Quote: Originally Posted by whs
dsperber, he was trying to install with everything (except the SSD) disconnected.
Well, I'm certainly confused enough.
I thought he'd already succeeded in getting Windows 7 installed onto the SSD when there was no SATA drive in the machine.
Then he installed the SATA drive, and problems ensued. Did I get this wrong?
My theory was that the installation of the second drive caused his BIOS to designate the new SATA drive as "hard disk #1", i.e. the boot drive. There obviously was no OS on it yet, since it had been installed on the SSD drive previously.
I was speculating that all that was really needed to get things back to "working properly" was to get back into the BIOS and rearrange the hard disk sequence, so that the SSD drive was again either (a) hard disk #1, if that's what an SSD drive looks like... I don't have one so I don't really know, or (b) change the boot sequence order to go to the SSD drive first and not the SATA drive first (which it seems is what the BIOS did, on its own, when it saw the installed SATA drive for the first time).
That shows that something is mucked up on the SSD. The SSD can be on any port, that does not matter. I have one on port3 and on another system on port4.
Right. The SATA port number itself really means nothing. It's just a connector.
But the smart way is to disconnect the HDDs because the Windows 7 installer has this habit to put the bootmgr on the first Sata it finds - even if the system itself gets to the right disk.
Windows 7's installer is not just picking the first SATA drive as the target for the boot manager files.
It's picking the hard disk #1, i.e. whatever is specified as boot drive in the BIOS setup. That's what the BIOS is going to boot to, so that's where the boot manager files need to go... no matter where the actual Windows 7 or WinXP or whatever OS(s) are placed. That's where BCD puts its ini file with the names and locations of the other bootable OS's, and where they are (drive number and partition number on that drive)... on the BOOT DRIVE, which is that first hard disk per the BIOS.
Seems to me if you want the SSD to be the boot drive, just rearrange the hard disk sequence in the BIOS to list it as the first hard disk, and specify it first in the boot device sequence (if it's not already there) and not the SATA drive.
I suggest we wait until he reports back with his findings from PW. He may have to setup the SSD again on another system - either in a bay or in an external enclosure.
I admit, I was kind of confused about the whole story in the original post.
But getting Windows 7 to install where you want it, which may or may not require that special 100MB "system reserved" partition if you're not installing in an environment which already has another bootable Windows (located on what the BIOS currently considers "the boot drive"), requires that the Windows 7 installer can pretty much have its way... and that is most easily done by just leaving all space on the target drive completely free. Let Windows 7 do whatever it wants. Then you can come back later and shrink the Windows 7 partition, and allocate other logical partitions if that's what you want to do.
From that point on, that first "boot drive" (actually, the 100MB "system reserved" partition) will be the location for the boot manager files, which will point to the Windows 7 partition also on that same drive. There should then be no problem installing the SATA drive as a second drive... as long as that doesn't trigger the BIOS to fool with the hard drive numbers and boot drive sequence, in which case it just needs to be reset manually to resolve any confusion. Obviously, the bootable system (i.e. boot manager) is not on the SATA drive, so you can't let the BIOS boot to the SATA drive... if the "system reserved" partition is on the SSD.