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Windows 7: Dual-Boot windows XP from External Drive

06 Dec 2009   #1

windows 7 ( and use win XP )
Dual-Boot windows XP from External Drive

Hi everyone ! this is my first post. i hope someone can help me with this question..

I've just got a new HP laptop with windows 7 Home Premium.
Anytime Upgraded to Ultimate.

i want to boot to windows XP (SP2) on this new laptop..(Not necessarily Dual-Boot). there is only on program i need to use under XP.

the dual-booting tutorials here are quite in depth and potentially problematic for none techie like me. i would prefer not re-partion the drive and 'hide' one operating system from the other, so what i would prefer to do is this...

1. Plug in an External hard drive (USB 2.0).Clean and factory formatted.

2. Go into my BIOS > Disable boot from internal hard drive > enable boot from CD Drive (first)

3. Exit BIOS having saved changes

4. insert win XP Install disk in drive.

So, in theory XP Install should be like on a brand new machine.

when i want to use windows 7 i would reverse the BIOS changes and make sure external drive with XP is not connected.

So, windows 7 would not know XP is even in use.

Is all this viable... or is there something that would prevent it from working?



My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Dec 2009   #2

windows 7

I have a similiar problem. I have a new Windows 7 computer and an old computer running XP. I can mount the XP hard drive into a USB enclosure. If I change the bios to boot from the USB port first, will I be able boot from the XP drive when the drive is connected and boot from the internal drive when the xp drive is not connected?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Dec 2009   #3
Microsoft MVP


MS works hard to keep its OS's off of USB external drives, or they could be carried around to any machine.

There is a tutorial on the web to install XP to a flash stick but it is one of the most complicated I've ever seen.

No one has done it with Vista (why bother?) or Win7 to my knowledge, although people stop in here all the time and say how easy they could do it.

I think your best bet is to use Virtual Mode XP in Win7, or install the program you refer to in Compatibility Mode or otherwise make it work in Win7. Or create a standard dual boot on your laptop HD, or on a second HD on the p.c. which can be booted via BIOS boot menu.

Dual Boot Installation with Windows 7 and XP
My System SpecsSystem Spec

28 Dec 2009   #4

windows 7

Thanks for the information.

I have tried to run some programs in virtual XP mode and they do not run. I figured if I have an old computer that runs XP all I have to do is connect the old hard drive to the new computer and change some settings.

My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Dual-Boot windows XP from External Drive

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