8MB boot partition created by XP doesn't let me install 7


New Member
This thing is very frustrating :\...I always didn't get why (in every XP reformat) XP had to create an 8MB partition ("system partition", with the boot files) in the second eide HD when in the first S-ata HD it had all the necessary space.

Anyway, here's my situation:

- MAIN HD: S-ata, one primary partition in which XP is installed on (d), one extended partition in which there're 4 logical units (s-e-f-g). The S partition is the one dedicated to 7.

- SECONDARY HD: an old eide HD dedicated to storage. Every time I tried to format\reinstall XP a partition were created with the boot files within (c "system partition").

Now as you certainly understood, 7 doesn't let me install the OS because "the system partition isn't big enough"

The only solution I see is:
- move the system partition or the boot files elsewhere (preferably in D:?), making XP recognize them. (note thet in D., where XP is installed, there's about 1GB of free space only..I reduced the partition with gparded precisely to gain free space for 7)
- Delete the "system partition" (c) with gparted (XP won't boot anymore, I imagine), and try to install 7 hoping it will find the space for its boot files on the main S-ata HD, then find a way to recreate a XP-7 multiboot.

I'll probably prefer the first solution type, but I don't know if there're other methods or if easyBCD can help me in this matter.

Thx in advance..I'm stuck until I find a solution :\
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Logical drives inside an extended partition cannot be "active".
The MBR IPL looks for the "active" partition to find the PBR which locates the boot files.
Before XP, Windows OSs could only be installed to a primary partition.
XP Vista and W7 can be installed into a logical drive but they cannot be booted from it (see lines 1 and 2 above)
That's the reason why the install for any of those OSs will create a small primary partition if you try putting them in a logical drive. (or use another pre-existing primary)
You can have 4 primaries or 3 primaries and one extended.
It makes sense to put your Windows OSs into primary partitions, and your apps and data into logical drives (like this)
I wouldn't put Vista or W7 into less than 50Gb if you want to have more than 1 or 2 days of system restore points available.
25Gb is the absolute minimum which will require constant housekeeping to manage.
Read the first link in the sticky thread for more multi-booting background detail.
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