cant boot vista at dual boot

I have installed windows 7 on my Vista laptop in dual boot.
After restart I get the choice fot both but it makes no difference, its always Windows7 that boots but I also want to start Vista.
So I used EasyBCD to create a Vista MBR because I think this was missing. But even writing a MBR makes no difference.

In the list beneath I deleted the Windows 7 settings and created two vista settings, and even then still windows 7 is booted.

In EasyBCD I see this:

There are a total of 2 entries listed in the Vista Bootloader.
Bootloader Timeout: 7 seconds.
Default OS: Microsoft Windows Vista
Entry #1
Name: Microsoft Windows vist
BCD ID: {5ff7c609-1983-11df-bc68-9558e09db0cb}
Drive: Active Boot Partition
Bootloader Path: \Windows\system32\winload.exe
Windows Directory: \Windows
Entry #2
Name: Microsoft Windows Vista
BCD ID: {current}
Drive: C:\
Bootloader Path: \Windows\system32\winload.exe
Windows Directory: \Windows

And Detail information:

Windows Boot Manager
identifier {9dea862c-5cdd-4e70-acc1-f32b344d4795}
device partition=C:
description Windows Boot Manager
locale nl-NL
inherit {7ea2e1ac-2e61-4728-aaa3-896d9d0a9f0e}
default {5ff7c608-1983-11df-bc68-9558e09db0cb}
resumeobject {5ff7c600-1983-11df-bc68-9558e09db0cb}
displayorder {5ff7c609-1983-11df-bc68-9558e09db0cb}
toolsdisplayorder {b2721d73-1db4-4c62-bf78-c548a880142d}
timeout 7
Windows Boot Loader
identifier {5ff7c609-1983-11df-bc68-9558e09db0cb}
device boot
path \Windows\system32\winload.exe
description Microsoft Windows vist
osdevice boot
systemroot \Windows
resumeobject {18124f0c-19aa-11df-ab4a-806e6f6e6963}
Windows Boot Loader
identifier {5ff7c608-1983-11df-bc68-9558e09db0cb}
device partition=C:
path \Windows\system32\winload.exe
description Microsoft Windows Vista
osdevice partition=C:
systemroot \Windows
resumeobject {19ec5ba9-19a9-11df-9847-806e6f6e6963}

I tried different settings but no success.

I hope one of you can tell me what is wrong and how can fix it so I can access Vista again.

You have 2 entries pointing to the same system on the "system" partition. That presumably is W7
Get EasyBCD 2.0 latest build. It's fully W7 compatible, 1.7 pre-dates W7.
Don't go rewriting the MBR. It wasn't broken. You just need to add an entry to the BCD.
Read the 1st link in the sticky thread if the acronyms are new to you.
The BCD doesn't contain partition letters, it uses partition UIDs.
EasyBCD translates these for your convenience to the lettering as seen by the system you're running it on.
Delete one of the entries (add/remove)
Rename the other to Windows 7 (change settings)
Add a new entry for Vista (add/remove), pointing it to the drive letter that W7 sees Vista as.
Terry, thanks for the reply. I triedyour suggestions but couldn't solve.
I downloaded EasyBCD 2.0.
This are my settings now:

There are a total of 2 entries listed in the bootloader.
Default: Microsoft Windows 7
Timeout: 7 seconds.
Boot Drive: C:\
Entry #1
Name: Microsoft Windows 7
BCD ID: {default}
Drive: D:\
Bootloader Path: \Windows\system32\winload.exe
Entry #2
Name: Microsoft Windows Vista
BCD ID: {current}
Drive: C:\
Bootloader Path: \Windows\system32\winload.exe

Default OS: Microsoft Windows 7
Choose OS to change associated settings: Microsoft Windows 7

I also tried the setting for Vista: add entry Drive: BOOT , no success.

Maybe: I had troubles with installing Win7 and it could be that I installed it both on Drive C and Drive D. And because of this and there is 1 Bootloaderpath it is not possible for the system to see a difference for Vista or Win7 and always startup Win 7?

