Curious about Win 7 startup screen

#1
OK, so this computer has never had any Windows on it but Win7, but it has had a troubled history with many attempts at "fixing" etc, with the standard tools on the Win7 disc. It is currently triple booting MacOS, Win7, and Ubuntu 8.10, with the Windows bootloader, and EasyBCD helping to manage the non-Windows entries in the BCD.

When the computer boots, it displays a Vista style animation before the logon screen. From what I've read, this may have to do with the "repair" process. What's really curious, though, is that if I'm booted into the Mac partition, and I run VMWare Fusion to access and boot the Win7 partition, it then uses the Win7 style animation!!

Can any of you boot experts explain this to me? In both scenarios (hardware boot and VMWare boot), I get the same boot (BCD) menu, and I end up in Windows both ways.

The disk is a GPT formatted disk with four partitions, EFI, Mac, Win, Linux.

I'd love to be able to get the Win7 animation when I boot, but I am not willing to sacrifice my working triple boot!
 

JustinW

Super Moderator
Staff member
#2
Its a problem others have been having as well. I believe its Windows related at the moment, though I've never been able to produce the problem myself with my W7/Vista laptop. If it matters I let W7 add itself during its installation, and didn't use EasyBCD for it, though EasyBCD shouldn't be the problem here.
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#3
I have the Vista animation on Vista and the W7 animation on W7, though when I was dual-booting Vista and W7 via the BCD, I had Vista on both.
The difference now is that I've customized HnS to make my 2 level boot into a single menu.
Previously the Vista bootmgr (renamed bootmgr.HnS by HnS) was used to open the BCD and locate the OS, so you see the Vista animation whichever OS you choose.
In the mod I locate the W7 partition and make it active, then chain to the bootmgr (W7's) on that partition when booting W7, this produces the W7 animation.
The W7 bootmgr doesn't use the Vista BCD but its own, which only contains a W7 entry, hence no second menu.
The difference would seem to be the version of bootmgr in use.
I don't know if EasyBCD restores a Vista version of bootmgr during repair, but it would seem likely from your description if you've never installed Vista yourself.
Look at the details on bootmgr in your W7 root and compare them to those on the "system" partition root. W7 is newer and slightly bigger than Vista.
You could rename (safer than delete) the smaller version and copy the larger one in its place and I'd guess you'll see the W7 animation all the time.
The BCD you see when you open EasyBCD in each case is no real guide.
The BCD is a weird system file with an "always open" status which is confusing when you have several independent Vista or W7 installs, each with their own BCD, because the BCD was designed to be a single copy (on the 1st install) with subsequent installs being added to the 1st BCD and no separate boot files being created on them.
When I look at the BCD from a booted W7, I still see Vista's version (which obviously wasn't used when I booted or I wouldn't have ended up in W7 (it defaults to Vista, timeout(0)), but it gets displayed, presumably because it's the version on the "system" partition.
 
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mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#4
I'm playing around with ways to get the boot animation to show for EasyBCD's Windows 7 entries now... Hope to have something to report soon.
 
#5
I have a simalar problem, this is how i obtained it, i have server 2008 on one drive, windows seven on a diff partition on the same drive, and xp on a seperate drive(seperate install with server\seven drive disconnected),
using bcd through my server install i couldn't get xp to boot, though the other two booted perfectly, but xp boots fine through the bios.
i booted into xp and ran easybcd, (it had to rewrite the MBR as there were no vista installs on that drive) rebooted and works perfectly (except windows 7 has the vista(server2008?) boot animations). great product btw, wish i could have the 7 boot animations though, (a possibility of server\vista with these animations too?)


update, renamed the boot folder on xp drive to boot old, copied boot folder from server drive(first partition on shared drive), now windows seven animations are back,(all boot paths work properly(i was hoping to get 7 animations for server:frowning: but oh well:smile: )
 
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JustinW

Super Moderator
Staff member
#6
Does this workaround fix it (i'd try it myself but I'm not having the problem)?

Boot into Windows 7. Start. Type "msconfig" into the search box and hit enter. On the boot tab, check "OS Boot Information". Than click "OK". It'll ask you to reboot. Reboot. On startup it'll look different, giving you background information of what Windows is doing. When you're back in Windows 7 uncheck it than reboot again.
 
#7
Thanks, Justin, for the idea, as it was something that seemed pretty safe, so I was willing to try. It didn't change anything, however.

Does anyone know where those animations are coming from?
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#8
I think it's the bootmgr module. Try renaming bootmgr on Vista to bootmgr.vista and copying the W7 version into the same root.
If it's not in there, you can always delete/rename back to where you were.
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#10
They say in that link CG, that it's a change to the boot loader (not the boot manager), so I did what I suggested in my last post and put W7's bootmgr on Vista, and sure enough the Vista green-bar appeared still.
So they must mean that winload.exe contains the code !?
So why does this BCD

Default: Vista 64 bit
Timeout: 5 seconds.
Boot Drive: D:\
Entry #1
Name: Vista 64 bit
BCD ID: {current}
Drive: C:\
Bootloader Path: \Windows\system32\winload.exe
Entry #2
Name: Windows 7 64 bit
BCD ID: {000faa65-7bd6-11dc-8f75-e95edf42ff29}
Drive: I:\
Bootloader Path: \Windows\system32\winload.exe


result in the Vista animation on Vista and W7, whereas this change to grub

title Vista 64 bit
find --unhide /Vista.C.HnS
find --unhide /Vista.E.HnS
find --unhide /Vista.I.HnS
find --set-root /BOOTMGR.HNS
makeactive
chainloader /BOOTMGR.HNS (Vista version)
boot
title Windows7 64 bit
find --unhide /Vista.C.HnS
find --unhide /Vista.E.HnS
find --unhide /Vista.I.HnS
find --set-root /Vista.I.HnS
makeactive
chainloader /BOOTMGR (W7 version)
boot


restores the W7 animation.

The workings of the BCD just get more inscrutable day by day.
 
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#11
One very interesting point made in that article is that the animation is for 1024x768, and my screen is 1024x600. I'm going to guess that my screen dimension is what's causing the issue, and that when booting under vmware, it emulates 1024x768 so the new animation comes up.

Thanks for the pointer to the article.
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#12
I don't think so, tastewar...

On my system (1680x1050) the default Windows 7 installation uses the pretty boot animation. But adding a new entry with EasyBCD deactivates pretty boot.
 
#14
Well, obviously I can't rule out EasyBCD, but the fact that your 168x1050 screen can show the snazzy new animation doesn't mean that my 1024x600 can. Also, when running in VMWare, I'm not sure what might be isolated, but it does display the same boot menu with my three OS choices.
 

Robz

New Member
#16
After searching this problem I found this thead and after some further investigation I found it is the Bootstat.dat that has the Windows screen animation. I renamed the Bootstat.dat located in Hidden boot folder on the active drive eg: XP drive in my case and copied from C:\Windows\bootstat.dat on Windows 7 (from in Windows 7) to the (Your drive letter here):\Boot and everything is now correct including the choose operating system screen. Hope this helps. Regards Rob
 

JustinW

Super Moderator
Staff member
#17
If that's the case than thanks for sharing :smile:
I think CG already worked out those issues though as far as EasyBCD's concerned?...
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#18
It's a bit more complex I think. That .dat file is basically 64k of X'00' with a few bytes of header and a couple of addresses up front.
According to CG's research when he was debugging the EasyBCD regression of W7's start screeen, parts of it are scattered around in the bootmgr and bootloader too.
Presumably this file contains a few pointers to the other bits.
 

Robz

New Member
#19
Quite Possably, but changing that file only, fixes the problem of having Vista Animation on Windows 7 after EasyBCD has Re-installed the boot loader for dual boot when the active or boot drive was the other OS and creates the new folder "boot" in the other OPs partition root. The file "Bootstat.dat" never changes after install and the Vista file is 64kb and Windows 7 is 66kb. Defently the only thing I changed and I compared the file on 3 other systems that were not dual boot they were all identical. It was reading Skandolis post that made look there for the solution. Thanks Skandolis. Thanks EasyBCD for the great software. Kind regards Rob
 
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mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#20
bootstat.dat, along with all the other BCD files in 7 have the new cool-image references plastered in an out of them. But using EasyBCD's "recreate boot files" or any other boot file generation options, the correct versions will be installed. More importantly, installing Windows 7 *should* update these to the latest versions.

The original problem was not in the files located on the drive, but rather the configuration of certain properties in the BCD registry for particular entries. That's why users couldn't get the pretty-boot to show even on a PC that once had that image after re-creating the W7 entry in EasyBCD (or bcdedit).

But it should be working now :smile: