But when i use the chkdsk /r it takes a few seconds,,,and then the computer reboots.

    any ideas/.

  47. Vicki0312 August 4, 2008 at 3:50 pm

    hi i alos have the error on my computer. i jave a dell insipiron 1150 but i bought it second hand and has no discs with it? is there anyway to sort it with out the disk or to get another disk?

  48. jay August 10, 2008 at 1:49 pm

    Ken, you are the macdaddy! I thought i’d have to buy a new computer before I read your solution page. You have been added to my favourites.

    Many thanks

  49. george August 14, 2008 at 7:09 pm

    wat blue screen and how do i get to it?

  50. Jason August 19, 2008 at 12:28 pm

    Well, I followed your steps, and it worked!

    Just wanted to say thanks πŸ™‚

  51. Ken McGuire August 21, 2008 at 10:31 am

    @jay, @jason You’re welcome.

  52. Bryan August 30, 2008 at 2:26 am


    Ok I turned on my Dell Inspiron 6000 with windows xp and I have the blue screen of death with an unmountable_Boot_volume tech info 0x000000ED and do not have any xp or dell disk. Now how do I fix it. I have another desk top computer with xp but I dont know if you can make a boot disk from it. Dell was no help nor was Microsoft. Any Idea’s I cant even get to the BIOS menu.

  53. Ken McGuire September 1, 2008 at 4:50 pm


    It is possible you could remove your hard disk from the 6000 and try mount it to the desktop PC and run the chkdsk etc. that way. You would need to get a data cable for the drive to connect to the desktop’s motherboard.

    Alternative is to borrow, where possible, an XP CD .

  54. Tiffany September 2, 2008 at 12:47 am

    Hi ken on my computer I keep getting DST Short Not Applicable then the test fails then at the end it say

    No Diagnostic Utility Partition Found. To run insert Dell Drivers and Utilities CD then select ok. But unfortantly I don’t have the CD

    What do I do

  55. R Carry September 3, 2008 at 10:20 am

    Oh man thanks for that. I actually can’t thank you enough. If you’re ever in my town you can stay in my house, drive my car, eat my food and take your pick of my sisters. I was a couple of chapters from completing a book and I thought I’d lost it – the set of instructions above got it back. Thanks again, much appreciated.

  56. Darmesh September 9, 2008 at 6:43 am

    Hello Ken,
    My computer has just went done i have a xps dell desktop, i tried you suggestion. but all is well till i press the “r” key, after that it just goes to a blue screen with WINDOWS XP PROFESSIONAL SETUP on top and at the bottom it says EXAMINING 152587 MB DISK 0 AT ID 0 ON BUS 0 ON IASTOR. No dos- prompt has come up, it has been like this for a hour or so.

    Any Suggestions.

    Thanks for the help

  57. Rob September 16, 2008 at 3:29 pm

    Thanks so much..you saved a relative of mine from the blue screen of death! This worked for him perfectly…

  58. Ken McGuire September 16, 2008 at 4:14 pm

    @Rob – You’re welcome

    @Darmesh – Have you tried any hard disk scanners to see if the drive itself is at fault? IBM have some available for download online (google search) that you can run as a bootable CDRom. They’ll quickly tell you whether your hard drive is in danger or not.

  59. Claude September 22, 2008 at 1:49 pm

    You are simply a king ! I went through all steps using a windows XP Pro CD in english but my Dell was running a XP Home in french, and it worked as well.

    Thanks a million πŸ™‚

  60. Alison September 23, 2008 at 3:48 am

    Oh I love you so much Ken McGuire. You rock. The Ò€œchkdsk /rÒ€ part took a really long time, but no matter, you saved my life. Thank you thank you thank you!!!

  61. Jordan October 2, 2008 at 2:37 am

    Hey do you know how to get your administrative password becasue i followed these steps which dell also did not tell me to but it asks me for the password and i entered my noram password and aparently its not your normal password to get into your computer

  62. susie October 3, 2008 at 4:27 pm

    how do you repair the unmountable volumne without a window’s xp disk, when i click on safe mode lots of files going flying up and it goes back to the blue screen again. i DO NOT want to format, as i have lots of photo’s and music on my computer. adobe photoshop has been giving a few problems for a while, could that be the cause of it.

  63. Ken McGuire October 5, 2008 at 8:18 pm


    Best thing I can suggest is to borrow a disc from somebody? The XP pro disc will have the repair option on it.


    Did you get your computer secondhand? Or is it your own? If it’s your own, you would have set the admin password on first boot of XP.

  64. alain October 6, 2008 at 2:20 pm

    just deleted the sound program by mistake.it is just saying sndvol32.exe missing.it’s a second hand pc and i haven’t got the disc to repair it.can u help plz?

  65. Ken McGuire October 6, 2008 at 2:29 pm


    Have you tried searching online for a copy of the file?

  66. Susie October 7, 2008 at 5:58 pm

    no my computer is new-ish, i wanted to try connecting my laptop into the desktop to get the files off it that way. but i don’t know how to do the connection, is there a step by step program on the internet that would show you how to do this.

  67. John October 9, 2008 at 4:22 am

    This goes back to the dreaded “Unmountable Boot Volume”. It is in a Dell laptop. I tried the repair (chkdsk /r) but after 40% it stopped and I got the message “cannot continue, drive has more problems”. Since there was nothing really on it anyway, I decided to just fdisk and reinstall. Fdisk won’t touch it it either. I’ve tried a number of programs to just blow the drive away and start from scratch but nothing seems to get through it.
    Do you have any suggestions short of replacing the drive?

  68. Ken McGuire October 9, 2008 at 10:16 am


    Have you considered mounting the laptop’s drive into a PC and checking / scanning / repairing that way?

    You could try (name escapes me of one) a bootable hard disk diagnostic CD… IBM and (i think) Hitachi have released bootable downloads, searchable via google. The idea here is that you create the bootable CD in another machine, run it on the laptop, the diagnostic software runs on boot and will scan your hard disk for phsysical / read / write errors. Based on the error codes returned you would get an idea on whether the drive is dead or not, something that could be the case.

  69. Derek October 11, 2008 at 12:26 pm

    Can you advise if Dell will ship out a driver CD in Ireland?
    They have this submission form for the USA, but it wont work for Ireland.

    My problem: AVG detected a Trojan Horse.Backdoor.9BAMQ virus and AVG put the infected files in its vault.
    I lost access to all peripherals, including USB/DVD/Video Card/NIC/Wireless/Sound/etc. andcould access the machine bar locally to a poor quality svreen.
    I eventually managed to get a Boot USB stick going, and got into the machine, downloaded some drivers from Dell, and managed to sort out video and USB only, then with lots of frustration the NIC card which now will not respond to DHCP, so I have fixed IP Addresses/DNS; and no Wireless operable.
    I am tearing my diminishing hair out, and cannot get sound/DVD/wireless operable.
    What will XP OS Repair do from the purple disc?
    The way I see it I need a source for the drivers required to restore the machine, a Dell 630M.

    HELP! Any ideas/advie please?
    I believe that the virus is still resident, but I have been unable to clean it with AVG virus removal tools or Avasti.


  70. D October 13, 2008 at 9:50 pm

    Please Help! After my bf got this blue screen I looked up on the internet what to do. I saw your steps and other similar ones as well, and told him he needs to reinstall his windows XP, which he didn’t have. His dad had his Home Edition, so they went to work on reinstalling; however, they didn’t wait for me to tell them the next steps and reinstalled with out going into the recovery console. He has windows xp, but not programs, no files, not even wirless internet capability. Is there any way we can start over to recover at least his wirless internet capability. Oh, by the way, it won’t even connect to the internet through an ethernet cable. If you have any ideas or thoughts that would be great. Thank you.

  71. Susie October 14, 2008 at 2:26 pm

    yes i got the windows xp disc from Dell, along with 6 other disc’s with all of the software that is on my computer. i used the disc to recover the system and it worked, just have a bit of a problem with zonealarm now. it seems to have a lot of virus’s on it, when my computer came back it disappeared and when i tried to get it back it came up with a box that said multyply virus threats. so zonealarm is almost gone at the moment, there are just two of the folders i can’t get rid of, it says it can’t delete them because the disc is full or write protected. any idea how i can delete zonealarm fully.

  72. Derek Smith October 15, 2008 at 11:30 am

    Susie, are you saying you got the discs post purchase or with the machine?
    All I recieved with the machine was the XP purple disc and 2 discs for MS Office.I am looking for the driver disc, but no joy to order via web. The machine is now out of warranty as well.
    I have also tried the drivers from the web, but no success to get audio and DVD running, and video drivers.
    Getting back to your problem on Zone Alarm you should be able to uninstall via Control Panel


  73. Susie October 15, 2008 at 12:00 pm


    yes i got the disc’s post purchase. i got my computer in 2005, so it was well out of warranty as well. they were really helpfull, and i’ve got all the software on the disc’s that is also on my computer. which is very handy incase anything else goes wrong.
    i rang there “tech support for home” phone number i got on there website.

    yeah i deleted all the files belonging to zonealarm off my computer last night, i found them all eventually. but when i went to go try put it on again it came up with a load of multiply virus’s on an alert box, and all to do with zonealarm.
    does that mean i have a virus on my computer now or spyware?

    i am a bit worried incase there is a virus on it, i don’t like not having zonealarm, but when it won’t let me put it back on what do you do?

  74. Susie October 15, 2008 at 12:10 pm


    again, just after re-reading all of message again. i have driver disc’s, they are blue in colour. can’t remember exactly whats on them now though as i’m in work, but it does say drivers on the disc’s, those are the one’s i got when i did buy the computer in 2005.

  75. Derek October 15, 2008 at 1:48 pm


    Thanks for the input. I will try and call Dell to arrange discs. I recieved a blue disc with an earlier laptop, but not with this laptop, as purchased in 2006.
    Suggest you see what other tools make of the problem as well:
    The free Spyware Doctor seems to work effectively for Spyware removal.[I used the Google tools version]
    Also free, the Grisoft AVG virus removal clean-up tool might assist.
    Good Luck!

  76. Susie October 15, 2008 at 4:39 pm


    i was reading earlier on a zonealarm forum that the problem could be with AVG, according to it, due to the new release, AVG thinks its malware. so i have to go into my AVG user interface and change the exceptions in the sheild, hopefully when i try this it will work.

    i’m from Ireland as well and i had to ring them when i got the dreaded blue screen, i found them to be very helpfull.
    Good Luck,

  77. Gustavo October 19, 2008 at 4:07 pm

    Hello Ken,

    My problem is that I get the blue screen but no error message. i am using windows 2000. Help, I can’t lose a lot information. what do i do.


  78. Saffsam October 26, 2008 at 12:14 am

    Just fixed this blue screen of death and all is fine, however I just did the CHKDSK /R as instructed by the dell website and no fix boot etc – should i go back and redo?
    Also the blue sign is a clear indication of things not right – after backing up !!!! is there anything I can do to actually fix it ie does this ultimately mean a replacement of the hard drive? Thanks Saff

  79. tama November 3, 2008 at 1:39 am

    is there any way to create a Windows XP dell boot CD for an inspirion B130? so I can get this repaired…i’ve been to the dell website and can’t seem to find it.
    any suggestions please – even if its something that is blatantly in front of me, will you please call me out on it….I’m super flustered and frustrated…thanks so much!!

  80. Martelle Pitts November 3, 2008 at 4:22 pm

    I am working on a friend’s computer who is experiencing the “unmountable boot volume error. As I am fairly knowledgeable about PC’s, I have booted from the OS Install CD, got to the recovery console, ran chkdsk \r, chkdsk \p and fixboot. After all that I still receive the error, any other suggestions. This person wants to keep all of their information, so reinstalling the OS is out of the question.


  81. fan of forums November 5, 2008 at 1:42 am

    I’m sure ken is saying to himself right now… why oh why did i ever post this fix…what a can of worms this has turned out to be.


