[Download] Vista Hide 'n Seek BETA

The problem with HnS is that different problems manifest themselves for different people.

Most didn't experience your floppy issue. And you didn't have the cmain() problem others did. And the boot.ini issue only affects certain configurations where XP isn't on the first partition of any drive. The list goes on, and on, and on.....

I'll announce a beta as soon as we have a sizeable number of downloads and zero complaints :smile:

I'd appreciate if you could test this build and let me know how it works to ensure that no bugs regressions have occurred.
That I will do on the spot. Eventually I will finally get around to wiping the current install of XP but simply have been running Vista and XP sits there by itself until I need to run a video capture program. No Vista version found yet.

The need to copy the boot.ini and ntldr files as well as the others like IO.sys, Config.sys, MSDos.sys, and NTDetect.com when dual booting through HnS by itself would be something. Grub4Dos however still is going to be "Grub for DOS"! in that sense requiring dos files. For the EasyBCD side of things the lack of having to manually copy the other files(ntldr, boot.ini) over will certainly make the program even easier for the novice or newbie there.
When seeing XP as an option in HnS utilizing NeoGrub(Grub4Dos) there to see XP added in that's one less step. This of course is left for the more advanced user seeing the dos type screen come up with Vista as the default. I simply increase the display time from 0 to 3 seconds to see XP as an option there.

For EasyBCD when dual booting seeing a stand alone install of XP on a separate drive added in the basic boot files have to be copied over to the root of the Vista primary. When installing XP first the Vista installer by itself will automatically detect and add XP in on it's own. With an auto detection process build into HnS similar to what the Windows installer sees that could save a step or two but also end up with a much larger program in the end.


You'll be glad to know that Build #56 is "smooth as silk" not seeing one indication of the previous floppy issue you corrected or anything else here. I performed a full of XP for the latest to insure a different setup with XP now seeing itself as D instead of performing a stand alone install on the second drive. The HnS tool is ready for a larger number to try out as it is where the additional feedback would be a larger help in the long run.
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Ok CG - Clean as a whistle - works perfectly.
I disconnected my flash drives as per the warning, but I thought you'd said that's not necessary any more ?
Played safe and did it anyway, but you might want to remove the message if it's spurious now.

Thanks a lot, and congratulations.

(now all I need to do is fix the broken AVG on my XP)
Yeah, it isn't necessary to remove any drives any longer.

I just haven't had the time for the cosmetic changes between all the core and bootloader modifications that were needed.

But...... YAY!!! God, I'm happy this is finally going somewhere!

I've finally arrived at a boot situation where I can see all my drives from the boot menus.

But I have a problem! I have 3 levels of boot menus!

I will go through the steps I took to arive at the situation I have arrived at:

1. Installed Windows XP
2. Installed Windows Vista
3. Installed Ubuntu (Hardy Heron) putting I think the grub onto the bootloader
4. Installed HnS - prompted to install EasyBCD to make Win XP work

I have 1 single HD - a sata 250gb. It is configured as fllows

1. Primary partition - Win Vista
2. Primary Partition - Win XP
3. Extended Partition - For data purposes
4. Extended Partition - Ubuntu and swap partition installed

So on the first boot menu I see Ubuntu, plus options for Win Vista & XP.

If I select Ubuntu - it takes me into Ubuntu

If I select Vista, it takes me to the HnS menu

I then select vista - it takes me to the Vista boot menu

I then select Vista - it teks me into Vista

Question - How do I get to 1 boot menu without going through all these steps?

Any help appreciated!

Gareth, you'll have to wait for one of the other Ubuntu users for advice on that, but if you select XP from the ubuntu grub menu you won't get HnS's hide facility and Vista won't be protected, so don't do that.
The HnS menu can take you directly to Vista or XP itself, so to get rid of the 3rd menu at least, just use EasyBCD to set timeout 0, then it will go directly into Vista (if it's default) without presenting a menu.
What some simply do is have nothing but Vista in the HnS boot menu and set the display time for that to 0 seconds. Your XP and ubuntu entries are then seen in the EascyBCD options screen there. That allows you to set which OS will be default separate of the HnS tool while that is still being used.
Thanks Terry

I'm not sure that I understand. Does that mean I still have a 3rd menu, but because the time out is 0 I just won't see it?

I don't have a problem having the Ubuntu menu, but I don't want both the HnS menu and another one as I am concerned that Vista will not be hidden properly from XP. Will installing Easy BCD replace the Vista boot menu?

I have found to my cost that if Vista is not hidden properly it causes all sorts of problems with Vista when you boot into XP and then cpome back to Vista

Secondly, I thought that HnS replaced EasyBCD - Is that not the case?


If you don't select XP from the HnS menu, you won't get the Vista hide command(s) executed.
There would be absolutely no point in using HnS if you don't want Vista hidden, unless in some future build it becomes a super all purpose bootloader.
At the moment there's no other point in having HnS. If you choose to default HnS to Vista then pick XP from the Vista bootloader, you won't get the hide command(s) and you'd just as well use the BCD as your top bootloader, and avoid using HnS completely.
yes HnS is a top level bootloader that passes control to bootldr (vista) or NTLDR (Xp) depending on what you choose.
They're always all there, they just don't need to present you with a choice.(so you don't see them)
HnS doen't replace Easy, it supplements it.
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Thanks PC Eye

Your response crossed with my further question. So are you saying that HnS does not act as a boot menu, but purely as a hiding device to hide Vista from XP?

