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Windows 7: Windows Vista and 7 Dual Boot Issues


05 Jul 2010   #1

Windows Vista
 
 
Windows Vista and 7 Dual Boot Issues - now resolved...

Evening All.

First post here, but as with most members Google led me here because I'm having some PC issues so I thought I'd get some advice here if no-one minds.

I have a Dell Vostro PC - it has 2 SATA HDDs and a DVD Drive. The original default OS was Vista Home Premium. Recently I wanted to try out Windows 7 Ultimate so I decided to set up a secondary partition on my primary HDD to install Win 7 there to test before taking the plunge with a full upgrade. This worked fine - I created the partition in Vista, defined it as the Y drive and successfully installed Windows 7 there no issue. All was well and I could dual boot both, although I have to say I mainly used the Vista install with the occasional Win 7 test.

However, in the last 24 hours things have gone very wrong and now neither installation works. Strangely nothing has been installed or changed on the machine yesterday to trigger this.

If I attempt to boot into Vista I get a Winload.exe error with error code 0xc0000428 telling me that winload.exe is missing or corrupt. Last night, I managed to get past this error once and into safe mode to perform a virus check, but since then it constantly cycles with the same error when booting or attempting to access advanced boot options.

If I attempt to boot into Windows 7, I get a bar saying Windows files loading and then the machine reboots without loading further. Same again if I try to access Advanced Boot Options for Windows 7.

Things I've tried so far are:

1. Booted from Vista Install disk and peformed a start-up repair - didn't resolve issue.

2. Booted from Vista Install disk and run a chkdsk /f - didn't resolve issue.

3. Booted from Vista Install disk and from cmd prompt copied winload.exe back to /system32 from /system32/boot - didn't resolve issue.

4. Booted from Windows 7 Install disk and performed a start-up repair - didn't resolve issue.

Now having read thru some of the other info out there I'm aware they're more things that I can try revolving around bcdedit.exe and bootrec.exe, but as neither windows install is currently working I'm not sure in what order to fix and which I should try first! I'd rather do a repair install for Vista as a last resort, but that is also an option if needed. I also have a sneaky suspicion this maybe hardware related, but I'd like to get the machine backup and running before I make any HW changes.

Thanks in advance for all help and advice.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

05 Jul 2010   #2

W7 Ult. x64 | OS X
 
 

According to a quick google search here's what you should do:

Boot to your Vista Recovery CD

A) Run a repair installation

B) Go to the Command Prompt section and run the following commands:

Code:
bootrec.exe /fixmbr
bootrec.exe /fixboot
winload.exe is missing or corrupt (no it's not!)

For future reference, System Restore and Repair Installations will fix most system related problems.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Jul 2010   #3
Microsoft MVP

 

A Repair Install is run from within OS, which won't start.

You want Startup Repair from the booted Vista or Windows 7 DVD Repair console or Repair CD depending upon which OS you want to start. You can add the other OS back into a Dual Boot menu using EasyBCD 2.0 beta after you start the first OS.

All of the bootrec (above post) and bootsect commands are automated in Windows 7 Startup Repair, but you may need to run them manually for Vista from it's Command Line.

The OS you want to start also needs to be marked Active from the DVD/CD Command Line: Partition - Mark as Active

Are you planning to keep Windows 7? If not, I'd start Vista by making sure it's marked Active, then run Startup Repair up to 3 separate times with reboots, then running bootrec commands given, then trying Startup Repair again up to 3 times. Post back for further steps.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


05 Jul 2010   #4

Windows Vista
 
 

Hi notsograymatter / gregrocker

Thanks for the advice above - I'll follow that shortly. I'm not too worried about keeping Windows 7 as I think I'll repartition my 2nd HDD and boot Win 7 from there via the BIOS once I've resolved these issues!

Will post back once I've tried the repairs...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Jul 2010   #5

Windows Vista
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gregrocker View Post
Are you planning to keep Windows 7? If not, I'd start Vista by making sure it's marked Active, then run Startup Repair up to 3 separate times with reboots, then running bootrec commands given, then trying Startup Repair again up to 3 times. Post back for further steps.
Sorry 1 question if you don't mind - each time I run Startup Repair and reboot should I allow it to attempt to boot from the HDD each time or straight back into booting from DVD and the next repair?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Jul 2010   #6
Microsoft MVP

 

Check first to see if OS will boot.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Jul 2010   #7

Windows Vista
 
 

Ok - tried the steps above.

3 x Start-up repair and try to boot - same error

Fix Mbr and Fix boot - same error

3 x Start-up repair and try to boot - same error

I haven't tried these steps yet from the MS link here: How to use the Bootrec.exe tool in the Windows Recovery Environment to troubleshoot and repair startup issues in Windows

Is that next - attempt a rebuild?

  • bcdedit /export C:\BCD_Backup
  • c:
  • cd boot
  • attrib bcd -s -h -r
  • ren c:\boot\bcd bcd.old
  • bootrec /RebuildBcd
If not, all advice gratefully received!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Jul 2010   #8
Microsoft MVP

 

Are you attempting to start Vista? Did you make certain Vista is marked Active before attempting the repair?

Yes, next you can follow the bootrec/bootsect commands in tutorial you linked to try to start it up since these are not automated in Vista Startup Repair.

If that fails, then mark Windows 7 active and attempt to start it by running Startup Repair from Windows 7 DVD/Repair CD, as Startup Repair is more advanced in 7.

I am here for the next 8 hours to help you in r/t. THere are other tools/approaches so that it can almost always be started unless the OS's have been irreparably damaged. Are they both showing up when you boot their respective Repair console?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Jul 2010   #9

Windows Vista
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gregrocker View Post
Are you attempting to start Vista? Did you make certain Vista is marked Active before attempting the repair?

Yes, next you can follow the bootrec/bootsect commands in tutorial you linked to try to start it up since these are not automated in Vista Startup Repair.

If that fails, then mark Windows 7 active and attempt to start it by running Startup Repair from Windows 7 DVD/Repair CD, as Startup Repair is more advanced in 7.

I am here for the next 8 hours to help you in r/t. THere are other tools/approaches so that it can almost always be started unless the OS's have been irreparably damaged. Are they both showing up when you boot their respective Repair console?
Definitely trying to start Vista - when I boot I can see the 2 OS's listed in the boot loader, select Vista and then I get the Winload error. I used diskpart right at the beginning before the first repair to make sure the correct partition was active - in my case on disk 0 and then partition 3. Should I have been setting it active before each repair?

I'll try the rebuild shortly as per the tutorial.

When I boot to the repair console from either the Vista or Win 7 Install DVDs I can see both the Win 7 and Vista OS in the initial list when it prompts me to select an OS to repair so that sounds like a good sign anyway.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Jul 2010   #10

Windows Vista
 
 

Ok. Tried a few things.

1. Attempted the BCD rebuild as above. This completed ok, but didn't resolve the issue. It recreated the boot list, but that didn't fix it. One thing I did notice was that the bcdedit output suggests both Os have the same Guiid. Is that correct?

2. Made sure diskpart set partition as active or at least think I did. Do you have to leave diskpart open or is the active flag left set?

3. Diskpart showed something possibly strange about the partitions on the Os hdd. I see 5 partitions listed. Oem, Recovery, Os (where Vista is installed) and then 2 partitions for the Windows 7 space - both 40gb - 1 logical and 1 extended. This config def worked but is that config ok for an Os partition?

Long and the short of it is still not fixed so open to more things to try. In the repair consoles I can def see both Os installs.

Thanks for the help so far. Off to bed now so further attempts have to wait for later.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Windows Vista and 7 Dual Boot Issues




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