A HP Compaq 6000 Pro Small Form Factor PC produces the following error when booting up:

Non-system disk or disk error. replace and strike any key when ready.

There is no CD-ROM/DVD or USB device inserted.

If I place a bootable DVD in the PC, and reboot, I get prompted to press any key to boot from DVD. I ignore that, and the PC will then boot into Windows off the hard drive.

The C drive partition is active, and primary.

This same behaviour occurred with a 2nd & 3rd HDD.

The 2nd HDD test is below, the 3rd HDD tested with Crystal Disk Info without an issue.

I reinstalled Windows on the 3rd HDD with both SATA emulation set to AHCI, and IDE, and the issue remained in both cases.

What do I need to do to boot from the HDD without a DVD inserted?



According to the picture

enter image description here

your HDD will fails soon because you have some uncorrectable and some pending sectors. The BIOS seams to detect this during boot:

 "Test failed. Drive replacement recommended. Completion Code: 7"

and skips the HDD, but still allows you to boot if you ignored a different boot drive like a DVD. Backup all data to a different drive and replace the HDD with a new one.

If you still see the issue after replacing the HDD, load the default BIOS settings, maybe the BIOS stores the error information and this error log must be cleared.

  • The same original error occurred with a 3rd hard drive. – Steve May 6 '15 at 3:21
  • have you removed the bad drive? – magicandre1981 May 6 '15 at 4:28
  • Yes, @magicandre1981. The 3rd drive tests fine with Crystal Disk Info. – Steve May 6 '15 at 5:13
  • 1
    maybe the BIOS stores the information. Look if you can clear an error log. Also try to load the default BIOS settings if nothing helps. – magicandre1981 May 6 '15 at 17:44
  • Setting BIOS to default was the fix @magicandre1981. Thank you very much. – Steve May 12 '15 at 6:32

Although your C partition is marked as 'active' it does not seem to contain the bootmgr or the bootmgr is corrupted. That's why your system needs the installation DVD to pick a bootmgr. You have 2 options:

  1. Look in Disk Management whether you also have a 100MB Sytem partition. If yes, set that active. For that operation you need the bootable CD of Partition Wizard because that cannot be performed on a running system. For details see the picture below.

  2. If you have no 100MB System Partition, run Startup/Repair 3 times. That will create a new bootmgr in the C partition.

enter image description here

  • This is how the HDD looks. I will try option 1. – Steve Apr 28 '15 at 5:08
  • I burnt the ISO as a bootable DVD, but when I try to boot from it, I receive a message: Attempting Boot from CD-ROM. Missing Operating System. – Steve Apr 28 '15 at 5:45
  • The 100MB partition is already active. – Steve Apr 29 '15 at 2:33
  • I created a system repair disc, and ran startup repair, but it couldn't fix any issues. – Steve Apr 29 '15 at 3:46
  • Running startup repair 3 times in the same session did not fix it unfortunately. – Steve Apr 29 '15 at 3:48

There are a lot of possibilities that would cause this, but it looks like you've already tried a few. Based on my experience, there are several possible causes.

Make sure your hard drive is being detected in the BIOS. You can verify this during POST, or in the BIOS.

  • During POST, press the Pause key and you should be able to see your boot devices such as the HDD and DVD/ROM.
  • If looking in the BIOS, your devices will show in "Standard CMOS features".

Possible causes

  1. BIOS configuration issue.
  2. Bootloader (MBR) is damaged or misconfigured. This is more than likely not the problem because you would get an error like BOOTMGR is missing.
  3. Failing hard drive with bad sectors (particularly where the bootloader is located).

You mentioned that you have the same issue with 2 hard drives, but they both have windows on them? It's also important that windows was installed with the same hardware.

The BIOS can be a mystery a lot of times, and many of the settings seem cryptic. I recommend you take these steps and after each step try booting normally.

  • Make absolutely sure you don't have ANY other bootable device other than the HDD, such as a USB drive, connected to the computer.
  • Set your hard drive as the first device in the boot order.
  • If you have an SATA/IDE drive, make sure the CMOS setup in the BIOS has SATA mode set to IDE. If you've got a newer drive or an SSD, it should more than likely need to be AHCI (Advanced Host Controller Interface). AHCI mode will only work if your drive supports it and the drive is installed/enable in Windows.
  • Reset the BIOS to factory defaults, by choosing that option in the BIOS.

Do not open the chassis of the computer if it is still under warranty

  • Reset the BIOS/CMOS by unplugging the computer from power, opening the chassis, and remove the CMOS battery for 15-20 sec. It is round and flat.

You've already ran windows startup repair, which in my experience does a pretty good job of repairing the bootloader. But since it didn't work, you can try these steps.

  1. Boot from your startup disc again.
  2. Instead of startup repair, choose command prompt.
  3. At the C:\ prompt, run cd boot.

First, run bcdedit to look at the boot configuration.

  • Look at the settings for "Windows Boot Manager".
  • Verify that device is set to partition=C: as shown.
  • The default setting should also show {current} as shown. It may not say this however when booting from the DVD.
  • Otherwise, you may need to do bcdedit /set {bootmgr} device partition=C:

If your configuration looks different than this leave a comment and I will update the answer to fit your scenario.

enter image description here

If all looks well, you can try this approach.

bcdedit /export C:\SAVEDBCD //backup your bcd file
Bootrec /fixmbr
Bootrec /fixboot
Bootrec /rebuildbcd

Since you've already tested with a different HDD, I won't go into a failed drive scenario.

Other resources that may help:
Error message when you start your computer with a non-system disk
BCDEdit Command-Line Options

  • @Steve - If you are seeing the HDD disabled in the BIOS it means... A) SMART tested the drive and determined it was bad. This doesn't definitively mean a hardware issue, could just mean it didn't find a boot sector which bcdedit could fix. B) I would recommend setting the boot order as CD/ROM, HDD, USB. The USB device could be causing an issue if it is bootable. – EternalHour May 7 '15 at 2:08

Have you checked the boot order settings of your machine? Go to your efi / bios setup and select your hard drive as the first boot drive.

  • 1
    This is more of a comment than a real answer. Even if the DVD drive is set as the first boot device, without a disc inside the system should boot from the HDD. – Karan Apr 28 '15 at 4:21
  • In BIOS, the HDD is the 3rd boot device, behind CD/DVD, and USB, which is okay, however, next to the HDD entry is the word [disabled]. A DPS Self-Test on the drive, in BIOS, produces "Test failed. Drive replacement recommended. Completion Code: 7". – Steve Apr 28 '15 at 4:24
  • @Steve: Have you tried following the advice and tested with a different HDD then? – Karan Apr 28 '15 at 4:32
  • @Karan: no one suggested I try a different HDD, because I stated I have already had the same symptoms with 2 HDD. – Steve Apr 28 '15 at 4:37
  • @Steve: So you did. Hmm, so even with an HDD change you still see [disabled] and the Test failed message? – Karan Apr 28 '15 at 4:39

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.