  82. Claire November 12, 2008 at 11:37 pm

    Thanks Ken! I have this problem on my Inspirion B120; I just got my laptop back from the Geek Squad, which ran a diagnostic and told me basically I’m screwed, all data lost, irretreivable. Could this possibly true? I told them not to replace the hard drive because I wanted to try what you suggested on my own.

    my CS major brother told me all i had to do was reinstall windows from the disc, which unfortunately I don’t have. I called Dell and reordered it. Do I have a prayer?

  83. thomas November 16, 2008 at 10:28 am

    Everytime i do the chkdsk /r it freezes and when i do reformat it and get all my drivers on there, it will get a unmountable boot volume error when i put any sort of file on there
    such as mp3, avi, video file ect.
    It will only do a unmountable boot volume error when i put a new file on there
    any suggestons?

  84. Bonita November 18, 2008 at 8:02 am

    Ken, I have a Dell inspirion dell b130 too but my laptop just ran out of warranty last year and I can’t find my recovery CD; I also don’t know how to make a Windows CD boot disk; my other laptop only can makes CDs not floppies; I did go ahead and change the BIOS so that when I can get a CD to boot from it will read from the drive with the CD’s first; I tried to do it with a flash drive but it wouldn’t let me ….any suggestions my friend…I appreciate anything you have to offer that would assist so I don’t have to pay Dell for another recovery CD….I’m sure that you may be able to get me out of this jam…..thank you so much

  85. Gemma November 18, 2008 at 3:04 pm

    Hi Ken

    After receiving the blue screen of death, I ran though your chkdsk /r, chkdsk /p and fixboot c: routeens on my Dell Inspiron 1501 and it does now get me in, but it takes about 2 minutes from turning on the laptop until I see the black timer bar screen that loads Win XP.

    Also, once in to the laptop the whole thing is so slow.

    I have run Spybot S & D, Hijack This, Norton Internet Security and AVG root kit and found nothing. (Obviously I have uninstalled each of the above after using).

    I am going to run a defrag, but I am now running out of options to fix the long delay on startup and the slowness of the laptop.

    Any further ideas or do you think the HDD is screwed???

  86. Ken McGuire November 19, 2008 at 6:22 am


    If you’re worried about the hard drive I would suggest performing a test / fitness test on the drive. IBM and Hitachi distribute fitness test and hard drive diagnostic programs that can run pre-boot, letting you know whether certain areas of the hard drive are damaged, safe or otherwise.

    Do you run any virtual drive software (like virtual CD rom drives for mounting disc images)? Sometimes the drivers loaded during boot for virtual cd rom drives can increase load times. A Defrag might be an option for you, and don’t forget about a scan disc run as well to repair possible surface errors.

    This google search (link below) should give you options on hard drive tests but you would need to read up on them yourself.


  87. Sara November 19, 2008 at 5:47 pm

    I am get the bluescreen of death, unmountable to boot volume. I do not have an XP cd. Do you have ANY suggestions???

  88. Ken McGuire November 20, 2008 at 6:18 am


    First suggestion is to borrow an XP pro CD from somebody, you don’t need to reinstall from their disc or buy a new license but the CD gives you access to the recovery console and tools mentioned above.

  89. Danielle November 21, 2008 at 6:19 am

    I got to the recovery console it gets to 50% then stops and my computer shuts off which it has been doing alot of lately. I figured it was just a virus so I ran a virus cleaner and yeah I did have a few so I cleaned it. The computer was running faster but still keeps shutting down. How do I fix this problem? So that I can get rid of the death screen as well. Thanks.

  90. tope November 21, 2008 at 8:07 am

    have a dell dimension 3100c, had to format de disk and now it would not boot if there is no win xp disc in the cd rom. if i remove the disk it comes up with an error that i should push f1. i need it to boot with out the disk. pls help.

  91. Ken McGuire November 22, 2008 at 5:35 am

    @tope Check your BIOS settings to make sure that your hard drive is actually detected and included in the boot process.

  92. tammy November 22, 2008 at 10:10 am

    I have a dell that has worked great until I got the blue screen, unmountable boot volume. Just before that I was online watching a live volleyball game and lost power (not sure that matters). I couldn’t do anything on the blue screen like it said – press F8, etc. Then my husband (who knows nothing about computers) started pushing buttons and somehow got it to a diagnostics screen and ran the “symptom tree”. The errors we got were error code OFOO:0244 msg block 91820: uncorrectable data error or media is write protected. ide disk s/n=MRGA1WKBJ8ADTJ read test fail. It then asked if we wanted to continue, yes, then the same error again. we continued and the next error was OFOO:1A44 msg block and everything was the same except verify test fail. I am sick to think I may have lost so many irreplacable family pictures, please help.

  93. Bea November 23, 2008 at 9:42 pm

    Hey Wiz-zard guy…
    I can’t seem to go past the bloody blue screen even with the disk in the drive…how do I get it to beyond Unmountable Boot Volume?

  94. Gemma November 24, 2008 at 2:26 pm

    Hi Ken

    Thanks for the info above.

    Now after sitting in XP for about 3 hours my laptop has started to beep. But not the sort of beep that is constant on boot up (for memory issues) just now and again like a little bird and I have checked all the devices, in device manager and there are no error messages either anywhere.

    I think this could soon be the end for my hard drive, so I think I may get a new one to be on the safe side.

  95. Joneja November 27, 2008 at 11:02 pm

    Hey Ken,

    Need help. I followed all the steps that you outlined and created the new boot sectore (fixboot c:) however when I restart my computer I still get the unmountable_boot_volume!

    Any pointers? Thanks!

  96. Ted December 1, 2008 at 1:07 am

    Am having this problem as well with my desktop. When I put in the boot disk and boot from it, I get a different menu with 6 options on black screen.

    1 Run Graphics Adapter Advanced Diagnostic
    2 Run 32 bit Dell Diagnostics
    5 Exit to DOS
    6 Reboot System

    I don’t see the Support Menu. If I go to DOS it takes me to the D drive, and when I try to run chkdsk /r, it tells me to run SCANDISK.

    Have I missed something to get to the blue support screen?


  97. Ken McGuire December 1, 2008 at 8:20 am


    Are you sure that’s a Windows XP disc? Sounds like a Dell resources CD…

  98. Jarrod December 1, 2008 at 8:55 am

    Hi when i click r then get to the command prompt and type chkdsk/r it says it is not recognised plz help me!!!!

  99. Jenny December 2, 2008 at 2:37 am

    I thought all was lost with the blue screen of death with the unmountable boot error. Dell told me it was probably the hard drive but did sent me the discs but because my warranty was over they would have to charge me to try and fix it. My friend did research on the internet and found your solution on line. It worked. Thank you, thank you, thank you. I thought I would have to buy a new laptop but you saved the day. You are brilliant.

  100. Holli December 8, 2008 at 5:01 am

    So, I truly thought that I was stuck. Then I found your tips!

    TI have made it to the recovery console and have typed in chkdsk /r

    It only completed 75%. it says the volume appears to contain one or more unrecoveralbe problems.

    What should I do now?

  101. Suki December 9, 2008 at 1:29 am

    I don’t get the “welcome to setup” screen that the picture above shows. When I put in an XP CD, it goes directly to a blue screen with list of partitions and unpartitions information asking me to install XP on my C drive. Which ofcourse means, losing all my data.
    Pressing R makes no difference….is there any other way I can get to the dos prompt?? I have tried pressing all the other keys! Enter will install XP, D will delete partition and F3 will quit….no other keys work!!
    Or is my only resort now to reinstall XP?
    p.s. I got the CD from a friend since I cudn’t find my original.

  102. Ken McGuire December 9, 2008 at 11:22 am


    Are you sure it’s an XP Professional CD?

  103. suki December 13, 2008 at 1:23 am

    Ken, I am sure I know that much @ XP Professional! =)
    Sorry took me while to respond..everytime I typed a reply, I prssed submit (w/o a name) and I would lose the whole text….happened 4 times!!

    I suspect the reason I may not be getting the welcome to setup screen/dos prompt is because the XP CD I am using came from an image file off my friend’s laptop vs. an orig CD….. I was going to try a diff CD to confirm my suspicion, but I haven’t been able to get my hands on one. Perhaps, incompatinility with XP service packs bw my XP and the XP on the CD could also cause this. What do you think abt those ideas?

    I just tried seein if I could install windows on a thumb-drive and backup files by loading windows from it….but that doesnt work =) I select the thumbdrive and it asked me to format C drive to proceed..baah! Eithrecase, in order to move on with my life, I am formatting the C and losing all my data right now.

    BTW do you know of any ways one can back up the data when something like this happens? Some hard-drive swap I heard about….

  104. hp December 16, 2008 at 4:56 pm


    How r u? after reading so posts over here i thot you would help me fix my hard drive related problems.

    Recently, my dell inspiron 700m was attacked by virus, i installed anti-viruses like AVG and Avira and scanned my machine but i guess they could not detect the virus. The laptop was still running fine but at times everything goes black on screen and gave me some memory address related errors, this thing happened many times, so i thot let me format the C: and re-install windows xp. Somehow, i got a CD from my friend and tried to install XP home professional. Initially, it formatted the C: drive where my previous windows XP home was installed. So, here is the sequence:
    Issue 1:
    – i insert XP Prof. CD in CD-ROM and boot the laptop from CD-ROM only
    – it starts copying some hardware related drivers to my machine on C: drive
    – then, it tries to start windows and it restarts again.

    Issue 2:
    – i insert XP Prof. CD in CD-ROM and boot the laptop from CD-ROM only
    – it starts copying some hardware related drivers to my machine on C: drive
    – then, it tries to start windows and it start coping files from XP prof. CD to my C: drive…but at 78% it restarts machine saying NTLDR missing!

    So, this has happened so many times ..I ran the diagnostic test before booting and it says “DST Short Test Fail – Error Code 1000-0146”.

    I don’t know how to fix these errors. It looks like its’ not allowing me to install windows, also, i have 40 GB data on my D: drive which is really really important.

    I checked so many forums and i knew when I get the above error code it means the HDD is probably corrupted or broken and has to be replaced with a new one. I know, sometimes, this might be because of bad sectors on my drive but how to fix these errors?

    Could you please help me fix this errors so that i can install windows successfully and do back up my data first?



  105. Christin December 23, 2008 at 8:05 pm

    Hello Ken, thank you so much for your post!! Its great and I made sure to read all the replys to your suggestions as well.

    However, I still have one ITTY BITTY problem… Whenever I use the command promts it will not let me use chkdsk/r or p. It will however use chkdsk. After going through the steps, minus r & p, I succuessfully could start in safe mode. Will not using R or P hender the fix? And once in safe mode… should I close down the computer and restart it successfully or should I just restore to an earlier time.

    Thank you so much, I know this post is over a year old but I found it to be the most help!

    Thank you again!!!

  106. Ken McGuire December 25, 2008 at 10:39 am


    There’s a space between chkdsk and /r or /p

  107. Charlie Campbell January 1, 2009 at 12:23 am

    Every other forum just says “get into boot mode’ or some such, but only you gave precise directions about the F2 key. This enabled me to get around this problem. I THANK you very much for your information; I thought my hard drive had crashed for sure!

  108. Mark January 2, 2009 at 3:26 am

    Does this fix work for Vista machaines?
    My son has a 1501 and the warrenty is out. he called Dell and just like some of the others had mentioned, he was told the HD would need to be replaced.
    He does not have any driver or OS disks that came with the machaine. the HD is partioned and the recovery data is in that partion.
    his problen is that the laptop will boot up to desktop screen and then after a few seconds the BLUE screen pops up, but flickers, making it unreadable.
    it will boot in safe mode just fine with no errors or blue screen, but will not give the option to restore.

    and help would be greatly appreciated.


  109. Vicky January 2, 2009 at 8:20 pm

    Hi Ken,

    I have same issues on my laptop Dell Inspiron 6000, however I do not have the reinstallation CD for XP Home Edition this laptop.

    Can I use the reinstalltion CD for Dell Dimension 2400 for XP Home Edition that is with me? Will there be any problem?


