Moving MBR from 1 drive to another

#1
Hello,

I have a working Dual Boot (Vista 32 & Vista 64). I've finally got all the software I need working on Vista 64 and I no longer really need my Vista 32 install.

I have an IDE drive (first installed drive) where the MBR resides which hosts Vista 32. I have a SATA drive which hosts Vista 64. I also have a couple of other SATA drives.

If I have any other drive than the IDE drive listed as the first drive in my BIOS, I do not get a boot menu with my list of OS's. If I select the Vista 64 drive i get NTLDR missing. Other drives I get 'insert boot disk' message.

I tried to change the new drive letter that was automatically assiged to my Vista 32 drive inside my Vista 64 install, but it wnt let me because it is an active or system partiton.

I really wanted to get my IDE drive acting as a backup for all personal data and want to have it listed as the last drive in the list. With the active partitio problem I can't do this.

I am of course quite happy to scrap that IDE partition and reformat the drive in order that I can reassign it. My real concern here is that when I do this, I wont have an MBR and I wont be able to boot my Vista 64 install.

I'm guessing I need a way to get an MBR written to my SATA drive, so I can go and trash my IDE drives partition.

Can EasyBCD do this? I noticed there is a Write MBR function, but nowhere do I see the option to choose where it should be written to. Once the new MBR is written allI will need to do is change the BIOS drive priority order and I would expect it to boot using the new MBR.

Any suggestions?

Regards
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#2
Hi Slick, welcome to NST.
The NTLDR message you're getting is an XP message, so I'm guessing you had XP on your SATA disk before you put Vista64 on there and the IPL in the MBR is XP's still. (vista won't have rewritten it if the Vista32 MBR was already present, it just used that one)
(see http://www.multibooters.co.uk/multiboot.html for explanation of how it all works.)
What you can do, is temporarily disconnect your V32 drive, boot from the Vista DVD and select "repair my computer" / "repair startup" so that Vista will automatically create the correct boot for you on your SATA disk. (you will probably need 2 or 3 iterations before it corrects everything, it's pretty dumb and only seems capable of one thing per boot).
When it's booting fine, you can do what you like with the IDE disk.