Locked out of vista! (can you change config from outside OS?)

I must have deleted my entry for Vista when I was mucking around with a fresh easyBCD install. I installed neoGRUB, but before I had a chance to configure it, I logged out to boot into Mandriva (to copy my menu.lst configurations), so now when I log back in, it's at a GRUB prompt (since I never changed the config) and I can't boot into Vista at all! :S

Is there a way to change configurations or settings from outside the OS?

Or is there a command from the neoGRUB prompt that will let me boot Vista? (at hd0,1)

I only need to get back in once, but when I try to set root/kernel/chainloader, it just boots back to the same GRUB prompt.

I've even restored a Vista bootloader from UBCD4Win, but it's just back to the GRUB prompt.

Please help! Is there anything I can do? :scared:


Update: so I managed, with the help of ntfs-3g to find and edit the menu.lst file in C:\NST, but I'm having trouble making setting it up to boot Vista.

I tried copying and pasting /boot/grub/menu.lst, and that will let me load mandriva, but no Vista.

color black/cyan yellow/cyan
gfxmenu (hd0,4)/boot/gfxmenu
default 0

title Mandriva
kernel (hd0,4)/boot/vmlinuz BOOT_IMAGE=1337 root=/dev/sda5 resume=/dev/sda6 splash=verbose vga=791
initrd (hd0,4)/boot/initrd.img

title Vista
root (hd0,0)
chainloader +1

title BT2
root (hd0,10)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz rw root=/dev/sda11
What do I need to do in menu.lst to start Vista (located on the first partition of the drive)?
Last edited:

Mak 2.0

Staff member
Wouldn't restoring a Vista bootloader with UBCD4Win pretty much be doing the same thing?

I overwrote the graphical GRUB bootloader that's native to my Mandriva install, and rewrote a Vista MBR with it (UBCD), but since it's been altered by easyBCD, it's just loading an unconfigured neoGRUB...again.

Well actually since I found I can edit NST/menu.lst, I can use it to boot into Mandriva and BT2, but when I try to load Vista I get told to run fdisk, and after a few errors it winds up going back to the neoGRUB selection.

I'll reload the Vista MBR with the .iso you provided, but what I really need is help configuring NST/menu.lst to make it boot Vista, I can fix it if I can get into it even once and run the easyBCD GUI.


Mostly Harmless
Staff member
Use the "bootrec.exe /rebuildbcd" command detailed in the recovering your bootloader section.
Done and back in Vista. :happy:

Vista was constantly overwriting GRUB when I'd run certain apps (without fail every time I ran a CS3 app...it was the strangest thing), and I was consistently having to whip out my superGRUB disc. It will be great if this stands up to Vista's wacky MBR overwriting.

Now if only I could figure out a way to give neoGRUB a graphic background like GRUB had..is that even possible?

ps: thanks a ton for the support and quick help! I can think of quite a few companies that could stand to take a que from you guys in service.


Mostly Harmless
Staff member
You should be able to configure NeoGrub to use the "pretty background" feature the same way you did GRUB assuming you don't have to physically modify any of GRUB's files to get it to work (with the obvious exception of menu.lst).
Uh oh. :scared::x:scared:

I fixed deletion of the Vista entry with the iso provided, but since I have neoGRUB as default with time of "0", I basically locked myself out of vista again!

Is there a text config file for easyBCD that I can change the default load time on from outside of Vista, or is there a key I can press that will stop neoGRUB from loading??

....again, I just need to get into Vista once, to undo my mistake, and I'll be ok.

edit: this time I'll leave it the fsck alone, I swear!
Last edited:


Mostly Harmless
Staff member

Open up a command prompt from the recovery DVD.
Type this command in:

Bcdedit /set {bootmgr} timeout 30
fsck requests to be left alone now :smile: :tongueout: