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  1. #1
    New Lounger
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
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    Modify single drive to dual boot and offload programs and data to logical d

    Xp SP3 on a 74 GB drive.

    Currently, C: 64GB with 34% used has the working Xp , and D: 10GB with 40% used has the HP Recovery.

    I would like to add a boot manager for either an eCS or Linux partition and then put Program Files and Data on separate drives in and extended partition. If possible, I would like to do this without having to reinstall Xp.

    I would like to shrink C: so it could be backed up as an image on a few DVDs. The folders on C: which would probably stay are Windows (6GB), Users, i386 (500MB). Could Program Files (2GB) be moved to the extended partition, or would the programs have to be reinstalled?

    The tools that I have to use are Partition Wizard; both program and the image CD. There is a USB 1TB drive available.

  2. #2
    New Lounger
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post

    Lots of views but no answers I suspect that's due to the kind of questions contained in this topic.
    Regardless ,while I can't write a full tutorial for you ,I can give you some tips and links.
    However ,you'd better be fully conversant with your system and the tools you're going to use.

    DISCLAIMER: Advice or suggestions below are given in good faith, but I can't guarantee
    that you'll be successful in achieving your objective since the chance of failure is fairly high
    because of the various boot menus involved.
    I.O.W ,don't blame me for any mishaps.

    Start off with creating (bootable) images of C and D and save them on your 1 TB drive.
    You could conceivably delete the D (HP Recovery) partition, but be aware that C and D are linked
    via the HP Recovery Console.So ideally the image you create should include both as an entity.
    Also ,the HP Recovery software contains entries in the boot menu which may be upset by the
    Linux or eCS bootloader.

    Ideally you'd try this on a separate 100GB drive
    IOW restore your saved image to that drive , take out the "old" drive and boot up with your
    trial drive.
    Using the Partition Wizard CD ,boot up from it, shrink the C partition , create the Data- and
    the Linux- or eCS partitions.
    I'm somewhat puzzled by your choices: eComStation is not free ($150) ,whereas Linux is free for the most part.

    Here are some links to deal with the dual boot setup
    How to dual boot Windows XP and Linux

    Dual Boot system with eComStation-OS/2 and other operating Systems.

    As for your other question about moving Program Files.
    Yes it can be done ,but can give some errors at times.
    Nevertheless ,the following utilities have been used successfully -your pick as to which one you want to use.
    There are several.

    Directory Linker

    Link Shell Extension (LSE)

    JunctionMaster (still in alpha - be careful )


    NTFS Link

    Steam Mover

    PickMeAp Very interesting multi-purpose software. (includes moving applications)

    COA2 (Change Of Address) Somewhat old ,but worked well for its time (description is for v1 but version 2 works on XP)

    Good luck.
    Above links may also be useful for other readers even if they're not contemplating the setup contained
    in this thread.


  3. #3
    Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Berwyn Heights, MD
    Thanked 4 Times in 4 Posts
    You will lose the restore ability completely if you unlink the D partition. There are loaders in it with pointers to other files. I would shrink C, then add a partition between it and the recovery partition and simply use it as E: and move your choice of stuff there. Once rebooted, go to maintenance and format the e: partition and all should be well. Move your stuff over, but pointers will be a mess unless you use COA or other pointer movers outlined above. The drive partitions do not have to be in order on the drive. Calls read the disc partition label, not the location on the drive. If you wish to add a drive for the stuff and use newly created E partition as a dual booting O/S you will need to allow it to create the dual boot mechanism on C: during its installation routine and all should be well.

    Personally I would use the added disc drive for the new o/s instead of the split partition on your original drive unless your data is too big for the new split drive E size. Then you could copy the loader files from C to the new drive and it would be able to boot by itself if needed. UNIX style boot loaders do not require specific track/sector locations.
    Last edited by mpioso; 2013-05-02 at 03:55.

  4. #4
    2 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Thanked 10 Times in 9 Posts

    I would backup all your data to the external and burn new restore disks from your existing XP install.

    Hopefully, you have a normal XP install CD that matches the key on your computer. Your key sticker should list whether it is for SP1/2/3 or not. Your XP CD needs to match, or your key won't work on the disk (to my knowledge).

    XP CD is not the same as the Restore CD/DVD set provided/created by HP. This might make my method impossible for you to complete.

    I would take a full drive image and store it on the external. This way, if this method bombs, you can always get back to exactly where you were in the first place.

    I would next remove all partitions.

    Install XP. Use the installer to create a 12Gig primary, and install XP to it. (I chose 12G because it should be large enough to hold WinXP and any software that won't install to D:\Program Files correctly now as well as in the future)

    Xp is now installed-> Create a 2nd partition (D:\) and give it how ever much space your data needs with your program files included.

    You got XP, so the very next thing I would do is modify the registry to make %ProgramFiles% match D:\Program Files (make the folder on D:\ first.)

    Install your software. See if the installer(s) pickup on D:\Program Files as the default install location. Every program that does should work with no further modifications. But if a program does NOT default to the D:\ folder.... I would still select the D:\ location and try it. If it works, great, if not, try the utilities others posted above me.

    Lastly, I would install the 2nd OS. Typically, Windows first and anything else last. Most non-Windows OS' recognize Windows and installs appropriately when the correct options are chosen.

    I didn't go into further detail as I am not suggesting you do this. If you never thought of this particular method, it just might not be the right way for you. I prefer this sequence for the benefits of redundancy (image the whole HD first) and clean-ness (fresh installs in fresh locations, not shoe-horning previous installs into new locations, which can create it's own set of gremlins)

    I also chose these steps because I prefer to NOT have HP's hand in my drives. I am proficient enough to locate all my own drivers and to be my own specialist. Besides, HP wants me to update my BIOS to a version that turns the fan off on my overheating laptop. Following my steps, there should be no HP software on the machine now, except for the required drivers.

    I have followed these steps myself, and they work for me in 95% of situations. The other 5% get installed onto C:\Program Files.

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