No really, bear with me, its not the usual gotchas.
I read about this a bit beforehand, and followed techspot's basic upgrade guide: Dual Boot Windows 7 with XP/Vista in three easy steps - TechSpot
My boot drive is a 120Gb Samsung spinpoint, previously one whole partition containing XP. This XP wasnt a clean install, it was an upgrade to Windows 98 I think, and this may be the problem. I have a number of other hard disks, 1 PATA and 2 SATA, which I am using for video editing stuff.
I downloaded GParted, shrunk the XP partition to 76Gb and created a new 35Gb partition for Windows 7. A bit small, but I figured once everything was tested out, I could grow out the Windows 7 partition.
This was successful, and I inserted the Windows 7 disk...selected custom install, and installed to my newly created partition.
Windows 7 did its reboots and I filled in the usual bunff to create basic accounts, etc.
Then I rebooted, and was a bit surprised I did not get the dual-boot menu, it went straight into Windows 7. Using F5 and F8 did not provide any further options, specifically the 'Previous version of Windows' one.
Going into Windows 7 Disk manager, i could see the partition was still there. I read other posts of what Windows 7 does (belately) and yes, it had 'hidden' the XP partition. I gave it a drive letter (D
, but Windows 7 saw it as an empty disk!
I downloaded EasyBCD, and it showed only one entry in the bootloader. I tried to add a new entry, using type:"Windows NT/2k/XP/2k3", but the Drive was greyed out; if I selected "Vista/Longhorn" I could then change the drive to D: and then change type back to XP (odd). I then clicked 'Add Entry', but it came back with an error message "EasyBCD could not locate a copy of NTLDR on your hard drive. Please download a copy of NTLDR and NTDETECT.COM from Htpp://(blah blah) and copy them to the drive D:\ in order for your newly-created entry to work.".
Does this mean my XP partition is truly trashed? Is there a way to get back my XP partition?
I am thinking of maybe inserting the XP disk and repairing, maybe it will detect XP and fix it, but if it will blow away both my installations, I might not bother.
Last resort is to use File Scavenger on the dead partition, but when I checked it out in GParted again just now, it said that 3Gb out of the 76Gb had data, could it be that Windows 7 has just not recognised my original XP partition as an XP partition, thought it was its configuration partition, and just overwrote stuff?
Please, any advice gratefully received...