Yea this is a boot error that is pretty hard to fix in the time of OS partians on the hard drive. And disc images on CD. I mean how do you get to the recovery window when this happens. Don't you need a copy of the OS to fix it.
Answer is yeppers. I'm lucky I'm a smart monkey and always make sure I buy a DVD of the microsoft product I'm going to use. That also usually mean being behind the times. In this day in age when everyone is doing vista I'm still doing Windows XP. Simply so I have the disc with the os burnt on it.
The fix is simple. Insert the Windows XP DVD. Boot the PC and select the repair option. Run chkdsk /p. If it returns one or more errors run chkdsk /r. This should repair the errors. If you can't fix the errors your hard drive has gone to the great beyond.
I bought a secondary 350 GB hard drive for my avetatec. So I'll be cooking with crisco and I was able to burn off dvd's of data.