The latest Windows Operating Systems (such as Windows Vista, Windows 7 and later) use BCD (Boot Configuration Data) store consisting of boot entries that are responsible for booting the system. The Bootmgr reads the boot entries from BCD store and displays the boot menu to the user as soon as you boot your system. Therefore, the booting process through BCD is safer than boot.ini, which was used in Windows XP and other early versions. Despite the secure nature of BCD store, it sometimes gets corrupt and results in an unbootable system.
There can be various reasons for the corruption of BCD store, which may range from corrupt active partition to power outage and virus infection. Generally, Windows is unable to start when BDC store gets corrupt and sends an error message related to BCD missing or corruption (or similar error message) prior to the boot process. The easiest way to overcome the issue with BCD store is to rebuild it, which you can perform through ‘Bootrec’ command.
Bootrec Command: The bootrec command is used in Windows Recovery Environment (Windows RE) for troubleshooting the issues related to the below mentioned items in Windows 7 and Windows Vista:
- Master Boot Record (MBR)
- A boot sector
- A Boot Configuration Data (BCD) store
Note: The thing to keep in mind herein with Bootrec command is, if you are troubleshooting the startup issues by using Windows Recovery Environment or Windows RE, then it is recommended to first try the ‘Startup Repair’ option present in ‘System Recovery Options’ dialog box. However, if this method fails to do any needful or you have to go through various manual steps for troubleshooting the issue, then use of ‘Bootrec.exe’ tool is suggested.
Follow the below mentioned steps to run the Bootrec tool in Windows RE:
- Put Windows Vista or Windows 7 installation disc in the disc drive of your computer and start it.
- Press a key when you are prompted to do so.
- Select the language, the currency, the time, the keyboard or an input method, and then click ‘Next’.
- Click ‘Repair your computer’.
- Click the operating system that you want to repair, and then click ‘Next’.
- Click ‘Command Prompt’ on the ‘System Recovery Options’ dialog box.
- Type the ‘Bootrec /rebuildbcd’, and then press ‘Enter’.
The ‘/rebuildbcd’ option scans all your disks, which are compatible with Windows Vista or Windows 7, for their installation. Moreover, this option enables you to select the installations, which you would like to add to your BCD store. However, use this option only when you want to rebuild your BCD store completely.
However, if this process fails to do any needful, then use of professional partition recovery software is recommended. A reliable professional tool restores all the data that encountered corruption issues due to the damage of BCD store. So, do not panic or lose your patience, as your system is not starting up or throwing an error message while you try to boot your system.
Generally, all professional tools for this category have simple intuitive user interface so that you can follow its steps for recovering your files without involving much time and effort. The compatibility with various file systems (such as NTFS, FAT, exFAT), and support for various file types enables the users to recover their data without much trouble.
Therefore, if Bootrec is unable to do any needful, then opting for commercial software is the best solution to overcome the loss of your valuable items that have been lost or became inaccessible due to startup or boot issues with your Windows Vista and later Operating System based computers.