Had to reinstall XP now no Win 7 option

#1
I started out with XP on one SATA drive and nothing on a second Sata drive. I went through two failed attempts at getting Windows 7 installed and finally had success on the 3rd try. Problem is the Boot menu in Win 7 didn't show the XP drive as a boot option, also in BIOS the drive was no longer shown as a boot option although it was still recognized as a drive both in BIOS and in Windows Explorer. I downloaded easyBCD and used it to add the XP drive to the boot loader in Windows 7 but when I attempted to boot to XP I got an error message involving NTLDR ant that I should repair XP. I used XP's command console to reload NTLDR and ntdetect.com and I ran fixboot. Still no luck!

Because all my day to day data is on the XP drive I had to bite the bullet and do a repair reinstall and reload all my applications and user data. Now I have XP on drive letter D: and Windows 7 on drive C:.

Can someone please advise me of the safest way to get back the ability to boot into Windows 7. If I run easyBCD in XP it still shows entries for Windows 7 and Microsoft Windows on the List Entries screen. I am the first to admit that I don't know much about the multiboot process so I am afraid to start poking around and totally mess up my system.

TIA for any assistance offered.
 
#2
Hi Cec Britton, welcome to NST.
Please read the sticky thread in the forum you posted in (i.e. the "EasyBCD support forum"), called "FAQ's-Please read before posting with a problem".
You will find a link to it in my sig, as well.
It answers a lot of the questions concerned with multibooting.

BTW, are Win 7 and XP on two separate physical drives? If so, then you may want to check your BIOS, and verify that your Win 7 drive is first in the boot sequence. Or if your XP drive was first when you installed Win 7, it is possible that Win 7's mbr (and bootloader) was written to that drive instead, meaning you messed up when you used the fixboot command from XP's Recovery Console. :wink:

Jake
 
#3
Thanks for the reply Jake. I took your directions to heart and read the very good "Understanding the Multiboot Process" article and several linked pages. Now I can say that I have full appreciation of another process that Microsoft has screwed up for us. You asked about the system configuration when I installed Win 7. Yes it is installed on a separate physical hard drive and I am 99% sure that XP was set to be the bootable hard disk in BIOS. So, as you said when I ran fixmbr I screwed up the Win 7 bootloader (that I didn't know was written to the XP partition!).

Right now Win 7 is on drive 0 and is shown as the system partition. XP is on drive 1 and shown as the boot partition. I believe this is the reverse of what should be and I don't know that the diagnostics routines in easyBCD can make the changes to fix the problem.

After reading the multiboot article I feel like that the best option I have now is to format the Win 7 disk partition, reinstall Win 7 and pray that the whole thing goes right this time around.
 
#4
Ok, so now that I sorted out your situation in full, the solution is relatively simple:

Just boot from the Win 7 DVD, and run Startup Repair 2-3 times (since it can only repair one thing per pass), and then you should be able to get back into Win 7. Once that is the case, simply copy over XP's boot files (i.e. ntldr, ntdetect.com, and boot.ini) into Win 7's partition, and add an XP entry to the Win 7 BCD with EasyBCD, using the [thread=642]2.0 Beta[/thread] version, since it will give you the option of auto-configuring boot.ini, so you wont have to.
And then you should have a dual-boot.

Cheers.

Jake