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Windows 7: Changing the active boot partition.

07 May 2012   #1

Windows 7 Pro with SP1 32bit
 
 
Changing the active boot partition.

I know that changing the active boot partition can be done without pain with the BCDEDIT Command Line Tool. My question is if it can be done manually without using a third party program?

I read on the Net that that the drive involved in booting needs a Folder named Boot and a file named bootmgr. These are both System objects and remain hidden by default. However on checking in my Computer not only I found these two objects but a few more files that may possibly be needed for booting. These files are config.sys, pagefile.sys and autoexec.bat.

If I copy these 5 objects (1 folder and 4 files) into my System Volume Drive and make it active then would it become the boot drive? I friend of mine who knows the inside out of Computers said that he doesn't know for sure but it may not work. The reason being that during installation the paths get embedded in the files that manual copying would not change but which BCDEDIT Command Line Tool perhaps does.

Anyway I shall try this out on my Grand-daughters computer to see what happens coming Saturday because she is the one wanting the change.

But in the meantime what is the opinion of the sages on this Forum?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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11 May 2012   #2

Windows 7 x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by wanchoo View Post
I know that changing the active boot partition can be done without pain with the BCDEDIT Command Line Tool. My question is if it can be done manually without using a third party program?
From an elevated command prompt window.

- Diskpart
- List disk
- select disk 0 (or whatever)
- select partition 1
- active
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 May 2012   #3
Microsoft MVP

 

It depends upon why you're changing it. Is this to remove a Dual Boot? In this case you'd mark the Win7 Partition Active, then run Startup Repair - Run 3 Separate Times.

The reason to use the automated method is because besides writing the System boot files to the partition there are other checks and tests which need to be run which are automated in Startup Repair - including changing the hotlink to F8 System Recovery Options which will be lost by manually editing the BCD or using EasyBCD to change boot partition.

It's best to see a maximized Disk Management screenshot first because each case can be different, e.g. a Logical partition cannot be marked Active, and cannot always be converted if there are already 3 Primary.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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11 May 2012   #4

Windows 7 Pro with SP1 32bit
 
 

Thank you pcunite and Greg. As already predicted just copying of files does not work. I shall try out the suggestions given by Greg or alternatively reintall Windows.

No, the problem is not connected with dual boot. I installed Windows 7 in C drive when there was this other partition full of all sorts of mp3 and other freeware. The installation put the boot files in the D drive and made it nameless like the System Reserved Partition.

Thank you all
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 May 2012   #5
Microsoft MVP

 

Can you post back a screenshot of the maxmized Disk Mgmt drive map with listings, or a camera snap of Partition Wizard boot CD drive map with listings? Then we can advise you with certainty.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 May 2012   #6

Windows 7 Pro with SP1 32bit
 
 

Thank you Greg. I would do that as soon as possible. The computer is with my grand-daughter and I would do that as soon as I lay my hands on it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Changing the active boot partition.




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