  110. SamJ January 3, 2009 at 10:48 am

    As other comments have proved, your advice is obviously great and seemed perfect for the problem I have. However, after following all the steps perfectly – using the purple disk, putting in commands etc – I still get the blue screen ‘unmountable volume’ screen. The laptop is a dell inspiron 6400.
    I want to be able to thank you too for solving this crisis. Alas, the crisis remains…

  111. Cameron January 3, 2009 at 11:48 pm

    Pls help I get the blue screen saying unmountable boot volume but I have no disks or anything war can I do

  112. Ken McGuire January 4, 2009 at 12:07 pm

    @Cameron – As per the instructions above, you’ll need to get your hands on a copy of the CD if you’re to access the repair tools.

    @SamJ – If you’ve run the steps, try a few other hard disk checks if you can get into windows – schedule a scandisk, defrag etc. Re-run the steps after that.

    @Vicky – You may need to get a copy of the XP Professional CD, not the Home edition CD. It shouldn’t matter what system it shipped with.

    @Mark – Booting into safe mode, you can’t access the recovery information on the second partition? Have you tried booting with the Vista CD in the drive to see if you get access to similar options? I’m not a Vista user myself (now, primarily OSX), I tend to steer clear of anything Vista related having used the Beta release of the OS when it first surfaced.

    @Charlie – You’re more than welcome, hope that helped πŸ™‚

  113. Mark January 5, 2009 at 3:34 am

    Hello Ken
    I tried accessing the tools on the recovery partition which gave me the option to restore the laptop to the manufactures settings. It started the process but then stopped and said there was an error, but did not list what the error was. I noticed there is an auto run.ini file. Do you think if I copied the recovery partition to a CD or a portable drive it would work on reboot, if I change the boot settings?
    I donÒ€ℒt know much about DELL, I have an HP and during setup for the first time I was required to make recovery disks. My son tells me that he does not remember having that option when he first set up his DELL.

  114. hunter January 5, 2009 at 8:26 pm

    hey i tried to get this pc to work dell. u know the error. i follow directions still wont work any suggestions

  115. ghaz January 6, 2009 at 4:35 am

    hi Ken,

    so my dell is also giving me this horrible blue screen at a very very bad time – in b/w backups! I got so excited when I googled the problem n came across your page. Unfortunately, I don’t have the purple cd, but I do have an ultimate boot cd v3.0…I just can’t figure out which tools might be helpful and don’t want to risk erasing my data. any help would be great! thanks!

  116. Luiggi January 7, 2009 at 9:06 pm

    Hi!! well my problem is that i have no volume icon, i have no problem with the sound it wroks fine but i can control my volume in my desktop i check control planel is fine, i check the taskbar its fine i try everything already but nothing is workin also i try to install the audio again and nothing what can i do!!!!

  117. Collin January 8, 2009 at 6:31 am

    Ken you are AMAZING!

  118. Vicky January 8, 2009 at 6:45 pm

    I am so glad I found this forum…but I too have the “unmountable boot volume error” message and I followed all the steps….I pushed r to get fix the error and get to the recovery console. I says “examining disk configuration” and then gives me this message that doesn’t go away…””Examining 305243 MB Disk 0 at ID 0 Bus 0 on iaster….” And it then doesn’t take to the prompts…so I can’t go any further. What do I do to get past this and fix this error? Thanks for your help.

  119. Erin January 10, 2009 at 2:58 am

    I am so happy! In reading your posts, I was able to fix my sons computer with the dreaded blue screen. I couldn’t be happier, I was ready to toss it out!
    You are amazing! Thank you so much for saving the day, I have a very happy boy!

  120. Pingback: People Still Get Blue Screens, Unmountable Volumes : Ken McGuire

  121. colin January 16, 2009 at 7:15 pm

    Ken –

    the dreaded blue screen has appeared on my desktop
    i called my pc man who put his own cd in (as i havnt got xp cd) and after 5 minutes he showed me that my “c” drive had zero mega bites – it recognised all the other drives attached but c drive had nothing to show

    is complete hope gone to try and get back my data????

  122. Happy January 21, 2009 at 4:11 am

    Thank you!!! You r a LIVE Saver! I m going to ditch my laptop for mac now!!!!! THANKS!

  123. Happy January 21, 2009 at 4:13 am

    opps sorry i mean LIFE SAVER! πŸ™‚

  124. jole January 23, 2009 at 3:30 pm

    Majstore ti si CAR!!!
    i am from Serbia, and i just fixed my dell thanks to your advice
    Maestro you are a KING!!!

  125. Rodolpho January 26, 2009 at 9:32 am

    Thank you!

  126. John Saadi January 27, 2009 at 5:01 am

    Hi ken i have a dell inspiron e 1505 and its showing unmountable boot volume problem with a blue screen. i tried to follow your instructions but when i enter the “chkdsk/r” or “chkdsk/p” the system says : “the command is not recognised ….” can you please tell me what should i do now?

  127. Jasmine February 1, 2009 at 4:59 pm

    Ken! Thank you so much for the easy instructions. I turned on my laptop last night and this screen popped up randomly..I didn’t even do anything! I followed your instructions and now everything’s fine. I haven’t even lost anything. You’re a life saver!! Thanks a million!!

  128. Jasmine February 1, 2009 at 5:01 pm

    “John Saadi”,
    you should be entering chkdsk /r with a space in between, same with the other.

  129. Kathy C February 2, 2009 at 1:33 am


    Thank you very much! I had the blue screen of death and looked all over the internet for a solution. Fortunately I had another computer I could use. My Dell Inspiron 1150 looked like it was dead in the water with the unmountable boot volume error. Your suggestions and advice saved the day! No one else told me how to access the dos screen and to change the boot order. Good thing I was able to find my original, still in the package installation cd. Also, when I got to the command list, it too didn’t recoginze the /r, so I just typed “chkdsk” and that worked. It found an error and I proceeded to the boofix command and it successfully overwrote it. I was able to reboot and launch Windows! Many kudos! Guess my next project is to back up everything. (oops, I don’t have it backed up yet?!?!)

  130. John Saadi February 9, 2009 at 3:26 am

    Still it’s not working. I got a new hard drive. But it would be a great help if I could recover some files from my old hard disc.

  131. Mark Wilson February 9, 2009 at 4:19 am

    I too have had this problem with my Dell Dimension. I had fixed the problem by reinstalling windows about a year ago, it crashed again, I fixed it again. Now I have what seem like 1,000 error OFOO:0244 messages on chkdsk. I could create a new boot sector, AGAIN, and reinstall XP AGAIN, but wonder if it’s even worth it if I’ll go through this again in a month.

  132. Marlon February 12, 2009 at 9:56 pm

    Hey ken I have the same problem as everyone else lol the dreaded blue screen and i dnt know what to do. The thing for me is im using an Hp so can the same steps you said b4 wrk for me as well?

  133. Art February 13, 2009 at 4:55 am

    Hello Ken,
    I have tried all the options and everything went well with chkdsk /r, /p .. but when i typed fixboot i got this msg:

    Are you sure you want to create a new bootsector…
    [I typed Y and hit enter]
    The filesystem on the startup partition is unknown
    FIXBOOT is attempting to detect the filesystem type
    The bootsector is corrupt
    FIXBOOT is checking the filesystem type…
    The partition is using the NTFS file system
    FIXBOOT is writing a new boot sector
    The new bootsector was successfully written
    Then I typed ‘exit’ and com restarted. I thought after restart it will be okay but I still have blue screen.
    Please be kind enough to explain where the problem might be.
    Thank you in advance!

  134. Art February 13, 2009 at 5:23 am

    Forgot to mention something… where it says
    1: F:\WINDOWS
    Which Windows installation would you like to log onto
    (To cancel, Press ENTER)

    How come its labeled as F if I know it was C ?

    Please help!

  135. Robert Parker February 13, 2009 at 12:27 pm

    Many thanks for your help.I have managed to clear the blue screen of death.Unfortunaely it keeps returning..do you know why this happens?

  136. Art February 15, 2009 at 9:52 am

    I am still waiting …plaese answer if you can help before I reinstall windows and just lose it all… πŸ™

  137. lorraine February 18, 2009 at 5:05 pm

    well i have the dreaded blue screen with unmountable boot volume and sadly i bought my laptop second hand therefore it doesnt have any boot disks how do i go about fixing it cheaply as im poor as anyone lol

  138. Kurt February 23, 2009 at 7:41 pm


    I wanted to express my appreciation for the information that you provide. I managed to get the ‘Unmountable Boot Volume’ on my Dell E520 at home and I would have been lost without you. Dell said reinstall Windows XP and so did the computer support where I work. I had too many family photos, videos, etc. just to give up. Anyway, I used your advice as a guide and I fixed my problem.

    I learned that I had to be patient while I was fixing the problem. Once I finally got to the ‘recovery console’, I had to reboot and try several times before I got a dos-prompt. I typed chkdsk /r and it just sat there…nothing happened. I left it all night and nothing. The same thing with chkdsk /p. After three days of frustration, I finally tried fixboot c and it worked great, but when I rebooted I got the blue screen again. Then, I tried chkdsk /p and finally it worked. I exited and rebooted and everything is great now.

    So, after rebooting and trying the commands over and over I finally had success. If anyone has this problem of nothing happening after typing a command, then the secret I found is to be persistent and patient….keep rebooting and trying again.

    Thanks again for all your advice.

  139. Dustin February 28, 2009 at 6:52 pm

    You are the man!!! I got the blue screen of death and followed your instructions and was back up in no time. This was on a Dell Precision m65….now, let me go back up the files before i have another scare.

    Thanks Again

  140. Robin Wirth March 3, 2009 at 5:16 am

    You Rock! You saved me! Followed your instructions and it worked.
    Thank you so much for taking the time to share.

  141. Susan March 10, 2009 at 11:28 am

    Add me to your long list of admirers. Saved me much time and agony.

  142. Erica Afeld March 12, 2009 at 8:46 pm

    Thank you sooooo much!! When I called Dell this morning, they told me that I needed a new hard drive. My life is on that hard drive and with your instructions, it worked!!!

    Thanks again!


  143. Maurice March 23, 2009 at 1:06 am

    I Love u man

  144. steve March 29, 2009 at 6:59 pm

    man you are a legiond,thought id lost everything mainly my pics..THANK YOU SO MUCH.. WOW WOW WOW

  145. Richard April 1, 2009 at 12:07 am

    I have a laptop with no floppy disk drive and I don’t have the xp cd. I have another desktop with windows Vista….

    If I have to borrow an xp disc from someone then I’m just going to get a new computer.

  146. jim April 5, 2009 at 3:46 am

    hey ken, help me on this one here. i bought a neww keyboard from dell right??well when i type with email to my friends there. the cursor goes all the way back to the start . isnt strange , and the keyboard is brand neww.checked out the viruses and found a ? exe2bin in the safe mode .what in the heck is an exe2bin virus there?. doenst look like the conflicker worm there.. thanks ..

  147. Steve April 11, 2009 at 11:50 pm

    This article saved my Dell computer. Thank God for the internet and smart people like you.
    Much thanks

  148. Hutch April 13, 2009 at 10:37 pm

    Sir, you are fantastic. Both my daughters belovd Dell inspiton 1501 laptops wre U/S and your clear , easy to follow instructions have saved them (and done no damage to my status in the houshold!)

  149. Zach April 14, 2009 at 1:28 am

    I can’t thank you enough for fixing my computer. I thought I was going to have to get a new one. I’ve got over 20 gigs of precious memory stored on my computer. And with my dad not home at the moment, it would be nearly impossible to fix this hunk of junk I call a comp. Thank you so much.

  150. nicola April 14, 2009 at 9:44 am

    Hey Ken, sorry this is going to sound rather stupid but you when you say type in “R”, do i type in R or “R”?

    Just going through this at the moment and don’t want to do any mistakes:D

  151. nicola April 14, 2009 at 11:04 am

    Thankyou so much, you saved my bacon:D Can i ask what you think will have caused this to happen and is there anyway of avoiding it happening again?

  152. Terrence April 15, 2009 at 2:41 am

    THANK YOU!!!!

    awesome fix, computer sat on my floor for 5 months while everyone told me to piss off or buy a new computer.
    sadfully i did buy a new one but this is a great and easy fix that will really help me.
    thank you very much.

