Vista/ME dual boot issues

#1
In their infinite wisdom Ms neglected us po' folk who have to use usb dial up modems and didn't include much support in this way, neither did the modem mfrs. Ergo I need this config as I write internet articles and content (would be willing to do some pro-bono for this app). Here is what I have:
Dell opti 270 2.8 ghz
1 gig ram
2x 80 gb hdd's 1st hdd ME, 2nd hdd vista
Both systems were installed with no other hdd attached to cable, the connected both disks, set bios to boot to only C:
Results are ME boots fine installed easybcd and got missing mscoree.dll.
Okay, Reversed HDD's and Vista boots fine. Installed easybcd and it couldn't find ME install. Not sure how to search for other drives, and found instructions that said the dos system had to be on C:.
So I reverted back to ME as C: now what?? Do I need the dotnet framework, this is where this file would be, right. I'm not an idiot but I am new to NTFS. ANY help would be sincerely appreciated as I have been trying this dual boot for a few weeks now.:rage:
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#2
Hi Victor, welcome to NST.
You're doing something I've never tried, so I can't offer advice from personal experience, but there is a wiki entry which might be a good place to start.
 
#3
HEY! Thanks for a quick response. :booyah:Thats the page I found concerning this, but the children at the bottom are blank pages...then I got stuck, but on the upside I found an install of dotnet and installer 2.0 now easybcd runs but complains about wanting a newer version of windows. Any ideas there?:brows:
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#4
You'll need to have Vista as the controlling system, and run EasyBCD from there. EasyBCD is a GUI manager of the Vista BCD, so that's where you need to concentrate your effort. With Vista booted, you need to add an entry for ME to the BCD from there. There's no BCD on ME, and because you installed each system independently, when you boot ME it will not know of the existence of VIsta's BCD, even if you can make EasyBCD execute there. (Easy is designed to run on just about any Windows, but it needs to be aware of (ie find a BCD) on the "active" partition, and when you boot your independent ME it will be "active" and BCDless.
Make sure you're using EasyBCD 2.0, which is far more advanced in support of esoteric OSs.
 
#5
This is the way I'm going now but I think vista keeps messing up the boot on the other drive. when I run bcd it tells me there is no bootsect.dos on the disk but if I disconnect the vista drive ME will boot just fine. I think I'm having problems finding the correct drive in bcd, the drive that ME is on E: is greyed out in the add/remove entries. Am I doing something wrong? I REALLY think so, I feel I'm so close but.....damn!
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#6
The reason why the disk is greyed out is the same as for dual-booting XP, to stop people pointing at the drive with the OS on. The entry in the BCD should point to the "system" partition where all the boot files for every Windows in the multi-boot should reside.
In the case of XP, EasyBCD 2.0 has been enhanced to do everything automatically that used to have to be done manually, i.e. copying the boot files from XP to Vista and modifying them to point back to XP.
In your case, you don't have the benefit of auto-configure for 9X/ME, so you'll need to copy ME's boot files across into the Vista root. (for XP they're NTLDR ntdetect.com and boot.ini, but for ME the bootloader should be mentioned in the BCD entry you created (path \xxxxx) and the other files necessary will be autoexec.bat, config.sys and some others I can't conjure from memory (it's been a while since I ran ME))
If you make sure that you're not hiding files and post a list of what's on the ME root, I'll try to remember which ones need to be copied across.
This is all necessary because Windows OSs are designed to be backward compatible boot-wise in the expectation that newer will always be installed after older and be able to see the older system and add its boot files into the existing setup.
Installing old after new (or independently) means you have to do a lot of fiddling around yourself.
(I have a deep suspicion somewhere in the depths of my memory that this may not be possible across 2 different HDDs for pre-XP Windows, but let's try anyway)
 
#7
I'll try this today and let you know tonight,have to do the compulsory dreaded day job. If I can get this going maybe I can make enough to quit the day job!

Addendum:

Heres a list of the ME install root:
AUTOEXEC 2
BOOTLOG 2
CLASSES.1ST
COMMAND.COM
CONFIG 2
DETLOG.TXT
IO.SYS
MSDOS 2
NETLOG.TXT
SCANDISK
SETUPLOG
SUHDLOG.DAT
SETUPLOG
SYSTEM.1ST
VIDEOROM.BIN
If I indicate 2 this is usually a system file and a bak. I have suspicions as to which ones to copy, but need to know: to the root of the vista install, and do I need to edit the files in any way
 
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Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#8
The DOS Boot Process
The MBR code will pass control to the code contained in the Boot Sector of the active primary partition. The code searches the root directory of the device being booted for the operating system files that contain the operating system. For a system running MS-DOS these are the files "IO.SYS", "MSDOS.SYS" and "COMMAND.COM".
If the operating system files are found, the boot program will load them into memory and transfer control to them. First, IO.SYS is loaded and its code executed. IO.SYS will then executed MSDOS.SYS (in pure DOS systems, MSDOS.SYS is just a text file in Windows 95 and later). Then the more complete operating system code loads and initializes the rest of the operating system structures. For MS-DOS, this means loading the command interpreter (COMMAND.COM) and then reading and interpreting the contents of the CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT system control files. This initial DOS operating system files then controls the loading and execution of many more routines as the boot progresses and eventually this results in the graphical Windows environment that we see.

These are the files involved, but I'm not sure whether they're capable of being edited to point to another HDD.
I've a suspicion that you might need to have the Vista files on the ME HDD and boot from the ME disk (using Vista's bootmgr and BCD), so that all of the ME files are already in place and correct.
Then when you choose Vista it can easily find Winload.exe (the Vista Loader) on the second HDD.
 
#9
Cool, I should have mentioned that I am using a second computer so any reinstalls or changes are no problem and I won't lose anything. It seems the 2 disk was a bad idea, I can blast (what I call repart and format) both disks and start from scratch I'll reformat tonight and part the disk 0 as this: 2-15 g partitions 1 formatted FAT32 and the other I will not format I'll let vista make it NTFS. BTW I do have a ntfs reader for win98 that works in me too. NOW whitch system do I install first? I can't remember exactly where I read that 98/ME will overwrite a system file or maybe it was the other way around???????HEEELP. Terry, thank you from the bottom of my pea picken wittle heart, for all the attention you've given
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#10
Pre-XP systems have to be in the front of the HDD, first partition. It was only with NT and the NTLDR that dual-booting became a standard supported feature in WIndows, and the OS didn't have to be in prime spot.
Put ME on first and then install Vista. That's the natural order in which backward compatibility might come to your aid.
 
#11
Okay, thanks a lot! pill proceed as planned. I ASS-U-ME all else should go as per standard instructions, also will create and format parts from their respective OS'es

Addendum:

All went as expected, formatted a FAT32, installed ME, restarted with vista, created, formatted, and installed, as expected the ME disk available (even saved a copy of all the root files to the desktop of ME). Copied the file to the vista desktop, then installed easybcd and tried to create an entry and got the expected "Can't find BOOTSECT.DOS". Went to file to copy BOOTSECT.DOS and it is gone! Will this be a hidden file even after I copied it and unhid it? If I can find it a simple copy-paste to the root should do it! I also cant see all the files in the Millennium part, this is related isn't it?

Addendum:

Found hidden files and unhid them. BOOTSECT.DOS is not on the root or in the file I copied them to from ME. Do I need to create a startup disk and put it on c:root, ( of the vista drive). I know I'm on it now (I think).
 
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