HArd drive accessibility


New Member
I have created a dual-boot system starting with Windows 7. I then added a second system (Windows XP) on a separate drive (both drives are SATA drives but the Windows 7 drive is a Western Digital and the Windows XP is a Seagate. Both systems will boot when I select them but here is the strange thing. When running Windows 7 I can access both drives (7 and XP) but when XP is active I can "see" the Windows 7 drive but that is all I can do. I used the Disk Management tool and found that XP thinks the 7 drive is Raw data rather than NTFS and I am at a loss as to why or what I can do to correct it. I am uncomfortable messing with the drive with XP for fear of destroying the Windows 7 system. Has anyone seen this and have a solution or does this mean I didn't actually get the XP installation completed properly?
You appear to have "lucked in" to a fortunate state. Disk formatting changed between XP and Vista to use new standards for partition alignment to accommodate the current generation of super-large HDDs, and that appears to have produced the situation you describe.
Multibooters, Vista Dual and Multibooting - Vista's New Partitioning Rules
However, you should not let XP "see" any newer OS if you wish to make use of system restore on either OS. If it can see Vista/7/8, it sees their identically named (but differently configured) Restore Folders as corrupt, and "fixes" them for you, destroying all your restore points (and shadow-copy backups, which are part of the same service, hence changed configuration). Since all restore points (and folders) are chained, in the process it also loses all of its own restore points too.
This means that system restore is completely non-functional on any XP-included multi-boot, and we'd be advising you to hack XP like so
System Restore Points - Stop XP Dual Boot Delete - Vista Forums
If it weren't already unable to see W7.