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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    Dual boot problem

    I'm trying to set up a machine with 2 hard disks such that each disk can boot a different operating system--WINXP and WIN2K. I've got WINXP running on one of the disks. The other disk appears to be in good working order--I can map to it, etc. But I can't seem to install a bootable operating system on it. The disks are swappable, so even if I remove the XP disk and swap the other to the primary bay and install WIN2K or WINXP, the PC fails to recognize the operating system.

    Thanks in advance for any assistance.

  2. #2
    Silver Lounger
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    Re: Dual boot problem

    What jumper settings are on your hard drives?

    By default, on most of modern hard drives the jumper is set on CS (Cable Select) position. For more stable configuration, I would recommend set your first hard drive (it doesn't matter which one, but remember, it will be the only bootable one) to Master and connect it to primary controller. Set your CD-ROM (or DVD-ROM, or whatever) as your Secondary Master, and your second hard drive as Slave. If you have both CD-ROM and CD-RW, connect CD-RW as primary slave and second hard drive as secondary slave. If you have only one CD-ROM, it doesn't matter to which controller to connect the second hard drive.

    Then insert your Win2k Installation CD and boot from it. During the installation, you will see the list of available partitions. From this point, be very careful: by mistake you can destroy your WinXP installation.
    1. Locate the second hard drive on the list. If you will see any existing partitions on that drive, destroy them (WARNING! All your data on this drive will be destroyed!) - press D, then Yes, then L.
    2. Then choose Unpartitioned space on the second hard drive and create partition (press C). I would recommend to choose NTFS (New Technology File System) rather than FAT32 (File Alocaton Table, 32-bit).
    3. Only after that highlight the new, already created partition on the second hard drive and install Win2k on it (pressing Enter).

    Since you install Win2k after WinXP (chronologically reverse order), your boot.ini file in the root of your C: drive can not allowed dual-booting. Open it and edit similar to this (presuming your first hard drive contains WinXP, and second Win2k):

    [boot loader]
    timeout=30
    default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)WINDOWS
    [operating systems]
    multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)WINDOWS="Micros oft Windows XP Professional" /fastdetect
    multi(0)disk(1)rdisk(0)partition(1)WINNT="Windows 2000 Professional" /fastdetect

    For more information, see HOW TO: Edit the Boot.ini File

    Good luck!

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