Tri-boot (Vista, XP, Wubi Ubuntu 8.10) problem [SOLVED]

#1
Hi, i'm new to this forum, and this is my first post. Let me just explain a little what i have done so far, and what i want to do (using EasyBCD)...

Ok, so my original plan was to simply dual boot Vista with XP, using the tutorial found here: http://apcmag.com/how_to_dual_boot_vista_and_xp_with_vista_installed_first__the_stepbystep_guide.htm

That was my original plan...however, by the time it took me to print off all the reader's comments for that tutorial, i had received additional suggestions by people on the Ubuntu forums. And of course in the meantime I found out about Wubi and decided to try out Ubuntu 8.10, of course. I decided I liked it, and wanted to keep it. So this made me change my mind about the way I was going to setup my computer....of course, naturally, I also happened to run across (also on the Ubuntu forums) a program called LVPM, which could migrate my Wubi install to a dedicated partition! This of course aroused my interest further in Ubuntu, and I made up my mind to transfer Wubi to a partition, after installing XP on another partition, since I figured it would be easier (although I was wrong). So this then i proceeded to do, using BootIT NG to create the needed partitions for both XP and Ubuntu.

Unfortunately, though, i ran into a couple of problems trying to do it that way (for one thing, I accidentally forgot to set the partition active that i wanted to install XP to, and i went ahead and installed XP anyway....before realizing my mistake! this of course produced undesirable results...), and so i then determined that I was going to delete the XP partition, and start afresh...this time migrating my Ubuntu install first! This I proceeded to do, and again ran into several problems! :ldown: For one thing, one thing that i didn't understand at first, when using LVPM (due to this fact not mentioned on the sticky thread concerning this topic back at the Ubuntu forums!), was that I was supposed to edit the menu.lst after the transfer...and so naturally, after migrating my Wub install, I thought that LVPM had failed, because when I tried booting into it, i got error 17 (cannot mount selected partition)! this then sent me on a course of more screw-ups (only making the matter worse:scared:smile:, i.e. trying the transferring process again more times, as well as attempting to "stg partition" using BootIT NG (which of course only succeeded in overwriting my Grub bootloader!:glare:smile:...

What all this is leading up, of course, is the fact that I tried EasyBCD to create a boot entry for XP so that I could boot into my XP installation (I've already installed XP again, by the way), but the program failed to do what was expected... :wtf: It neither worked to allow me to boot into Ubuntu or XP, via the Vista bootloader! :frowning: I've tried both, using the latest EasyBCD version (i.e. 1.7.2), but both have failed.

Here's what it says in the "View Settings" window in EasyBCD:

Code:
There are a total of 4 entries listed in the Vista Bootloader.
Bootloader Timeout: 10 seconds.
Default OS: Microsoft Windows Vista

Entry #1

Name:  Microsoft Windows Vista
BCD ID:  {current}
Drive:  C:\
Bootloader Path:  \Windows\system32\winload.exe
Windows Directory:  \Windows

Entry #2

Name:  Ubuntu
BCD ID:  {637a99e5-c702-11dd-b2b9-82a022abb6b4}
Drive:  C:\
Bootloader Path:  \ubuntu\winboot\wubildr.mbr

Entry #3

Name:  Ubuntu 2
BCD ID:  {637a99ed-c702-11dd-b2b9-82a022abb6b4}
Drive:  C:\
Bootloader Path:  \NST\nst_grub-6AD1B88A3FD296E85BC179CB1DC35544.mbr

Entry #4

Name:  Microsoft Windows XP
BCD ID:  {637a99ee-c702-11dd-b2b9-82a022abb6b4}
Drive:  C:\
Bootloader Path:  \NTLDR
Hopefully someone can figure out what I'm missing, in order for the boot entries created by EasyBCD to work... :ldown:

Looking forward to all replies! :brows:

-Coolname007

P.S. to make this post shorter, i omitted some of the things that I went through to get to the place that I am at now...basically, i have just have had so many problems trying to figure out how to tri-boot my computer with Vista (installed first), XP, and Ubuntu 8.10! :wink:

EDIT: Entry #1 is preinstalled Vista, Entry #2 is my Wubi install of Ubuntu 8.10, Entry #3 is the entry that I created for my real install of Ubuntu, using EasyBCD, but it didn't work... Entry #4 is of course the entry that I created for XP, but it didn't work as well!

