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Windows 7: create dual boot partition from exisiting W7 partition on existing HDD

25 Dec 2012   #1

XP Pro, Vista Ult, W7 ultimate, Win 8 Professional
create dual boot partition from exisiting W7 partition on existing HDD

I would like to create a bootable partition from an existing Win 7 partition. I have two partitions bootable now. Both Win 7- one with dragon dictate and various software I am trying out (on a 1.5 TB drive) and the other is my regular boot partition on an SSD with the system reserved partition.

I would like to create an exact image of the regular SSD boot partition on the 1.5 TB drive with the existing win7 dragon partition (and other data drives) to do an upgrade to win 8 (avoiding reinstall of lots of additional software).

I have read lots of threads on related topics but haven't seen one that can help with this problem.

I have tried acronis DD 2011 copying the partition but it isn't bootable and easyBCD adds it but it always defaults to the dragon partition when selecting it from the boot menu.

I do have acronis 2011, 2012, and 2013 plus versions as well as 2011 disk director.
Also just downloaded partition wizard but thought I might try a question first. If there is a thread I missed that has the solution, please point me there.

Thanks in advance.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Dec 2012   #2


After re-imaging the partition to HD choosing Auto drive letter selection, Active partition and include MBR and Track0, unplug all other HDs, set target HDD first HD to boot in BIOS (after DVD drive), confirm partition is still marked Active then run Startup Repair - Run up to 3 Separate Times until Win7 starts with the System Active flags onboard.

If you are including the 100mb System Reserved partition then all of these things should be done choosing it, so that it remains bootable and starts Win7. Otherwise the steps applied to C will cut out the 100mb System Reserved as boot partition.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Dec 2012   #3

XP Pro, Vista Ult, W7 ultimate, Win 8 Professional

So I get your response right, I will try to rephase my problem. Here is a shot of the disks:

create dual boot partition from exisiting W7 partition on existing HDD-diskmgmt.jpg

I have a SSD (Disk1) that has the sys reserved and boot partition I want to replicate.
The HDD (Disk0) has a second bootable partition (Win7sys2) already on it with two other data partitions. I want a third partition that boots (called win7sys18 at this point). I created the win7sys18 partition with acronis as a copy (not-bootable) and of course will not boot when selected at boot menu.

I don't know what you mean by "After re-imaging the partition to HD choosing Auto drive letter selection, Active partition and include MBR and Track0..." Are you suggesting that I do something different to get the partition on Disk0?

My System SpecsSystem Spec

25 Dec 2012   #4


Now that you tell me that there's another bootable OS on the HDD, you would want to image only the OS partition from SSD to HD, starting with unallocated space there. FOr the imaging settings you would not choose Active, copy MBR or include Track0 - just a primary partition. But do choose Auto drive letter so it will boot as C.

After re-imaging, unplug the SSD, from Win7 on HD open EasyBCD Edit OS tab, delete any second entry which existed before, on Add OS tab add the new Win7 entry by name and drive letter. Reboot to see if Win7 will start. If not run a few Startup Repairs from System Recovery Options
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jan 2013   #5

XP Pro, Vista Ult, W7 ultimate, Win 8 Professional

What worked...

I did a full backup image of the boot partition with acronis to the drive that I wanted the new bootable partition on.

I shutdown the machine and disconnected the SSD with the original boot partition and system reserved partition.

I restored the partition to a new space on the second drive along with another bootable partition and data (Disk 0, Win7sys18 above).

I restarted then machine and it did not boot. I used the System recovery options on the win7 dvd to repair the installation. It actually created a new system reserved space on Disk 0.

Once the system booted, I renamed the partition to win7sys18 (it restored as the original name), I then added the SSD back as the first boot disk in BIOs and then added the win7sys18 to the boot menu using easyBCD.

I was then able to upgrade the new partition to windows 8 to play with the new interface.

Thanks for the help creating the boot partition.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 create dual boot partition from exisiting W7 partition on existing HDD

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