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Windows 7: Is it possible to change default OS at boot?

30 Aug 2014   #1
Poolemahu

Win 7 Ultimate 32 bit
 
 
Is it possible to change default OS at boot?

Hi All,

I'm not sure if Im in deep trouble or if this is something trivial. Please help me out.

I had once tried to install windows xp SP3 (long back) and it had failed.. The result was that I got 2 options (healthy xp and not working SP3) Everytime during boot. I continued working choosing the healthy one. The default always was the corrupt sp3 and if I was not alert to change it it would try to install Sp3.. Say something got corrupted and restart again during which time I would select the healthy Xp.

Sometime back I got Windows 7 and installed the same. Rather than clean up and format my drive I went for an install that didn't delete my other drives. It took a back up of xp and installed win 7. My C drive had 9Gb of space and I continued working. At boot up I now had 3 options.

annoyed at constantly being asked 3 choices at start up I found my way to uncheck the 'time' box in the advanced setting in windows 7. I thought this meant that win 7 would load automatically without asking for other choices.

Now when I start my system it doesn't ask any choices but goes straight to install from the the corrupt SP3 version, fails and prompts for a restart.. At restart the same thing happens again... I am now stuck and can't seem to either boot up windows 7 or get that list of OS to choose at boot..

Are there any options in bios through which I can increase the time so that it displays that list again or can I change default OS to boot there?

I am not sure of installing win7 again as I believe I don't have enough space on C drive and even if I take the pain of doing all the installation will it still go to the corrupt SP3 because no where during installation do I change the time to list the OS on the machine. Plus I don want to lose my data as there is years of work. I do have a back up on an external drive but it is with a friend who has borrowed it for Atleast a month.

In case you ask me to install win 7 again can I just do it in such a way that only the C drive is formatted? But I need to be sure that corrupt sp3 is not there to cause problem at boot.

Please help me I'm in deep trouble. I don't have any other machine to work on and I type this on phone..

If you need any further info please let me know..

Thanks.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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30 Aug 2014   #2
Comicsnut

Win 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

If you type "msconfig" in the start menu and then choose the "Boot" tab, are there different operating systems listed?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Aug 2014   #3
Comicsnut

Win 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Also, download the free version of Macrium and create a Rescue CD as shown on that page.

Boot to that disc and when Macrium loads the environment, choose the option on the left side of the dialog box for repairing Windows boot issues. This will fix your MBR (Master Boot Record).

If, when the environment is loading, you are prompted about loading drivers just press no or cancel, you don't need to inject any drivers.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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30 Aug 2014   #4
Poolemahu

Win 7 Ultimate 32 bit
 
 

Hi Comicsnut,

Thanks for replying.
The problem is that I don't get a proper boot to happen.
When I power ON my machine it doesn't show any list of OS and tries to install the XP SP3 which doesn't and hence the machine goes into a loop of restart and failed attempts of installing SP3..
I can't get to access windows at all... And since its the only machine I have, I am unable to download software.

Any other solution?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Aug 2014   #5
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

Is the data on your hard drive on its own partition? Or is it on a partition shared by an operating system?

If the personal data that you care about was known to be secure and saved (backed up), would you bite the bullet and install Windows 7 only and get rid of XP entirely?

Do you have an ordinary valid Windows 7 installation disc?

Unless your hard drive is actually damaged, I'd think you should be able to gain access to your data--possibly by using Linux if nothing else. Wait for more comments and don't do anything rash.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Aug 2014   #6
Poolemahu

Win 7 Ultimate 32 bit
 
 

Thanks for your kind response.

My data is backed up. I always use the c drive for OS and the other drives I use for data. However the XP I guess is on a different partition.

My last option is that to format the whole set up. I do have the windows 7 CD with me.
But I'm hesitant to do that because I saw the whole set up working smoothly with win 7. And I didn't have to reinstall any software or drivers.
If I do a format I need to do all the work of installing.

I was wondering if there was an easier way to resolve because I know the system has a proper functioning OS inside.
All the solution for viewing the list of OS is what one can do after the OS has booted up. My problem is before that.

I only have the BIOS setting which I can work on..
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Aug 2014   #7
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

Does this PC have only 1 internal hard drive, with several partitions? Or does it have more than 1 internal hard drive?

What options do you see if you go into the BIOS and look at the boot choices and order?

You may be able to fix this just by running Windows 7 repair from the installation disc, but I'm not well enough acquainted with it to advise you.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Aug 2014   #8
Poolemahu

Win 7 Ultimate 32 bit
 
 

Hi.
It has one internal hard disk with multiple partitions. I really don't know where I can see a list of OS in bios setting.
All I have there
1. Main menu - shows stuff like processor and clock and system language.
2. Advanced menu - shows boot configuration, peripheral config, drive config, event log, video config, hardware monitoring, chipset config, USB config.
3. Security menu
4. Power menu
5. Boot menu - boot menu type, boot device priority, hard drive order, dvr rom order and other options to boot -enable or disable
6. Exit

Where do I see the list? Or any place here where I can change the display time for OS choice at boot up?

Thank for your help.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Aug 2014   #9
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

You might want to fill out your system specs at the lower left of your posts. It shows little detail about your PC.

You aren't likely to see a list of OS in the BIOS.

You could look at and change the boot order, but that may well not help. Normally, if a PC can't boot from the first item on the list, it will automatically go to the next and the next and the next until it does boot. So your PC should have walked down the list and failed on every choice.

If you look at the boot configuration choice you mentioned under Advanced, you might see a time related choice that could help you.

Are you comfortable working in the BIOS?

Are your BIOS settings now at default, or have you made changes previously? You should see a choice to reset to defaults, but that won't help you if you are already at defaults.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Aug 2014   #10
Poolemahu

Win 7 Ultimate 32 bit
 
 

Thanks for your patience and support. I will fill up the details on system.

I do know the win 7 OS works.. This is because I have been using it for sometime now and Everytime at boot up if I did not choose the win 7 it would go to install xp sp3 and fail and again reboot. If I simply sit and watched it again, it would try to install sp3 again and fail.

My bios setting are at default I didn't change anything because I am not sure how it would affect my system.
In the advanced menu all I see is numlock( on or off), CPU fan control, system fan control, lowest fan speed, max cpuid value limit, display setup prompt.

Anything in here that would help me show that list of OS' on my machine?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Is it possible to change default OS at boot?




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