Recover Vista Bootloader after Installing Windows XP

sivakeshava

New Member
Really ma bad

I installed Xp knowing well of the booting issues with dual boot.. Then i coolly installed Vista x86 ultimate. Now see i have a 160GB sata and a 250 GB Slave ATA. I am installing XP on D:\(2nd partition on sata) and vista on c:\(1st partition on sata).

I very well know that if i install OS with that ATA it installs the boot files in the ATA only so i disconnected the ATA and installed OSes.

Now both nicely got installed on d and c drives and i could boot thru both of them thru vista boot loader. But there was some messsy driver problem in vista when i installed alcohol and started showing blue screens. Now when i went to the advanced boot option of vista and selected the previous working setting ... it just worked fine.. Now when i installed BitDefender .. it really became cruel and systems just hangs nothing works and the CPU fan becomes a monster of sound!!!!

So I just unplugged the ATA formatted C:\ where i installed that vista and reinstalled vista... Now all that mess was gone and alcohol etc were working fine!!! But the problem was that i can no longer boot to XP. I used Vistabootpro and added the xp entry with D:\ ... it says the ntldr and ntdetect are missing!!! I tried to download the ntldr and put it into D:\ but i doesnt work. How to fix this... is there any way out... I am still with ATA unpluggued just not to complicate things... Please help me as soon as possible... @!!!
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
The XP boot files need to be copied to the "active" partition, not to XP.
 

sivakeshava

New Member
Ya u r rite but........!

^^^
I did already what you have said but to no avail:frowning:
I just want to explain what might have happened so that you can help out better..
Actually whenever we install vista when xp alone already is there... vista can detect XP and so it deletes all the boot.,ini ntldr etc from that xp drive and creates appropriate files. Now what happened with me from the previous post is that i reinstalled vista when xp is there and so there are no boot.ini or other files in xp drive... and vista when reinstalling didn't detect xp and just boots without xp
NOW how can i restore those boot.ini ntldr etc into appropriate places (which i have no clue) so that xp works.... This sounds a bit tricky but its challenging to work it out

PLZZZ HELP!!!!
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
Hi Siva, welcome to NST.
Sorry if my previous response was too brief, but I was on my way out and I didn't have time to write any more, so I thought a brief note was better than no reply at all.
The wiki here contains all the information about booting XP with Vista.
Essentially, XP uses NTLDR to boot, which refers to the boot.ini file for information on the location of the XP windows folder.
NTLDR cannot boot Vista, so in a dual boot Vista's bootldr sits at the top of the boot chain, and if you ask for XP, bootldr must chain to NTLDR. Since NTLDR uses boot.ini to locate XP, Vista is in a catch 22 situation of not knowing where XP is, but needing to hand control to it.
It gets over its dilemma by insisting that the files needed to boot XP must be in the same partition root as its own bootldr.
If Vista installed its own bootldr on the XP partition, (like on my system), that condition is already met so the boot is fine.
If Vista installed its own bootldr in the Vista partition (most of the time), then the 3 files will need to be copied from XP.
The reason why my previous short reply stressed the "active" partition, is because that's how you know which of the above 2 conditions applies.
Look in disk management at which of the 2 partitions contains the active flag, and that's the one that the Vista bootmgr was installed to and where everything else must be too.
If you've lost your XP boot files altogether, NTLDR and ntdetect.com, which are not system specific, can be copied from here, and you can follow the links from the XP page for advice on constructing a boot.ini file from scratch to point to your XP partition.
 
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sivakeshava

New Member
Hi Terry... Thank you very much dude... it was just was amazing... my only mistake was that i just copied the boot.ini which was posted in the previous page of this ticket!!! I have a sata and ata disabled in the BIOS and so all of the values should be 0 expect the partition which should have been 2 for XP which i just blindly put as 1 from the previous page.. !! Now it works like a charm.! Thank you very much...! This is just fantastic that people give replies so fast and so expertly!
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
You're welcome, and sorry again, I didn't have time to be more specific on the first post.
 

DDDDAVE

New Member
My problem is slightly different, I have a laptop with Vista Home Premium installed and wanted to install XP on a 4 gig thumbdrive. Now neither will boot. I get the scrolling XP intro window and then the BSOD. Nothing starts but the bios. Can I use files from an old 98 startup disk to access a command prompt, and if so, what can I do from DOS?
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
Hi Dave, welcome to NST.
Whenever you install XP on a Vista system, XP will overwrite the Vista boot process with its own. XP is not forward compatible, doesn't recognize Vista, and cannot be made to boot it.
You must repair the Vista bootloader. Vista is backward compatible and recognizes XP, and can dual boot it.
If you don't own a bootable Vista DVD, you can download an ISO from here which contains just enough of Vista to be able to auto-repair the boot process.
Burn the ISO to a CD, boot it, select "repair my computer" then "repair startup". Repeat the boot/repair sequence as many times as necesssary to get Vista booting normally again (probably 2 or 3).
Unfortunately, whilst this will get your Vista back, I don't think it's going to help with booting XP.
Normally Vista would recognize XP during this repair and include it in a dual-boot menu, but Windows systems aren't bootable from USB flash drives to prevent you from using one licence on multiple systems, so I think you're going to need to reinstall on one of your internal HDDs.
 

JustinW

Super Moderator
Staff member
Well technically it can be done... but whether or not it is legal according to the EULA is another matter. Search google on the topic and you'll find a few sites that explain the proccess in detail. They are lengthy and most likely do not work, but it is worth the effort it that is want you want to do.
 

DDDDAVE

New Member
Hi Terry, I got the XP to work on the laptop but the Vista is not responding to the repair at all. I have repeated the steps about a dozen times and have no result except that the XP is the only boot option. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Dave
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
Whichever of your partitions is marked "system" "active" in disk management on the HDD which is first in your BIOS boot sequence, is where all the boot files for Vista and XP should be.
Make sure you've changed the status of system and hidden files and known filetypes in folder options so that they are no longer hidden, and you should be able to see bootmgr and a boot folder from Vista, and NTLDR, ntdetect.com and boot.ini from XP in the partition root.
If the Vista file/folder are not there then the repair is not working. What does it say when you run it ?
If the Vista entries are there, then the repair is failing to put the Vista IPL into the MBR. (The MBR should search for bootmgr in the active partition if it's Vista's, or NTLDR if it's XP's)
If the repair won't reset it automatically (it always works for me, so I've no idea why it shouldn't) then you can install EasyBCD on XP (make sure you install NET 2 framework first from Windows Update custom options) and use EasyBCD to rewrite the MBR with the Vista version.
 

jeremy34

New Member
Is ther anyone online in here


Addendum:


How to recover my Vista Boot with the Recovery CD?
 
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Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
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