Idea - Vista Hardware Profiles?

#1
I just found this site yesterday and I LOVE EasyBCD... Great work!!

The problem I was trying to solve by googling around was how to implement hardware profiles in Windows Vista. MS has removed this feature (deprecated) from the gui, which sucks for the huge number of users that actually use it. They say that the plug and play capability is so good now that hardware profiles are unnecessary.

Ahhh... no.

I must admit that I don't really know how involved the process would be to write an application that would basically replace that functionality in Vista, but it might be a great match for your boot loader mod product. This is going to be a huge issue for the number of people that run Linux/Vista dual boot systems who want to be able to boot either OS from within VMWare while the other OS is running as the host.

My situation is that I want to run a pre-installed version of Ubuntu from within VMWare in Vista, and vice-versa. The main difficulty that I run into when trying to boot Vista (without hardware profile support) is that the driver for the hard disk controller is a SATA drive, and doesn't support VMWare's virtual IDE drive (...can you say Blue Screen?). Under XP a hardware profile would have solved the issue quite handily.

From the number of posts out there on various forums etc. I think you'd be very popular if you could solve this issue. Virtualization is just getting more common all the time!

Just an idea...

Cheers!

Joel
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#2
Hi Joel, welcome to NST!

I don't think it'd be possible to re-implement hardware profiles without having the Vista source code since it would involve changes to the kernel.

However, I don't think you have to add that feature any way. The problem is that Windows Vista isn't loading the IDE drivers at boot since it doesn't think it needs them. The same thing happens when you enable AHCI after installing Vista w/ AHCI disabled or running your SATA drives in native IDE mode.

Two solutions:
1) Enable the IDE service in regedit. I'm not sure of the exact entry, but it'd be something akin to this one for enable the SATA one: Error message when you start a Windows Vista-based computer after you change the SATA mode of the boot drive:
2) Create the virtual machine w/ a SCSI drive instead of an IDE one (not sure if this would work, but worth a try).

Good luck.