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Windows 7: Dual Boot not working

20 Dec 2010   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate/ Windows XP Professional
Dual Boot not working

I recently reformatted and reinstalled Windows 7. I have another drive with Windows XP on it. Before reinstalling 7 it offered to boot either Windows 7 or "Older Version of Windows". Now it recognizes the drive, it even recognizes it as being named XP but it will not offer to boot to XP. I tried going into the BIOS and shifting that drive to the second boot device behind the drive containing Windows 7. No luck, it still boots straight to Windows 7.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Dec 2010   #2

Win 8 RP, Win 7, XP

If you have two separate physical disk drives ( not the same as logical DOS drives! ) it is possible that Windows 7 installation did not find the OS (XP) on the other drive and add it to the boot choices.
You have to add the boot entry for XP yourself. See this: Dual Boot Installation with Windows 7 and XP
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Dec 2010   #3


With separate HD's try booting XP using BIOS Boot Menu key. This keeps the drives independent to come and go as you please.

If it fails to boot, unplug Win7 HD and run an XP Repair install:

Afterwards plug back in the Win7 HD, set preferred HS as first to boot in BIOS, then boot the other HD using BIOS Boot menu key.

Or in Win7, try removing XP listing from EasyBCD 2.0, then Add it back, accept boot files, autocompletes, Save, restart. If this fails, remove XP listing, unplug the drive and do the XP Repair, boot via BIOS.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

20 Dec 2010   #4

Windows 7 Ultimate/ Windows XP Professional

Hmmm, tried Easy BCD as per instructions. No luck. It's weird, I have done clean installs on this machine before and in the past it automatically detected Windows XP and offered it as a boot option. I do believe I will just go ahead and reinstall XP and hopefully 7 will see that and adjust accordingly. I have a 3rd physical drive with everything I want to keep anyway. Thanx for the suggestions!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Dec 2010   #5


If you reinstall XP Win7 will not see it. You need to install Win7 last for it to configure a multi-boot Menu with the previously installed OS('s).

Have you tried booting XP HD via the BIOS one-time Boot Menu F12 key for your Giga mobo? I see you were advised to do this in another thread in June. This is the best way to dual boot without complications so the HD's can come and go as you please.

Can you post back a screenshot of your full Disk Mgmt drive map with listings, using Snipping Tool in Start menu? We may be able to spot the problem or give better suggestions.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Dec 2010   #6
Bare Foot Kid
Microsoft MVP

W 7 64-bit Ultimate


If you had XP installed first, you didn't mark the Windows 7 partition as "Active" for the installation of Windows 7 before you started did you; if you did the XP boot files will have to be repaired before XP will boot again; XP HAS to be left the "System" partition for the install of Windows 7 or it will cause all sorts of issues with XP booting?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Dec 2010   #7

Windows 7 Ultimate 64 Retail

Did he install this XP on his current system... sorry to budge in but that might be important
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Dec 2010   #8


Post back the Disk Mgmt screenshot and we can tell you what the exact problem is.

Use Snipping Tool in Start Menu.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

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