  153. compbroken April 16, 2009 at 5:22 pm

    Ive done all the above including pulling the hardrive but have not ponied it onto another comp yet.. I dont know whats causing this. I done all of the following: pulled cd ROM tested=ok and played CD in another mach, ran xp home {as it has home} disc, downloaded other drivers, bootdisks, XPservice pac3, dell drivers ect. Nothing comes up, but the screen of death. CD wont start {lights up then stops in this mach} I dont have floppy drive, all with the same results Unmountable boot volume. STOP: 0x000000ED {0x8A649E30, 0xC0000006, 0x00000000 0x00000000} reguardless of my out come, I must say thanx you for all the other people you have helped. Its nice to know decent humans are out there helping others.

  154. Tom April 18, 2009 at 1:43 pm

    Hi Ken…I tried the steps you outlined on my Dell Dimension 2400, but it does not appear to have worked. For both the chkdsk /r and /p steps, the process only made it to 25% before indicating there were problems with the disk and returning me to the C> prompt. I wasn’t sure if this was “normal” or not. I did make it to the “fixboot c:” step and did receive a “success” message. However, when I tried to reboot, it just stalls on the Windows Load screen. Is it possible that DELL was right in my case and the HD does need to be replaced?


  155. vigi April 18, 2009 at 3:05 pm

    I tried and have finished successfully the steps mentioned above but again i am getting the fu… blue picture i dont know why..
    Would you be so kind and give me some more suggestions..

    Thank you very much.

  156. Bill DenHertog April 21, 2009 at 11:13 pm

    Yes, I did get this infamous blue screen after installing some new software.And I kept getting the same screen whatever I tried. My last resort was google with “unmountable boot …” and MY FIRST CHOICE was your (this) website. All your instructions worked like a charm!! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!

    And it might make you feel good to realize that with my nearly 82 years of age your help made me still feel I’m not too old yet for all this stuff. Thank you again!
    (young man!)

  157. JMG April 23, 2009 at 8:37 pm

    Ken, thanks soooo much for you help.. I thought I lost everything.


  158. Mariah May 1, 2009 at 4:11 am

    ok so one day my computer was running fine and then it just shut down on me and the blue screen pops up. cant get into it on safe mode. dont have any of the discs that came with it at hand, i can kinda get around computers, but i really need step by step instructions. i have a lot of music and photos on it and i’d rather not have to lose all of it but if necessary then i dont mind. dont have the money to have someone else fix it and the screen pops up saying “unmountable_boot_volume” i have no clue what that means

  159. Craig May 4, 2009 at 12:19 am

    Have Vista – 2 month old laptop – compaq unmountable_boot_volume error message??? Tried rebooting and following instructions under error message – nothing is working. Just keep getting the same error message. The new compaq does not come with recovery cd – I remember the sales person stating you just go online now to download everything. If my computer wont start windows – how can I go online with it to download anything… Please help – Thanks in advance! Craig

  160. Patrick May 4, 2009 at 8:24 pm

    thats why it didn’t work i forgot the “c:” after “fixboot”

  161. Rose Royalty May 7, 2009 at 2:14 am

    I’m sure you are used to hearing this, but you are a genius! Thank you being such a great help, not only to me, but to all the other folks who thought their computers were lost. MMMWAH!!! and thanks again.

  162. donald May 18, 2009 at 5:49 am

    does anyone know where i can get the dell re boot cd from cuzz i dont have mines anymore its been misplaced….

  163. Londonne May 19, 2009 at 10:33 pm

    Hi Ken or anyone else that can help me!!!!!!!!!!

    I have the same problem, but I have the Dell Inspiron 1501 with Windows Vista installed. What do I do to avoid taking it in for repair and a new hard drive?

    I tried to follow the same steps as above, but they did not work as they were for the Windows XP disc!!

    Please help me out here!!!!!!!!!!! I have my entire life on that laptop! Pics, work, music, etc.!!!!!

    Thanks to all who respond! I am grateful!!!!!


  164. Alex Poulin May 26, 2009 at 7:13 pm

    Ken. I am begging for your help here. I got this error “unmountable boot volume”. I followed your instructions to a tee and still got the same error. I was successful with each step and saw all the choices and messages that you indicated. I have a Dell Inspiron E1705.

    I’d really appreciate your help. If you have any other suggestions, please let me know. I ran the diagnostic and the hard drive appears to be fine.

    Thanks again!

    Alex Poulin

  165. Ian May 30, 2009 at 2:14 am

    I did all the steps as dictated above and i still keep getting the “gorgeous blue screen”. My Bios has nothing to do with it. *Sigh* guess I just have to reinstall.
    me right b4 reinstall: T_T
    Me right after when i realize what I lost: //_T (emo)

  166. lorna blake May 31, 2009 at 12:51 pm

    i have an xp home edition cd.

    i booted my laptop from the cd but before it got to the menu where you press ‘r’ it went back to the blue screen!

    any suggestions would be greatful!


  167. Ray June 3, 2009 at 2:00 pm

    another success story!!! thanks

  168. Lidia Caraveo June 8, 2009 at 4:47 pm

    Hi Ken! I got the unmounted boot volume error in my Inspiron E1405. I do not have any recovery CD, the way I’d formatted it before is by pressing ctrl+F11 but this doesn’t work now.

    Anything I try to do gives me back to the blue screen. what can I do?


  169. cristi June 13, 2009 at 7:28 pm

    I’m 10 years old I googled my error code from my blue screen and found your post.
    I had to leave off the “/r” and it worked.

    Thankfully my dad saved the original disk, you saved my computer.



  170. Ken McGuire June 15, 2009 at 8:49 am

    Hey Cristi,

    You’re welcome.

    @Lidia without the recovery CD it falls out of the steps above.

  171. Pat June 16, 2009 at 3:11 am

    My computer has 4 partitions – i tried this with c: and it didn’t work; so now working on d: then e:; I also have a ? partition, which has 55MB used – once I’ve tried this on all partitions I will try to get my computer running…fingers crossed!

  172. Pat June 16, 2009 at 3:15 am

    Didn’t work; guess Dell is it! Darn it!

  173. Simon Childs June 20, 2009 at 5:58 am

    Ken. I love you. you have saved my life! thank you!

  174. Christina June 27, 2009 at 1:15 am

    I have tried everything you have said, i even made my cd drive the number 1 to be read on boot up and yet i still get no options to use this cd. WHAT DO I DO?!?!

  175. James Connolly June 29, 2009 at 7:21 pm

    This info is invaluable.
    I tried to help my brother by taking the back off of his Alienware laptop to clean out the cooling fans because they were clogged with dust and causing it to overheat and crash.On reasembling,this very message came up and i was thinking oh sh*t ive screwed it up for him.But on following these instructions its now back to normal and running much cooler!

    Thankyou so much,its a life saver.

  176. Dennis July 1, 2009 at 12:45 pm

    Great job Ken. This is the most info I have seen anywhere on this topic. I have an inspiron 6000 and ran through the steps below (twice) and still get the same unmountable boot volume error. Anyone have any ideas what to do next?
    Ran chkdsk /r
    Ran chkdsk /p
    ran fixboot c:
    ran full diagnostics (received multiple error messages)

  177. Peete30 July 7, 2009 at 4:24 pm

    I have a Dell Dimnesion 2400 and I am getting the blue screen. I do not have the XP cd so what do I do.

  178. Doc July 9, 2009 at 3:03 pm

    I’m getting the same issue. I’m using a 9 in 1 copy of xp and when I type chkdsk /r it tells me it can not locate it in the startup directory or cd. Is it because I’m using the 9 in 1 os disk?

  179. Danger Dan July 13, 2009 at 5:33 pm

    If I may concurr with others who cannot heap enough praise on you: thank you. Blue screen of death, thought I would have to sit on the phone with Dell support but after running diagnostics for two weeks and the such and then stumbling upon your site…done. Thank you. I think I may want to look into backup memory for my photos and iTunes.

    Thank you.

  180. courtney July 15, 2009 at 1:09 am

    okay, ken….
    maybe possibly, you could help me..?
    i have a dell desktop computer that shows the blue unmountable_boot_volume screen.

    …i put in a dell quick setup disc (which is probably the wrong one, but the only one i have. it says E 771a Color Monitor. it contains the following files: INF, ICM, HTML, CAT.) and nothing happened. i don’t know a whole lot about computers so i thought i’d better not try to mess with anything. i was wondering if there was a way to fix my computer without losing hundreds of dollars in itunes files??? hopefully so….

    the computer & disk is from 2000 or 2001, so i don’t know if you could help me? please try!


  181. Glenn July 20, 2009 at 4:20 pm

    Ken, Thanks so much for your simple, straightfoward solution. I’ve reformatted pc’s a number of times, and have never run across this type of blue screen error before: caused by a power outage (circuit breaker tripped in the middle of a deleting files from a folder, transfer, etc.from a bad electric cord on a lamp). Once I booted from the install disk, and in the recovery module c: prompt, the DOS run commands you provided did the trick. Many thanks Ken!- My daughters’ pics and music files have dodged a bullet!

    lesson learned: GET AN EXTERNAL HD…

  182. Chow July 23, 2009 at 9:37 pm

    You’re STAR !!!!!
    It works.
    My Dell Inspiron 700m is alive again.
    Many thanks.

  183. marie July 25, 2009 at 8:10 am

    i cannot fix the volume control on my dell inspiron 1501.i cannot hear any sounds if i am watching a movie or music videos on you tube

  184. rusma July 25, 2009 at 9:07 am

    hi everyone there, please help me…

    i also got a “blue-message error” with Unmountable Boot Volume, Technical info: *** STOP: 0x000000ED (cx84F5AE30, 0xC0000015, 0x00000000, 0x00000000). my computer wont start and it keeps of shutting down.

    i dont have an XP CD with me and my laptop is Sony Vaio, PCG-K23. iv tried using the safe mode but it wont work. can you please help me with this problem??? what are the steps that im gonna do???

    please ken, help me,.i really need my computer so badly…thanks a lot..


  185. Mark July 31, 2009 at 9:13 am

    who the man? hopefully ken the man. please help! as im trying to perform the ckkdsk it stops at 50% = “one or more unrecoverable items”. damn these computers. (btw dell latitude d520)

    any help very much appreciated,


  186. Mark July 31, 2009 at 10:20 am

    think im sorted now ken after 3 hours! thanks very much for the info – very useful. have to upgrade my anti virus now πŸ™‚ mark

  187. Raist420 August 5, 2009 at 7:21 am

    Thanks very much the instructions you posted worked like a charm and i didn’t have the oem disc just a windows xp pro standalone worked just like you said it would!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  188. Jenna August 6, 2009 at 9:14 pm

    Ok I got the blue screen today. I have a Dell Latittude CPx. I have WIndows XP Professional. But I don’t have any disk. Not one from Dell or Windows. Is there anything I can do? I need my laptop.

  189. Missy August 13, 2009 at 4:38 am

    Okay.. cousin gave me Dell Latitude c810.. no discs.. no books of any kind.. is there anyway I can copy the recovery files from my HP desktop, with xp os to a flash drive and use that to fix this thing???

  190. Fred1morocho August 14, 2009 at 1:24 pm

    Plz help I have tried step by step your instructions however no luck yet. I changed the BIOS. Then r at the recovery console pressed 1 then the comamds everything seems to work but when I restart the computer same blue screen. Any other suggestions? Any one. By the way I have windows xp dimension E310

  191. Paul David Field August 21, 2009 at 7:52 am

    Hello there ken, I have tried your method.. down to the little details.. I have used the disk (purple win XP disk) I have made sure my Bios is all in check with my cd loading first.. I ran the Chkdsk /r, /p, and fixboot… During however, I was only able to run the /p and fixboot.. Every time I run /r It freezes at 50%… everytime.. I have no idea what to do.. And The fixboot said it worked however I still reach this blue screen… I really need help.. from anyone who could help me… I am using the Dell Latitude D 520 version.. (an ancient piecer..) I cannot afford to pay dell.. I am low on funds atm and a quick home fix is all I am asking for… Thank you in advance…

    Sincerely Paul david..