EDIT #2: When i open up the \NST\nst_grub-6AD1B88A3FD296E85BC179CB1DC35544.mbr file, this is what it shows:
Code:
ë<                                                           ú3ÀŽÐ¼ |¸°ŽØŽÀ¹ ‹ñ¿ ó¥¸ÐPŽØŽÀ¸dPËû¾èo ¹Áÿº€ 3ÛS» |S¾é¸BÍs¸BÍs¸BÍr.&>þ}Uªu%¸  Àt&¢$|¸  Àt&¢%|¸  &£|¸  &£|˾—è ´Ít2äÍëô2äÍ3ÒÍü¬
ÀuÃV´Í^ëò   |  õ¸3            BootPart 2.60 Bootsector (c) 1993-2005 Gilles Vollant http://www.winimage.com/bootpart.htm

Loading new partition

Bootsector from C.H. Hochst„tter

 Cannot load from harddisk.

Insert Systemdisk and press any key.

                                     Uª
So it looks like to me that this file needs to be edited some how, so that it will point to the correct place... :scared:
 
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#2
Since Vista is a preinstalled copy in order to see a working triple boot on a single drive it would have been easier seeing 8.10 go on last once you had a working dual of XP with Vista. The reason for this is the need to see NeoGrub installed to the Vista primary not boot sector once you have the distro installed last.

When installing Grub from the live to install option that goes on the root(system files) partition also seeing that made the mount point. Once on and booting you may need to repair the Vista mbr just like you would seeing XP installed after Vista again.

When all three are on and the Vista mbr is restored you then install NeoGrub with the "do not install NeoGrub to bootsector" box checked off to avoid seeing that form of Grub go into the mbr. From there you simply create the new entries for XP and ubuntu alike. For XP of course the need for seeing the required boot files copied over to the Vista primary and edit of the boot.ini file then points to rdisk(0)partition(2) with ubuntu at the back or rdisk(0)partition(3) the way you have it now.

Once you see 8.10 load up and run the way XP did prior to that you then make the single entry needed for XP and ubuntu once back in Vista.
 
#3
Since Vista is a preinstalled copy in order to see a working triple boot on a single drive it would have been easier seeing 8.10 go on last once you had a working dual of XP with Vista. The reason for this is the need to see NeoGrub installed to the Vista primary not boot sector once you have the distro installed last.
Thanks for the reply. But how would I go about fixing it with my current setup (i.e. with Vista installed first, Ubuntu installed second-via LVPM, and XP installed last? cause that's actually the order that I did them in...and I would like to know a solution for fixing it without reinstalling any of them (which i've already several times, btw!).
When installing Grub from the live to install option that goes on the root(system files) partition also seeing that made the mount point. Once on and booting you may need to repair the Vista mbr just like you would seeing XP installed after Vista again.
Unfortunately, I didn't use the Ubuntu LiveCD to do the real install... i transferred my Wubi install via LVPM. >.<
When all three are on and the Vista mbr is restored you then install NeoGrub with the "do not install NeoGrub to bootsector" box checked off to avoid seeing that form of Grub go into the mbr. From there you simply create the new entries for XP and ubuntu alike. For XP of course the need for seeing the required boot files copied over to the Vista primary and edit of the boot.ini file then points to rdisk(0)partition(2) with ubuntu at the back or rdisk(0)partition(3) the way you have it now.

Once you see 8.10 load up and run the way XP did prior to that you then make the single entry needed for XP and ubuntu once back in Vista.
Thanks, but i would definitely prefer a way to fix it without reinstalling any of the OSes... :shame:
 
#4
First thing now since you didn't use any live install is to make the boot loader for 8.10 is installed to the root itself and not the Vista mbr. The boot.ini information for rdisk(0)partition(3) would still see use there for the copy on the VIsta root.

NeoGrub does need to be installed on the Vista primary in order to then point to the root/mount point. You'll see that tab when looking in the add/remove entries option. Once NeoGrub is installed you then proceed to the Linux tab there in order to see the boot entry for the Vista BCD created. Hopefully the Wubi loader will then take over to see 8.10 load up for you when going to select ubuntu from the Vista boot screen.
 
