Cannot dual boot anymore

Have had Vista and XP dual booted on my machine for a few years without easyBCD. A couple days ago, I can no longer boot into XP because it bypasses the boot select screen and boots directly into Vista. I tried using easyBCD to boot back into XP, but I don't think I configured it correctly. I can get to where it lets me select the OS when I reboot but when I select XP it says it cannot find it. I know it hasn't been erased because the XP partition still shows up active in computer management. I have posted here with some screenshots of how I tried to set it up
I would be very appreciated if someone could help me outhere.


Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
Hi NASA, welcome to NST.
Can't see your screenshots on the other forum without being registered, but have a read of the sticky thread points 3,5,6 and note especially the wiki link to the XP troubleshooter which describes all of the problems dual-booting XP from the BCD and their fixes.
If you can't work out what's wrong, you can post screenshots here. (just use the go advanced button below the quick reply box, and use the paperclip icon to attach images)
This is how I tried setting it up. I read that sticky and this is the error I am having:
NTLDR is missing or corrupt (or one of its variants)

In the sticky you said "Make sure the Windows XP entry in EasyBCD points to the system drive and keep in mind that this is not necessarily the same as the drive that Windows XP is installed to."
I think this might be what I did wrong. How should I set this up in easyBCD.



Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
I can't see the system flag on that little snapshot of disk management, but use EasyBCD 2.0, delete the current XP entry (add/remove) then add another XP entry. Accept the offer to create boot.ini for you, and note the drive that EasyBCD will point the XP entry to. That's the system drive.
The very latest build will also copy the other XP files into the correct place for you too.
As long as you're using the very latest build, it should do everything for you completely automatically.
(you're lucky - 2 days ago you'd have to locate and copy the XP files for yourself)


Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
You appear to have your backup HDD (I) set 1st in the BIOS boot sequence, and it's become the "system" partition where boot files are found.

The BCD however is saying the bootmgr is on C: so EasyBCD seems to have followed that lead with the XP boot files.

Did all this start to happen when you put a new HDD on the PC ?

You seem to have got the BIOS boot sequence messed up, but what surprises me is that you got either system to boot. Have you been running Vista startup repair or taking other steps you haven't mentioned ?


Can the latest build EasyBCD auto-config be confused by the misplaced "system" on the wrong HDD.
Should of mentioned that the power was knocked out a while ago and I had nothing was booting so I did have to go back into BIOS to rearrange the order. I had to run the Vista repair disc to get it back so that is probably what happened. Never booted into XP during that time period until a few days ago when I noticed it wasn't booting so that explains it. I will try going back into BIOS and arranging the drives to be in the correct order and try this again.


Yep that was it. Went into BIOS and changed the boot order around and I can now boot back into both again.
On a side note, I've been trying to do this for years and I may as well at least ask. Would it be out of the question to also have Linux Ubuntu installed on a different HD to triple boot into? I've tried it before a number of times and never could get it to work. Wondering if this new beta build of ebcd would make this task easier.
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Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
Yes that's Easy with Easy.

Just install Linux to its partition making sure that the linux bootloader is added to the Linux partition, not to the MBR of the boot disk. (In Ubuntu this is achieved by use of the "advanced" button on the grub installation page. The default behaviour of a Linux install is to take over the boot process completely. If you want to use grub as your primary bootmanager/loader that's fine, but if you want Vista BCD to be the controlling bootmgr you'll need to take the step described to keep it in control)

If Linux is on the same HDD as the Vista "system" (boot) files, just add an entry to the BCD using EasyBCD 2.0, using the Linux tab in the add/remove section and leaving the "grub is not...." box unticked, and the BCD will chain to grub in its own partition.
There is a problem (with grub, not EasyBCD) when you install Linux on a different HDD to Vista.
In that case you'll need to add the Linux entry with the "grub is not ..." box ticked. This will prompt EasyBCD to install and use NST's Neogrub to effect the chaining to Linux.

The net result, either way, is that you'll have a Linux entry in your boot menu which will take you to the new OS. Linux will probably then present you with another boot menu offering several types of boot.
When you select the "normal" default option and are inside Linux, edit the /boot/grub/menu.lst to change timeout 30 to timeout 0 and you'll make that 2nd menu invisible.