How To Make a Windows 2000 Boot Disk

Level of difficulty: Intermediate

In many instances, the boot disk has proven to be a very handy tool in resolving computer system related problems like failure to boot, missing NTLDR, or cannot detect CD drive problems which can be caused by a number of possibilities. By using the boot disk, the computer system reads directly from either the floppy or CD drive and loads the necessary system files to allow the computer user to gain minimal access to system resources. A boot disk can be created virtually from any type of computer system that runs under the Microsoft Windows Operating System platform or has an installed utility like Nero Burning ROM which allows for faster creation on optical media. A boot disk for the Windows 2000 environment would normally eat up around four floppy disks with 1.44Mb capacity each or a single CD or DVD optical media.

Materials Needed:
- Windows 2000 installation CD
- Floppy disks
- CD or DVD media
- Computer
- Floppy drive
- CD or DVD drive
- Notepad
Step 1
To begin the creation of the boot disk, you would need access to a Windows-based computer system. Click on the Start button, select the Run option and choose Browse.
Step 2
Navigate to the location of the CD or DVD drive where the Windows 2000 Professional CD is located.
Step 3
Open the folder named Bootdisk and double click on the icon for the makeboot.exe file. Click the OK button to execute the application for creating the boot disk.
Step 4
The application will use four 1.44MB capacity floppy drives to finish the procedure. Make sure that every floppy disk is correctly labeled immediately after it is ejected from the floppy drive.
Step 5
An alternative option is to use a computer that runs on the Microsoft Windows XP Operating System platform. Format a floppy disk via the Windows format tool.
Step 6
Click on the Start button, choose Run, and type the command format a: then click on the OK button.
Step 7
Locate the installation folder of Windows XP and navigate to the i386 folder. Copy the Ntldr as well as the Ntdetect files into the boot disk. These two files are required by Operating Systems like Windows NT, Windows 2000, and Windows XP among others.
Step 8
Make a boot.ini file using any standard text editor program like Notepad. Type in [boot loader], timeout=30, Default= multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\windows, [operating systems], and multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\windows='' on separate lines.
Step 9
Make sure to save the file in the floppy disk and not the hard drive. Verify also that the file extension is INI and not TXT which is the default used by Notepad. Eject the floppy disk and write protect it.
Step 10
To verify if the boot disk is working properly, reboot your machine (make sure that the first boot device is the floppy drive) with the boot disk in the floppy drive. The system should boot directly from the floppy disk and proceed to display the command prompt after loading the system files.