I know I know another Vista XP Dual Boot Please Help!

Guys and gals, how we doing? Well I have been trying to get this Vista XP dual boot going using forums and such for a couple days now. Here is the problem...I get the Boot manager screen that prompts you to choose what operating system to use. When I try to boot to the XP it sends me to File: \NTLDR Status ...something about possibly being corrupt.

I can boot into Vista just fine. Below is my EasyBCD settings
There are a total of 2 entries listed in the Vista Bootloader.
Bootloader Timeout: 30 seconds.
Default OS: Windows Vista (TM) Ultimate
Entry #1
Name: Windows Vista (TM) Ultimate
BCD ID: {current}
Drive: C:\
Bootloader Path: \Windows\system32\winload.exe
Windows Directory: \Windows
Entry #2
Name: Windows XP
BCD ID: {8d7d15d0-1c75-11dd-a5ae-ec3f4ef9feaa}
Drive: X:\
Bootloader Path: \NTLDR

I will also try to attach if I have sufficient rights a screenshot of my disk drive management. Thanks in advance! Todd


Mak 2.0

Staff member
Troubleshooting Windows XP - NeoSmart Technologies Wiki

There you go. The information you need to get it working. You need to make sure that he XP files are on the boot drive.

NTLDR, NTDETECT and the boot.ini files all have to be on the boot drive. Which is your Vista drive. So unhide all your files.

Computer>Organize>Folder Options>View Tab>Show hidden files and folders and uncheck the hide protected system files. It will have a (Recommended) by it. That is the one you will need to make sure is off to see those files in teh XP Drive.

Just take them from the root of the drive. Not in any folders they will be right there when you open the drive and put them in the root of the Vista drive.

Restart and it should work just fine.
Thanks so much for your quick response. However, my Vista is obviously on C. I checked and all of those files are there already. There are non of those files on the XP partition. Any ideas? Thanks a bunch!!


Super Moderator
Staff member
Maybe XP needs a copy of those files on its partition too? Try that and see if it fixes it.


Also, in your first post, I noticed that you had X: for the drive under the XP entry. Is drive X: the XP partition or is it something else? Regardless, the link to the wiki Mak posted points out that the XP entry needs to point to the boot drive (ie Vista Partition) Since NTLDR and pals are there already, pointing to Vista's partition may do it.
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Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
Your X:\ disk is marked "system" "active". That's the drive which should contain all of Vista's and XP's boot files.

This is the relevant info from Vista Help

System partitions and boot partitions are names for partitions or volumes on a hard disk that Windows uses when starting. These technical terms are only important if you have more than one operating system installed on your computer (often called a dual-boot or multiboot configuration).
The system partition contains the hardware-related files that tell a computer where to look to start Windows. A boot partition is a partition that contains the Windows operating system files, which are located in the Windows file folder. Usually, these are the same partition, especially if you have only one operating system installed on your computer. If you have a multiboot computer, you will have more than one boot partition. An additional term, the active partition, describes which system partition (and thus which operating system) your computer uses to start.
When you turn on your computer, it uses information stored on the system partition to start up. There is only one system partition on a Windows-based computer, even if you have different versions of Windows installed on the same computer. However, non-Windows operating systems use different system files. In a multiboot computer using a non-Windows operating system, its system files are located on its own partition, separate from the Windows system partition.
A boot partition is a partition that contains Windows operating system files. If you have a multiboot computer that contains, for example, this version of Windows and Windows XP, then each of those volumes are considered boot partitions.
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Mak 2.0

Staff member
While i agree Terry about the System Active if you read C:\ it is also marked Boot as well as system Active. That should be the boot drive.

In any case try switching the XP entry to C:\ or Boot drive and see what happens.


Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
No Mak, crazy I know, but that's MS.
"Boot" just means there's a windows folder on the disk.
"system" means it's the windows system with the boot information
"active" means it's the one of the "systems" with the boot (only for when one or more of the OS's are not Windows)
For a single OS, they're all the same disk
For a Vista/XP dual, one is S A and B and the other is just B
For a Windows/ Linux dual boot, both are system, only one is active.
Guys thank you so much for taking the time to help me with this. I have tried all of these things with no success. As nice as it would be to dual boot, I have a ton of stuff coming up for work. So my priority list has been changed for a while. Thanks Again, I am sure we will chat again when things slow down.

xp vista

on your dual boot, how did you install the dual boot? which was the first o/s installed, when you installed the second, did you hide the first partition where the o/s was installed?