HELP: Vista and Windows XP on MacBook Pro


Hello. I registered to these forums because I have some trouble with the Vista bootloader.
First, I have to explain what I did. I have a MacBook Pro. I installed XP via BootCamp on it. No problems. I have an external SATA drive attached to the MBP on which I finally (after days of failures) I succeeded to install Vista. I installed it, starting the installation from within XP. Then, after the first reboot during the installation process, the problems already began. I had to use rEFIt and manually choose to boot Vista to let the installation finish. After completion of the Vista installation, I always get error messages when booting. When I boot Vista I get error messages because of the other HFS+ partitions (which Vista, of course, cannot recognize as such), although the boot process continues and boots into Vista as it should.
If I choose to boot XP "previously installed Windows" (I don't remember exactly what the Vista bootloader says), I get an ntldr error message and cannot boot into XP.
When I boot Mac OS X and I start VMWare, I still can boot this XP installation (since VMWare Fusion also supports BootCamp partitions), but still I have to be very quick to choose to boot XP instead of Vista, because this causes another error message (because Vista is not present/visible from within the virtual machine).
What I want to know now is how to get rid of the Vista bootloader so I can still boot into both Operating Systems and my second question, if I can install and use EasyBCD on Windows XP or do I have to do what I desire under Vista?
I hope you can help me. Thanks in advance.


I also did a research on this before posting, unfortunately I didn't find what I am looking for.
Well, I'd recommend doing this:

Install EasyBCD in XP.
Delete the old Vista entry.
Change the default to XP.
Reboot :smile:
I actually installed EasyBCD on XP, but the problem is that I have to run it in VMWare Fusion (with the BootCamp option) and I get a dialog box, when I start EasyBCD. I don't really know what to choose in this dialog box.
I also posted about my problems on InsanelyMac forums, maybe you can have a look on what I posted (I also included some screenshots).
Here's the link to the topic: Vista Bootloader problems

Well, since nobody has the intention to answer, I wanted to elaborate the problematics a bit more detailed. Actually I have quite some questions about the usage of EasyBCD. I made some screenshots of the several options of the program:

EasyBCD Capture 1

As you can see, this screen capture shows the settings of my Vista bootloader. As I started the Vista setup from within XP on my BootCamp partition, I wonder why the entry shows:

Entry #1

Name: Earlier Version of Windows
BCD ID: {ntldr}
Drive: Deleted Partition\
Bootloader Path: ntldr\

My guess is, because it is a BootCamp partition it says "Deleted Partition\" while in reality, under Vista the partition shows up as drive D:\.
I also think it is because of that that choosing to boot "Earlier Version of Windows" from the bootloader results in a ntldr error.

Then let's go over to the detailed view of the settings:

EasyBCD Capture 2

There I don't get it. Under the first point "Windows Boot Manager" there is an entry "device partition=D:" while below under "Windows Legacy OS Loader" another entry says "device unknown".
That is a bit confusing!

The next image shows the 'Configure Boot' settings of EasyBCD, where I can choose a drive under the 'Entry-Based Settings' as well as I can change the name from the bootloader entry, as you can see:

EasyBCD Capture 3

If we move on to the 'Manage Existing Entries' section you can yet see again both entries (Earlier Windows Version+Microsoft Windows Vista) and at the bottom I could add another entry. The image shows that I chose to add an entry for Mac OS X, though I wonder what would happen, if I choose to do so (note that I am using a MacBook Pro with Vista installed on a seperate externaldrive hooked up with eSATA). I would like to know if anybody tested this before I mess up everything.

EasyBCD Capture 4

As for the 'Advanced Options' I think it is best to back it up BEFORE applying any changes to it:

EasyBCD Capture 5

The 'Diagnostics Center' though remains quite mysterious to me, as I couldn't find out about the 'Repair OS X "HFS+ Partition Error"'. That sounds interesting since I get these nasty error messages during Vista startup (I'll try to make some screenshots of them). Maybe I can get rid of them by selecting this option in EasyBCD. Hopefully somebody could tell me more about that "HFS+ Partition Error".

EasyBCD Capture 6

The last screenshot shows what EasyBCD shows me when starting it from Windows XP, run in VMWare Fusion (with its BootCamp option). Since I cannot start the XP installation natively because of the ntldr error message, I tried this method, but I wouldn't even choose a 'Correct Boot Drive' to prevent messing things up, so I exited it right away.

EasyBCD Capture XP

I hope there are some (EasyBCD/bootloader) experts out there who can help me. I would really appreciate that.