Thought that it also acted as a boot device and that I could use it to boot Vista or XP. You seem to indicate that I need to have Easy BCD as well to boot Vista or XP. CG seemed to indicate in a previous response that HnS was also a full bootloader.

As you can see from my previous response I don't have a problem with the ubuntu menu. Just want to stop the 3rd chainloader to Vista's boot menu!


I don't know wheteher you can boot Linux directly from HnS (with a custom edit of menu.lst). I'm not a linux user.
You certainly can't do it directly.
You'll need to wait for Guru to see if there's a way to customize your particular setup to use just one level.
Copy the Ubuntu entry's settings from /boot/grub/menu.lst on Linux to C:\menu.lst on Windows (only the section that starts "title Ubuntu")

That will let HnS natively boot into Ubuntu bypassing GRUB and the second boot menu.

Remove all non-Vista entries from the Vista boot menu, that will make selecting the vista option in the HnS boot menu take you directly to Vista.

So you'll have three entries in HnS that take you to three OSes directly.
Thanks all

Lets see if I have got this right!

HnS is not a bootloader but purely a method of hiding Vista from XP?

So if that is right I will always have to go through 2 stages - HnS menu to hide or not hide Vista and then remember when I get to either the vista or easybcd bootloader to remember which action I selected?

CG's response to me in #293 does not seem to confirm that. He said

You can copy and paste Ubuntu's menu from /boot/grub/menu.lst into HnS' menu.lst at c:\menu.lst to make it one menu.

Mahmoud Al-Qudsi, Director

I assumed that this meant that HnS is a proper bootloader and that it would boot into anything direct without the need of any further boot menus.

I have to admit that I couldn't get the menulist to accept the additions when I tried to save it. It just kept saying that it could not save it!

So I am truely confused. I'm determined to get to a good boot configuration, but can't seem to quite get there.

I don't have a problem reinstalling my OS's, just would like to get there.

With XP and Vista here I simply use the HnS menu without EasyBCD for seeing a working dual boot with Vista hidden from XP while booted into the older version. I'm trying to get familiar with editing the HnS menu manually at the command line there for possibly adding ubuntu in while EasyBCD simplifies seeing another OS added into the equation there.
HnS is a bootmanager which passes control to other bootmanagers as required.
Vista's BOOTMGR is also a bootmanager which passes control to XP's NTLDR if asked
NTLDR is also a combined bootmanager/loader.
HnS will also do the necessary to hide Vista from XP.
If you don't want to hide Vista, you don't use it.
If you do want to hide Vista, you can't do it with Vista's BOOTMGR
EasyBCD is not a bootloader it's an editor for the Vista BCD
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Thanks CG

However, the first boot menu I get is the Ubuntu menu, so the HnS is the secone one. So I need to remove grub from where it is to get to the position you are suggesting. How do I do that?

Secondly, please see previous response. I tried to copy Ubuntu to the menu list, but it wouldn't save!

How do you remove the Vista entries from Vista's bootloader?




Thank Terry

But I'm now totally confused.

I seem to be getting confusing messages fro CG and yourself and I am sitting here going whoch way do I turn!

Is there a wiki on this or something that takes someone new to this complicated booting arrangement through all the issues about what HnS does or not do, how it works with EasyBCD/Vista/Ubuntu etc. whether or not it is a bootloader or purely passes instructions onto other bootloaders?!

Help yours totally confused as to how I get to one way of getting my booting arrangement sorted.


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Gareth follow Guru's advice about getting Ubuntu to work with HnS.
There is no wiki on HnS, It's still pre-Beta.
My last post was just trying to clear up some miconceptions in your previous posts.
Guru didn't say remove Vista with EasyBCD, he said the non-Vista entries.
When you have a boot menu with only one option, it will behave in the same way as a bootmenu with timeout(0). It will go directly to the default system without giving you a choice.
What we said were two different ways of achieving the same thing, namely removing your third menu.
The technique I recommended is quicker and more easily reversible, Guru's is more understandable logically.
If you couldn't save menu.lst, try opening notepad (or whatever you used) with admin privileges.
Earlier in this thread CG covered seeing Grub manually installed to the root partition. When installing ubuntu 7.10 and later 8.04 here the installer setup Grub as the default seeing HnS as second in order. After restoring the Vista mbr I found Grub was also installed into the mbr on the second drive where XP was installed to still seen as the default OS there.

One tip for those wanting to dual boot XP along with Vista when having two hard drives involved is to first unplug the Vista drive if installing XP last for Windows there to also be seen as C not D. Once on you copy the dos files of io.sys, msdos.sys, config.sys along with the ntldr and boot.ini files over to the Vista drive when going to use the HnS tool.

CG once explained how Grub4Dos is the loader used in the HnS tool. With a file missing XP won't load when selected from the boot menu there. At first the Fixboot and Fixmbr commands are used at the XP recovery consoled followed by the Vista startup repair. You then oroceed to add XP in. With Linux either an edit of that loader or the EasyBCD is used for seeing a distro as an option after seeing Grub installed onto the root partition.