  192. AC ThisNewz September 3, 2009 at 6:28 am

    Great suggestion – thought my disk had died but this worked like a charm!

    Paul David Field – chkdsk /r took 3 hours on my small hard drive – I would let it run for at least that long, even if it seems frozen.

    Missy, Jenny, others with no disks – you might find a local computer ship in the yellow pages, then just take your computer in there and ask them to use one of their disks for half an hour. Tell them you just need to get into the recovery panel, and won’t be re-installing the OS. Maybe give them $5 or $10…

  193. jack goodyear September 7, 2009 at 4:49 pm

    i am trying to attempt this with a windows xp service pack 2. is this incorrect because its not working and is the only windows disk i can find, i cant find the dell one.

  194. Yvonne September 11, 2009 at 3:45 pm

    I am having thios blue screen. My problem is i dont have a “puple Dsik. what are my options. Blue screen I tried safe mode and all. not working. h=Help

  195. Morris September 17, 2009 at 8:24 pm


    I’ve tried everything you’ve said to do with no luck at getting rid of this error message. I also tried chkdsk /f and it states that the parametter is not valid… It will not boot up with the recovery cd

  196. MANDY September 19, 2009 at 4:41 pm

    I literally jumped for joy when this worked!! THANK YOU SO MUCH! YOU ROCK!

  197. Charles September 20, 2009 at 3:16 am

    I followed all of the steps and it looked like it was working fine, when the computer restarted, I got the same error message. Any other suggestions?


  198. drew September 27, 2009 at 11:28 pm

    it won’t let me type “chkdsk /r”. it will only let me type one letter at a time. What do i do?

  199. RC September 28, 2009 at 4:03 am

    Ken – It worked like a magic on my Dell Desktop !!! At first I thought my hard drive crashed. Then I found your fix and it’s working great now.


  200. leigh October 5, 2009 at 5:23 pm

    Hi Ken, Daughter has same problem but she hasn’t got a cd drive (latitude c400) Any ideas?

  201. Liz October 15, 2009 at 10:23 am

    Ken, thank you sooooo much!! This worked beautifully!! Now, I can get to work and make some money!!

  202. Claire Bilston October 16, 2009 at 3:55 am

    I wish it worked!! I followed the steps, the system told me that it had re-written 1 bad sector, and still got the blue screen after the xp screen πŸ™ I do design for my company on that pc, needless to say that I am on my MAC now!! πŸ˜› Any ideas? Dell Dimension 4700…. grr

  203. Lynn October 16, 2009 at 5:23 pm

    Thank you! I returned from vacation and turned on the old PC only to be confronted with “the message!!”. I have never had this happen before and wonder if it is due to the new Windows 7 appearing soon. Anyway, thanks to your helpful advice, all is well. After placing the CD in the drive and starting the computer, I had to quickly select F12 for the boot menu, then arrow up as you suggested in order for the PC to boot from the CD drive first. My computer would only allow the chkdsk command ( no /r). Within seconds I received a message that everything appeared to working normally with my AUDIO files, but that I could run the chkdsk command with a /p if I wanted them checked. I typed exit instead and the computer began to restart itself instantly. Just as everything was up and running, we had a short power outage!!! grrrr I was afraid everything would have to be re-done, but thankfully, it’s still working. This “fix” literally took seconds, not minutes. My daughter had recently been downloading from I-Tunes, so I wonder if that had something to do with the “audio files” message and the whole mess?? Who knows; just thankful for the info and a quick fix. Thanks again.

  204. Jesse wright October 18, 2009 at 8:51 pm

    When I get to screen that says boot from cd , it says windows ;F or windows;C ?? What now

  205. Tracee October 19, 2009 at 2:37 am

    I have tried the instructions above, and I did get to the recovery, but the command will not work. When I put in “chkdsk” space /r, i recieve the message. “This specified drive is not valid, or there is no disk in the drive”. What am I to do. I really need my computer and all of the data on it. Please help. I have visited other sites, and they all give the same instructions, (yours is more plainly spoken). One however gave an example of the prompt. My prompt does not look like it, My prompt looks like such “c:\>” not as the other site showed “C:/ >” is there a problem? HELP!!!

  206. Tami October 23, 2009 at 2:28 am

    Please help….. unmountable boot volume.. I can get all the way to the recovery console.. but then it stops.. it says type exit to quit the recovery cnsole and restart the computer.. It does not give me any prompt al all to type anything…. What am I doing wrong?

  207. Sofia November 2, 2009 at 3:41 am

    Thank you so very much! I sincerely thought we would have to buy a new laptop.

  208. kevin November 14, 2009 at 10:17 pm

    Hi Ken,

    Help! We got to the fixboot part and put in Y to write a new bootsector and then when pushing enter the message is “Fixbboot cannot open the partition.” Any advice is much appreciated.

    Thank you,


  209. John November 21, 2009 at 4:46 pm


    Through these simple instructions you saved all of my family’s pix from 2002 until now which includes almost every picture of my kids who are now ages 5 and 6. I was about to throw the computer on the junk heap. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  210. Ken McGuire November 26, 2009 at 11:20 am


    No problem at all, you’ve very welcome. Now you’ve the fun task of getting everything backed up πŸ™‚

  211. Pismopk November 29, 2009 at 10:42 pm

    Great fix!!!
    I had a whole house power failure right after I deleted 2 programs and added 1 which required a reboot. to make the install complete. The Reboot after power failure produced the unmountable boot volume deraded blue screen. Bios also reported a keyboard failure. Not sure why that but not the problem. I have a Dell desk top running on win xp pro. I needed to go all the way thru the fixboot c: as the boot was corrupted. Plan a while for the fix!!!!! to work its way thru. Mine lasted all the way thru the Colts /Texans game and into half of the Charger/Chiefs game 4 plus hours to get there. I kept getting to the 75% complete and it would go back to 50% and continue. it did this 3 times. Back in time to see my fantasy football team lose πŸ™

  212. Jenny December 6, 2009 at 7:35 pm

    Thank you for leaving this posted…It worked great.. no more blue screen. I think my blue screen was caused by plugging the wrong usb cable into the wrong device. Does this problem mean that my hard drive was damaged, and is going to go again soon? Thank you again…you saved my computer

  213. Amanda December 7, 2009 at 9:32 pm

    Thanks Ken! Your step by step instructions saved the day. Add my name to the list of admirers!

  214. Paula December 9, 2009 at 4:00 am

    Hi Ken,
    Do you wear your pants outside your trousers?? If not, then I think you should because then you would look like the SUPER HERO you are!!
    Totally saved my sanity and possibly my life, when while trying to back up my sisters files to an external hard drive it all went a bit pete tong!
    She had 3500 pics, 2700 tunes plus all her sage accounts data.
    Without your site we would have been up the creek without a paddle!
    Keep up the great work and have a great xmas.
    X X

  215. Lisa December 9, 2009 at 1:22 pm

    Ken I have followed your instructions step by step, and all seems to have worked but after typing exit command the blue screen is still there. I have a DELL 3100 and Windows XP Home edition, i have also set the CD driver to the first sequence for the boot sequence. I do all of this with the CD still in the driver. Any other suggestions?

  216. Lisa December 9, 2009 at 1:55 pm

    Something else I forgot to mention. After pressing “R” on the Recovery Console i receive a prompt of F: /MININT which makes me wonder if this is a bigger problem.

  217. Eve December 20, 2009 at 12:56 am

    I too am the victim of the blue screen with the words unmountable_boot that pops up. I have tried everything, my pc didn’t come with a recovery cd, so I tried hitting the ctrl+f11 to bring up the symnated ghost program, but still nothing happens, I tried all the different options it offered, but stil nada!…….How can i get my pc back working? I have all my grandkids pics on there from the time the first one was born down to the fourth one…….please please please help me if you can…… I have run out of ideas. I have a dell dimension e310 desktop with windows xp…..

  218. Shannon December 27, 2009 at 12:21 am

    Anyone know what to do when the windows screen comes up and asks for the ADMINISTRATOR CODE? YIKES! dONT HAVE ONE! πŸ™

  219. GiGi December 29, 2009 at 10:50 am

    Shannon – try without entering an Administrator code. Worked for me.

  220. Len Chermack January 4, 2010 at 3:33 am


    Configuration on the Dell Dimension 4700 which is confured with a DVD and CD drive (no floppy). WDC WD800JD-75JNAO (I assume Western Digital 8gb hard drive

    Here is what happens When the system starts it takes me to logon /password, I enter it, it looks to start (login sequence)paints the windows background screen and the says logging off. So I figure I might have a virus or other problem.

    1) I run the the last successful windows setup option, it does the same tthing login and then log off.
    2)I try to use the XP Home edition CD to se if I can get in. It fails to see CD I get the F1 reboot or hit F12 option.
    3) I select the partition drive which is the diagnostics test and no command prompt. So I run the test, I get error code 0F00:0244 on the read test on about 7 message blocks

    On the Verify test I get error code 0F00:1A44 about 12 message blocks.

    What I have noticed is no where can I find a command line to run chkdsk.
    There seems to be no way around this start up and login loop where it attemps to log in then says logging off on both users

    F2 on start up and checked to see that the CD loads first. (it cannot read the CD)To get the XP Home CD to load;

    Am I screwed or is there a way to recover XP and the data?

  221. Shannon January 5, 2010 at 7:54 pm

    it ask for a admin code and a password, so what would I do with that?

  222. Shannon January 5, 2010 at 7:54 pm

    it ask for a admin code and a password, so what would I do with that?

  223. Roy January 6, 2010 at 7:59 pm

    Thanks Ken. I followed your instructions step by step and everything worked just perfectly. Everyone that i had spoken to told me my hard drive was toast. But that wasnt the case after i found your fix for the unmountable boot volume. You are a genius!

  224. cj January 7, 2010 at 6:18 am

    i have a dell pc i purchased two years ago(well three now)havents used it much actualy its been in storage,how can i get a disk to try your method,as i dont remember ever having one and if so its lost somewhere in my storage rental.can u lend me a hand?thanks,

  225. Ken McGuire January 7, 2010 at 12:29 pm

    @Roy – You’re very welcome

    @CJ – Best bet is to ask anyone you know who has an XP-based PC could you borrow a disk. You wouldn’t need license keys or anything to try the method outlined above, it’s only to access the repair and recovery side of things so any XP pro or XP SP2 disc should be ok.

  226. Lisa January 7, 2010 at 1:49 pm

    Ken Still got the same problem even though I have followed your instructions step by step, ( or at least I think I have) and all seems to have worked but after typing exit command the blue screen is still there. The only difference is that after pressing Ò€œRÒ€ on the Recovery Console i receive a prompt of F: /MININT. Do I need to do something different to change this to the C: ??

  227. Lisa January 7, 2010 at 1:50 pm

    Still got the same problem of the blue screen even though I have followed your instructions step by step, ( or at least I think I have) and all seems to have worked but after typing exit command the blue screen is still there. The only difference is that after pressing Ò€œRÒ€ on the Recovery Console i receive a prompt of F: /MININT. Do I need to do something different to change this to the C: ??

  228. Deborah Whelan January 8, 2010 at 1:41 pm

    Just doing a new year clean out of the desk where the computer is and moved it around a little, My two year old helping ( bad move) her decided to switch off the power at the socket whilst it was setting up. A dell Dimension 9200. Have your blue screen , have done what it told me on the screen, but just reverts to the same screen again. Is it built in so Dell can make some money out of us??? Will try and borrow a disc and do as you say. All my years accounts for work are on it. Help.
    Will let you know how I get on.

  229. Ken McGuire January 8, 2010 at 8:01 pm

    @Deborah Best of luck πŸ™‚

  230. Christine Lanegan January 13, 2010 at 1:50 am

    Hi Ken, Thanks for the help on this site. Because of you I have been able to figure out how to make my reboot disk work by accessing the set up, and I have typed in the chkdsk /r and p but it stops about midway and tell me “The volume appears to contain one or more unrecoverable problems” Any advice for that? Thanks! Christine

  231. Andy January 21, 2010 at 8:52 am

    Your a life saver!!!
    After getting the blue screen I thought I’d lost everything and was either looking at formatting & re-installing windows, a new HDD or worse a new laptop!!!!
    I owe you a few beers to say the least!

    Many thanks, Andy.

  232. natalie January 22, 2010 at 11:09 am

    Hi Ken

    I have just had this problem. I have a netbook with no disc drive so how do i fix this? Does anyone know?

  233. natalie January 22, 2010 at 3:13 pm

    after taking my netbook into a local pc shop. I have been advised it is a hardware issue that only dell can repair. The last thing i want to do is use dells repair service. Any other suggestions?

  234. Ken McGuire January 22, 2010 at 4:56 pm

    @Natalie If it’s a hardware issue and you reckon you could borrow a disc from someone to try the steps above, there’s certainly no harm in it. You’ve nothing to lose and won’t have had to deal with their repair service, yet, at least.

  235. Ken McGuire January 22, 2010 at 4:56 pm

    Aha… just saw the point about having no disc drive. I don’t suppose then you’d also know someone who would have an external USB cd drive that you could hook up to the netbook?

  236. natalie January 23, 2010 at 7:42 am

    ken no i don`t know anyone who has an external usb cd drive. Now i bet my best option would be to contact dell? I know after this i will not be having a dell computer ever again. I really dont want to sit hours on the phone to them then have to wait for them collect it and repair it. I have got all these disks in the box that u mention just no disk drive. If it is a hardware fault can this be repaired wihtout sending it to dell?

  237. Darryl Holmes January 26, 2010 at 4:11 pm

    Hi Ken… same problems as above i run the “chkdsk /r” after 25% completed i get “The volume appears to contain one or more unrecoverable problems” then run the “chkdsk /p” and the same message. Then run the “fixboot c:” and get “Fixboot cannot open the partition” any help would be much appreciated thanks.

  238. Gwen January 29, 2010 at 4:47 am

    I turned my computer “Dell Inspirion 6000” off one night and back on the next day to the Unmountable_boot_volume. I’ve tried the fixes as near as I can. chkdsk/r – it tell me’s its not a valid command to type HELP for the list. CHKDSK is there so, I put that in. Then try the R… nothing. Nothing is working… any advise (the Windows XP is in the drive, and it will start come up, I just cannot get past the few few steps… Any advise (except) stay with the Mac would be helpful since the mac is my daughers.


    Gwen Kich

  239. Brian February 2, 2010 at 3:31 am

    Hi – I actually have a Dell Dimension Desktop C521 running XP Home, and am having same issues as the laptops described thoughout the posts here. So figured it would be worth a try to ask for help I, however, seem to be having a slightly more severe issue(?) I ran chkdsk /r successfully – it took about 30 minutes to run and found / fixed one or more errors on volume. Then ran chkdsk /p successfully and fixboot c: and EXITed without problem. Upon reboot, the failure to reboot happens again and PC goes back to main screen for SAFE MODE, SAFE Mode with Networking, etc. Interestingly, I was able to hook the SATA drive up as a slave drive to another PC and get most of the files, but I still need a few that were encrypted and would need to reboot machine. Any thoughts on if this is a bigger issue than it seems? Thanks

  240. Ken McGuire February 2, 2010 at 12:51 pm

    @Brian – Have you tried to repair the installation of XP on the drive at all? Interesting that it’s reading as a slave, could be faulty boot sector altogether? Hard to call.

  241. Brian February 3, 2010 at 2:18 am

    Hi Ken, thanks for the suggestion regarding the repair install. This is a logical next step, however, when I attempted to execute a repair install by going through the Bootable CD process, that option is not available. After agreeing to license terms the XP Home setup states “The following list shows the existing partitions and unpartitioned space on this computer…” I seem to have a couple partitions a “-;” [FAT]. a “C:’ , a “E:” :, and a small unpartitioned space of 8 MB. I quit out at this stage because I was unsure of what to do next and didn’t want to erase any files. Perhpas this is the right direction but more adjustments must be made? Thanks again.

  242. Brian February 6, 2010 at 3:04 pm

    Update for everyone out there….I discovered that the OEM copy of Windows XP that I had did not have the REPAIR option available on it. I reached out to a friend who had an old copy of Windows XP and used that to REPAIR my Windows file. It worked! The only trick is that I had to use his Windows key for that version of the OS, which luckily was not in use for him.

  243. Kent February 7, 2010 at 2:19 pm

    Hi Ken, thanks for starting the thread, working through it now, Dell Inspiron E1705. Got the computer boot sector repaired, the laptop restarted and is now going through the overdue disk maintenence. Cheers!

  244. mark February 14, 2010 at 7:35 pm

    many thanks,
    worked for me when others were saying it needed new hardrive

  245. Milly February 17, 2010 at 11:07 am

    okay i have a dilemma, the letter r has fallen off my keypad and i cant type it HELP!

  246. Milly February 17, 2010 at 11:41 am

    i’ve got the key working but now it says that the command is not recognised when i try and type the command in?

  247. Milly February 17, 2010 at 11:51 am

    never mind i was just being a dumboo and forgetting to put a space before /r
    thanks for the help x

  248. Rene February 18, 2010 at 5:04 pm

    Hey Ken, First off, brilliant work.. thank you for all the help you provide in a this crippling market for quality advice. I see you’ve been on this for some years now, and I’m sure you’ve mention a fix for my problem but I thought my problem is’nt quite specific to the advice you may have mentioned above. If it is, please direct me to the reference, and I’ll take it from there.

    Dell Dimension 3100

    XP Professional



    If this sit the first time you’ve seen this stop error screen…..

    …check to make sure and new hardware or software is properly… installed hardware or software. Disable IOS memory options…Select Advanced Startup Options, and then select Safe Mode…

    0x000000ED (0x8A678900, 0xc0000006, 0x00000000, 0x00000000)


    All I have is a XP Pro Service Pack 2 Disk.. No CD’s that came with this computer either.

    Any Advice?

  249. Ken McGuire February 19, 2010 at 10:25 am

    Hi Rene,

    Have you tried the above steps using the XPSP2 disc? Is the disc XP Pro with SP2 included, or just the service pack only?


  250. Jim B. February 24, 2010 at 6:54 am

    Hi Ken.

    Looks like you have been able to help a lot of people over the last several years. I have the unmountable_boot_volume error and have been working on it for a couple hours. I have the reinstallation CD and have set it to boot from the CD-ROM drive and still get the blue screen. The green light on the CD drive lights up for a few seconds then goes dark, and it does not sound like the drive is attempting to read the disc. I have pressed F12 to get the boot menu and when I select CD-ROM it says “Selected boot device not available.” I have made sure it is set to “On” in the BIOS menu. The CD drive has been working just fine. Any suggestions? Thanks either way.

  251. sandy March 1, 2010 at 11:26 pm

    If I recover using the windows xp disc. will I lose my data already on computer?

  252. Robert March 9, 2010 at 10:59 pm

    Hello All.
    I have a Dell D630 with the dreaded Unmountable Boot Volume Error. In following the steps detailed above to correct the Boot Volume Error, my computer powers off @ random. I will get %50 through the first check, if I’m Lucky, then the Computer shuts down. There is plenty of power. Now it seems to just shut off @ any given point. Does this sound like something that is repairable?

    Before this came about I was having “split screen” and other video related errors. I sent the laptop off to be repaired, and upon its return I got the blue screen. The video was fine for a while, but in the process of “repairing” my computer I am having more split screen errors.

    I was rather pleased with my first dell, but considering all the issues this one is having….
    I may have to give up on the D630, and possibly Dell altogether. Many Thanx

  253. Kent March 11, 2010 at 2:36 pm

    For anyone with this problem, if you successfully regain access to your windows install following this method (i did, it worked great) FIRST PRIORITY IS TO BACK UP YOUR DATA IMMEDIATELY. there is always the possibility of heavier hard drive issues lurking in the near future. (for me it was only 9 days later, and then Kaboom!) no more hard drive. Whatsoever. Zilch. Warranty replacement, and no chance to get the data off (the hard drive was so internally screwed that it could not even be seen anymore by windows, bios, or via external connections) BACK UP YOUR DATA!!! and Good Luck! πŸ™‚

  254. Bill S March 21, 2010 at 2:09 am

    You are a god. Thanks for posting such perfect instructions.

  255. Angie March 24, 2010 at 4:37 am

    I’ve been trying to use the reinstall CD (purple) but it says I don’t have a hard drive. I have a SATA disk msg: Block 9617272 Uncorrectable data error. Is my hard drive toast?

  256. darren April 4, 2010 at 3:49 pm

    I would just like to say a big thankyou, we have had no end of trouble with dell but our inspiron is now working again.
    well done on a post that works

  257. Adam Williams (on behalf of my wife, Lisa) April 6, 2010 at 4:56 am

    I’ll be uncharacteristically brief:
    Your instructions following “Reinstall? No sirree!” were perfect.
    You have helped immeasurably, and we are very grateful.
    Thank you, Thank you.
    Adam Williams
    Fountain Valley, CA

  258. Pixi April 17, 2010 at 12:03 am

    Hi! Just wanted to say thanks a ton for this, it worked like a charm. I was dreading calling Dell since I’ve had awful luck with their customer service in the past so this was a life saver! <3

  259. Atlandy April 19, 2010 at 7:20 pm

    Actually after 2 days of using the library computer (ugh) I found this site! Everything above is great however, I too get the same error message, but for some reason, it is not loading up the disc upon restart. I have changed the options allowing the cd-rom to be first accessed, but I think my CD-rom is fried (I have had issues with it before the crash). Isn’t there a way to download somehing to a USB and use that?

  260. Ken McGuire April 20, 2010 at 12:29 pm


    There are sites that provide the recover console on its own as a downloadable, though I don’t have it here myself. It comes as an ISO file (CD image) that you would need to open on the desktop, applications like WinRAR come in handy for that.

    Once you’ve the recovery console, you could look at creating a bootable USB disk (using a USB key) but that’s a whole other tutorial, one I don’t have experience of myself for the Windows XP issues.

  261. Atlandy April 20, 2010 at 8:45 pm

    Thanks for the help. I actually got reinstall disk to work using the 2nd disk drive (slave drive), disabling the main cdrom and telling it to boot from the slave drive. I ran all the above chkdsk and fixboot stuff, and got back to windows! However, my computer runs as slow as a C64 now. It takes about 20 minutes to even boot up. Any sugguestions?

  262. L May 1, 2010 at 3:58 pm

    Thank you so much for putting this fix up! My computer was suffering from two issues (although I didn’t know it to begin with). First I had a iastor.sys error (arg!) which I managed to fix with help from people on a free tech support website (yay!) and then I had this as a new error popping up (bwfah?!). The people at the tech support website didn’t know how to fix the new problem, so I was all concerned that I was going to loose the data I hadn’t backed up yet (I had most of my important data backed up, but I had some stuff I had done in the last day or two that I hadn’t backed up, plus some not-important-but-I-still-would-like-to-retrieve it stuff I hadn’t backed up). This page is wonderful!

  263. shane nelligan May 3, 2010 at 9:42 pm

    thank you sooooooooo much. wish i could buy you a beer and shake your hand, i was skeptical, but it worked and I lost no info, thanks again

  264. Mike May 13, 2010 at 4:00 am


    Thanks bigtime! Worked like a charm!
    Thanks again!

  265. Sandy Williams May 24, 2010 at 2:38 am

    OMG Your instructions are spot on!! I thought we would have to buy our teenage son a “new” computer…Thanks a million..

    And for folks that do NOT have the Windows XP CD nor the Recovery CD (we had neither)..You can purchase MY recovery cd that I made on Ebay soon…

    This was so simple…

    Again, thanks a million..

  266. Kenny May 24, 2010 at 5:36 pm

    hey ken, i’m using a friends notebook, a Dell Inspiron mini 10, with no CD-Rom, I seen where you told someone that they would need an external CD drive but I was wondering if that is the only option, is it possible to hook a usb cable from the notebook to my home computer to fix it, i’m getting the unmountable boot volume screen by the way.