#5
First thing now since you didn't use any live install is to make the boot loader for 8.10 is installed to the root itself and not the Vista mbr. The boot.ini information for rdisk(0)partition(3) would still see use there for the copy on the VIsta root.

NeoGrub does need to be installed on the Vista primary in order to then point to the root/mount point. You'll see that tab when looking in the add/remove entries option. Once NeoGrub is installed you then proceed to the Linux tab there in order to see the boot entry for the Vista BCD created. Hopefully the Wubi loader will then take over to see 8.10 load up for you when going to select ubuntu from the Vista boot screen.
Thanks...but i used NeoGrub when creating the Ubuntu entry for Wubi. that didn't work that time, and so i ended up having to reinstall Wubi again in order to get the Ubuntu entry back into the Vista bootloader. However, that's not what i'm referring to now...i'm referring to a real install of Ubuntu 8.10, i.e. a migrated (or transferred) version of my Wubi install, to a dedicated partiton. That is what i'm trying to boot now, in addition to XP, of course. However, what i'm currently concerned right now with is getting first XP to work ok, via EasyBCD...after that, i suspect i can reinstall Grub (it got either deactivated, or overwritten when I reinstalled BootIT NG...which I had to do, in order to get the partitioning program working again, because somehow it got screwed up during the transfer with LVPM).

So, what i'm simply trying to say then is, i need first to get XP working as a dual boot with Vista (even though Ubuntu's already installed, both Wubi within Windows Vista, and also as an install on a dedicated parition).

Anyway, thanks for trying to help...and looking forward to next comment. :wink:
 

Mak 2.0

Mod...WAFFLES!?!?
Staff member
#6
To get XP Working you need to copy over the 3 files to the boot partition and then have EasyBCD use that as teh drive selected.

The 3 files are NTLDR, NTDETECT and boot.ini files. Now open up disk management. Find out which drive is your boot drive. From there copy those files to the root fo the partition. When you go into EasyBCD and edit your XP Entry make sure that it reads teh same drive as the boot drive you saw in the Disk Management.

With the 3 files it should either boot or give you a error about the boot.ini being incorrect cause it will read the wrong drive and/or partition.

All this is fully explained in our documentation.

Windows XP - NeoSmart Technologies Wiki
Troubleshooting Windows XP - NeoSmart Technologies Wiki

After that just add a Ubuntu entry as explained as well.

Ubuntu - NeoSmart Technologies Wiki
 
#7
To get XP Working you need to copy over the 3 files to the boot partition and then have EasyBCD use that as teh drive selected.
Thanks...but where exactly do i find these three files? R they supposed to be in the "NST" folder in C:/Nst on Vista, because the last time I checked the files weren't there. Also (i neglected to mention before) when i created the XP boot entry with EasyBCD, it gave me the following message:

Code:
NTLDR not found! 

EasyBCD could not locate a copy of NTLDR on your hard drive. Please download a copy of NTLDR and NTDETECT.COM from http://neosmart.net/wiki/pages/viewpageattachments.action?pageId=196612 and copy them to drive C:\ in order for your newly-created entry to work.
I tried going to the webpage mentioned in the message, but it seems you need administrator priviledges to access it, because it sent me to a login page, where i tried to use my NeoSmart Forums username and password to login, but it wasn't accepted.

Further help would be appreciated... :scared:

EDIT: or am i supposed to copy them over from XP into Vista?

EDIT #2: never mind now about NTLDR and NTDETECT.COM now...i finally was able to access the page, and download them. I moved the files to C:/ and now I just need to know where to get the "Boot.ini" file from. Am i supposed to copy it over from the "Boot" folder in XP, and transfer it over to Vista? Looking forward to your reply...
 
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Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#8
The files are all in the root of your XP partition. They're hidden files, so you need to use folder options to unhide system and hidden files and known filetypes. Then just drag copies into the Vista root and edit the new copy of boot.ini to point back to the XP partition.

btw. your posts are so wide they're very difficult to read. What browser are you using ?
 

