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Windows 7: Installing win7 pro alongside botlockered win7 ultimate

05 Dec 2012   #1

Installing win7 pro alongside bitlockered win7 ultimate

Hi All,
I current have a win7 ultimate install with bitlocker enabled on the entire drive.
Currently the Ultimate install is on Disk 1(samsung 830 256gb ssd) and Disk 0 is a msata (will be crucial 256gb msata ssd)
I have a couple of questions
  • Would I be able to encrypt the second drive with bitlocker and install win7 pro?
    • Would install win7 pro from the ultimate install of windows
    • Would I need to install from ausb/cd
  • Would I be able to install win7 pro on disk 0 and not need the bitlocker key (sitting on a external usb key) to boot from it (suppose this is decided by bios boot drive setting).

Any help would be appreciated.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Dec 2012   #2

Win 8 RP, Win 7, XP

You can encrypt everything (partitions, disks) but there must be at least one primary partition that is not encrypted which will hold boot files.

So on first disk (that you put first in BIOS) you should have the so called "System Reserved" partition which will hold boot files for both systems.

All other partitions you create (have) can be encrypted.

Do not install from within another running Windows system always use DVD/USB external media for installation.

When you install to empty disk Windows 7 creates the "System Reserved" partition by default and another partition for the OS.

SystemReserved is a primary hidden partition of size 100 MB - can be seen in Disk Management.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Dec 2012   #3


Thanks for your response.
My disk layout (for the boot disk) is:
100mb EFI system partition
240gb NTFS (BotLicker Encrypted)
250mb Recovery Parttion
I have a couple of follow up questions:
  • Do I encrypt the new partition first, then boot from the dvd/usb to install win7 pro?
    • My worries is that the win7 pro installer won't be able to install to the encrypted partition
  • Or should I install win7 pro from dvd/usb and then encrypt the win7 pro install, from the Ulitmate install?

My System SpecsSystem Spec

07 Dec 2012   #4

Win 8 RP, Win 7, XP

On GPT disks EFI System partition is the analog of SystemReserved for MBR disks.

One point - 100 MB seems small, can cause problems in the future.(Windows 8 creates a 350 MB System partition by default - Microsoft has learned from previous problems caused by a small system partition).

I think you install Windows 7 first and then turn on Bitlocker.

See what Microsoft suggests for Windows 7 with Bitlocker:
Scenario 1: Turning On BitLocker Drive Encryption on an Operating System Drive (Windows 7)

Bitlocker checks if system meets requirements before it encrypts disk/partition so there shouldn't be a problem if requirements are not fulfilled - OS stays unencrypted.
Do not encrypt another OS or it cannot start - every OS encrypts itself if possible (if needed hardware is present).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Dec 2012   #5


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by boyans View Post
Do not encrypt another OS or it cannot start - every OS encrypts itself if possible (if needed hardware is present).[/LEFT]
Sorry I don't think I made it clear in my original post. The os installed on the Disk 1 (sammy 830) is Win7 Ultimate and I'm looking to install Win7 Pro on the 256gb msata that I'm installing.
So I suppose the more pertinent questions would be:
  • If the aobve it true then I wont' be able to bitlocker the win7 pro install
  • Will I be able to boot into win7 pro after installing onto disk 0
    • Will I need to have my usb key with the bitlockers keys plugged in if I want to boot from win7 pro
    • Will the OS selection prompt come after the bitlocker screen, if disk 1 is set as first boot disk
    • Or will I need to boot from disk 0 and then have the bitlocker usb plugged in to boot into ultimate

Sorry for not making it clear in my original post.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Dec 2012   #6

Win 8 RP, Win 7, XP

Boot files are always unencrypted.

So you boot and the boot manager is started which displays boot menu.

Then you select OS in case of dual/multi booting = launch loader for OS.

For bitlocker to run you need a separate partition which is SystemReserved on MBR disk or EFI System partition on GPT disk. Boot files are there - unencrypted.

In case of bitlocker OS files are on encrypted partition so bitlocker has to be started at some point during OS boot so it can decode files on encrypted partition so they can be loaded and executed.

Installation of Windows 7 to any disk is straightforward - better detach all other disks during installation so installation is undependent.

You can create later dual/multi boot either using bcdedit or Visual BCD Editor.

Common boot files should be placed on first disk. Only BCD needs to be altered as it stores boot configuration data - you add a second loader entry for second OS.

Mixing MBR and GPT disks can create problems.
It is better to keep your Windows installations separate and use one time boot selection key - F12, F11 or whatever on your system to select OS/disk/partition for booting.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Installing win7 pro alongside botlockered win7 ultimate

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