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Windows 7: Dual boot of a copy of Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit

29 Jul 2012   #1
Nibor1

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 
Dual boot of a copy of Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit

Grateful your advice as I am a newbie!

This is what I want to do in order to provide a backup copy of my Windows 7 volume C: on my single hard disc Asus K53U laptop.

Then, if I run into trouble with my C: volume, I will be able to boot into my backup D: volume.

1. Clone my primary and active volume C: to a new volume D: as a backup copy. (My data is on G
2. Make D: a primary volume.
3. Create a second BCD on D: using Visual BCDedit.
4. Make D: Active.

I have implemented steps 1, 2 and 3 - but not step 4.

Steps 1, 2 and 3 have caused my BIOS to ask at every boot whether I want to boot into C: or D: (That is in accordance with my intentions.) Without marking D: as Active, though, booting into D: will not be possible.

However, I am aware that you "cannot" have two active volumes on the same physical disc because it would(?)/might(?) make my laptop unbootable - but why can I not have two active volumes on the same physical disc? Is there a workaround?

If not, would my proposed set-up work satisfactorily with an external USB hard disc?

Thank you!


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
29 Jul 2012   #2
DavidE

Multi-Boot W7_Pro_x64 W8.1_Pro_x64 W10_Pro_x64
 
 

Hello Nibor1 and welcome to Seven Forums,

With the approach you are wanting, you will need 2 Windows licenses.
If you're not aware of that, you might consider a different approach.

The most common approach for "backup protection" is
- Choose Backup Imaging program(s) such as Macrium, Acronis, Windows, etc.
- Create a system image backup of the "C: System partition"
- Create a bootable Recovery CD for the Imaging program(s) you use
- If a restore is ever needed, boot from the Recovery CD and restore the most recent "C:" backup image

With this approach you should be able to recover your system (OS) in < 1 hour, and only need 1 license.

Do you really need "immediate bootable recovery" using a dual boot system?

Backup images should be stored on multiple devices...HD's, DVD's, ...
If one device fails, you can still recover from another device.

Answers to all your other questions depend on your answer to the license question.

hope this helps,
David
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Jul 2012   #3
Nibor1

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Most grateful to you, DavidW7ncus, for your comprehensive and very clear response. Your < 1 hour solution with only one licence is a good one. A bootable backup in situ would have had an advantage on my slow laptop (in principle), since switching over by just rebooting would entail minimal downtime; cloning and replacing the wayward drive could then be done overnight. The cost of a second licence greatly outweighs the occasional saving in downtime, though! PS Mr Murphy tells me that crashes only occur at the least convenient moment...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

30 Jul 2012   #4
DavidE

Multi-Boot W7_Pro_x64 W8.1_Pro_x64 W10_Pro_x64
 
 

You're welcome and glad i could help.

If you want to learn more about imaging and backup/restore, SF has a lot tutorials for this.
Tutorials - Windows 7 Forums

Here are 2 about system imaging.
Backup Complete Computer - Create an Image Backup
Imaging with free Macrium

Yea - seems Mr. Murphy is usually right
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Dual boot of a copy of Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit




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