Mak 2.0

Mod...WAFFLES!?!?
Staff member
#9
As Terry said they are in the root of the drive. But they are system protected files so you cant see them.

Open My Computer>Tools>Folder Options. There click the View Tab. There show hidden files and folders then scroll down a couple of lines and you will see:

Show system protected files

Uncheck that box. It says recommended to have them hidden. Which is true 99.9% of the time. But for our purpose we need to see them.

Now when you go into the root of the XP Drive. Just openeing C:\ you will see the files in question. NTLDR, NTDETECT and boot.ini are just sitting there. Put them in the Vista drive. Then hide the files again as you dont need to see the system protected files.

Now add XP and make sure that it reads the same entry as the Vista drive and try to boot into XP.
 
#10
The files are all in the root of your XP partition. They're hidden files, so you need to use folder options to unhide system and hidden files and known filetypes. Then just drag copies into the Vista root and edit the new copy of boot.ini to point back to the XP partition.
Ok...thanks! :smile:
btw. your posts are so wide they're very difficult to read. What browser are you using ?
yeah...i know. :lol: i'm sorry...i don't know what the deal is with that. I'm using Firefox.

Thanks! :smile:

Addendum:

As Terry said they are in the root of the drive. But they are system protected files so you cant see them.

Open My Computer>Tools>Folder Options. There click the View Tab. There show hidden files and folders then scroll down a couple of lines and you will see:

Show system protected files

Uncheck that box. It says recommended to have them hidden. Which is true 99.9% of the time. But for our purpose we need to see them.

Now when you go into the root of the XP Drive. Just openeing C:\ you will see the files in question. NTLDR, NTDETECT and boot.ini are just sitting there. Put them in the Vista drive. Then hide the files again as you dont need to see the system protected files.

Now add XP and make sure that it reads the same entry as the Vista drive and try to boot into XP.
Ok...thanks. :smile: I will get right right on it...might need some help with editing the "boot.ini" file though once its in Vista. :wink:

Cheers!
 
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#11
Remeber you don't move the files over but simply copy them from the XP root over to the Vista root directory. Once you have the files unhidden and copied over you will need to right click on the boot.ini before you can edit there. In the properties you have to uncheck the "read only" box and click apply. All protected system files are set to read only.

To simply add XP in the hardest problem is simply making sure the rdisk(0)partition(?) sees the correct partition number. The one thing you will find out fast once all three are up and running is that ubuntu will not see any logical drive letter assigned to it when trying to view the partition while booted in either version of Windows. The Disk Management tool in both will see an unnamed healthy active primary or extended without any other diesignation.

The other items concerning the boot.ini file to mention are the default entry above "operating systems" as well as the entry below that both have to see the same rdisk(0)partition(?) 2 or 3 depending which will see XP boot up. Otherwise you will see two boot options once you select XP from the Vista boot menu being "default" and XP.

You'll go to select one and nothing will happen since the other will be pointing at the correct partition. Before you see that however you may run into the "missing or invalid boot.ini file" message meaning you have to re-edit the boot.ini file again to change from 3 to 2 or vice versa in the rdisk(0)partition(?).
 
#12
Remeber you don't move the files over but simply copy them from the XP root over to the Vista root directory. Once you have the files unhidden and copied over you will need to right click on the boot.ini before you can edit there. In the properties you have to uncheck the "read only" box and click apply. All protected system files are set to read only.

To simply add XP in the hardest problem is simply making sure the rdisk(0)partition(?) sees the correct partition number. The one thing you will find out fast once all three are up and running is that ubuntu will not see any logical drive letter assigned to it when trying to view the partition while booted in either version of Windows. The Disk Management tool in both will see an unnamed healthy active primary or extended without any other diesignation.

The other items concerning the boot.ini file to mention are the default entry above "operating systems" as well as the entry below that both have to see the same rdisk(0)partition(?) 2 or 3 depending which will see XP boot up. Otherwise you will see two boot options once you select XP from the Vista boot menu being "default" and XP.

