Why files saved to other partitions with other XPs installed on them?

#1
Hello all,
Happy to be part of the group! Bare with me; I'm a newbie to all of this.
Installed XP 3 times on 3 partitions on my 160 GB hardrive (C: 110GB, G: 25GB, and F: 15GB). The XP running on partition C (110GB) I wish to keep pristine. The XP's running on partiton G and F are for opening questionalbe files, keygens, for installing questionable programs to determine how they run, etc.
Problem: when I install programs I suspect to be problematic form the XP running on partition G or F, their files are stored not on drive G or F but instead on drive C. Drives G and F are virtually empty while Drive C has used up 40GB. I'm not so much concerned with the location of stored files; my main concern is that the XP running on drive C is not corrupted from malicious files that may have been saved on it from programs installed on XP's running on partitions G and F. Will corrupt files seemingly stored onto drive C from XP's running on other partitions corrupt the XP running on it? Please enlighten. I am currently running an updated anti-virus program - Trend Micro Internet Security Pro - on all three partitions and, although the full system scan hasn't detected any viruses, I still wonder whether it simply hasn't recognized viruses yet to be identified because I'm positive I've opened malicious files in the XP running on partiton G. As well, when I'm logged into the XP running on partition C, partition G becomes partition I.
 

Mak 2.0

Mod...WAFFLES!?!?
Staff member
#2
Did you notice that when the installer ran that they were gonna install to C:\Program Files? that oculd explain why your C install is filling up while there are not. If that install is known as C:\ throughout all system everything you install with just default settings will go there cause that is where the default settings go to. :wink:
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#3
Thread moved.
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#4
Buddy,
If you forget to tell the installer not to default to C, like Mak said, or you're using software that doesn't give you the option (how old must that be !), maybe you need to approach the problem from a different angle.
Try creating your system in a way that all of the XPs think they're the C:\ drive, and that the others are something else. That way they shouldn't try to put anything anwhere else than on their own drives.
You can find a method to achieve this in another thread
http://neosmart.net/forums/showpost.php?p=14351&postcount=9
 
#5
Did you notice that when the installer ran that they were gonna install to C:\Program Files? that oculd explain why your C install is filling up while there are not. If that install is known as C:\ throughout all system everything you install with just default settings will go there cause that is where the default settings go to. :wink:
I see - makes sense. Appreciate the response. Now, if I were to format C drive, would the programs installed on the other XP's running on drives G and F be messed up as their files are installed on drive C?
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#6
Yes Buddy, you'll need to un/reinstall the G F software so they're on their own drive. There will be entries in the registries on G and F pointing to the folders on C.
Even if you tell the software to install on F:\Myprogs, a lot of programs (everything by Adobe for example) will still put bits in C:\Program Files\Common Files and nothing you do will stop them except not having a C:\ disk visible

ADD

In answer to the last part of your first post.
I don't think the technique of attempted isolation you're using is ever going to be effective the way you're set up. A virus introduced while booted to either G or F might very well install itself deep into C:\ anyway in the same way as your legitimate software is doing.

The letters that a booted system calls its disks are internal to itself and don't have to bear any similarity to what the other systems call the same disks, unless you arrange it to be so. You might be able to use Admin Tools/Comp mgmt/Disk mgmt to alter internal naming, but it's not normally keen on doing so for anything bootable.
 
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#7
Buddy,
If you forget to tell the installer not to default to C, like Mak said, or you're using software that doesn't give you the option (how old must that be !), maybe you need to approach the problem from a different angle.
Try creating your system in a way that all of the XPs think they're the C:\ drive, and that the others are something else. That way they shouldn't try to put anything anwhere else than on their own drives.
You can find a method to achieve this in another thread
http://neosmart.net/forums/showpost.php?p=14351&postcount=9
Seems Easy BCD requires VISTA. No worries...thanks for the response:happy:
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#8
EasyBCD works in XP too Buddy, as long as you have NET 2.0 framework installed first.

The post I quoted happened to be talking about Vista, but the technique would work for any OS.
It's the fact of hiding previous installs from the current one which is important, that way they all think they're the only system and chose C:\ as their ID.
You can unhide them when everything is installed, then they all call themselves C:\, and call the others probably D and E
 
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#9
Yes Buddy, you'll need to un/reinstall the G F software so they're on their own drive. There will be entries in the registries on G and F pointing to the folders on C.
Even if you tell the software to install on F:\Myprogs, a lot of programs (everything by Adobe for example) will still put bits in C:\Program Files\Common Files and nothing you do will stop them except not having a C:\ disk visible

ADD

In answer to the last part of your first post.
I don't think the technique of attempted isolation you're using is ever going to be effective the way you're set up. A virus introduced while booted to either G or F might very well install itself deep into C:\ anyway in the same way as your legitimate software is doing.

The letters that a booted system calls its disks are internal to itself and don't have to bear any similarity to what the other systems call the same disks, unless you arrange it to be so. You might be able to use Admin Tools/Comp mgmt/Disk mgmt to alter internal naming, but it's not normally keen on doing so for anything bootable.
Thanks for taking the time to clear it all up Terry. I assumed that partitions with an OS installed on them would not be available for use by others - obviously they are. I will try EasyBCD - installed Net 2.0 framework yesterday. I don't see why it wouldn't work - Hope it does as I'm tired of formating every time my computer begins to slow. I'll let you know how it goes - thanks again!


Addendum:


EasyBCD works in XP too Buddy, as long as you have NET 2.0 framework installed first.

The post I quoted happened to be talking about Vista, but the technique would work for any OS.
It's the fact of hiding previous installs from the current one which is important, that way they all think they're the only system and chose C:\ as their ID.
You can unhide them when everything is installed, then they all call themselves C:\, and call the others probably D and E
Oh, great! Will try!
 
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Sarge

Active Member
#10
EasyBCD works in XP too Buddy, as long as you have NET 2.0 framework installed first.
It can work on XP, but I believe it can modify vista boot loader which you need Vista for. At least that's how it used to be, unless something changed. :lup:
 
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Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#11
You're right of course Sarge,
I'm forgetting because just about everyone comes here for EasyBCD for Vista dual-boots with a.n.other OS.

Buddy, EasyBCD isn't needed to do what you want. It was only written because Vista lost the easily editable dual boot facility of XP (just use Notepad on boot.ini) and made it a lot more difficult.
Guru wrote EasyBCD to make it simple again under Vista by providing a neat UI.
 

Sarge

Active Member
#12
Exactly, Terry.

Good luck, buddy! :smile: