Dual boot XP/Vista can't access XP partition

#1
I put a copy of Vista Ultimate on a 320 GB drive,that was partioned by partion magic.I had XP on 250 Gbs & Vista on 50.I don't have a copy of XP cause I have an HP machine which requires you to burn you're own back up copy.It boots to vista fine,It shows all the partions as primary but none have a drive letter except Vista,which is C: All my good stuff is on XP and I don't have a clue on how to get it to boot,It's like vista won't reconize my partitions.I've read a lot of the post and it seems like a common problem.I'm new to this forum and from what I've read there's some pretty smart people out there.Maybe someone could help me with this. I've been messing with this for 3 days:?? Thanxs!!!
Frankiedino
 

Mak 2.0

Mod...WAFFLES!?!?
Staff member
#2
I know this problem well. I have a solution. but it might not be what you want to hear.

Remember that cute "Administrator" account you see when you login to safe mode? That's the built-in administrator account that's installed by default, and disabled by default too, after a little digging-in I made this tutorial that'll let you enable and use this account in normal mode, and with a little other tweak, enjoying an XP-like administrator experience, while UAC is left ON (or off, it doesn't matter), but with no prompts or right clicks.

For Windows Vista Ultimate/Business/Enterprise:

1- Click Start, and type "secpol.msc" in the search area and click Enter. (You may receive a prompt from UAC, approve/login and proceed)
2- In the left list, choose "Local Policies", then "Security Options"
3- Set "Accounts: Administrator account status" to Enabled.
4- Set "User Account Control: Admin Approval Mode for the Built-in Administrator account" to Disabled.

For Windows Vista Home Basic/Home Premium:

1- Click Start, and type "cmd" in the search area, right click on "Command Prompt" and select 'Run as Administrator".

2- In the command prompt type "net users Administrator /active'" (Note the capital "A" in Administrator) and press Enter, you will get a confirmation as "The command completed successfully".

3- Click Start, and type "regedit" in the search area and click Enter, navigate to: [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\Curr entVersion\Policies\System]
Double click on "FilterAdministratorToken" and set it to "0"

*************************************

Now log-off, and you'll see new account named "Administrator" is available, click on it to login.

Now you are the master of your domain! I recommend if you're going to use this method is to apply it as soon as you do a fresh install of Windows, so you can simply delete whatever administrator you've created in the setup process, and make this one the "real" administrator for your PC, also you can rename this new admin account or change its password like any other account from "User Accounts" in the Control Panel.

A last note: Please apply this procedures only if you know what you're doing. Disabling security features in the operating system is not something recommended to the average Joe, and for sure I won't be held accountable for any damaging happens to your system or files resulting from running a full administrator account all the time.
Okay what that will do is unlock the Hidden Aministrator account. This Admin account will be able to see and use the Partitions. Only problem is that you have to use that account to keep accessing them. Plus that account doesnt have any of the stuff (Wallpapers, windows size etc.) as your default profile. So you will have to do it all over again. Sadly this is the one and only true way i know of to recover from this.

Another option is to get a backup drive. Get a external drive and then go into the Admin account. From there put all the info on the XP partition and the other drives that are not recognized by you rDefault Vista profile and use a application like GParted to format them again. Then put the info back onto the drives.

Only issue with this is that after the Admin account become unhidden i dont know if you can turn it back off. I have yet to try. Maybe by hiding it within secpol.msc again will work so that you have only your default profile showing. Will try that and let you know.
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#3
I put a copy of Vista Ultimate on a 320 GB drive,that was partioned by partion magic.I had XP on 250 Gbs & Vista on 50.I don't have a copy of XP cause I have an HP machine which requires you to burn you're own back up copy.It boots to vista fine,It shows all the partions as primary but none have a drive letter except Vista,which is C: All my good stuff is on XP and I don't have a clue on how to get it to boot,It's like vista won't reconize my partitions.I've read a lot of the post and it seems like a common problem.I'm new to this forum and from what I've read there's some pretty smart people out there.Maybe someone could help me with this. I've been messing with this for 3 days:?? Thanxs!!!
Frankiedino
I'm not clear on whether you tried this, but if you haven't:
Control Panel | Administrative Tools | Computer Management | Disk Management
Can you right-click the partition there and assign it a drive letter?
 
