Microsoft KB Archive/246507
PSS ID Number: 246507
Article Last Modified on 8/27/2002
The information in this article applies to:
- Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 4.0
- Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0
This article was previously published under Q246507
When you try to restart a computer running Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 4.0 or Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0 after an abnormal shutdown (for example, a crash), the computer may not start and you may receive the following error message:
This behavior can occur when the Ntoskrnl.exe file is missing or corrupted, or when the Advanced RISC Computer (ARC) path in Boot.ini points to the wrong boot partition as the location of the Windows NT 4.0 system files.
NOTE: This can also occur if the system partition is larger than 7.8 gigabytes and system files have be placed outside of the 7.8 gb limit (possibly as a result of applying a service pack or defragmenting the drive). Although Windows NT 4.0 can in theory support partitions of up to 16 exabytes in size using the NTFS file system, the maximum size of the system partition is limited to 7.8 gigabytes. Windows 2000 does not have this limitation unless the machine's BIOS does not support INT13 extensions.
For more information, please see the following article:
224526 Windows NT 4.0 Supports Maximum of 7.8-GB System Partition
To resolve this behavior, replace the Ntoskrnl.exe file. Follow one of these sets of steps, depending on whether you do or do not have an Emergency Repair Disk (ERD) available.
If you do have an ERD, use the emergency repair process to replace the Ntoskrnl.exe file:
- Start the computer with Windows NT 4.0 Setup Disk 1 in the disk drive.
- At the prompt, insert Windows NT 4.0 Setup Disk 2 into the disk drive.
- When the Windows NT Setup screen appears, press R to begin the repair process.
- Use the arrow keys to select Verify Windows NT system files from the repair options, and then press ENTER.
- Use the arrow keys to select the other options, and then press ENTER to clear those selections.
- Select Continue, press ENTER, and then follow the on-screen instructions to detect mass storage devices.
- At the prompt, insert the ERD into the disk drive.
- At the prompt, insert the appropriate Windows NT 4.0 CD-ROM into the CD-ROM drive.
- When the repair process is complete, remove the ERD from the disk drive, and then press ENTER to restart the computer.
If you do not have an ERD, replace the Ntoskrnl.exe file by making a new copy of it:
- If Windows NT 4.0 is installed on a file allocation table (FAT) partition:
- Start the computer in MS-DOS.
- Open the Boot.ini file in a text editor, and verify that the ARC path to the boot partition is correct in the Boot.ini file.
- Copy the Ntoskrnl.exe file from the original installation disks or CD-ROM to the %SystemRoot%\System32\ folder.
- Restart the computer.
- If Windows NT 4.0 is installed on an NTFS file system partition:
- Install a parallel copy of Windows NT 4.0.
- Verify that the ARC path to the boot partition is correct in the Boot.ini file.
- Copy the Ntoskrnl.exe file from the parallel installation to the %SystemRoot%\System32 folder of the original installation.
- Start the computer in the original installation.
NOTE: If you determine the system partition is larger than 7.8 gb, Windows NT has been setup in an unsupported configuration, and the drive will need to be repartitioned to a size less than 7.8 gb.
For additional information on using an ERD to repair Windows NT 4.0, please see the following articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
103280 Using an Emergency Repair Disk Created by Windows NT
129037 Windows NT 3.5x and 4.0 Emergency Repair Process Screens
Additional query words: improper shutdown
Keywords: kbprb KB246507
Technology: kbWinNT400search kbWinNTS400 kbWinNTS400search kbWinNTsearch kbWinNTSsearch kbWinNTW400 kbWinNTW400search kbWinNTWsearch