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Missing operating system

Distro hopping may sometimes lead to borked bootloaders and/or installs. Grub/Lilo are usually relatively easy to google around for a fix but fixing a borked windows install wasn’t as easy to find a fix. Borked mine so I’m posting this over here so I can use it for later reference.

Boot from the Windows 8 install CD and navigate to the command prompt. I somehow managed to disable the “active” (bootable?) option for the partition Windows was installed so “bootrec /fixmbr” and “bootrec /fixboot” weren’t working.

diskpart
list volume
# Select the volume where Windows is installed:
select volume X
active

This activates and turns the partition bootable.

At this point “bootrec /fixmbr” and “bootrec /fixboot” were reporting success but the computer still failed to boot, something about a damaged BCD. “bootrec /rebuildbcd” did the trick.