  267. leslie June 1, 2010 at 6:27 pm

    I have the same error message but I have a dell dimension 4600 desktop. When I put the install disk in, I can’t find a way to boot from it. I can get to the F2 menu but that’s it. Is there any way anyone can tell me what I’m doing wrong??

  268. tama June 2, 2010 at 3:06 am

    hi ken.

    would you happen to be able to help me on this one? its been almost 2 years since i’ve been able to use my HP pavilion desktop….my wife mainly used it for emails and surfing the web but somehow either she or one of my kids downloaded something that will not allow us to connect to the internet…..

    it kept going to the dealio.srch page and says that we have connectivity but it will not allow either the IE or Firefox/Mozilla browser access the internet. Have tried cleaning as much off of it by downloading cleaners onto a flash drive then installing it but when it says to update the software from the internet it goes nowhere….i have too much info on the hard drive we do not want to lose…the computer runs great other than it will not connect to the internet ……

    Superantivirusware, AVG, and others have not worked …..paid some IT guy from our local pennysaver $75 and he couldn’t figure it out….I’m dumbfounded

    please help or give me some insight

    thank you.

  269. J.D. Barton June 10, 2010 at 3:35 pm

    Unmountable – boot – volume What a crock! Called dell 6 times and got some female Haji evertime who must of had the micophone in her shoe. I could not hear them and kept calling back for more of the same. Finally called Dell in Austin went thru their menu and when I finally got a human I said Tech Support . I got someone from this hemispear at least who was one a computer screnn reading to me what to do. I finally cound not get to R to take for the recovery but I kept trying and trying after mutipule restarts it finally took. Typed in the chkdsk/r and it did not work then typed chkdsk /r with a space between the k and the forward slant and away it went. Were at 63% completed right now . Looks like all will be well.

    Thanks man you rock!


  270. Cely June 14, 2010 at 5:08 pm

    Hi Ken, need your help. We have a Dell Dimension 8400. We got the Blue Screen. I was able to find the Symptom Tree and running the tests right now. I ran the tests for System Locks Up, Windows Blue Screen, Hard Drive Error. I get the same read test error codes: 0F00:0244 Msg Block 21577128 Uncorrectable Data Error; Error Code 0F00:1A44 for VerifyTest.

    Is this fixable? HELP PLEASE. THANK YOU.

  271. tryan July 3, 2010 at 10:04 am

    your brill followed you instructions to the letter and my unbootable amount is now bootable again thanks lap top working great thanks

  272. Eileen July 22, 2010 at 1:35 am

    My dell lap top is saying NTLDR is missing do you know how to fix this??
    Thanks for any help ,

  273. Mel August 4, 2010 at 11:52 pm

    Thank you so much, this really helped me. I thought there was no hope & my pc was doomed. You really explained things really well, especially when referring back to a dell website for instructions on how to get the cdrom working. Because the dell website shows the different screens that could appear on our pc’s & then we just follow instructions from there. Thankyou times a trillion.
    God bless you.

  274. Aaron August 6, 2010 at 10:39 am

    BIG THANKS KEN πŸ™‚ , These things always have a bad habit of happening the day before I have any leave booked, good job I found your fix.

    Thanks Again …… Aaron

  275. Christina August 11, 2010 at 9:32 pm

    Hey Ken!

    I finally got my cd to work and I just typed in the “chkdsk /r” command & after running for a few minutes it stopped at 50% complete and says “The volume appears to contain one or more unrecoverable problems.” Then it asks for another command, what should I do??

  276. Trex131-PHI August 23, 2010 at 11:24 pm

    Ken Thank you very much for all the man hours of re-installation and reformatting and updates avoided. Using your fixes plus finally letting windows update & letting checkdisk do it’s thing have breathed new life into my system. The internet is a magical thing & I’m just glad I came across your thread.

  277. Ken McGuire August 24, 2010 at 6:31 pm

    @Trex131-PHI You’re most welcome.

  278. Hanna August 29, 2010 at 12:37 am


    I didn’t have faith that it would work. Because nothing has.
    And low and behold. Here I am. Using my lappy once again!

    Thank you thank you thank you.

  279. Melanie August 30, 2010 at 8:48 pm

    Hi Ken,
    How are you? Hope you are well.

    My husband has an Dell 8600 Inspiron Laptop-about 6 years old. We have the blue screen with the Unmountable boot volume error or whatever. The blue screen just stays there when I put in the CD. How do you get the computer to restart so you can put the cd in to work, etc and then move forward with the repair that I see on your blog?

    Dell could not help-said we needed a new hardrive but I think maybe not after seeing you repair technique.

    Please advise………….Melanie

  280. SCOTT August 30, 2010 at 10:14 pm

    Hi Ken,

    When I get to the part where it asks me which Windows installation I would like to log into, the only choice is E:\WINDOWS. I tried the chkdsk commands and then the fixboot . It didn’t work. Is my C:\ called E:\? If so, why does it take me to the windows folder. Thanks!

  281. Melanie August 31, 2010 at 3:52 pm

    Hello Ken,

    Just wanted to let you know that I gave your instructions for the blue screen of death fix to my husband and it worked! Yahoo! It is funny that you can be on the phone with Dell and they cannot fix it but you can. Also, all the tech businesses I called said he probably needed a new computer and I had a feeling he did not. Thanks again for your help. You really saved us a lot of aggregation.


  282. Melanie August 31, 2010 at 3:55 pm

    Hi Ken,

    One more thing, Dave said he had to push F12 in the first step as soon it boots up which was not in your instructions at the top. Just thought I would let you know in case anyone else has the issue…………Melanie

  283. mike September 4, 2010 at 7:24 pm

    i love you. you saved my computer from being thrown at the wall or out of the window. cheers

  284. Cari September 24, 2010 at 3:29 pm

    im having the same problem as Scott can type anything when i get to the Which Windows installation would u like to log into….it only lets me type on letter???? HELP PLEASE πŸ™‚

  285. Dan pelman September 26, 2010 at 5:27 pm

    Awesome fix. very scary but your write up hit the mark. thx

  286. Grim December 21, 2010 at 11:43 am

    After swearing to never use pc again I do find myself in moments where I do need windows, so on my Mac I’ve got win 7. Worked like a charm, until… Somehow my boot volume got un mounted, I’ve dealt with the pc boot problem more than once and solved it the same way you did. Now win is still working but my Mac won’t boot into OSX. Would it be possible that the pc partition on my drive messed up my Mac partition in the same way as above problem? If you know, any help would be appreciated.

    Best regards
    Grim Bernhoft

  287. Dw January 14, 2011 at 3:00 am

    help – I’m at recover console screen
    says 1: c:windows
    won’t let me type anything
    locked up can’t get in or out
    what do I do now

  288. Maurice Christopher J March 3, 2011 at 1:38 am

    You are a computer GOD! I thought for sure I met the blue screen of death. got kinda worried it took over an hour but well worth the wait..Time to back it up. Thank you so much. I wish you success in all that you do! I wish i could some how return the favor! Peace

  289. Chris March 20, 2011 at 5:15 pm

    Have a Dell E1505 originally installed with Dell Vista OS and the dreaded Dell Media Direct. Hard drive crashes after a year and is replaced with a new one. Reinstalled Vista OS (from Dell with drivers and DMD). 6-7 months later, computer is caught in Dell Media Direct Loop. Can’t get back to Windows. Take it to repair shop and they were able to fix it. 6 months later it starts again, so I reinstalled everything again after breaking in through a well placed F2 while it was booting to DMD that took me back to Windows. Reinstalled everything and was fine for 2-3 months until it got back to the same DMD loop again. I was able to break out of it once to get all the files copied to the external HD before I couldn’t break back into Windows at all. Decided to take it back to repair shop with a stand-alone copy of Windows 7.
    Repair shop wiped the hard drive completely, did a clean install of Windows 7. Battery had gone dead on him, so he plugged it in and laptop immediately fired up and tried to go back to Dell Media Direct. As it turns out, the power button circuit board was faulty (someone had spilled something on it at one time because of a bit of corrosion). I’m getting a new board, but the disturbing thing is why did the laptop try to boot Dell Media Direct when there is nothing on the hard drive (the repair shop has several sophisticated programs to clean partitions off of hard drives) and nothing about the OS that points to Dell Media Direct?
    Does Dell code something in a hardware ROM someplace? I couldn’t find anything in the BIOS.

  290. natasha March 29, 2011 at 3:11 am

    I have a hp mini 1000 no disk drive can i do anything about unmountable boot volume? Thank you sooo much!

  291. Chris April 25, 2011 at 1:33 pm

    A laptop saver! You are the man. Thanks!

  292. WILLIAM May 1, 2011 at 4:28 pm


  293. Sy May 26, 2011 at 4:44 pm

    Wow!!! Worked perfectly! My computer crashed at 11 am today. After finding your blog, it is up and running an hour later. Thank you. You literally saved my data and spared me from standing in line at best buy or spending $350 to get Dell Tech support’s “expert” assistance (basically wipe data and reinstall OS). Thanks again!

  294. Liz May 31, 2011 at 4:37 am

    Thank you….thank you….thank you
    After a few tries I was finally able to fix my Dell Dimension 8400 desktop

  295. Joshua Johnson May 31, 2011 at 8:35 am

    i have this problem with a inspiron mini i dont have an disc drive or the xp disk what should i do

  296. Garret June 1, 2011 at 9:37 am

    Thank you so much. I had no idea what to do. I messed around with the menu for a while until I thought ” Why not Google it?” So I got on the internet on my phone and looked it up and this webpage was the first result. I followed your instructions exactly and it worked perfectly. Thank you for helping me fix my computer.

  297. Izzat June 5, 2011 at 3:00 pm



    This will solve your problem. During setup set it as “Create a USB drive with Windows XP/2003 Recovery Console” under Advanced Mode tab.

  298. Leigh June 8, 2011 at 6:25 pm

    Hi I have this unmountable problem. How can I get my data off my hard drive first. A friend has dine some for me but he’s on holiday and I wanna do the rest.

    Many thanks

  299. K Drevon June 13, 2011 at 10:05 pm

    Awesome ! thank you so much for your instructions, it worked like charm !

  300. Karen June 22, 2011 at 1:18 pm

    Had the Unmountable Boot Volume show up on a Dell Latitude D830. Tried this fix and it worked!!! Saved me from having to call in the outside IT guys who charge a fortune to fix. Thank you so much!!!

  301. Carl June 22, 2011 at 8:48 pm

    Ken…..if you are still reading these, THANK YOU for the instructions on how to fix this issue…….my Averatec 3200 laptop did this today, with ALL my music, pictures, etc from Iraq, military stuff, and thanks to you, I have it all back. You are the man!!!


  302. Ken McGuire June 23, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    Hey Carl,

    You’re most welcome! They’re old ones but they still work and have saved a few people a good few dollars and Euro over the past few years!

  303. yuko June 27, 2011 at 4:33 pm

    Hi I’m following your unmountable boot volume fix; mine’s Dell precision M70, and it doesn’t recognize “chkdsk/r” what should I do? please help. thanking you in advance

  304. Patty July 2, 2011 at 12:29 am

    Thanks Ken for posting this fix! I had this very issue on my Dell optiplex 745 yesterday. I followed your instructions and all worked flawlessly. Thanks to you, I am back in business!


  305. Fiona July 5, 2011 at 8:46 pm

    OMG! Thank you so much for this tutorial. I got so scared when my computer got this error and I was totally thinking I have to buy another computer! I’m so glad I found this!

  306. RDWilson July 13, 2011 at 3:39 pm

    Possibly the best single-page troubleshooting tutorial I have ever seen, certainly in the PC world (I’m also a Mac man, personally). I can’t thank you enough. If only all online troubleshooting guides were this concise, straightforward, and supportive… well, I’d be out of a job, so I suppose it’s just as well!

