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Windows 7: Windows 7 v XP dual boot mess

15 Feb 2010   #1

Windows 7
Windows 7 v XP dual boot mess

Help required to get out of a complete mess!

First up, I'm new not only to this forum but forums in general so apologies if my etiquette is wrong.

I have a new Packard Bell X6620 loaded with Windows 7 64bit Home Premium and 6GB of memory.
The hard drive is 1 TB which is factory partitioned into 2 halves, C: and D:
The DVD is drive E: and there are multiple built in card readers and USBs.

I tried to turn this into a dual boot system by loading XP Pro onto the D: drive using Brink's Method 2 which I have to say is a very well written piece.

Unfortunately I fell at the first as the drive I was offered for the XP load was the J: drive (I now believe the card reader drives caused this to happen).
I nethertheless continued through to the end including running the EasyBCD and (unsuccesfully) attempting to stop XP from deleting the W7 restore points.

From W7 all looked good with the W7 drive as C: and the XP drive as D:
There was a minor issue listed below for completeness [see *], but thats the least of my problems!

From XP however, all was not right as the J: drive is not desiged to be booted to.
[The XP drive was J: and the W7 drive was I: ]

So, I thought I'd boot to W7, reformat the XP drive (D: from here) and try again.

Once again XP loaded into J: and then the fun started.

When I boot now, I get the dual boot prompt but both entries are for XP!
I can't boot to W7 anymore. The files are still there (on the I: drive), but without the option to select W7 I'm stuck.

Running EasyBCD from XP still allows me to set up as before with a W7 and XP option, but it has no effect since when I reboot as I still get 2 XP options.

I've tried booting from the W7 back up disks that I created, which looks good until once again I'm hit with the XP or XP dual prompt choice. (Note that W7 was preloaded so I don't have the original MS disks)
I've looked into booting from a USB key but cant create one without the ISO disks either.

Any suggestions?
I'd be happy to restore to W7 only and forget the dual boot if that's easier.

[* Booting to W7 after W7 was absolutely fine, but booting to W7 after XP caused a recovery to occur each time. Perhaps this is down to the restore points being deleted? I'll only look into this if I can get XP to boot into the C: drive]

My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2010   #2

Windows 7 x64

You have tried using EasyBCD to add an entry for Windows 7? Which version of EasyBCD are you using, hopefully the 2.0 beta you have to join the forum to get right now.

Do both XP boot menu entries work and are they the same install?

Have you checked the Disk Management Window to get a good idea of what might be going on?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2010   #3

Windows 7

Hi Saltgrass - thanks for the reply.

I'm using EasyBCD 1.7.2 as that's where the original post's link took me. I'll register with NeoSmart and try v 2.0 if you think it will help.

Both entries on my boot menu take me to the same place. XP is only installed once, its just that there are 2 entries on the list for it.

I've just tried the disk management (this is all new to me so thanks for mentioning it) and a screen shot is below. Of course, this is from XP and not W7 !

My System SpecsSystem Spec

15 Feb 2010   #4

Windows 7 x64

Hopefully the EasyBCD update will allow you to set up the dual boot.

What type of Win backup disc are you talking about? Did you make a repair CD? If so, make sure the bios is set to boot the DVD first. You should get a "Hit any key to boot to DVD" when you boot. Hitting a key will, of course, boot to the disc if it is bootable. If you have that you could just do a startup repair on Win 7 or follow the suggestion below.

I have a suggestion, but since you do not seem to have a repair CD or install DVD you could boot to, I will just tell you what it is and it has worked for me several times and leave it up to you.

First, look in the bin folder for EasyBCD. Something like Program Files\NeoSmart Technologies\EasyBCD\bin and look for a utility called bootsect.exe. If you find it, copy it to the XP Windows\System32 folder.

Then open a command window and type the following. Hit enter after and then wait for a confirmation:
bootsect /nt60 sys

This should restore the Win 7 boot sequence. Going back to XP you would use /nt52 instead of 60, if you had a bootable repair or Install disc.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2010   #5
Microsoft MVP


Try tapping F8 at bootup to see if the 100mb System Reserved partition has correctly placed the Win 7 Repair My Computer console into the Advanced Boot Tools.

If not, Download the WIn7 Repair CD from here: Download Windows 7 System Recovery Discs — The NeoSmart Files

Burn to CD using ImgBurn at 4x speed with Verify, or write to flash stick: Bootable ISO - Create from Installation Files

Boot the Repair console, click through to Recovery Tools list, open a Command Line to type:

SELECT DISK # (for Win7 HD)
SELECT PARTITION # (for Win7 partition)

Now return to the Recovery Tools list to run Startup Repair up to 3 separate times with reboots to write the MBR to Win7 until it starts. Then install EasyBCD 2.0, remove XP then add it again on Add/Remove tab, accepting boot files offered.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Feb 2010   #6

Windows 7

Success !

Chaps first of all thanks for your help here. I think I'd have got the chain saw out by now without it !

Installition of EasyBCD 2.0 was the first step. This removed the dual boot window, although regardless of the settings (either just W7 or W7/XP) everything booted directly to XP.

I then tried booting (yes I had already changed the BIOS boot seq) from the W7 recovery discs that I created and once again, all seemed well, the files loaded, I was prompted to load discs 2 then 3 and finally... XP loaded !

Then I followed Gregs links and created the ISO disc, tried that and EUREKA!
Windows 7 is back up and running.
I'll now have a long think on whether to retry to dual boot again, but once again thank you both very much as I'm now back to where I started which is a relief to say the least.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Windows 7 v XP dual boot mess

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