{ 32 Intelligent Comments }

Download: Windows XP Recovery Console

Download IconDownload Windows XP Recovery Console

Credit for this download goes to Dean Adams.

This free recovery console package may be used to create your own bootable CD which will allow you access to the Windows XP recovery console without the need for a Windows XP CD.

In a previous article I discussed the three main methods of accessing the recovery console.

This is the third method and requires you to create your own CD.

This is necessary due to the fact that a lot of PC manufacturers now ship PCs without an original CD and instead store the software on the hard disk in a hidden partition.

For instructions on how to create the bootable USB flash drive please see this article: How To Create A Bootable USB Thumb Drive From ISO Image File

Disk Download and Creation Instructions:

Buy Pre-made Disks from $5.95

If you would prefer to have a pre-made Windows Recovery Disk delivered to your door then simply get it here:

  1. Download the Microsoft Setup Disks for your version of Windows XP (SP1 or SP2 – you only need one of these):
  2. Rename the file you just downloaded to BootDisk.exe and place it in a new folder on the desktop called recovercd
  3. Download Recovery Console CD zip file: recovery_console_cd.zip
  4. Extract recovery_console_cd.zip to the recovercd folder on the desktop.
  5. You should now have the following files in the recovercdfolder:
    • burncdcc.exe
    • burncdcc.txt
    • BurncdccLic.txt
    • Burning.txt
    • extract.exe
    • extract.txt
    • mkisofs.exe
    • Readme.htm
    • RecoveryCD.bat
    • splitter.exe
    • splitter.htm
    • BootDisk.exe
  6. Double click RecoveryCD.bat
  7. Accept the EULA if you agree
  8. Files will extract and you will then be asked, ‘Would you like to burn the recovery console CD now?’ – type Y and press Enter
  9. Press any key to continue…
  10. When BurnCDCC appears press the Start button in BurnCDCC
  11. Insert a blank CD when prompted and wait until the process completes.
Updated July 10th 2012 - Corrected links.


Wow, 32 Comments! We've got a conversation going now. Join the discussion below!

  1. Les says:

    Hi Dean can’t find the password to allow me to download recovery_console_cd.zip help!!

    1. Rosco says:

      Hi Les,
      There is no password required.
      Just click the link above. This will open in a new tab/window on the megaupload download page for this file. Wait until the counter on the right reches zero and then click ‘Regular Download’
      Zip file is not password protected.


  2. Edward says:

    Hi, CD created and everything goes OK until I press R to access Recovery Console after booting up. The message states that no hard drives could be found on my computer!

    Am using Windows XP SP2 on healthy 20GB partition. Computer was pre-installed with XP, so Recovery Console is not included on the XP CD.

    Any advice very welcome!

  3. gdv says:

    Is there a way to use the Recovery Console CD zip file to create a bootable CD that will work if WinXPsp3 is already installed? (no SP3 option is listed above, and even Microsoft does not seem to be offering floppy boot disks for SP3).

    Thanks! 🙂

  4. Jamie says:

    Hi, when unzipping to recovercd it sends two folders, one called recovery something and one macOSx I just unzipped it and moved the files individually, I made the cd etc and now it just sticks on boot from cd: have I done something wrong?!?


    1. Rosy says:

      I also have this problem it just freezes at “boot from cd”

  5. Jamie says:

    ok, I downloaded both SP1 and SP2 files and made 2 discs. My PC was originally SP1 so I tried that one, it just hangs at Boot from CD. I put the SP2 one in and it worked! I started encountering problems when I wanted to install IE8 so I thought I’d reformat the PC using the manufacturer disc. I did that and got ntldr is compressed again. I tried the SP1 disc this time but it didn’t work and now it won’t read the SP2 one which worked originally!

    Any ideas at all?! Why work once then not again?!?
    Thanks in advance!

  6. ISO Please says:

    Can’t you just replace this with an ISO? I don’t wanna run an unknown .exe & .bat file.

    1. Rosco says:

      Hi, I’ve now updated the article above with links to an ISO file. Hope this works for you!


  7. jem says:

    The megaupload is all in french, im english in france but not sure exactly what this site is saying. Seems to want to charge me too

    1. Rosco says:

      Hi Jem,
      Megaupload is in French because you are in France. Change the language to English in the top right hand corner.

      You will not be charged to download this file. Just choose the Regular Download button after the timer reaches zero.

  8. jane says:

    i was able to get the recovery console going by using the sp2, however it asks for an administrative password. I type it in and it says that it’s invalid. please help.

  9. Rosco says:

    Hi Jane.
    The password the recovery console requests is your Windows Administrator account password.

  10. andy says:

    hi – am going round and round in circles. xp pro not starting so tried my floppies but they froze on “checking hardware …”‘ etc . Have created your version on CD and screen stopped at boot device menu (dell 670).. Kbd still active part can’t arrow up or down so won’t select boot from CD….UG! Any thoughts?
    cheers, Andy

    1. andy says:

      now it keeps rebooting over and over all on it’s own ( i redownloaded the xp files and reburnt a cd)

  11. jim says:

    I did this and when i choose set up xp it says it can’t find EULA

  12. jonc says:

    ive got the exact same problem as jim!

  13. Rosco says:

    Jim & Jonc – This is a Recovery Console image and NOT a Windows XP Setup CD. The only function you can access is the RECOVERY CONSOLE.


  14. Pleasant says:

    When I open the .zip, “bootdisk.exe” isn’t there.

    1. Anonymous says:

      I’m having this same problem! Were you able to find anything that worked?

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  16. mc says:

    im using a desktop and everytime i try to logg onto it. it comes up with “windows could no start because the following file is missing or corrupt: /windows/system32/config/system. will the solution you proposed fix this, cause i havn’t got the originall cd’s.

  17. GTSI says:

    I’ve followed all of your instructions and have the recovery cd however when I put it in my computer it goes to a blank screen. It doesn’t do anything. when I try to startup with a Windows 98 boot disc it will boot and I can get to the command prompt but can’t see the hard drive. I actually have windows xp on cd and it won’t read the cd. any suggestions? Your help would be greatly appreciated.

    1. Ding says:

      what the hell are you doing mon?

  18. Christopher says:

    It worked I am able to boot up and I get to the point of install XP or repair? I hit R and then I am asked for my administrator password but I forgot it!!! So now what???

  19. Alejandro says:

    After I burned my CD what do I have to do?… When I put it into my laptop and it keeps saying “NTLDR is compressed. Press CTRL+ALT+DEL to restart”

    1. Roger More says:


  20. Anonymous says:

    MICROSOFT DOES N-O-T download a recovery disc download with “SAVE” so that it cannot be saved except on the computer it was downloaded to. That does NO GOOD for the computer where the problem is. THX anyway.

  21. Anonymous says:

    can you down load onto a flash drive instead of cd’s

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