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Windows 7: Dual Boot Installation with Windows 7 and XP

14 Dec 2015   #2210
KingWhiskers

Windows 7 Ultimate x64, XP Pro SP3, 32bit
 
 

I have 7 64bit Ultimate and XP 32 bit installed on different drives and they both show C as the main drive. This only happens if you install XP first.
Good post though.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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18 Dec 2015   #2211
johnnpj

Windows 7 Ultimate x86, Windows Xp x86, Ubuntu
 
 

This all seems overly complicated to me from the ones I read. I highly recommend using Paragon Drive Copy which is meant to deal with all these issues.
I have an old Toshiba Windows Xp machine. I presently have Windows 7, Windows Xp and Ubuntu all working on it. I still need advice on activation of keys though if both windows are OEM.

My advice on the issue of getting XP on a Windows 7 machine would be this:

Completely wipe the hard drive. Do this by rebooting using the boot disk that you had to create with the Drive Copy software, which would have been set up before hand. Then using the software.
Install Windows XP. Partition size doesn't matter at this stage. Make sure it is working okay by rebooting enough. If it doesn't work, then I don't know.
Reboot using the boot disk.
Backup the partition with XP to an external hard drive using the software. It won't be very big.
Then install Windows 7. Delete any existing drives first. Set the size appropriately for everything.
Then reboot with the boot disk. Copy partition with XP from the backup to an appropriate size.
Reboot machine. Windows 7 will detect Windows XP and have it in the boot manager.

Also, the boot.ini file in XP will be wrong and should be corrected before starting Windows 7 in dual boot. It gets copied over to Windows 7 system partition automatically by Windows 7 itself. The partition should be set to '3', the last number in the line. I never managed to edit it in Windows 7, it won't give me permission. The Paragon boot disk might fix it but I wouldn't count on it with Windows 7 installed. What I did though was edit it before copying it over. The way it is done as I described above, you would have to edit it before closing XP, then saving the image. All this might be fixable in BCDedit anyway, I never had to try it. If you can get to XP's boot.ini in anything except Windows 7, you can change it. The boot disk software has ways you can edit boot files, but I'm not sure it can do this.

If you develop boot issues, the boot disk has software that is meant to deal with that.
You have to realize there can be compatibility issues with XP and newer hard drives because of different sector sizes. There are fixes you can get. But the Drive Copy software should deal with it when you copy XP over. You shouldn't use drive management software on XP on newer hard drives. Though I do use the defragmenter in XP.

You can also backup Windows 7 that is already there. You can do things without installing Windows 7 but you would have to clone a hard drive with it installed, not just copy a partition over. You could install Windows 7, then copy back the saved partition of Windows 7 also. Ubuntu can't find Windows if there are no Windows installations, not just a partition. I think if you just copy partitions over with only Windows and no Linux, everything might work okay.
I ended up with 3 boot managers, Grub for Ubuntu, Windows 7 dual boot, and XP. Windows has no idea Linux is there. Ubuntu detects everything else. The Grub Ubuntu boot manager comes up first.

If everything is right but not booting. You can run the boot disk to fix boot problems. A Windows 7 start up disk is meant to fix it too. Then use BCDEdit in Windows 7 to tweak the booting.

And I gather from web research there are bad complications from newer systems not using Bios normally, which is another story.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Feb 2016   #2212
javic

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 
EasyBCD warning I'm not sure how to handle

First, apologies if this question has been asked and answered. There are over 220 notes in this thread , and I haven't read through them all. If already answered, a pointer to the answer would be fine.

I'm attempting Option 2, Win7 first then WinXP. When I get to Step 10 "BCD Deployment" and click "Write MBR", EasyBCD presents an imposing warning message (see attachment). This warning isn't described in the tutorial so perhaps it's new to EasyBCD (I have EasyBCD V2.3).

I have lots of computer experience (application development), but don't mess with boot stuff very often, so I'm not sure what this message is telling me.

