NTLDR is Compressed – Fixed it in Windows 7/8/10/XP

Posted by @Ada

July 16, 2018

This article will introduce how to fix NTLDR is compressed. Also, it will give you some tips on how to avoid this issue happening again.

Some users may receive the following error message when starting or rebooting computer: NTLDR is compressed(missing)Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to restart. What’s wrong with this?

NTLDR is Compressed

What is NT Loader?

To fix this issue, we should first know what NT Loader is. It is a hidden and read-only system file which is located in the root directory and loads Operating System. Since it is part of system files, it will cause computer unbootable if it is damaged (lost or compressed). Therefore, you should backup NT Loader when the system runs normally.

How to fix NTLDR is compressed or missing in Windows 7/8/10/XP?

When you encounter the issue: NTLRD is compressed, you can try the following methods to solve it.

Method 1. Decompress the NTLDR file manually

Since this error is caused by a compressed NTLDR file, it is possible to fix it by decompressing it manually.

Here are the steps to decompress this file:

Step 1. Insert the Windows 7 install CD, restart the computer and boot from the CD.

Step 2. At the Install Windows screen, set language, time and other preference and click Next.

Step 3. Click Repair your computer, then you will see System Recovery Options.

Step 4. Open Command Prompt and type cd \ attrib -c C:\ntldr. This command will decompress the NTLDR file:

Step 5. Once NTLDR is decompressed, remove the Windows installation disc from the disc drive and then restart the PC

Method 2. Replace the NTLDR file

Windows users can replace the NTLDR file with a fresh copy from a Windows installation CD.

Take Windows 7 as an example. Here are the steps to replace NTLDR file in Windows 7:

Step 1. Insert the Windows 7 installation CD, restart the computer and boot from the CD.

Step 2. Access System Recovery Options by clicking Repair your computer. Then open Command Prompt, use the following commands to copy the NTLDR and file from the Windows installation disk to the hard disk:

copy D:\i386\ntldr C:\    

Where D:\ is the install CD’s drive letter and C:\ is the Windows 7 partition’s drive letter

Step 3. When prompted whether the existing file should be overwritten, answer “Y”(Yes).

Step 4. Once that file is replaced, remove the Windows installation disc from the disc drive and restart the PC.

Other errors related to NT Loader

Besides the error NTLDR is compressed, you may also meet other typical errors related to NTLDR.

  • Invalid partition table 

  • Error loading Operating System 

  • Missing Operating System 

  • A disk read error occurred

As you may know, some system files like NTLDR will be deleted or modified by malware, which will cause the computer not working properly. Therefore, to prevent this issue happening again, we should backup system and important data on a regular basis. Here, I’d like to recommend an easy-to-use backup tool – AOMEI Backupper.

How to avoid this issue happening again?

AOMEI Backupper is a free backup and restore tool that works in Windows 7/8/10/XP/Visa. It allows you to backup system, disk, partition, files and folders with only a few clicks. You can also schedule automatic backup. With a backup at hand, you can perfectly prevent NTLDR errors happening again. Let’s see how to create image backup with AOMEI Backupper.

Step 1. Download AOMEI Backupper, install and open this software. Then click Backup, select System Backup or Disk Backup according to your own needs. Here we take System Backup as an example.

System Backup

Step 2. It will automatically choose the source for you, and you only need to choose another location as destination path.

System Backup Task Name

Step 3. At the bottom of System Backup, here are Backup Options, Schedule, and Scheme that you can click to have more advanced settings.

  • Backup Options: Here you can enable backup encryption and email notification.

  • Schedule: You can click Schedule to backup system on a regular basis.

  • Scheme: This option allows you to automatically delete old backups. However, this feature is only available in the advanced version of AOMEI Backupper. You can upgrade if necessary.

Step 4. After setting up the backup, click Start Backup.

Tips: To prevent NTLDR is compressed issue in Windows Server, you can download AOMEI Backupper Server edition.

After creating system image backup, you can restore system whenever there are any problems with system files. And you won’t worry about the issue NTLDR is compressed or missing anymore.