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Windows 7: Win 7 installed on new drive as "E" Can I change?

29 Nov 2009   #11

7600.20510 x86

Yeah, I'm aware of that page.

They use the word "may" and not "will" because it is not guaranteed to mess up a system. They are protecting themselves and don't want added problems from users making mistakes etc...

Notice they do not explicitly state that it is impossible or will not work.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Nov 2009   #12

Windows 10 64 bit

After reading all the posts, I've decided to just leave it as it is. Sort of the old "if it ain't broke don't fix it". It really doesn't matter what the drive letter is other than the "C convention". If I ever (should I say when) have to reinstall then I'll straighten it out and install it as "C".

My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Nov 2009   #13

Windows 7 Ultimate RTM (Technet)

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by torrentg View Post
It simply does what is needed by following the link I posted.

Upon a reboot, the registry is altered on the fly by the OS and things go well from there on.

Now if you have any pointers in software, you'll manually have to change them. An example is like where to save downloads in FF. You'd have to change that by hand if you had it set to the system drive previously. Minor things like that. Or uTorrent save locations etc...
Actually, the link you posted states that the procedure is only for systems where the drive letter was changed AFTER the OS was installed, NOT if the drive letter is where the system was actually installed originally.

I've tried this myself a few times and it has never worked. It just isn't advisable.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

30 Nov 2009   #14

7600.20510 x86

I guess I must have been lucky then when it worked for me.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Nov 2009   #15
Microsoft MVP


TG, trust me nobody doubts it worked for you. We have all learned from your advice in the past and know your word is good. We just have different experiences with this, and some of us got burned when we tried it ourselves.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Nov 2009   #16

7600.20510 x86

Ya, I hear ya. It probably is better for users to not mess around with it unless he/she knows how to offline edit the reg in case of failure. lol My boot drive right now is D: (Volume with Windows on it.)

Later on, I might try to make it C: for the heck of it. Last time I did it was months ago. It is possible I did other things too along with what I posted to make it work but I'm almost sure I didn't.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Nov 2009   #17

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1

I wouldn't bother trying it, as no guide or method has ever worked for me either. The solution, either leave it the way it is, or do a clean install, paying attention to the drive letter assigned this time around.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Nov 2009   #18

Vista U32 , now Win7 64


doh? It should be very easy.

If you installed WIndows 7 after a Vista install, WIndows 7 'should have taken over the bootloader and when YOu log into Win7 it shoulf of set E to C and Vista (C) would of been set to somethign else.. D most likely.

That is a bit strange.. if you say you dont need vista anymore... Id delte it and reinstall Win 7 on C.

If none of that is wished for and you wish to keep it as is atm and just force E to be C give this a try:

(in case of errors, given someone said he 'borked' his installation lol) just keep a winpe disk on usb.

Now. cmd (admin level), run diskpart.exe

list volume
lets say E is volume 3 and C is volume 1
then type :
select volume 1
(when volume 1 is now selected)
you type:
remove letter=C
(if succesful)

select volume 3
remove letter=E
assign letter=C
select volume 1
assign letter=E (for example.. u can also change these parameters easier in computer-> manage -> disk managment)

Now... before restarting:

still in admin cmd : run
bcdedit > bcd.txt
notepad bcd.txt

In the notepad file you will see entries.... the vista one will have entries containing C and Win 7 E
Please make sure you do this in windows 7 (in fact erm... wait... since its a bit strange iwn 7 doesnt take over C, in disk management verify which is boot partition). Hmmm, now I realize Vista C will still probably be the active and/or boot partition.

ok wait... fireberd... in fact STRIKE all ive said for now... BUT IF YOU STILL ARE INTERESTED...

then report back with this and I can give you more advice:

disk management -> which partition is active and which partition is boot (may or may not be the same)(do this BOTH in vista AND in win 7)

do in cmd : bcdedit /enum all > bcdwin7.txt (when u r in windows 7)
and bcdedit /enum all > bcdVista.txt (when u r in Vista)

attach those two files or do a screenshot of them n attack for me.

also, you could do diskpart , list volumes, from Win 7 for me and thats it


Basically, to change yoru partitions, needs only two things even if it looks a bit strenous if you do not do basic commands yourself (aka a 'normal common end user').

1. manipulate volume letters in windows 7 (assuming you want newer OS to be dominant),
2. edit bcdedit accordingly, regardless of which partition is still running it.

[3]. if above would not be sufficient, a more advanced bcd rebuild is possible by moving it to win 7 partition, but then I would highly recommend just installing Win 7 on C.

FINAL NOTE. if you have a recovery console , winre /winpe disk (you do automatically in win7 implicitly), then you can also do from windows 7, bootsect /nt60 all /force

My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Nov 2009   #19

Windows 7 x64

The fact there are so many responses means there is some confusion about how this type of stuff works. Since I have been playing with this the last few days, hopefully I have some insight.

To test what I say, boot to Vista and then check the diskmgmt.msc. It should show Drive 0 and C: saying Boot, system..

If you boot to Windows 7, it should show Disk 1 as C: and Boot, system, etc.

You can also do a search for bootmgr.exe (hidden system file) and it will be on Drive 0, or the Vista install, but not on the windows 7 drive. The Boot folder will also be on the Vista Drive but not the Windows 7 drive.

If what I say seems to be correct, you can remove the vista drive(unplug) and then do a startup repair to the Windows 7 drive and all should be oK. It will take two passes for the startup repair to fix the situation.

Sorry to anyone that already said this.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Nov 2009   #20
Microsoft MVP


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Saltgrass View Post

If what I say seems to be correct, you can remove the vista drive(unplug) and then do a startup repair to the Windows 7 drive and all should be oK. It will take two passes for the startup repair to fix the situation.

Would really like to hear from anyone who tries this.

Please also check the Startup Repair "Problems Found" log before restarting to note exactly what repair it applied in case it starts up reclaiming the C: drive.

Win7 might even have the ability to reassume the C; drive just by unplugging the Vista and restarting. We already know it has allowed itself to be C: relative to the others since the RC or RTM build.

This is completely different approach than trying to change drive letter in registry.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Win 7 installed on new drive as "E" Can I change?

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