[Download] Vista Hide 'n Seek BETA

Thought I'd confirm that I also had problems with build 57. Pretty boot splash screen displayed well, but I could no longer boot into WindowsXP. Looked at menu.lst entries and all seemed as before. Have now reverted to build 56 and all is well again - think I will now wait until the problem is solved. Unfortunately in my panic I failed to take a copy of the logs and menu.lst - apologies.
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
No sorry I meant the system updates, ie removing/replacing the boot.ini entries etc. Comodo is preventing unknown tasks (ie new ones) from changing the system without permission.
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
Thought I'd confirm that I also had problems with build 57. Pretty boot splash screen displayed well, but I could no longer boot into WindowsXP. Looked at menu.lst entries and all seemed as before. Have now reverted to build 56 and all is well again - think I will now wait until the problem is solved. Unfortunately in my panic I failed to take a copy of the logs and menu.lst - apologies.
geoff, I'm fairly certain that was the problem with GRLDR in build 57 - give number 58 a try.

Build 58 should sort out any boot-time issues with build 57. Terry's problem w/ UI.exe is a separate issue, I have no idea whether or not it's been resolved, but I'm pretty confident about yours.
 
Build 58 worked fine for me. I updated from build 47 ( I have not been around for a while) using the "start over" option. Upon completion I edited menu.lst to add an option to call Ubuntu and rebooted. I can access all three operating systems without any problems.
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
Hey Finbar, nice to see you around & thanks for the confirmation.

Seems build 57 was a quirky build all around for a mix of odd reasons, good to know they've been resolved in 58.

I haven't heard any complaints about the new bootscreen.....
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
Tried build 58 with similar results. This time the unscheduled boot during UI didn't go straight to Vista but gave the new menu screen, though with the same result as 2nd try on build 57, ie wouldn't work till I removed the unhide commands.
When back in Vista, menu.lst was the same as before (OK), but this time Vista.E.HnS was missing from the E disk. I copied the file from C and renamed it and rebooted, and this time before the menu screen there was a lot of disk seeking and an "invalid partition table - please rebuild etcetc", but then the menu screen was displayed and the default Vista boot completed OK despite the previous message.
The log strangely, shows the uninstall, but no more, though it went as far as I described.
NeoSmart intelliLogger 1.0
Logging started on 19/08/2008 at 20:31 using log level Debug
20:31 Vista Hide 'n Seek 0.5.0.58
20:31 Boot drive: D:\
20:31 Listing drives involved in the procedure.
20:31 Beginning Uninstall process.
20:31 Reverting BOOTMGR on C:\
20:31 Reverting BOOTMGR on D:\
20:31 Reverting BOOTMGR on E:\
20:31 Reverting BOOTMGR on F:\
20:31 Reverting BOOTMGR on G:\
20:31 Reverting BOOTMGR on H:\
20:31 Removing menu.lst from D:\
20:31 Attempting to revert boot.ini.hns, XP.ID.HnS, & Vista.ID.HnS on C:\
20:31 Attempting to revert boot.ini.hns, XP.ID.HnS, & Vista.ID.HnS on D:\
20:31 Attempting to revert boot.ini.hns, XP.ID.HnS, & Vista.ID.HnS on E:\
20:31 Attempting to revert boot.ini.hns, XP.ID.HnS, & Vista.ID.HnS on F:\
20:31 Attempting to revert boot.ini.hns, XP.ID.HnS, & Vista.ID.HnS on G:\
20:31 Attempting to revert boot.ini.hns, XP.ID.HnS, & Vista.ID.HnS on H:\
20:31 Deleting NTLDR and NTDETECT from C:\
20:31 Access to the path 'C:\NTLDR' is denied.
20:31 Access to the path 'C:\NTDETECT.COM' is denied.
20:31 Deleting NTLDR and NTDETECT from D:\
20:31 Access to the path 'D:\NTLDR' is denied.
20:31 Access to the path 'D:\NTDETECT.COM' is denied.
20:31 Deleting NTLDR and NTDETECT from E:\
20:31 Access to the path 'E:\NTLDR' is denied.
20:31 Access to the path 'E:\NTDETECT.COM' is denied.
20:31 Deleting NTLDR and NTDETECT from F:\
20:31 Access to the path 'F:\NTLDR' is denied.
20:31 Access to the path 'F:\NTDETECT.COM' is denied.
20:31 Deleting NTLDR and NTDETECT from G:\
20:31 Access to the path 'G:\NTLDR' is denied.
20:31 Access to the path 'G:\NTDETECT.COM' is denied.
20:31 Deleting NTLDR and NTDETECT from H:\
20:31 Access to the path 'H:\NTLDR' is denied.
20:31 Access to the path 'H:\NTDETECT.COM' is denied.
20:31 Re-creating NTLDR and NTDETECT on D:\
20:31 HnS has been successfully uninstalled.

