Dual Boot-Win7 & XP (on external drive)

#1
I just bought a new pc with Windows 7 on it and originally wanted to partition it and then clone a HDD that came out of my old laptop (has XP Pro on it, now in an external caddy) onto the other partition and last but not least, make my new tower a dual boot so I can still use the programs on it, some of which cannot be transferred off and used on the tower directly (they'll only work if cloned or booting directly into the external drive). After FUBARing my new toy trying to clone the laptop HDD over (used XXClone), I reformatted my new tower and am attempting to be able to boot directly into the laptop HDD using EasyBCD.

Here is the problem, when I installed EasyBCD and ran it, set the entry for my external HDD, and then tried to boot, it said the boot files were corrupted and needed to be fixed, in particular the /ntldr. Now I am not sure which OS it is referring to as I am not familiar with Win 7 at all. Win 7 does load fine but the external does not which would lead me to think its the XP os its referring to but my wife is already ticked cuz we've had this pc barely a week and I already had to reformat it completely once and I told her I wouldn't do anything to screw it up again:x.

Is my assumption correct and is it safe to let EasyBCD fix the startup files on XP (and will this solve my problem) or is it referring to Win 7? If it IS referring to 7, will it kill anything to let EasyBCD run the repair? If it is 7, what am I missing to get my machine to recognize the external HDD? This pc seems to get into the EasyBCD menu PRIOR to the BIOS boot sequence.

I need one of two things to happen. Either I successfully clone my XP Pro onto a partition and make my pc a dual boot, or I need to get it to recognize my external drive as a bootable device and be able to get into it that way. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
 

JustinW

Super Moderator
Staff member
#2
You can't normally install a Windows OS on an external drive. Its one of the many ways MS cracks down on software piracy/distribution.
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#3
And if it's XP from an OEM PC with a pre-installed OS, the EULA will tie the XP installation to the hardware it was supplied with.
XP activation will fail and MS will decline to provide a validation code by phone.
I'm afraid you don't own the license, the laptop hardware does.