Also when I look in the D=drive its empty and the C-drive does not show all the files that should be there.

Is it possible to de-install win7 so Vista can take over the system and that I can try a new win7 installation?

Or can EasyBCD do some repair for me? Can I force the startup to look just for Vista?

Can you post a Disk Management screenshot as detailed at the end of the sticky, remembering to annotate which partition is which if the disk labels don't make it clear.
Make that 2 screenshots, one from each boot option.
Last edited:
Attached scrrenshot of disk management tool.

The language is dutch, I hope this makes it not too difficult.


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OK. That's running from C: which should be Vista (but you didn't label your partitions ! so I can't tell if it is.)
Can you choose the other boot option for W7, and paste another DM screenshot from that boot.

(btw. you could add Dutch to this thread when you have a spare moment)
Aren't you getting a boot menu ?
You are getting 2 options, which you think are both booting the same system.
I want to see a DM screenshot taken after you've selected each boot option to see if they really are the same partition, or whether you've just managed to create 2 copies of one system in different partitions.
I have enclosed 5 screenshots.
In boot-1 you see the two boot options.
When I choose Windows Vista then the system is starting up with Windows7.
When I choose Windows 7 then I get screen boot-2. It says:
"Cannot start windows. probably caused by a recent change of hardware or software. This you can do to solve it:
1 ...., 2 .... , 3 .....
If you don't have the windows install disk please contact the manufacturer.
Information: cannot load the selected option because the application does not exists or is damaged."

Thats why I am not able to make DM screenshots for the other boot option.

I hope these information is for you enough to determine what is fault.

btw: I did download the Vista Recovery ISO in case I will need it.



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OK Rob, I can see what's wrong now. Sorry I didn't spot it before.
Your DM screenshot shows D:\ with 100% free space.
You installed W7 into the Vista partition instead of into the empty partition you'd created for it.
If you want Vista back, you're going to need to factory reset the PC from your OEM recovery facility, then shrink the Vista partition again and then install W7 again.
This time give the partitions labels when you do the DM shrink. Call the existing partition "Vista" and call the empty space "Windows 7". That way, when you do the W7 install again, there'll be no confusion about where you're putting it.
It's always dangerous to install into unnamed partitions, especially if you think that the partition letter tells you what's what.
Remember that the booted DVD is an OS in its own right, and it will see your existing Vista and the empty space as letters which it makes up for itself. Disk letters are only registry entries in the running system, and the letters that Vista used need not be the same as the Install setup.
Disk labels are physical. They attach to the partition, and will appear the same to all OSs (even Linux)
Terry, that's not necessary!

This is an *ancient* and way under-advertised article I wrote that can solve his problem:
Recovering XP The NeoSmart Files

It probably needs some minor changes to be applicable for Windows7 over Vista, but the same steps (mainly) as Windows Vista over XP should apply.
" you're going to need to factory reset the PC from your OEM recovery facility..."
I assume you mean a OEM Recovery disk, but with my laptop (year 2007) I did not get such disk/dvd.

For Computer Guru: I checked 'Windows.old' but that file is not visible anymore. When I was installing windows 7 I did see that this file was there but now it's behind the scenes and can't get access to it.

I see you have an Acer Aspire from the BIOS screenshot.
That should access the recovery partition by pressing Alt/F10 as you boot.
I made a photoshot of the screen after F10.
Can I access the recovery partition from here?

btw "Maybe it's just hidden. Do you have the viewing of both system and hidden files enabled?" : i've these enabled. I don't get more information then I get when I search via the DOS-prompt.


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Try the 1st link (enable the facility in the BIOS etc.)
The 2nd is no good. That's just a standard removal of W7 from a dual-boot with Vista still present.
You don't have a Vista system until you factory reset your PC and recreate it.
From your DM screenshot we can see there is still a recovery partition on the HDD.
You need to concentrate on getting the factory reset done and getting back to square one.
(did you make portable recovery media from the hidden partition when you first comissioned the PC ? )