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  1. #1
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    Anyone here an expert on the Vista/7 boot loader?

    I have a four-partition disk with a WinXP OS partition, a Win7 OS partition, and a user data partition. I created these partitions with BootIt Next Generation, a very nice but outdated boot and partition managing tool, but I'd like to convert to using the Windows 7 boot loader.

    I removed BING and replaced it with the Windows 7 boot loader and created an entry for Windows XP but it doesn't boot XP. It will successfully boot Win 7.

    Windows 7 sees all four primary partitions, but when I created the Windows XP setup with BING, I hid the Win7 partition so that XP saw its own partition as C: and the user data partition as D: Windows 7 sees itself as C: user data as D: and the XP partition as F:

    I'm confused as to how to configure the boot manager using BCDedit.exe to get XP to boot again. Do I put ntldr on the Win7 partition or leave it on the XP partition? Do I refer to the XP partition in the boot manager using the F: designation, or can I refer to it without a drive letter. It expects to see its own partition as C: Will this conflict with Windows 7 seeing itself as C: also? (This was easy to deal with in BING, because it would re-arrange the MBR before booting either XP or 7 allowing each to see itself as C:

    Perhaps I can't boot XP because it expects to be on the C: drive and so does 7, but I'm hoping there is a way to fool it. No matter, I'll likely replace it with Ubuntu in a while.

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    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    You should have kept BING. It has its own BCD edit function.

    It is by no means outdated...
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
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    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    You can download EasyBCD 2.0 (the earlier versions don't handle Windows 7). It has a fairly simple UI.
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
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    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kent W. England View Post
    (This was easy to deal with in BING, because it would re-arrange the MBR before booting either XP or 7 allowing each to see itself as C:

    Perhaps I can't boot XP because it expects to be on the C: drive and so does 7, but I'm hoping there is a way to fool it. No matter, I'll likely replace it with Ubuntu in a while.
    BING does not see or assign drive letters; it sees drives and partitions with their partition names, if one uses partition names (which is a very good idea, if one uses very many partitions). It is the OS that assigns drive letters when it boots. I dual boot Windows 7 and XP with BING, and they both see themselves (once booted) as C:, and the other bootable partition as D:.

    BING simply tells the OS selected from the boot menu on what partition it can find its boot loader and associated files.
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
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  5. #5
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    [quote name='Kent W. England' date='2010-05-29 13:36' timestamp='1275154581' post='842282']
    Anyone here an expert on the Vista/7 boot loader?

    I have a four-partition disk with a WinXP OS partition, a Win7 OS partition, and a user data partition. I created these partitions with BootIt Next Generation, a very nice but outdated boot and partition managing tool, but I'd like to convert to using the Windows 7 boot loader.


    Kent ,
    Hello. I have had some experience with managing "boot loaders" as i am now "quint booting" 5 OS's. Vista, several iterations, and now Windows "7" 32 \ and 64 bit, and Linux mint "Helena" ( experimental, just for fun and to compare systems) I use Neosmart EasyBCD (beta2) (free whatever) you can get the beta if it is not already available at the "Neosmart forum" just register. With Easy BCD you can set up to boot what ever system that you want as your default and also change the default time as well. You can backup your settings before you start the process too.You will need the beta if you want to boot "GRUB2" in the mix (linux boot loader) Just check this forum (search EasyBCD) for much information. As far as your system choosing drive letters ..... Windows always wants whatever OS is "UP" to be C: Will do this automatically. You can change things around to some extent ... by using "disk manager" but you wont be able to assign anything else to the "booted "OS". (just rename them so you can keep track of them) Post back if you need more info. Regards Fred
    PlainFred

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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fred J Usack View Post
    Kent ,
    Hello. I have had some experience with managing "boot loaders" as i am now "quint booting" 5 OS's. Vista, several iterations, and now Windows "7" 32 \ and 64 bit, and Linux mint "Helena" ( experimental, just for fun and to compare systems) I use Neosmart EasyBCD (beta2) (free whatever) you can get the beta if it is not already available at the "Neosmart forum" just register. With Easy BCD you can set up to boot what ever system that you want as your default and also change the default time as well. You can backup your settings before you start the process too.You will need the beta if you want to boot "GRUB2" in the mix (linux boot loader) Just check this forum (search EasyBCD) for much information. As far as your system choosing drive letters ..... Windows always wants whatever OS is "UP" to be C: Will do this automatically. You can change things around to some extent ... by using "disk manager" but you wont be able to assign anything else to the "booted "OS". (just rename them so you can keep track of them) Post back if you need more info. Regards Fred
    Thanks, Fred.
    Here is my bcdedit configuration for the XP boot:

    bcdedit /create {ntldr} /d "Windows XP"
    bcdedit /set {ntldr} device partition=F:
    bcdedit /set {ntldr} path \ntldr
    bcdedit /displayorder {ntldr} /addlast
    bcdedit /timeout 10

