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Windows 7: Black Magic with WinXP Boot.ini and Windows 7 boot file

13 Mar 2010   #1

Win 7 - Mac OS X - Linux
 
 
Black Magic with WinXP Boot.ini and Windows 7 boot file

Why Black Magic? Let me get to it.
I had a dual boot Win XP and Windows 7. One beautiful day last week, my Windows XP hard drive seized and is now as good as dead.
The Windows 7 Hard drive works, but Windows 7 won't boot.

I have already tried just about everything I could, so if you think of something, I probably tried it.

The bottom line is that the only documented way to fix this issue would be to go back in time and either install BCDedit on my Windows 7 drive or perform a clean install of win 7. Which is what I did on another hard drive, by the way.

Now, since my options are limited but I have a perfectly good Windows 7 installation that won't boot, I found this tutorial:

Migrate to Windows 7 from an XP dual-boot configuration | Microsoft Windows | TechRepublic.com

which explains how to "properly" eliminate the WinXP partition from a Windows 7, WinXP dual boot.

One of the steps, unfortunately, is to copy the Boot.ini and other files from the WinXP partition to the Windows 7 partition, which I cannot do. Otherwise, there is little difference between my situation and the one in the tutorial.

This is where the black magic comes in: what if I go to another WinXP computer (say, my netbook or an old winXP I have) and copy the Boot files from there, paste tehm into my Windows 7 drive and edit them to reflect a dual boot, then proceed with the same steps as the tutorial?

What do you windows geniuses think? Can it work?

Do any of you have a dual boot winxp/Windows 7 boot.ini code you could post for me to copy?

Thank you very much for your help.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

13 Mar 2010   #2

Windows 7 Ultimate 64Bit
 
 

Do a repair from the Windows 7 disk. Windows 7 is not finding the Master Boot Record.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Mar 2010   #3

Win 7 - Mac OS X - Linux
 
 

I have tried that numerous times. The Windows 7 installation disk first says there is something wrong, then it says it fixed it. I restart, and nothing. Then I do it again, again is fixed. Now it just says everything is fine, still it won;t boot.

By now I have tried the repair with the win 7 disk no less the 12 or 13 times. It just won;t work.

Not only that, but by exploring all my disks with my Mac (mounted as USB drives) I did a fresh install of Win 7 on another disk and that only has one Boot folder under windows/boot

yet, my original Windows 7 disk has 2 boot folders: one top level under C and one under windows/boot.

Believe me: if there is a solution posted anywhere on any forum, I have tried it, I have been at this for 3 days now. This is a real problem, but if you guys can take a look at the tutorial I mention above
Migrate to Windows 7 from an XP dual-boot configuration | Microsoft Windows | TechRepublic.com

you'll see that it covers pretty much the same situation as mine with the difference that in the tutorial the elimination of WinXP is intentional while in my case it's due to a disk failure.

However, I really think copying files from another Win XP installation may work but I would appreciate a second opinion from someone that has not been staring at my computer for 3 days.

Thanks.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


13 Mar 2010   #4

Windows 7 Ultimate x64, Mint 9
 
 

As Zomby said, looks to be a bad MBR.

Boot into your Windows 7 install disk, and choose repair your computer. Go to Command Prompt and type:
Code:
fixmbr
~Lordbob
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Mar 2010   #5

Windows 7 Ultimate x64, Mint 9
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by conticreative View Post
I have tried that numerous times. The Windows 7 installation disk first says there is something wrong, then it says it fixed it. I restart, and nothing. Then I do it again, again is fixed. Now it just says everything is fine, still it won;t boot.

By now I have tried the repair with the win 7 disk no less the 12 or 13 times. It just won;t work.

Not only that, but by exploring all my disks with my Mac (mounted as USB drives) I did a fresh install of Win 7 on another disk and that only has one Boot folder under windows/boot

yet, my original Windows 7 disk has 2 boot folders: one top level under C and one under windows/boot.

Believe me: if there is a solution posted anywhere on any forum, I have tried it, I have been at this for 3 days now. This is a real problem, but if you guys can take a look at the tutorial I mention above
Migrate to Windows 7 from an XP dual-boot configuration | Microsoft Windows | TechRepublic.com

you'll see that it covers pretty much the same situation as mine with the difference that in the tutorial the elimination of WinXP is intentional while in my case it's due to a disk failure.

However, I really think copying files from another Win XP installation may work but I would appreciate a second opinion from someone that has not been staring at my computer for 3 days.

Thanks.
Dual Boot Installation with Windows 7 and XP

Maybe that will help you out.

~Lordbob
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Mar 2010   #6
Microsoft MVP

W 7 64-bit Ultimate
 
 

I have to add the XP boot files back to my Vista after I reinstall Vista (the system partition) and just leave the XP still installed (second after Vista) as Vista has the boot files, yes it should work.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Mar 2010   #7

Windows 7 x64
 
 

You need to make the Win 7 partition active. Use a third party partitioning software, or boot to the Install DVD or Repair CD and run Diskpart. If you would like the commands for diskpart, post back.

After the Win 7 partition is active, a repair install should work.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Mar 2010   #8
Microsoft MVP

 

As Saltgrass says, if you cannot get Startup Repair to write the MBR to Windows 7 partition after repeated attempts with reboots, then it is because it is not correctly marked active, or Windows 7 is damaged, or HD is not set to boot first..

Unplug the dead XP HD, set Windows 7 HD first HD to boot (after DVD drive).

Boot into Windows 7 DVD, select Repair, click through to Recovery Tools list to open a Command Line, type:

DISKPART
LIST DISK
SELECT DISK # (replace # with Windows 7 HD)
LIST PARTITION
Select partition # (for Windows 7 partition)
ACTIVE
EXIT

Now return to Recovery Tools list to run Startup Repair up to 3 separate times with reboots until Windows 7 starts.

You can also do this using free Partition Wizard bootable CD, which will Modify>Mark Active and Rebuild MBR with a graphical interface.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Mar 2010   #9

Win 7 - Mac OS X - Linux
 
 
[solved] Boot problem

Thank you for the replay.

The failed disk has been off the computer from day one and I have been testing one disk at the time. Incidentally, I was able to revive the hard drive using BCDetit.exe like others have been suggesting here.

Until now I was unable to make it work because my syntax was wrong when I first tried it. At least it must have been. Finally yesterday I decided to try to find BCDetit.exe again and this time it worked.
Then I used one of the parameters out of a list I had to try and at the first try the disk came back to life.

Thank you all for the help. I wonder how I could have mistyped it the first time or what the heck happened.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Mar 2010   #10
Microsoft MVP

W 7 64-bit Ultimate
 
 

Hello conticreative.



We're glad you found a solution that works for you, thanks for the update.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Black Magic with WinXP Boot.ini and Windows 7 boot file




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