BTW, is there a way to include screenshots in the posts like on the InsanelyMac forums?
You can attach files to your post or use the [ i m g ] tag :smile:

Anyway, this shouldn't be difficult: Go to "Configure Boot" and set the drive for the XP entry to D:
Thank you for the hint. If I edit the entry will I be able to boot into Windows XP although it was installed with the help of BootCamp on my MacBook Pro hard disk? If not, I would prefer deleting the "Earlier Version of Windows" entry.
And what about the screenshot I took in Windows XP? I don't know what to choose from the dropdown-menu.
I think so, but I haven't tried it since I do not have a Macbook myself.

Select the letter of the drive with "boot.ini" and "ntldr" in it.
OK, thank you again for your help (strange - actually I wasn't aware that I posted my last message since it wasn't finished - anyway...).
I have edited the Bootloader entry but didn't restart the computer yet. I still have to edit it in Windows XP so it doesn't show up during its boot-up anymore (because otherwise it even shows up when booting XP in VMWare, where of course, I cannot choose Vista to start).
Even though you have no MacBook/MacBook Pro computer, can you tell me something about creating a Mac OS X entry in the bootloader as shown on image #4 (I hope you can actually see the images, since I don't know if you are a member of InsanelyMac)?
I will do my reboot later on, hopefully everything worked fine. I will also post some screenshots about these error messages I get during Vista boot-up. Maybe you can tell me what these mean.
Well, I'd say don't make a OS X entry because Bootcamp pretends to a BIOS, so using the EFI entry for Macbook would never work.

Hopefully everything else went ok? :smile:
Finally the board is up again! Well, unfortunately everything doesn't work as it should since I found out that the Bootloader is actually situated on the Windows XP partition. It was more of a coinicidence that I found this out when I wanted to boot XP from the BootCamp, but actually got directly into the Vista bootloader. So, luckily this prevented me from changing any Vista bootloader values in XP which would most probably have messed up everything!
So my question is now, if there is a possibility to copy the folder where the Vista bootloader is located (it is the hidden 'Boot' folder, right?) over from the XP partition to the Vista partition, so that I can edit it later with EasyBCD after booting into Vista?
I also have taken some screenshots of the famous errors I get while booting up Windows (I read over on the InsanelyMac forums that someone had these, too, but was able to get rid of these by rebuilding the MBR).
So here are the screenshots:

Bootloader Error Capture

Bootloader Error Capture 2

These seem to be due to unrecognized HFS+ partitions (as I already speculated before).

Maybe, if I can copy over the Vista bootloader to the Vista partition and if XP will not be bootable anymore, I will have to reinstall it through BootCamp (which would not be that much work since it is still more or less a freshly installed system - I could also make an image of the installation to restore it later on). I just need to know about a way copying the Vista bootloader where it belongs, i.e. the Vista partition.
Well, you could copy bootmgr and the boot folder to the vista drive, and that would do the trick - but only if the xp drive is hidden from the boot process or else it will default to there.
Could you please tell me, which files need to be copied to do this? For hiding the XP partition I think that Acronis Disk Director can do this, right?
What about XP? Will it still be bootable (as it was before installing Vista) after copying over the Vista Bootloader?
The folder "boot" and the file "bootmgr" - all of which are found in the root of your boot drive.
Thank you, I will try that. After copying the bootloader over from the XP partition to the Vista partition, will XP remain bootable afterwards (ntldr, and boot.ini are present in the root of the drive)?
Just in case I will better make a backup of the XP partition.
This is making me crazy. I spent another sleepless night on installing, formatting, reinstalling and editing and everything I did was without success.
Ultimately I formatted my BootCamp partition with XP because I couldn't remove one entry from EasyBCD without leaving one of the Windows installations unbootable. Then I reinstalled XP with BootCamp in hope that it would show up as an extra icon under rEFIt as it did some time before, alongside with another icon for Vista. Now, I just can boot into my BootCamp Windows XP installation and the Vista icon doesn't show up in rEFIt either. What is going on? Can it be so difficult to let the user choose between two Operating Systems the way he wants it? I begin to ask myself why I seem to waste my time with that. I really don't know what's wrong with the guys at Microsoft to implement such horrible bootloader solutions into Windows.
Could you please help me out of my dilemma? At least I want to get the Vista bootloader to show up again. Maybe I should copy it back to the XP partition. Or maybe even restore the XP installation I backed up before formatting and reinstalling it?
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[boot loader]
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(3)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(1)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Windows XP Professional eSATA" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(1)partition(3)\WINDOWS="Windows XP MCE 2005 eSATA" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect