As long as your image is good, you should be able to restore it. That your getting it to bootup to the splashscreen still points to a drive letter or boot.ini file problem. I would rule out the MBR as your problem. Theres one more thing that is rare but can cause bootup problems, that is how the primary partition's are slotted. If your original windows xp installation was in a different primary partition and you want to install it in another primary partition, that might cause problems. This is fixable by re-slotting the partitions. I don't think is a hardware problem, mainly because your system has no problem reading your hard drives and cd's. If you had a motherboard/hard drive problems you would have problems booting up with cd's and would be getting input/output read errors. I have never encountered a windows xp image, that I couldn't restored. Yours is fixable because, it boots, then reaches an area where it can't find the startup files. "Maybe you need to try to change the drive letter to e: " and try to reboot. At this point it won't hurt anything. From my expierence everything points to the drive letters. finally your boot.ini file has a reference to a "windows old" that looks out of place. I'm not sure if removing that entry will cause problems. Maybe someone else who is more familiar with the boot.ini file can suggest something there.