    Furthermore, I copied ntldr over to the Win7 partition which is the active partition. It's also on the XP partition, where it belongs.

    When I select XP to boot, I see no boot screen whatever and then it's back to the BIOS. Any ideas what I've done wrong in my configuration?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by bbearren View Post
    You should have kept BING. It has its own BCD edit function.

    It is by no means outdated...
    I haven't checked the site in a while -- does BING have the ability to edit boot configuration from within Windows?

    I hope I made clear that BING was having no trouble dual-booting 7 and XP. No issues with BING for me.

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    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kent W. England View Post
    I haven't checked the site in a while -- does BING have the ability to edit boot configuration from within Windows?
    No, not from within Windows, from within BING. If a partition has a BCD store, BING can edit it.
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
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  9. #9
    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kent W. England View Post
    Here is my bcdedit configuration for the XP boot:

    bcdedit /create {ntldr} /d "Windows XP"
    bcdedit /set {ntldr} device partition=F:
    bcdedit /set {ntldr} path \ntldr
    bcdedit /displayorder {ntldr} /addlast
    bcdedit /timeout 10

    Furthermore, I copied ntldr over to the Win7 partition which is the active partition. It's also on the XP partition, where it belongs.

    When I select XP to boot, I see no boot screen whatever and then it's back to the BIOS. Any ideas what I've done wrong in my configuration?
    You don't have an identifier, which should be {ntldr}

    It should look something like this:

    Windows Legacy OS Loader
    --------------------------------------
    identifier {ntldr}
    device partition=F:
    path \ntldr
    description Windows XP

    The displayorder and the timeout will be in the Windows Boot Manager, which is your Windows 7 loader.

    You're not seeing a boot screen when you select XP because you're not calling an identifier for the loader.

    If you type "bcdedit" at a command prompt and hit enter, it will list all the current settings in your BCD store.
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by bbearren View Post
    You don't have an identifier, which should be {ntldr}

    It should look something like this:

    Windows Legacy OS Loader
    --------------------------------------
    identifier {ntldr}
    device partition=F:
    path \ntldr
    description Windows XP
    What you list is exactly what bcdedit.exe displays for me.

  11. #11
    Super Moderator Deadeye81's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kent W. England View Post
    What you list is exactly what bcdedit.exe displays for me.
    I do not see the specific identifier entry bbearren said was missing:

    Windows Legacy OS Loader
    --------------------------------------
    identifier {ntldr}
    device partition=F:
    path \ntldr
    description Windows XP

    Also, you said earlier you copied "ntldr" over to the Windows 7 partition. I don't know how that impacts the issue, or whether it does at all, but ntldr should only be on the XP partition (In a setup where XP was the first OS and Windows 7 was added afterward).
    Deadeye81

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  12. #12
    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kent W. England View Post
    What you list is exactly what bcdedit.exe displays for me.
    Does ntldr exist on "partition F:"?
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
    Unleash Windows

  13. #13
    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kent W. England View Post
    What you list is exactly what bcdedit.exe displays for me.
    What is the full listing of the BCD store?
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
    Unleash Windows

  14. #14
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    If all else fails, what about using bootcfg to find the XP installation and fix the boot.ini file? See the link below:
    Click here

    If XP then boots you can restore the dual boot by booting with your Windows 7 CD and do a "Startup Repair"

  15. #15
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    Kent,
    Hello, This may be a over simplification of the problem but here go's anyway. It seems to me that "7" always wants to be the "big dog" in the overall boot scheme. I know with EasyBCD i can overcome this, however.. Check this first, click on computer.. then properties ... then.. advanced system setting.....then advanced... then ...startup and recovery,and check to see in the dropdown if it shows XP if it does... then set it as default.Other than installing EasyBCD i have no other suggestions . regards Fred
    PlainFred

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