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Windows 7: Dual Boot Installation with Windows 7 and XP


28 Apr 2009   #1959
Brink
Microsoft MVP

64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise
 
 
Dual Boot Installation with Windows 7 and XP

How to Setup a Dual Boot Installation with Windows 7 and XP


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My System SpecsSystem Spec
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09 May 2013   #1960
Richie001

Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Golden View Post
You can download a Windows 7 ISO here, and create your own installation DVD using this.
Thank you.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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06 Jun 2013   #1961
Billkwando

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 & Windows XP Professional
 
 
XP showing wrong letter for C drive

Hi All!

I'd like to say thanks for the great tutorial, as it worked great for me except for one thing...

(This is in reference to using a SINGLE drive for dual boot)

Has anyone come up with a solution for folks who install 7 first, and have the unfortunate side effect of XP assigning the C drive letter to the "System Reserved" 100mb partition? Everywhere I look, I read that it is impossible to change the letter of the boot drive. Assuming that this is a universal issue (I certainly found plenty of unsolved examples of it online) I think it would be a great service to readers if the post author would add this caveat into the instructions for dual booting with 7 as the initial installation.....or maybe a note encouraging users NOT to install 7 first if at all possible.

For the folks who may ask the question "why does it matter if your boot drive is F and not C?", it is because some older programs (ostensibly the reason one chooses to dual boot XP in the first place) do not offer the option of choosing which drive they install to, and default to C: Program Files.

As it stands, I'm looking at a weekend of removing 7 from my HDD (which I had gotten nicely settled into already and all set up) as well as XP, and reinstalling them in the reverse order. To be completely honest, this is a bit frustrating, considering that I feel I followed the instructions to the letter, only to receive a nasty surprise at the end.

Sorry about the venting, and I really do appreciate the help I've received so far from this forum...I'm just bummed cos this could've been avoided so easily, considering that I started with a fresh HDD and chose to install 7 first, all things being equal, because the directions looked easier. Unfortunately, all things were not equal.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Jun 2013   #1962
gregrocker
Microsoft MVP

 

This might be avoidable by marked the intended XP partition Active first, so the boot files are directed to there. Mark Partition Active It is unusual enough I can't remember it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Jun 2013   #1963
Billkwando

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 & Windows XP Professional
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gregrocker View Post
This might be avoidable by marked the intended XP partition Active first, so the boot files are directed to there. Mark Partition Active It is unusual enough I can't remember it.

That sounds interesting, but it says:

"There can be only one active partition per physical hard disk."

Doesn't that spell trouble for my Windows 7 installation?

Also a concern is this:

"Do not mark a partition as active if it doesn't contain the loader for an operating system. Doing so will make your computer unbootable."

Thoughts?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Jun 2013   #1964
gregrocker
Microsoft MVP

 

Yes but XP normally steals the System flag to its partition from Windows 7 anyway, requiring 7 to be repaired to add XP to a Dual Boot. Adding Windows 7 from XP has become increasingly troublesome over time - is this what you did?

Can you post back a screenshot of your Disk Management - Post a Screen Capture Image - Windows 7 Help Forums as viewed from both XP and Windows 7. For XP you'll need to Print Screen and paste to Paint: Screenshot with Paint
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Jun 2013   #1965
Billkwando

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 & Windows XP Professional
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gregrocker View Post
Yes but XP normally steals the System flag to its partition from Windows 7 anyway, requiring 7 to be repaired to add XP to a Dual Boot. Adding Windows 7 from XP has become increasingly troublesome over time - is this what you did?

Can you post back a screenshot of your Disk Management - Post a Screen Capture Image - Windows 7 Help Forums as viewed from both XP and Windows 7. For XP you'll need to Print Screen and paste to Paint: Screenshot with Paint
I can definitely post a screenshot, but it probably won't be for another 2 hours, if you're still online then. Everything looked as expected, per the tutorial, but I'll post it up soon.

As for switching the active partition, which of the 3 methods would you recommend? I'm guessing the 3rd one, but if it can be done within 7, that would save me a little time.

Edit: yes, I did add 7 from inside of XP using EasyBCD.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Jun 2013   #1966
gregrocker
Microsoft MVP

 

What letter is XP booting as? Is its partition Logical?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Jun 2013   #1967
Billkwando

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 & Windows XP Professional
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gregrocker View Post
What letter is XP booting as? Is its partition Logical?
XP is booting as E and I can't remember the designation, but I believe it was the same as my Windows 7 partition. I'll get the specifics for you as soon as I can get to the machine

I really appreciate the help!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Jun 2013   #1968
Billkwando

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 & Windows XP Professional
 
 

OK, here they go. Thanks again,

I don't see any mention of logical, alas.


Attached Thumbnails
Dual Boot Installation with Windows 7 and XP-capture.jpg   Dual Boot Installation with Windows 7 and XP-capturexp.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Jun 2013   #1969
gregrocker
Microsoft MVP

 

I don't remember this situation from the days when we dealt with several of these Dual Boots a day here. Maybe someone else does.

What I remember is that XP is only smart enough to place its own boot files on its own partition, clumsily stealing the boot from Windows 7 if installed last.

But the rule of thumb when an OS can place it's boot files on another Active partition as Windows 7 does is to mark the target partition Active if that's where you want the boot files to go.

This is assuming it gave System Reserved the letter C because the boot files were written there.

After XP install, Mark Win7 Partition Active and run Startup Repair - Run up to 3 Separate Times until Windows 7 starts, install Easy BCD to add XP.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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