Addendum:

I'll try installing again later with the firewall disabled and report back.
 
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mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
Terry, this is very weird indeed.

I assume build 56 (the one before the pretty boot screen) doesn't do this?

I wouldn't worry about the unhide commands failing and whatnot, I believe all that is a result of the unexpected reboot. As to why it's happening... I don't know - but knowing whether or not build 56 has the same problem w/ UI.exe will help pin it down some.
 
Build #56 ran like a champ here once you had corrected the floppy search problem seen earlier. But the reason I went for first using the recovery console commands and later the startup repair tool for Vista was also due to not being able to boot into XP.

The other builds went right on with a quick "start over" and simply creating a new shortcut for each. But the effort to get both versions to load didn't go well. Now it's simply the process of getting everything back on and seeing #58 will see better results here. The new look was a winner there however despite another apparent bug?!
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
I went back and ran 56 again (from my saved download), which worked perfectly last time it ran.
This time it did the uninstall, ran through all of the install successfully to the "do you want to do any tidying up" phase, and before I could select anything, the UI disappeared. There was a lot of disk activity audible, but the system was basically hung until a "sorry but windows is going to have to close in 1 minute" message. Eventually it rebooted perfectly into Vista.
The only thing I can think of to explain why a build which worked perfectly before should suddenly cause the system to close is the set of x64 critical fixes that went on with WUD last week are causing a clash, but why only on my system ? Is it an x64 problem ? is anyone else who tried it using 64 bit ?


Addendum:


Oh and I should say for completeness that I ignored the "unplug all your USB devices" message (left them in) which makes this technically different to the previous run of 56 (where I removed them).
But I did so in the belief that the message was redundant but hadn't been removed from my copy when I downloaded it ?


Addendum:


The previously mentioned disk activity before shutdown sounded suspiciously like it was compiling a dump, but still no minidump folder has ever been created in my windows folder.
Is there anywhere else it hides dumps ?


Addendum:


I just tried build 58 again with the firewall removed, but things are still basically the same. The reboot is random (this time it had got far enough for the Vista boot to complete ok - but still preceding the menu screen with the invalid partition table message), but it always happens somewhere. (this time I got a windows "UI is closing - do you want to search online for a solution" dialogue while the install was hanging in the penultimate stage.)
I ran the UI twice, once for uninstall - worked perfectly, and once for install.

