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Windows 7: Reformatting on a dual boot system

18 May 2011   #1

Windows XP Sp3 x32, Windows 7 Ultimate x32
Reformatting on a dual boot system

I'm new here so I'm not sure if this is the area I should post this, but I'm trying to find some information...

My PC is set up for dual booting...first OS installed is Windows XP sp3 and the second is Windows 7 Ultimate x32. Both are installed on separate hard drives. I want to reformat the drive with Windows 7 on it and do a clean install of it. Can anyone give me detailed instructions on how to do this? For some reason I can't get the PC to boot up with the DVD disc instead of the hard drives, and I don't know much about the BIOS to mess around in there...last thing I wanna do is screw up my PC. Thanks in advance :)

My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 May 2011   #2
Microsoft MVP


Cleanest method to dual boot with separate HD's is to unplug the other HD during install, then boot by setting the preferred HD first to boot in BIOS setup, boot other HD using one-time BIOS Boot Menu key.

This keeps the HD's independent to come and go as you please whereas leaving XP plugged in during WIn7 install to create a Windows-managed Dual Boot will lock Win7 to the XP HD until surgery is done.

Either way, you need to boot your DVD either using the one-time BIOS Boot Menu key given on first boot screen, or by setting DVD drive to boot first in BIOS setup: How to Boot your Computer from a Bootable CD or DVD
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 May 2011   #3

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient


Why do you need to reinstall Windows 7?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

19 May 2011   #4

Windows XP Sp3 x32, Windows 7 Ultimate x32

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by theog View Post
Why do you need to reinstall Windows 7?
I don't "need" to, but I want to reformat the hard drive it's installed on, so once I reformat it I'll have to reinstall Windows 7 on it. I use it a lot and I really like it, so I would like to continue using it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 May 2011   #5

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1, Windows 8.1 Pro x64, Windows 10 Pro x64

I guess the next question is, Why do you want to reformat the drive?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 May 2011   #6
Bare Foot Kid
Microsoft MVP

W 7 64-bit Ultimate

Hello tealtiger21, welcome to Seven Forums!

If you are going to use a BIOS managed dual boot as opposed to a Windows managed dual boot, it would be a good idea to power down the PC and disconnect the Hard Disk Drive data cable of the Windows 7 HDD to make sure the XP HDD will boot on its own first.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Reformatting on a dual boot system

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