  307. Venus Kourouvacilis July 14, 2011 at 4:25 pm

    Can I fix this “blue screen nighmare” without my disk? Note: the computer that has the prbelm is my Dell LatititudeE5500…Help,please.

  308. Tony Winters July 18, 2011 at 6:50 pm


    I carried out instructions and seemed to carry through fine but I am not sure whether I should boot into windows from the reinstallation CD or from the newly checked hard disk. Trying from CD seems to a reinstallation of Windows XP, which I was not sure I want. Whereas switching back to boot from hard disk (via boot change procedure) leads back to the blue screen and same message. Any further suggestions most welcome

  309. Fiffer July 23, 2011 at 7:32 pm

    Please add me to the list of the legions of fans who love you and are grateful for this post. Many many thanks!! I, a total computer novice, was able to repair my computer on my own. My husband is amazed and equally thrilled!

  310. Chris July 31, 2011 at 3:21 pm

    Our Dell Inspiron E1505 kept running into that (problem was worse, because we upgraded to the Windows 7). What we discovered is that it would go into a Dell Media Direct loop, and couldn’t get back. Upon taking the computer apart, discovered that something had spilled on the power buttons, including dell media direct button. Purchased a new Dell Media Direct button, used Krazy Glue to ensure it could never be pressed again, and the computer has been stable ever since.

  311. mj August 17, 2011 at 8:46 pm

    Thank you so much for the step by step! I tried it on an old Toshiba J11 and it worked! Saved me at least $65!

  312. George September 3, 2011 at 4:17 pm

    A solution that worked for my Dell Inspiron 6400 XP professional SP 3.

    As I do not have (like most of us) the XP installation disk (it was preinstalled on my laptop), I discovered (by pure inspiration !!!) that when pressing the Dell Media Direct button (instead of pressing the “power” button !!) I could boot and actually see all the folders of my laptop [those containing media files (photos, videos) I could even play them]. After browsing the folders containing media files (photos, movies) I clicked “exit” and my laptop powered off. After that I pressed the “power” button and my laptop booted normally. I am not sure but it may be that the BSOD Unmountable Boot Volume error appeared after I installed the Slim Cleaner applcation. After I was able to boot again into my laptop I uninstalled Slim Cleaner and run the β€œchkdsk /r” . I do not know the explanation for this workaround (I am not an IT guru) but I just wanted to share with those using Dell Inspiron 6400 with Dell Media Direct !!!) this possible solution that worked for me. Maybe I am wrong but it could be that this solution worked due to the fact that Dell Media Direct is located on a separate partition (I have three partitions on my Dell Inspiron 6400) allowing thus the booting.
    One question : should I run the recovery console β€œchkdsk /p β€œ and β€œfixboot c:” commands to test the boot sector or not ? Waiting for feedback from IT experts. Thanks.

  313. Shari September 9, 2011 at 5:41 pm

    I scoured the Internet for hours before I found the solution that worked! Even MS only had half the answer. Thank you!

  314. Pingback: How to Fix Unmountable Boot Volume « Midlife Magazine

  315. Louise Edney November 8, 2011 at 1:24 pm

    Hi I keep getting the message unmountable boot volume on nt hell unspoken 1300
    I dont have windows disk either can do without disk.

  316. Donna November 9, 2011 at 7:25 pm

    Ken you are the best…..i turned on my netbook and it had the blue screen from hell….I logged onto another computer followed your advice and now it is up and running….i am currently writing from it now…thanks again..

  317. david November 23, 2011 at 8:37 pm

    Same happened to me today but on a Lenovo R60. Unmountable boot etc. Can’t start in any mode and can’t do r and r either! I also don’t have any disks to go withe laptop as all installations were done in my old company which no longer exists. Any suggestions?? Everything is on it, including all my new business files. Thanks.

  318. Eric Dsilva December 2, 2011 at 3:04 am

    If your Not Able to Get Chkdsk/r…u will need to run it as an administrator .Firts try this sfc /scannow ..and then Run Chkdsk/r..

  319. Greg Mosurick January 8, 2012 at 3:09 pm

    I have a 7 year old Dell desktop and just got the Unmountable Boot Volume blue screen of death. I have limited knowledge about computers but I tried your “volume” fix with no success. When I pop the CD in nothing happens and it goes back to the blue screen. What do I need to do to boot from the CD when I reboot?

  320. Jay Royer February 24, 2012 at 4:33 am

    I got to the step where I hit ‘R’ for recovery an what I got was ‘Windows XP Home Edition Setup’ on the upper left of the screen and ‘Examining 476,938 MB Disk 0 at Id 0 on bus 0 on iastor…’ across the bottom of the screen. Then it didn’t do anything further.

  321. Patrick March 17, 2012 at 7:06 pm

    Try holding down F12 as you restart the PC, that should put you into the boot menu and you should be able to specificy to boot from CD there.

  322. Patrick March 17, 2012 at 7:16 pm

    Perfect – took a while for chkdsk to run but it worked. Thanks.

  323. MItesh Shah June 8, 2012 at 12:46 pm

    Ken u saved my day.
    thanks a lot.
    may god bless u.

  324. IT support August 13, 2012 at 8:01 pm

    Will be back for any updates.

  325. gordiz January 1, 2013 at 7:06 pm

    hello my laptop just got the blue screen and my cd,dvd. drive dose not work to load my reboot CD, and when i connect an external usb CD/DVD. drive when i try to run it through my laptop dose not give the option from the internal CD/DVD rive to the external usb CD/DVD drive. i have tried everything and nothing can fix it.. do you recommend something for me to do please

  326. mike January 3, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    Worked on xp pro sp3 E8400 box with 1TB WD drive.

    I have read other sites attacking this problem, some of the them run by guys who build/reinstall windows OS every week.
    They say this is common.

    What a bizarre outcome for a new install!

    Thanks very much , Ken.

  327. Mark January 19, 2013 at 4:33 am

    hi sir ken, i have a dell inspiron 8600 laptop, problem is, display in screen: primary hard disk drive not FOUND. No boot device available. Strike F1, to retry boot, F2 for setup utility. HOW to fix this in order for me to proceed and successfully get to the desktop?

    *when i entered the BIOS, primary hard drive “NONE”…

    *need help! thx

  328. Eddie January 20, 2013 at 7:53 pm

    While I’m sure this post has been dead and gone for a while, I was wondering if maybe anybody knew of any ways to remedy this horrific BSOD without the windows recovery discs? I’ve never really had any other issues that required a system recovery, so the disc must have just been misplaced over the past couple of years. If anybody is still following this post, or just happens to stumble upon it like I did… PLEASE HELP!!!

  329. Danielle January 24, 2013 at 4:21 am

    Thank you soooo much! U saved my life, I am literally here in.tears! I thought I was going to have to start allll over!!

  330. Beanie January 31, 2013 at 4:14 pm

    This may be an “older” fix, but it worked like a charm. It brought my laptop back to life and saved me a lot of worry. Thanks for the easy fix.

  331. Janine February 1, 2013 at 5:10 pm

    Staples says Dell XPS 420 needs new hard drive,but ran diagnostics with F12 while speaking to Dell and got error code 0146. Tech said boot sector is corrupt, and have to uninstall and reinstall O/S, etc

  332. Randall February 6, 2013 at 7:18 pm

    I worked great but how do I recover old files like tax info, etc?

  333. Julene February 7, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    To make this article (and its valuable “Speak Your Mind” section) a continued “one stop shop” for this particular “Blue Screen of Death” experience, I offer a tidbit about the “1. F:\minint” option: Since only one character can be entered, type in “1” and hit the “Enter” key. The prompt will, then, read: “F:\minint>”. Type “chkdsk /r c:”. (Do not use ” and be mindful of necessary “Space Bar” activity.) Computer should whirl to life, and get busy “checking disk” C! (This took over an hour for me. When done, the screen should note that “CHKDSK found and fixed one or more errors…” ) Then, onto “chkdsk /p c:” and, lastly, “fixboot c:” as indicated in this article.

    Also, I had better luck finding detailed/relevant info more easily/quickly on “F:\minint” using Bing – a Microsoft (creator of Windows) search engine, than with Google.

    Thank you, Ken! Your article lives on into the double-aught teen years ( Feb. 2013).

    Thank you, all, for your comments. Your issues & solutions made the recovery of my data possible (My computer is back to normal, to boot!)

    P.S. I have no computer repair training, just a strong D-I-Y/hands-on drive (that is fueled by continued successes like this), a tad of (un)common sense, and the idea to cross-reference, cross-reference, cross-reference!

    Good luck and have fun with it!

  334. vignesh February 20, 2013 at 6:30 am

    hi ken,
    i am using dell vostro when ever i switch on the system it shows some error has occurred try safe mode or safe mode with networking and it shows windows loading and showing a blue screen and come to same safe mode screen again.if i try safe mode or restore with recent configuration no use.

    i have tried to repair or install windows xp os by configuring bios setting as you said by keeping cd/dvd at first. it goes up to press enter to install os and f3 to repair those three steps. If i choose repair or install it shows no hard disk found error. Please kindly help me i want to restore my file and back up and get system running.

  335. don March 6, 2013 at 7:20 pm

    Yes, ive read the fix steps you’ve provided here, (and the same things on other sites) but my DELL INSPIRON MINI doesnt HAVE a CD drive!! Or an external CD port station, or whatever they are called. I go from start-up teling me to hit F8 to get more options, to blue screen with UNMOUNTABLE BOOT VOLUME. Error xo- blah, blah…..
    and their service tech doesn’t do anything but give me the run around between this department and that department.
    How do I fix this thing? Or maybe I should just throw it away?

  336. justin March 11, 2013 at 4:50 am

    all i can say is a very heart felt thank you,patience is a vertue with the first step and people(me as well)need to realise that there is a space involved but you solved my problem.everybody said time for a new laptop,harddrive fault.but lo and behold computer fine now and as i use it at work daily at my own expense it was a lovely experience.;>~may good karma greet you daily…peace

  337. celia May 2, 2013 at 11:46 pm

    thanks so much , saved my life ! ancient but reliable Dell 5150 died in the middle of crucial work , now fully working ….thanks !

  338. Zoe May 5, 2013 at 3:21 am

    Hi Ken
    I have run the re-installation disk with chkdsk, chkdsk /p , chkdsk /r, fixboot c with no problems. However I am still getting the blue screen of death with the unmountable boot volume message. Any ideas or is my hard disc really fried. There were no errors when I ran the command prompts. Keeping my finger crossed you have some ideas!

  339. Riccardo May 15, 2013 at 5:54 pm

    Unmountable Boot Volume Sorted!

    Hi Ken,
    thanks for your article, i managed to fix the problem. I just would like to share how i did find way out to the problem. I did follow your instruction (very detailed and handy for all users even the beginners) but after putting the installation cd (the original) the pc wasn’t able to access to the Cd dirve even after i did change on the BIOS setting the CD-Drive putting it on the top of the list. I did run the diagnostic, all of them express, full and custom and i did find 3 errors 2 on the hard drive and 1 on the optical drive (cd drive).

    I made the last attempt but this time pressing F12 after rebooting the Pc and selecting from the menu CD-Drive. The Cd-drive started run well and i was able following your instruction reboot my pc without getting the blu screen of death.. i still can’t believe it after an entire day reading topics and almost giving up! Thanks a lot for the brilliant article. Cheers Riccardo

  340. matthew July 2, 2013 at 10:07 pm

    I’ve got the same issue however i can’t get to the recovery console. I get another blue screen while the windows recovery cd is loading files… any thoughts?

  341. Ian July 11, 2013 at 4:30 pm

    Hi Ken
    Thanks very much for your help. I have a Dell Dimension 51 Desktop and I tried the procedure and it worked beautifully. My computer is up and running again.

  342. Julit August 28, 2014 at 5:45 pm

    what do you do if you didn’t get a recovery cd?

  343. Michael March 29, 2015 at 9:16 pm

    worked perfect thank you

  344. Megan January 28, 2016 at 7:37 pm

    hey. i have an old dell latitude c400 and i dont have a disk drive to put a disk in. how should i fix this problem. i am a story writer and all my work is on the laptop. please help

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