First, it's asking if I'm sure I want to uninstall something ("BOOTMGR"), but I don't know what it means to uninstall that thing. Is it safe? Can I get it back if I unininstall it and then change my mind? The way the message is worded, it seems to be asking if I'm sure I want to uninstall something that's required to boot Windows 7.

The message goes on to imply there's some other step I must do first ("...only boot into Windows XP if the proper boot files are already in place") but I don't know what files it's referring to or how to ensure they're "in place". And what "place" should they be in?

In short, what happens if I click "Yes" in this warning dialog? I'm concerned of course that I'll render my system inoperative.

FWIW I'm also attaching a screen shot of Disk Management in case it's relevant. Installation locations for Win7 & WinXP can be inferred from the drive labels. (And you can't see it but my System Reserved partition is assigned drive letter "B:").


Attached Thumbnails
Dual Boot Installation with Windows 7 and XP-disk-management.png  
Attached Images
Dual Boot Installation with Windows 7 and XP-easybcd-warning.png 
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Feb 2016   #2213
johnnpj

Windows 7 Ultimate x86, Windows Xp x86, Ubuntu
 
 

Hi, I am a late comer to this thread. I haven't had the difficulties that others seemed to have. I am not familiar with the methods that were outlined. My method in my last post was because I had XP OEM preinstalled, and I was backing up and restoring a partition of it. I cannot praise Paragon Drive Copy enough for helping with this. It even deals with the Advanced Format of later hard drives. This difference might create issues. If you install XP on a newer hard drive using Advanced Format without using a backup as I said I did, then you would have to obtain the fix tool by going to the web site for you hard drive brand.

As to dual booting XP and W7 generally: Microsoft on a page I happened across a while ago said to install the older OS first, then the newer one. I have only been dealing with 32 bit if that makes a difference, I would doubt it but I don't know. I am assuming if you tried a dual boot with one 32 bit and one 64 bit, you shouldn't go from one to the other by restarting the computer, you would have to shutdown first each time. This is relates to experience I had with the dual booting problem where the sound goes away in XP, solved by shutting down Windows 7 first, not restarting.

I have been setting up computers with older hard drives for XP and W7 dual booting and have had no problems. First I removed all partitions from the hard drive, leaving it all as unallocated, using the Paragon boot disk. I install XP first using a Microsoft disc, then install W7 using a disc. There is no system partition added by W7 for some reason this way, but it works fine.

I have also set up a triple boot with Ubuntu, on a hard drive that uses Advanced Format. In my last effort at this particular situation, I installed XP first, using the recovery discs with my laptop, then recovered an archive backup with Paragon Drive Copy eliminating issues with Advanced Format. Then I installed Windows 7, then I installed Ubuntu, which is a bit different to what I described before because XP is first to be added to the hard drive this time. The problem with installing Ubuntu is that it has to detect Windows installed and seems to need information in the MBR to know this. Oddly it didn't seem to mention detecting XP but only Win7. When I previously had set up the hard drive with Windows 7 first and then XP from a backup as I described in my last post, it detected both. Which says something, I don't know what, about the MBR, but a difference I should mention was that Windows 7 had created a system partition at this time.

Changing the MBR seems excessive, and is usually only affected by the act of installing an OS, unless you use advanced tools for changing it. Ubuntu gave me a little experience with the MBR because of some issues that occurred, Ubuntu takes over the first startup of the computer. I am only concerned with the MBR because of Ubuntu, Windows seems much easier going. I could wipe a hard drive, then restore a Windows partition and it will start, but Ubuntu won't detect Windows and can't be used for a multi boot this time.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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16 Feb 2016   #2214
Brink

64-bit Windows 10 Pro
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by javic View Post
First, apologies if this question has been asked and answered. There are over 220 notes in this thread , and I haven't read through them all. If already answered, a pointer to the answer would be fine.