NeoSmart intelliLogger 1.0
Logging started on 20/08/2008 at 02:28 using log level Debug
02:28 Vista Hide 'n Seek 0.5.0.58
02:28 Boot drive: D:\
02:28 Listing drives involved in the procedure.
02:28 Beginning Uninstall process.
02:28 Reverting BOOTMGR on C:\
02:28 Reverting BOOTMGR on D:\
02:28 Reverting BOOTMGR on E:\
02:28 Reverting BOOTMGR on F:\
02:28 Reverting BOOTMGR on G:\
02:28 Reverting BOOTMGR on H:\
02:28 Removing menu.lst from D:\
02:28 Attempting to revert boot.ini.hns, XP.ID.HnS, & Vista.ID.HnS on C:\
02:28 Attempting to revert boot.ini.hns, XP.ID.HnS, & Vista.ID.HnS on D:\
02:28 Attempting to revert boot.ini.hns, XP.ID.HnS, & Vista.ID.HnS on E:\
02:28 Attempting to revert boot.ini.hns, XP.ID.HnS, & Vista.ID.HnS on F:\
02:28 Attempting to revert boot.ini.hns, XP.ID.HnS, & Vista.ID.HnS on G:\
02:28 Attempting to revert boot.ini.hns, XP.ID.HnS, & Vista.ID.HnS on H:\
02:28 Deleting NTLDR and NTDETECT from C:\
02:28 Access to the path 'C:\NTLDR' is denied.
02:28 Access to the path 'C:\NTDETECT.COM' is denied.
02:28 Deleting NTLDR and NTDETECT from D:\
02:28 Access to the path 'D:\NTLDR' is denied.
02:28 Access to the path 'D:\NTDETECT.COM' is denied.
02:28 Deleting NTLDR and NTDETECT from E:\
02:28 Access to the path 'E:\NTLDR' is denied.
02:28 Access to the path 'E:\NTDETECT.COM' is denied.
02:28 Deleting NTLDR and NTDETECT from F:\
02:28 Access to the path 'F:\NTLDR' is denied.
02:28 Access to the path 'F:\NTDETECT.COM' is denied.
02:28 Deleting NTLDR and NTDETECT from G:\
02:28 Access to the path 'G:\NTLDR' is denied.
02:28 Access to the path 'G:\NTDETECT.COM' is denied.
02:28 Deleting NTLDR and NTDETECT from H:\
02:28 Access to the path 'H:\NTLDR' is denied.
02:28 Access to the path 'H:\NTDETECT.COM' is denied.
02:28 Re-creating NTLDR and NTDETECT on D:\
02:28 HnS has been successfully uninstalled.
NeoSmart intelliLogger 1.0
Logging started on 20/08/2008 at 02:28 using log level Debug
02:28 Vista Hide 'n Seek 0.5.0.58
02:28 Boot drive: D:\
02:28 Listing drives involved in the procedure.
02:28 H as Unknown
02:28 G as Unknown
02:28 F as Unknown
02:28 E as Vista
02:28 D as XP
02:28 C as Vista
02:28 Beginning Install process.
02:28 Attempting to rename D:\boot.ini to D:\boot.ini.hns
02:28 Copying NTLDR and NTDETECT.COM to D:\
02:28 Creating boot.ini on D as partition(2)
02:28 Creating Vista entry in menu.lst.
02:28 Adding XP entry D to menu.lst
02:28 Renaming BOOTMGR, creating GRLDR on D:\
02:28 Updating the bootsector on all partitions.

Addendum:

Just before closing down for the night, I rebooted to check the cosmetic edits I'd made to menu .lst
viz.
# NeoSmart Technologies' Vista Hide 'n Seek Beta
# DO NOT MODIFY!!! YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!
timeout 8
default 0
find --set-root /vhns.xpm.gz0
splashimage=/vhns.xpm.gz
foreground 000000
background 8f8f8f
title Vista 64 bit
find --unhide /Vista.C.HnS
find --unhide /Vista.E.HnS
find --set-root /BOOTMGR.HNS
makeactive
chainloader /BOOTMGR.HNS
boot
title XP 32 bit
find --hide /Vista.C.HnS
find --hide /Vista.E.HnS
find --remap-root /XP.D.HnS
find --set-root /XP.D.HnS
makeactive
chainloader /ntldr
boot
# All your boot are belong to NeoSmart!

which worked fine, but the splash screen is always preceded now by a multiple HDD seek and the messages that drive 80 and drive 82 have invalid partition tables and need to be rebuilt.
This is the same message as I got back at about build 45, which was followed then by the cmain message and a dead system, but seems to be causing no problems other than the seek noise and the extra delay now.
What step got omitted during the install to cause this message ? (the system works perfectly btw, all drives present and correct), and can I run it manually to clean up the start of the boot ?
 
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mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
Is this a typo?
"find --set-root /vhns.xpm.gz0"

Because it should be "find --set-root /vhns.xpm.gz"

That'll explain the seek and delay.


At any rate, the issue is like I suspected - it's not something new introduced in build 58 that's giving your system trouble, which is releaving since I only added a line or two of code in-between the two.

I think I know what's causing the reboot. Technically, everything done in the "Install" phases of HnS is also done in the "Remove" phases with one exception - bootsect.exe.

The last step of installation is using bootsect.exe to update the bootsector so that it searches for BOOTMGR and not NTLDR. Failures in bootsect.exe would explain everything from the error unhiding the partitions to the unexpected reboots.

