Reinstallation of XP


Distinguished Member
So I forgot my XP password, and I figured wouldn't be a bad idea just to reformat after all. Everything with EASYBCD is on Vista, so I assume when I reformat the second hard drive and reinstall XP that when it is done installing, I should still be presented with the same boot menu I have now, and nothing should change except a fresh install of XP?
It should be fine as long as you install XP to the same drive and paritition it was on. However, you well need to either disconnect the first drive containing Vista during the setup or prepare to restore the Vista bootloader from a recovery disc/Vista DVD after the installation. You should also check to verify that XP's boot files (ntdetect, ntldr, and boot.ini are on the root of Vista's partition. You'll need to enable "Show hidden files and folders" and uncheck "Hide protected operating system files" in Folder Options in order to view them.

If they are not located there, they should be on XP's partition. I would go ahead and copy them for later use if needed.

After the XP installation, reconnect Vista's drive and/or repair Vista's bootloader. Verify that the entry that you previously had well boot the new installation. If it doesn't and you orginally found XP's boot files at the root of XP's partition rather then Vistas', copy the backups you made of XP's boot files back to the root of XP's partition and try again to use the existing entry.

If the above doesn't work, try making a new entry for XP and deleting the old one.
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Ok thanks, but I decided to just wipe the HDD and use it as storage, if I totally format and wipe everything off the drive will my bootloader be affected and will I need to change anything? All the EasyBCD is on Vista.
Check that the Vista partition is marked "active" and is ahead of the disk you intend to format, in your BIOS boot sequence. If so then everything at boot should look as normal, except of course if you select XP !
You can delete the XP entry, or even simpler, set timeout (0), and in future Vista will boot directly without a boot menu.