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Windows 7: Dual boot windows vista and windows 7 boot error winload.exe

13 Dec 2014   #1

Windows Vista Home Premium x64
Dual boot windows vista and windows 7 boot error winload.exe

I am trying to dual boot with 2 different hard drives and 2 different systems. One is Vista x64 and the other is Windows 7 Professional 32-bit. After installing the hard drive with Windows 7 which came from a different computer, I used EasyBCD to configure the boot order. Windows vista still works, but when I want to switch to Windows 7 I get:

FILE \windows\system32\winload.exe
Status: 0xc0000428
info: windows cannot verify the digital signature for this file.

After some search I have found this old thread from this same forum. Here is the link: dual boot windows 7 and vista boot error winload.exe

The Op seems to have similar problem as me. I just don't get all the follow up instructions in the thread dealing with bootrec since I haven't encountered it before (I think...). Any thoughts?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Dec 2014   #2
Microsoft MVP


The best way to Dual Boot OS's on separate HD's is to set the preferred OS HD as Primary HD and first HD to boot in BIOS setup, then when needed trigger the other using the one-time BIOS Boot Menu key.

If this is not desireable, then set Win7 HD as Primary HD and first HD to boot in BIOS setup, install easyBCD to Win7 to add XP.

Before doing this delete any EasyBCD listing for the other HD you've already made in Edit OS Menu tab.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Dec 2014   #3

Windows Vista Home Premium x64

I have already set preferred OS, which is vista, to be first in hard drive boot up. What do you mean set as primary hard drive? Is there something else to be done besides setting the boot up order in bios? Also, what is one-time BIOS boot menu key? As, i said in my original post, I cannot even get into Windows 7. What is the point of making it primary HD? Also, I don't have XP, but vista.

Maybe I completely misunderstood your post.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

13 Dec 2014   #4
Microsoft MVP


Are both HD's listed in the BIOS boot order to choose? If not then there is likely another place in BIOS setup where you choose the primary hard drive. This makes sure that drive is the one booted when you choose the HD to boot first.

To repair Win7, unplug the Vista drive, swap its cable to Win7 so you know it remains set to boot first,

confirm the the 100mb System Reserved partition (if you have it) or C (if you don't) is Partition Marked Active,

then run Startup Repair - Run 3 Separate Times until Win7 boots and is marked System Active in Disk mgmt.

Now power down to plug back in the other hard drive, reboot to confirm Win7 boots. Then reboot again, tap the key given on first boot screen for Boot Menu, see if you can choose the Vista hard drive to boot. BIOS Boot menu keys

If you fill out your System specs to bottom left corner of your posts with at least your PC or mobo make/ model we can help you better.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Dec 2014   #5

Windows Vista Home Premium x64

Both HD's are listed in the bios boot order and I have already set the boot priorities. As for partitions, the option to mark partition as active is grayed out in both. However, both drives are marked as active and primary already. Both are online as well (even though I don't know what that means in this situation).

P.S. Should I be able to see the 2nd hard drive with Windows 7 on it in my computer and be able to open it as well? While running Vista? I thought this was weird. Maybe it is of no importance.

For start up repair, I don't have the system disk and no repair disk. I guess I should plug the windows 7 hard drive into the old computer and make a repair disk?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

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