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I am trying to fix someone’s computer, and I came across instructions that said to use the "Recovery Console".

I started the computer with F8, however I do not see option for the Recovery Console, only

Microsoft Windows XP Professional

I do not have the Windows XP installation disk either, however I do have the product key, found on sticker on the case.

Is this Recovery Console something that I can download as an ISO?

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2 Answers 2

Follow the following steps to install the Recovery Console:

With the Windows XP installation disk

  1. Insert the Windows XP CD into the CD drive.
  2. Click Start, and then click Run or press Win+R.
  3. In the run box, type:
    • For x86 (32 bit) edition
      x:\i386\winnt32.exe /cmdcons
    • For x64 Edition
      x:\amd64\winnt32.exe /cmdcons
      where x is the drive letter for the CD drive.
  4. A Windows Setup Dialog Box appears. The Windows Setup Dialog Box describes the Recovery Console option. To confirm the installation, click Yes.
  5. Restart the computer. The next time that you start your computer, "Microsoft Windows Recovery Console" appears on the start-up menu.

Without the Windows XP installation disk

  1. Click Start, and then click Run or press Win+R.
  2. In the run box, type:
    %windir%\i386\winnt32.exe /cmdcons
  3. A Windows Setup Dialog Box appears. The Windows Setup Dialog Box describes the Recovery Console option. To confirm the installation, click Yes.
  4. Restart the computer. The next time that you start your computer, "Microsoft Windows Recovery Console" appears on the start-up menu.

Note: If the directory i386 is missing then this method will not work.


You can also access the recovery console directly from the Windows XP installation disk.

Follow the steps to access the Recovery Console:

  1. Insert the Windows XP startup disk into the floppy disk drive, or insert the Windows XP CD-ROM into the CD drive, and then restart the computer.
    Click to select any options that are required to start the computer from the CD drive if you are prompted.
  2. When the "Welcome to Setup" screen appears, press R to start the Recovery Console.
  3. If you have a dual-boot or multiple-boot computer, select the installation that you must access from the Recovery Console.
  4. When you are prompted, type the Administrator password. If the administrator password is blank, just press ENTER.
  5. At the command prompt, type the appropriate commands to diagnose and repair your Windows XP installation.
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@StevenPenny: Even if you are not helped by this answer, others might be. It does look to be correct. –  oKtosiTe Mar 24 '13 at 9:14
    
I have just provided another method for the users without the Windows XP installation disk. –  golchha21 Mar 24 '13 at 19:26
up vote 0 down vote accepted

golchha21’s answer is only helpful if you already have a Windows XP installation disk, which I do not. However I was able to make one.

I came across this forum thread, in which a user suggests to search for

en_windows_xp_professional_with_service_pack_3_x86_cd_vl_x14-73974.iso

This would be the file name of the official ISO from Microsoft.

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