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Windows 7: Moved boot manager, 7 drive still refuses to boot without old drive.

23 Jun 2011   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 
Moved boot manager, 7 drive still refuses to boot without old drive.

I've been trying all day to get to a point where I can format my old hard drive (D). I found out today that, in its infinite wisdom, the Windows 7 installer put the boot manager on a completely separate drive from my new drive (C), the one I selected for installation.

Windows 7 is totally self-contained on C, save for the boot manager. I have tried:

1: Creating new boot files with "bcdboot C:\ /s C:" in an admin command line at the suggestion of another post, and then going into the BIOS, setting C as the default drive, and setting it as the primary boot device.

2: When that didn't work, I ran multiple startup repairs to C from the 7 install disk with D disconnected, until it no longer reported problems. This didn't work either. C still will not run the boot manager without D plugged in and set in the BIOS as the default drive.

I've found more things to try, such as this method, but I don't feel that the description is clear enough to attempt it.

I attached a screenshot of Disk Management. I notice that C still does not have "system" in its parameters. I assume it has something to do with this, but I don't know how to make that show up there.

Does anyone know what could be wrong?

Edit: Clearer description of what I did before posting:

Quote:
Here is what I did before posting here, for clarity:
1. Marked Waffles as Active using DISKPART in an administrative command line (I'm refraining from referring to it as C, because the Windows 7 install DVD refers to it as D, while my Windows 7 installation refers to it as C, leaving things a bit ambiguous. For reference, it's the drive which I'm trying to boot from. "Pancakes" is the drive which currently contains the boot files and carries the "System" flag)
Edit: 1.5. Used an administrative command line to create boot files on C. Command may have been 'bcdboot C:\ /s C:', that's the best I can remember. This method was suggested on another forum.
2. Went into BIOS and set Waffles as the primary startup drive (It is interesting to note that running DISKPART within the Windows 7 install DVD environment still marks Pancakes as Disk 0, and Waffles as Disk 1, even with Waffles set as the primary boot drive)
Edit: 2.5. Attempted to boot. Failed.
3. Ran startup repair several times, each time letting it apply fixes until Startup Repair failed to detect errors in the boot files and would not let me run startup repair again
4. Attempted to boot the system with Waffles set as the primary boot drive, and Pancakes plugged in. System would not boot.
5. Ran the Windows 7 install DVD again, startup repair still failed to detect problems and would not run.
6. Gave up, set Pancakes as the primary boot drive. System booted, and I posted here.





Attached Thumbnails
Moved boot manager, 7 drive still refuses to boot without old drive.-capture.png  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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24 Jun 2011   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

ME/XP/Vista/Win7
 
 

1) unplug cable from Disk0 Pancakes.

2) Plug the cable from Pancakes to Waffles.

3) Check BIOS to make sure Waffles is the first HD to boot.

4) Do a startup Repair.
Press the F8 key repeatedly at boot up or use the Startup disk.
Startup Repair
Note: You may need to do startup repair 3 to 4 times.
Startup Repair - Run 3 Separate Times
Startup Repair Infinite Loop Recovery

5) When windows is booting OK, plug the cable from Waffles to Pancakes.

6) Mark Pancakes INACTIVE.
Partition - Mark as Active
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Jun 2011   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

I've done that already.

Quote:
2: When that didn't work, I ran multiple startup repairs to C from the 7 install disk with D disconnected, until it no longer reported problems. This didn't work either. C still will not run the boot manager without D plugged in and set in the BIOS as the default drive.
Windows startup repair no longer detects problems with booting, so I can't even run it again. C will still not boot without D plugged in and set as default.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


24 Jun 2011   #4

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

ME/XP/Vista/Win7
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by theog View Post
1) unplug cable from Disk0 Pancakes.

2) Plug the cable from Pancakes to Waffles.

3) Check BIOS to make sure Waffles is the first HD to boot.

4) Do a startup Repair.
Press the F8 key repeatedly at boot up or use the Startup disk.
Startup Repair
Note: You may need to do startup repair 3 to 4 times.
Startup Repair - Run 3 Separate Times
Startup Repair Infinite Loop Recovery

5) When windows is booting OK, plug the cable from Waffles to Pancakes.

6) Mark Pancakes INACTIVE.
Partition - Mark as Active
Do you have a folder called boot & a file called bootmgr on Waffles If no Copy & Paste over. Make sure Waffles is Disk 0 & first HD boot in BOOT in BIOS.