I'm uploading a new build that has an option to not run bootsect.exe - can you please give it a test run and see if it's bootsect that's giving your system hell?
 
Thanks for your advice. I gave build 58 a try and, it does now allow booting into Windows XP as you thought. Just one strange event - I now have a single 'Warning - unrecognised partition table etc etc' message before the pretty boot screen. Build 56 had successfully cleared all of these. Any ideas?
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
You're right, removing the 0 from gz0 got rid of the disk thrashing (and the invalid partition table messages), though I've no idea where it came from. That wasn't one of the lines I edited, just the timeout, system names and the background colour.
If it's not your typo, and it's not mine ! ............ spooky............... !
I checked to see if it was in the previously posted menu.lst but that line doesn't appear at all.
I'll give the new build a test when I get back from shopping, but you'll have to fix the link first. It just gives an invalid attachment message.
 
I also found that my menu.lst contained the line "find --set-root /vhns.xpm.gz0", so edited out the 0 hoping it might also get rid of the invalid partition table error message. Alas, no joy! Change made no obvious difference on my machine.
The link to build 59 gave an error message, but I may have tried it before the file was available. Will try again later.
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
OK, the 0 is my error - sorry about that..... seems I can't get a single build straight these days :frowning:

I had uploaded build 59, but as I was about to rush out from the house I realized I had left a debug option in there; so I just deleted the attachment and neglected to remove the link to it.

I'm uploading build 60 now; couple of changes that I'll detail as soon as it's up.

Addendum:

OK, build 60 uploaded, hopefully this'll sort out the following:

* No more errors before the pretty boot screen (geoffp).
* Got rid of the typo in menu.lst
* Added option to prevent bootsect.exe from running; I believe bootsect.exe and not UI is the cause of the crashes in Terry's case.

To prevent bootsect.exe from running:
Open UI.exe.config, and change the following:

Code:
    <userSettings>
        <NeoSmart.Vista_HnS.UI.Properties.Settings>
            <setting name="InitializeBootsectors" serializeAs="String">
                <value>[B]True[/B]</value>
            </setting>
        </NeoSmart.Vista_HnS.UI.Properties.Settings>
    </userSettings>
to:

Code:
    <userSettings>
        <NeoSmart.Vista_HnS.UI.Properties.Settings>
            <setting name="InitializeBootsectors" serializeAs="String">
                <value>[B]False[/B]</value>
            </setting>
        </NeoSmart.Vista_HnS.UI.Properties.Settings>
    </userSettings>
Once that's done, go ahead and run UI.exe, you should be good to go via either Uninstall && Install or Start Over.
 
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OK, tried build 60 but I still get the unrecognised partition table error message. Not sure if I should have followed the instructions to prevent bootsect.exe from running. I omitted this believing it to be relevant to Terry's problems only - if this was the wrong choice, my apologies!
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
Only relevant to Terry's condition.... sorry to hear that didn't fix your problem though.

/back to the drawing board for me.

What was the last build that didn't give you that warning?
 
Build 56 was the last one that worked well without the partition error messages. In the early builds the error message was repeated many times to cover all the partitions which followed the new Vista rules. Now in Builds 58 and 60 there is just the single error message. Does this give you any clues?
The drive and partition layout has remained unchanged throughout my trials of HnS, so this should at least be one fixed point when looking at the issue. I can't remember the post number when I gave the results from Drive Grabber - think it was February sometime. If this would be of any help, I can re-run and post the details.
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
geoff, if you remove the "splashimage ...." line in menu.lst, does the error message go away?
 
GEEEEE..... Just when I get Build #58 working normally you already moved up two builds! :brows:

As soon as #58 went on and XP was added it loaded without a glitch. But I'll give #60 a look since you have that ready.

UPDATE: Build #60 is doing well so far. The settings for assigning the default as well as renaming entries and setting the display time for the boot options all seem normal.
 
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Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
Your instinct was right CG. Taking the bootsect out put everything back to normal, and UI/HnS behaved perfectly with the correct outcome and successful boots into both systems.
This raises the question "what's wrong with my bootsect.exe ?" if this doesn't happen to anyone else, or is it that my configuration invokes bootsect in UI and others don't ?
What exactly is it there for if I can omit it without a problem ? (or more correctly not omit it with a problem)
 
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