You'll go to select one and nothing will happen since the other will be pointing at the correct partition. Before you see that however you may run into the "missing or invalid boot.ini file" message meaning you have to re-edit the boot.ini file again to change from 3 to 2 or vice versa in the rdisk(0)partition(?).
Thanks for the help. I ended up creating the boot.ini file instead of copying it from XP, because I could not boot into XP the conventional way...even with the XP partition set to active. I copied and pasted the boot.ini text from this link: Rebuilding Boot.ini - NeoSmart Technologies Wiki

And then using both the instuctions on that page, and from ur post, I edited it, changing both of the partition numbers, above and below "operating systems", to read:

Code:
[boot loader] [FONT=monospace]
[/FONT]timeout=30 [FONT=monospace]
[/FONT]default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS [FONT=monospace]
[/FONT][operating systems] [FONT=monospace]
[/FONT]multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS="Windows XP Professional" /fastdetect
I selected partition #2, thinking that that would be the correct one, as it was (i thought) the second one in the MBR. However, when i received the following error message when trying to boot into XP:

Code:
"Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt:

<Windows root>\system32\ntoskrnl.exe.

Please re-install a copy of the above file"
And so, puzzled, i went back into BootIT NG (it boots at startup) and checked the MBR again. However, for some odd reason, XP was no longer #2 in the layer order...in fact, it wasn't even in the MBR! Perhaps my next move was a mistake, but the thought occured to me that perhaps EasyBCD could read the EMBR (extended master boot record existing only with BootIT NG) instead of the standard MBR. So what i did next was boot back into Vista, and changed the partition numbers once again...this time to 6, instead of 2.

And this is the error message that I have now:

Code:
Windows could not start because of a computer disk hardware 
configuration problem. Could not read from the selected boot 
disk.

Check boot path and disk hardware. Please check the Windows 
documentation about hardware disk configuration and your 
hardware reference manuals for additional information.
I realize that that was probably a dumb move on my part... :shame: and so what i'm going to try next is changing the partition numbers in Boot.ini so that they will be 2 again, instead of 6. And then i guess I'll try to find some way to get XP back into the MBR, so that it will stay there when I reboot.

Cheers! :smile:
 
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Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#13
Both of those error messages were due to getting the boot.ini information wrong.
See the wiki troubleshooter.
The BIOS specifies which HDD to boot from first
The IPL in the MBR on that HDD locates the "active" "system" partition, and if it's Vista's IPL will search for bootmgr in the boot sector of that partition.
Bootmgr reads the BCD from the boot folder and presents the boot menu with the choices contained in the BCD.
If you choose XP, bootmgr will chain to NTLDR (XP's bootloader) in the same partition, which will read boot.ini from that partition.
Finally boot.ini will tell NTLDR where the partition containing the XP Windows folder is located.
You can play around with the rdisk and partition values in boot.ini until you hit the combination that accurately describes the XP location, but don't play around with the rest of the boot process.
If you put the XP IPL in the MBR, you will never boot Vista again until you put the Vista IPL back. XP cannot be made to boot Vista, only the other way round
Take a look at this post for some reasons why your calculation of the correct address for XP might be wrong.
 
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#14
With a partition inbetween VIsta and XP the boot.ini should see rdisk(0)partition(3). For a boot loader besides the Vista BCD the one other tool that is cross platform is Grud4Dos. A version of that is seen with NeoGrub in the HnS tool. Vista is still set as the deafault OS in that.
 
#15
I realize that that was probably a dumb move on my part... :shame: and so what i'm going to try next is changing the partition numbers in Boot.ini so that they will be 2 again, instead of 6. And then i guess I'll try to find some way to get XP back into the MBR, so that it will stay there when I reboot.

Cheers! :smile:
Nope. Still didn't work...:frowning: I tried putting XP in the MBR, and putting it as #2 in the partition order, after editing the boot.ini file to look there. But I tried it, and it still didn't work...once again i got the message that means i've got the wrong partition numbers in Boot.ini:

Code:
"Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt:

<Windows root>\system32\ntoskrnl.exe.