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My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Jun 2011   #5

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

I don't have either of those on either drive. I have one file that says "Boot.BAK" on D, but not on C. Hidden files and folders are showing up but those don't show up at all. I also don't have $Recycle.Bin, Recovery, or System Volume Information.

I have an unhidden folder in C:\Windows named Boot, however. No bootmgr, though. The folder is not in D:\Windows, and there is still no bootmgr in there, either.

Edit: A quick search with Everything shows that there is indeed a file named bootmgr in the root of both drives. However, it seems that Windows is doing everything in its power to prevent me from seeing it through Explorer. I've tried registry edits to get it to show up, to no avail. A very few hidden files and folders show up when it's set to show hidden files, but no bootmgr, and no other system files. Windows isn't letting me see it.


Disregard that. Stupid mistake, forgot to uncheck "hide protected system files". yes, both the Boot folder and bootmgr are there. C still won't boot without D plugged in. I'll try copying D's boot files over.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Jun 2011   #6

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

ME/XP/Vista/Win7
 
 

You have far to many files in the root of C:

Do you have a linux bootloader?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Jun 2011   #7

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by theog View Post
You have far to many files in the root of C:

Do you have a linux bootloader?
I don't have a Linux bootloader. Would getting one help? I can always boot to the Windows 7 DVD.

A lot of programs put things in C:\ for some reason. on D:\, when I used to use WinXP, I had a habit for a while of installing games to the root in an effort to make them load faster. It never did anything, aside from clutter the folder.

Anyhow, new update. I copied D's boot files to C, and booted into the BIOS to set C as the default drive. It still didn't boot, so I booted into the Windows 7 install disk again and repaired the boot files with D's partition set to Inactive. It still didn't boot, and once again the startup repair utility didn't detect any problems.

I did see one thing, though. In the list of current Windows installations at the computer repair screen, it showed Waffles as D. Waffles shows as C when booted into Windows 7, and D when booted into WinXP. The fact that the Windows 7 install disk recognizes Waffles as D, the way WinXP does concerns me. The drive letters are wrong when viewed from anywhere outside of my Windows 7 installation.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Jun 2011   #8

Win 8 RP, Win 7, XP
 
 

It is not a very good idea to copy the boot environment - its better done using the tools provided as the boot files have the security token of TrustedInstaller. All other users including "System" have only read access.

If you boot with only the Windows 7 disk connected (after successful repairs) what happens - just black screen, any message, blinking cursor?

To get to the boot-menu you need only
1. MBR, 2. PBR (MBR and PBR in Win 7 format)
3. bootmgr in "\"
4. the "\boot" folder with BCD file in it.
(2. 3. and 4. on active primary partition)


Did you install Windows from the same DVD you are using for repair ?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Jun 2011   #9

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

I backed up the old boot files, and I've reinstated them.

I don't know what MBR or PBR are, and I don't see anything in C:\ that matches that description. The boot folder and bootmgr are here, with the requisite files in boot.

When I boot without "Pancakes" connected, the computer never goes past the hardware monitor screen. (on my computer, this is where boot is initiated, and where Boot From CD shows up when one is put in). The cursor just blinks endlessly until I hit reset. "Waffles", the drive that shows up as C when booted into Windows 7, still shows up lacking the System parameter in Disk Management, and is also listed as Disk 1, with Pancakes listed as Disk 0. It also produces the same results as not having Pancakes connected when I switch the primary boot disk to Waffles in the BIOS, and leave Pancakes hooked up and active.

I'm not using the same DVD, but it's one for the same version of Windows 7 that I'm using (Ultimate x64), so I don't know what the problem could be. I could have a look for my original disk and see if that fixes anything, though I doubt it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Jun 2011   #10

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

ME/XP/Vista/Win7
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by theog View Post
1) unplug cable from Disk0 Pancakes.

2) Plug the cable from Pancakes to Waffles.

3) Check BIOS to make sure Waffles is the first HD to boot.

4) Do a startup Repair.
Press the F8 key repeatedly at boot up or use the Startup disk.
Startup Repair
Note: You may need to do startup repair 3 to 4 times.
Startup Repair - Run 3 Separate Times
Startup Repair Infinite Loop Recovery

5) When windows is booting OK, plug the cable from Waffles to Pancakes.

6) Mark Pancakes INACTIVE.
Partition - Mark as Active
Reread my post.

5)When windows is booting OK, plug the cable from Waffles to Pancakes.

DO NOT PLUG BACK IN PANCAKES UNTIL WINDOWS IS BOOTING OK.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Moved boot manager, 7 drive still refuses to boot without old drive.




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