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Windows 7: File "BOOTMGR" & folder "BOOT" appear on TWO partitions...why?

14 Jul 2012   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 Sp1
File "BOOTMGR" & folder "BOOT" appear on TWO partitions...why?

OK. This is complicated; please be patient. Some months ago my PC (Win7 Ultimate x64) suddenly came up with the dreaded "BOOTMGR CTRL+ALT+DEL to continue..." error message. No idea what caused this; the OS had been operating flawlessly for almost a year. Anyway, I tried using a "Windows 7 Recovery Disc" which I had burned from an .iso file downloaded ages ago. After several unsuccessful attempts to fix the problem with the Recovery Disc, I gave up in frustration and rebooted from the Win7 installation DVD. It of course told me there was an existing Win7 OS on the machine; did I wish to update/overwrite that or install a NEW copy of the OS? I chose "new copy" and installed it. This fixed the problem, of course. Once I was certain all was working (several days later), I used Win7's "BOOTMGR" utility to DELETE this second, unnecessary version of the OS. All still worked fine, but it "shrunk" drive D: and left an "UNUSED" area on the drive (according to the DISKMGR tool). I don't remember the drive letter the install routine created. Anyway, I could not "extend" D: or get back the wasted HD space no matter what I tried. Naturally, in the process I stupidly screwed up something and was back to the "BOOTMGR missing..." situation. Arrgghh!! I used another PC to search for help on the 'net, and found a lot of praise for a utility called "EasyBCD" (using "Ubuntu," which I assume is another OS that, like Linux, can "read" and fix problems on NTSF-formatted drives). Worked like a charm AND I HAVE NOT SCREWED WITH *ANYTHING* once all was working.

Now, however, I have a BOOTMGR file in the root of both my D: and I: partitions (both on the primary HD). They have different dates; also, both partitions now have a folder named "boot" as well. The folder on I: is obviously needed and in use, as numerous files (bootstat.dat, etc.) and logs seem to be recreated or updated on most every reboot of the machine. The "boot" folder on D: contains none of this and doesn't appear to have been accessed or changed since the date of the ORIGINAL problem (11-20-2011). Why is it there? What are the consequences of say, renaming it, rebooting, and if all goes well DELETING it? Shouldn't there only be ONE partition with BOOTMGR on it? There is also a file on C: called "bootsqm.dat" which always has the date/time of my last reboot? What is THIS?

I'm probably too curious for my own good, but would at least like SOME idea of what's going on...and why!

Any assistance or external references would be GREATLY appreciated. Thanks.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Jul 2012   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bits 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1

post screenshot of disk management with all fields visible

bootsqm.dat will be created if you do a "check disk". It can be deleted if want.
bootstat.dat see The Boot Status Data Log
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Jul 2012   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 Sp1

Okay, this is gonna actually take THREE images to show it all because when the OS was installed, it misdetected various media ports as "drives". Hope I do this right!

File "BOOTMGR" & folder "BOOT" appear on TWO partitions...why?-part-1.jpg

File "BOOTMGR" & folder "BOOT" appear on TWO partitions...why?-part-2.jpg

File "BOOTMGR" & folder "BOOT" appear on TWO partitions...why?-part-3.jpg

I hope you can snatch Part 1.jpg and enlarge it enough to make it legible...


My System SpecsSystem Spec

14 Jul 2012   #4
Microsoft MVP


The label Boot only means the currently booted OS. So we know you have Win7 booted on C now.

It looks correct except that System Reserved partition (I) should not have a drive letter so remove the drive letter now in Disk Mgmt to avoid having anything write to it: Drive Letter - Add, Change, or Remove in Windows 7 - Windows 7 Forums

In addition I would not put the paging file on D. Remove it by turning it off and then turning it back on so it correctly writes it to C. Virtual Memory Paging File - Change

Finallly the 1tb HD (J) should not be marked Active: Partition - Mark as Inactive - Windows 7 Forums
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Jul 2012   #5

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 Sp1

Thanks for the help! I did everything you suggested except removing Drive I: I am terrified to touch it as it was created by the Ubuntu "EasyBCD" and I think it must be critical for two reasons. (1) The various files in the "BOOT" folder on I: (e.g., BCD, BCD.LOG, BOOTSTAT.DAT) are obviously in use. "BCD" is labeled a system file but it's date/time are always the last machine restart. Also, some of the files are "locked" and cannot even be COPIED to a different folder for examination. (2) I have a "DOS" cmd batch file to run chkdsk.exe on ALL drives, with a ten-second pause after each drive's finished. C: and D: must be done at startup (well, D: won't be locked now that the paging file is on C:); when the batch file comes to I: a warning appears, roughly "CHKSK can't run, vol in use by another process. Will run if dismounted but all opened handles to volume...invalid, yada yada. Asks do I wish to dismount the volume, I type Y and chkdsk runs (very quickly as it's so small). Does this make any sense to you? SOMETHING critical is using the volume! Using task manager, I see no processes or services that are called anything similar to "bootmgr," "bootstat," etc.

VERY confusing to me and the inability to even COPY certan files in I:\BOOT would seem to mean they are necessary. ????
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Jul 2012   #6
Microsoft MVP


No one advised you to remove Drive I, only it's drive letter. It houses the System boot files and boots Win7. Best Practices (many developed here) require it to NOT have a drive letter so that no program can write to it. It does no harm whatsoever to remove the drive letter. You can set a restore point, even save a Win7 backup image first if you feel safer.

Leave the boot files alone. You only need pay heed to the labels on the partitions in Disk Mgmt if all is working well, and they are correct: System Reserved partition is System Active with no drive letter, C is Boot and holds Paging File. Done.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

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