#4
Since my last post I have gotten back into XP,I'm so happy I'm beside myself.Can't get into Vista,but right now I really don't care.I did assign drive letters but I've tried so much in the last few days I could'nt begin to tell exactly what I did to get back in.I do know that the solution is somewhere between a program called partition magic & Easy bcd 1.7.& disc management as you suggested.Thanx for you're help!
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#5
You're welcome - happy to hear it :smile:
 
#6
Have XP but no Vista

Maybe simple for you but really dificult for me.I,m back into my XP OS on a system with XP & Vista on a partitioned 320 GB hard drive.I used Partition Magic.Everything in Windows & Partion Magic says,XP is on C: and Vista is on D: I set XP as the active partition,that's how I got back into booting XP.At that time I was happy but with Vista just sitting there laughing at me I could'nt stand it.I know there is a way to dual boot it but being a 57 year old, retired not so computer savvy citizen, I can't for the life of me figure it out.I do have EasyBCD1.7.1 I could use some laymans term help.:S
P.S. = I hope I but this in the right place!
 

Mak 2.0

Mod...WAFFLES!?!?
Staff member
#7
Do you have the Vista DVD? If not check here in teh Wiki:
Recovering the Vista Bootloader from the DVD - NeoSmart Technologies Wiki

In the red area where it talks about Dell and HP computers you will see there is a download to recover the Vista startup.

Other than that have you added Vista to the startup Menu and reloaded the MBR thru the Manage part of EasyBCD. I believe it is the manage. Where it says to write the MBR.
 
#8
Yes I did all that but I'll do it again.I don't have an option at the start screen to go to Vista. What I do have is, to go to Windows XP or HP Recovery.Would making my D: drive [active]and re-booting do anything in a positive direction,since Vista is on the D partition?Well that's what it says in the disc management .Really confusing for me.
 

Mak 2.0

Mod...WAFFLES!?!?
Staff member
#9
Yes it will have to be active to do anything. Windows requires that their partitions be active to boot from them. So if it is inactive that is where the problme lies.
 
#10
Vista

I finally got Vista to boot with XP.Great!!! Not really.I deleted all partitions except for HP Pavillion with Recovery,booted from the Vista disc and when it came to the part of "where to install"I went to "command prompt"typed in"disk part"then"list Vol"from that list I chose "Vol 2"{which was HP pavillion,it had 280gb}thenI typed in"shrink querymax"then it went wierd.It said I only had 24gb of reclaimable space.I typed in "shrink desired=24000"I wonder why it did'nt show all my disc?Typed in "exit",and went on my merry way.Vista finished loaded and finally there it was,until I went to the boot screen.What a mess!It had..Earlier Versions,Windows Vista,Micro.Windows,Windows Vista{again} and Windows Recovery.I went to Earlier Versions{would'nt work}went to Vista,one would work the other would'nt,went to Micro. Windows and it booted into my origional XP.I thought,this will be alright,so I changed the order to boot into XP by default and it worked. I messed with it several diferent times yesterday,no problems, today it won't work!!! Imagine that.So I deleted that partition and got things back to square#1...except for the boot loader.Got any idea how to get that whole Vista screen off? I think I know just enough to be slightly dangerous:brows:
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#11
Boot from the XP cd, enter the recovery console, and type:
Code:
fixmbr
fixboot
That should get rid of the Vista bootloader for ya.
 
#12
Thanks for that advice ,is there a way to do it without an XP CD? As you probably know HP at the time I bought this a305w Pavillion{yes it's old}HP wanted you to burn your own back-up.So in all reality I don't have a copy of XP.
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#13
Not really...
But you don't need to do this step, when you restore it should be reset.