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Windows 7: Installed windows 7 on e-sata, internal windows xp not booting anymore

14 Jun 2010   #1

Windows 7
Installed windows 7 on e-sata, internal windows xp not booting anymore

I have a portable with windows xp installed on together with pointsec security software. I decided to install windows 7 on an external e-sata harddisk to keep my work harddisk (xp) apart from my personal harddisk (windows 7).

Now I can't boot anymore with the internal windows xp because windows 7 seems to have overwritten some boot files on the internal HD altough I did tell windows 7 to only install on the external HD. I guess that windows 7 installs it's bootloader on the internal harddisk.

How I can I restore the original bootloader to the internal HD? Please note pointsec security software was installed on the internal harddisk. On the internal harddisk I only see the following files:
Boot [DIR]
System Volume Information [DIR]

Thank you,

My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Jun 2010   #2
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64

Welcome to the sevenforums! JohnQM

The mbr or master boot record on the internal drive now points to the external eSata drive you have 7 installed on. In order to make the internal drive bootable again you would need the original hopefully bootable recovery disk or another XP disk of the same edition to boot upto the recovery console.

Rather then performing a repair install the "Fixboot" and "Fixmbr" commands are typed in at the command prompt type window once you log onto the XP preinstall in order to see the boot sector information and mbr entries rewritten. You first will need to unplug the external drive while powered down however to see this done.

The look at the root of the internal drive while booted in 7 should reveal any 7 boot files placed there if you have gone into the folder options view tab and unchecked the hide protected system files item to make them visible. Otherwise only the mbr entries were replaced by the 7 installer.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Jun 2010   #3

Windows 7

Would it work if I save the MBR of another similar computer with a tool like MBRWizard and then restore the MBR to the portable which has problems? The whole problem is the pointsec encryption software which I think use it's own boot software.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

15 Jun 2010   #4
Microsoft MVP


You cannot install Win7 to an external HD as MS makes it impossible lest people would carry around their OS in their pocket to any machine.

Had Win7 correctly updated the XP MBR as it does when installed second to XP, you would have a Dual Boot configuration right now.

Best that you unplug the external to see if XP will boot, and if not run a Repair Install from the booted XP CD. This is not the first "R" for Repair but proceed as if to install until it locates an installation and pray it then offers "R" for Repair Install.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Jun 2010   #5
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64

A repair install should be the last option since you should only to see the XP mbr entries rewritten. eSata installations are not the same as usb.... attempts to install 7 since the drive is still going direct to the board or an addon sata controller card. You simply have the hard drive outside rather then inside the laptop while still seeing the same board controllers in use.

As far as installing any Windows externally that would have been ill advised from the start since things especially drives you would unplug can be too fragile and end up seeing boot problems.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Installed windows 7 on e-sata, internal windows xp not booting anymore

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