Please re-install a copy of the above file"
To tell the truth, i don't understand how all this is supposed to work...it should have worked after my last editing of the boot.ini and putting XP back in the MBR.... :glare:

Addendum:

Both of those error messages were due to getting the boot.ini information wrong.
See the wiki troubleshooter.
The BIOS specifies which HDD to boot from first
The IPL in the MBR on that HDD locates the "active" "system" partition, and if it's Vista's IPL will search for bootmgr in the boot sector of that partition.
Bootmgr reads the BCD from the boot folder and presents the boot menu with the choices contained in the BCD.
If you choose XP, bootmgr will chain to NTLDR (XP's bootloader) in the same partition, which will read boot.ini from that partition.
Finally boot.ini will tell NTLDR where the partition containing the XP Windows folder is located.
You can play around with the rdisk and partition values in boot.ini until you hit the combination that accurately describes the XP location, but don't play around with the rest of the boot process.
If you put the XP IPL in the MBR, you will never boot Vista again until you put the Vista IPL back. XP cannot be made to boot Vista, only the other way round
Take a look at this post for some reasons why your calculation of the correct address for XP might be wrong.
Thanks Terry. I've already had a look though at the Windows XP troubleshoot page...that is where i learned what the errors that i had meant. That is also why it now puzzles me that my last move has not worked (see above post)...

Additionally, to be honest, i'm not exactly sure what u meant by "IPL" in the MBR. No doubt it stands for something, and i'll try to find out in the meantime what it means...but i guess i'll try starting from 0, and working my way up, until i hit the correct combination, like u said. Hopefully that will work...

Thanks! :smile:

EDIT: also, i forgot to mention before that the partition XP is installed on is a primary partition, not an extended one...

Addendum:

With a partition inbetween VIsta and XP the boot.ini should see rdisk(0)partition(3). For a boot loader besides the Vista BCD the one other tool that is cross platform is Grud4Dos. A version of that is seen with NeoGrub in the HnS tool. Vista is still set as the deafault OS in that.
Why would it be partition 3, if this is the following layout of my MBR?

HD0 entry 0 (64 MB partition for storing the EMBR for BootIT NG)
WinXP (Windows XP)
OS-2 (Vista partition)
MBR entry 3 (partition for Ubuntu 8.10)

As u can see from the above list, XP is #2, not #3 (Vista is 3), and there is no partition (in the MBR, at least!) between XP and Vista...>.<

Anyway, i'd rather not mess with Grub4dos right now...at least until i get XP and Vista dual booting ok...

Cheers! :smile:
 
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#16
The boot.ini entries still have to point to the partition XP was installed on. Neither VIsta or XP will assign a logical drive letter to ubuntu being Linux there will still seeing that on a second partition. The mbr or master boot record sees entries made there to point to the default OS's own boot loader namely Vista.

You'll be using a form of Grub3Dos also called NeoGrub seen in the EasyBCD tool as well as included in the other used to protect Vista's system restore points by hiding Vista from XP. The best description by the chief programmer for both is that being able to dual or multiboot different OSs is simply a side benefit seen with NeoGrub being a part of it there.
 
#17
The boot.ini entries still have to point to the partition XP was installed on. Neither VIsta or XP will assign a logical drive letter to ubuntu being Linux there will still seeing that on a second partition. The mbr or master boot record sees entries made there to point to the default OS's own boot loader namely Vista.
Yes...i understand that. However, i'm talking about XP and Vista, not Ubuntu at the moment.

Once i have got XP dual booted correctly with Vista, i will then proceed to work on getting Ubuntu booting as well via the Vista bootloader...

Cheers! :smile:
 
#18
I'm just letting you know ahead of time about seeing ubuntu added in later since that's when NeoGrub will have a role there. Once you have the correct partition number entered in the boot.in file along with having the three files copied over you should see XP then load right up when selected.
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#19
Have you tried partition(1)?
 
#20
I'm just letting you know ahead of time about seeing ubuntu added in later since that's when NeoGrub will have a role there. Once you have the correct partition number entered in the boot.in file along with having the three files copied over you should see XP then load right up when selected.
Ok then...thanks! :smile: I will indeed keep that in mind, once i have the correct partition number in boot.ini.

Much appreciation,

-C

Addendum:

Have you tried partition(1)?
Yes i have. That was it was to begin with, since i simply copied and pasted from this link the boot.ini text: Rebuilding Boot.ini - NeoSmart Technologies Wiki

But that didn't work either...

Further help would be much appreciated.
 
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