Dual booting Win XP and Win 7 doesn't work. Not even getting a boot menu at startup.


I've just installed Windows 7 and I want to be able to dual boot it alongside my older Windows XP installed on a separate partition. However, when I start my computer, I don't get to the boot menu with the option between "Windows 7" and "Earlier version of Windows" – instead the system boots directly into Win 7.

Before I installed Windows 7 I had one instance of Windows XP on my C: partition and another Win XP on my E: partition. My C: drive was set to be the System/Boot partition. I also had yet another partition, where I tried out Windows 7 for a while before deciding upon installing it "permanently".

At this point there were no problems dual booting (triple booting?) the operating systems - when starting the computer, the boot menu displayed "Windows 7" and "Earlier version of Windows" and under the "Earlier version...", there were the both instances of Win XP.

Then I removed the temporary partition with Windows 7 and formatted my C: drive and installed Windows 7 there instead. And - as mentioned - now I can’t dual boot my second Win XP (E: ) anymore.

When I open up the Startup and Recovery/Settings... (under the Advanced tab in the Control panel/Advanced system settings) in Windows 7, I see “Windows 7” as the Default operating system, but in the dropdown menu there is no “Earlier version of Windows”.

I have also tried running EasyBCD 2.0, but here only Windows 7 is shown as well:

There is one entry in the Windows Vista bootloader.

Default: Windows 7
Timeout: 30 seconds.
EasyBCD Boot Device: C:\

Entry #1
Name: Windows 7
BCD ID: {current}
Drive: C:\
Bootloader Path: \Windows\system32\winload.exe

I tried to add a new entry and that makes the boot menu show when I restart my computer, but when I choose the “newly created” operating system, it doesn’t work to start it.

Does anyone know what the problem might be and how I can fix this?

Use EasyBCD 2.0.
Add an entry for XP (Windows tab / XP dropdown)
Let Easy2 auto-configure
Don't change the XP drive.
Hi Terry! I tried exactly that and it did give me a "Windows XP" option in the boot menu. However, when I choose Windows XP I get this screen:


(I modified an image of the same messege I found online, so that it shows exactly the message I got)


Any suggestion on what to do with this?
Last edited:
Did you use 2.0 ? (not 1.7)
It's the version that will configure XP for you (1.7 expects you to do it yourself)
Did it auto-configure ?
If so, and you have an unlettered "system" partition on W7, give it a letter and try again.