I'm attempting Option 2, Win7 first then WinXP. When I get to Step 10 "BCD Deployment" and click "Write MBR", EasyBCD presents an imposing warning message (see attachment). This warning isn't described in the tutorial so perhaps it's new to EasyBCD (I have EasyBCD V2.3).

I have lots of computer experience (application development), but don't mess with boot stuff very often, so I'm not sure what this message is telling me.

First, it's asking if I'm sure I want to uninstall something ("BOOTMGR"), but I don't know what it means to uninstall that thing. Is it safe? Can I get it back if I unininstall it and then change my mind? The way the message is worded, it seems to be asking if I'm sure I want to uninstall something that's required to boot Windows 7.

The message goes on to imply there's some other step I must do first ("...only boot into Windows XP if the proper boot files are already in place") but I don't know what files it's referring to or how to ensure they're "in place". And what "place" should they be in?

In short, what happens if I click "Yes" in this warning dialog? I'm concerned of course that I'll render my system inoperative.

FWIW I'm also attaching a screen shot of Disk Management in case it's relevant. Installation locations for Win7 & WinXP can be inferred from the drive labels. (And you can't see it but my System Reserved partition is assigned drive letter "B:").
Hello Javic, and welcome to Seven Forums.

Clicking on yes should confirm the operation.

If you have any issues with booting to Windows 7, you can do a startup repair of Windows 7.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Feb 2016   #2215
javic

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 

johnnpj: Thanks for the thoughful reply. (And I didn't mention it but I'm running Win7 64 bit and WinXP 32 bit). If I was starting from scratch I most certainly would install WinXP first as that approach seems to work better for most folks. Unfortunately, I started with a system on which Win7 was already installed (dual boot was an afterthought ), and rebuilding that system was more work than I cared to take on. Plus, as I understand it, using EasyBCD is supposed to make this easy, right?

brink: You've reassured me that clicking "yes" is safe. But what about the "proper boot files" the EasyBCD message refers to? Is there some other work I need to do besides just clicking "yes"? I've seen notes in this thread about copying ntldr and related files onto my "System Reserved" partition. Is that what this message is talking about?

And in general, if I can't get this to work, I'll just use the BIOS option to switch between boot drives. Having the two OSes installed in different drives makes that almost as easy as having a boot menu.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Feb 2016   #2216
Brink

64-bit Windows 10 Pro
 
 

You shouldn't have to do anything else other than click on yes to confirm.

Depending on what you wanted to do with XP, you might also consider if running XP in a virtual machine may work for you. This way you wouldn't have to worry about dual booting with XP and the boot manager.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Feb 2016   #2217
javic

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 

Thanks.

And just FYI I tried XP under VMPlayer but could never get my SoundBlaster Audigy 5.1 sound system working properly (for games). So I figured I'd try dual boot to get direct hardware access for sound. But it's been a few years since I tried the VM approach so maybe I should give it another go.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Feb 2016   #2218
Brink

64-bit Windows 10 Pro
 
 

Please let us know how it goes.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Apr 2016   #2219
RRRitchey

Windows 7 64-bit
 
 

I have an old Dell that originally came with XP. I upgraded it to Windows 7 Professional 64-bit. I now would like to reload XP and its almost impossible to find any motherboards that will run XP. So, I followed another forum's instructions but they left out a few of the EasyBCD steps. I have an 125MB OEM partiion, then the Windows 7 partition and finally the Windows XP partition. I have another disc with several partitions so I end up with the Windows 7 in the C: partition and Windows XP in the J: partition. I checked the bootloader using the BCDEdit and it looks OK but then I went to the directory where ntldr should be and there is no ntldr. I tried running the XP install again but it always tells me:
"Windows failed to start"....... File: \NTLDR
Status: 0xc000000f

I have run EasyBCD numerous times but I am assuming since ntldr is not where it should be this will do nothing. I have started over numerous times but end up at the same place. Any idea how to proceed?
Thank you,
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Dual Boot Installation with Windows 7 and XP




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