Vista Ubuntu Dual Boot and SP1 will not load


I have read and believe I fully understand the basic problem with a dual boot Vista / Ubuntu system and the problem of not being able to install SP1 due to Grub now being the boot loader. I'm looking for some basic instructions about using EasyBCD to install SP1 on Vista.

My system is an ACER Aspire 3680 that came pre loaded with Vista Home Basic. I have installed Ubuntu 8.04 and the two work great together. I have spent a lot of time tweaking and updating drivers on Ubuntu and the same on Vista to get optimum performance out of both, so I don't want to have to reinstall anything if I can help it. So, I just want to update to SP1 which I have read should improve performance. So what steps do you suggest I follow to install SP1 on Vista using EasyBCD if possible without a reinstall. Thanks
SP1 would not be bothered by GRUB. Nor can you use EasyBCD to isntall SP1.

First check around to make sure you do not have the Driver issues that is realted to SP1 for Vista. Most of them are related to RealTek sound drivers.

2nd turn off all your 3rd party security applicaitons.

3rd check Windows Update.

That should allow you to install Vista SP1.
Thanks, but I think there may be some problems with SP1 related to dual boot systems with Vista and Ubuntu (or other dual boots) that relate to GRUB or LILO being the boot loader during the SP1 update. See the following link:

With the research I've done so far it sounds like SP1 will not install if Grub or LILO is the boot loader. I hope that is not correct, but it sounds like Microsoft has configured Vista and service pack updates to not work with dual boot systems except on backwards compatible Microsoft OS (ie XP, 2000, Win98).

I have tried all of the Windows workarounds and nothing has worked. I assume Easy BCD might be a way to get around this by restoring the Vista bootloader, updating SP1 and then reinstalling GRUB. But I did not want to try until I had real clear instructions about how to do it. I am still studying EasyBCD to see if I can get comfortable with its functionality before giving it a try. If anyone has any suggestions - please pass along.

There must be other Dual Booters out there that are having the same problem. I know there are some, but since SP1 just came out it seems this is a relatively new situation.
I was using HnS, which puts its bootloader above Vista's and hands control on to BCD or NTLDR as required, when I let WUD install SP1 on Vista.
It all worked ok, but when it had finished BCD was back in control and HnS had to be removed by hand piece by piece then run again. (a bit like having to repair Vista's boot after you've installed XP last)
I think the problem is just that you'll need to repair your broken dual boot after SP1, not that it will have any problem installing.
Probably simplest to repair the vista bootloader, install SP1, then reinstate your dual boot. (why not use EasyBCD while you're at it)

Thanks for the reply. Yes, I think you are right that the simplest way to do this is restore the Visa bootloader, install SP1, then reinstate the dual boot. I've installed EasyBCD, but have never used it before so I am being careful. I want to make sure I know how to do this, assuming it can be done, before giving it a try. Any more suggestions or better yet - instructions would be appreciated. I am a real EasyBCD novice.
Last edited:
It looks like you have given me the sequences I need to successfully make this work. I'll give it a try and report back the results. If it works it should be helpful to a lot of dual-booters.
So far I have still not been succesful updating Windows Vista with SP1 using EasyBCD and the information provided. I was able to restore the Windows Bootloader but SP1 still will not install. I have used all of the Microsoft troubleshooting with no success and at this point have no other suggestions from anyone about how to get SP1 installed. My next step will be to get Microsoft support on the phone and see if they can help. I have a feeling they are just going to say the dual boot system is the problem and I doubt they will be much help there, as they probably would be just as happy it I can't get Ubuntu running. I'm about ready to boot Vista off the machine, go back to XP and then gradually just move everything to Ubuntu. At the moment Ubuntu will not install after repairing the Windows bootloader. I just hope I can eventually get it running again without a full re-install. Any suggestions will be appreciated.
Have you turned off all your 3rd party firewall and Anti-Virus? Have you turned off Spybot, Ad-Aware and any other protection applications that you might be running?

Have you tried to install it form Safe Mode?
I tried installing SP1 in Safe Mode as suggested and that did not work either. So, that is the last thing I know to try before contacting Microsoft. Any other ideas?
Sounds like you have a driver conflict. Are you sure you do not have any of the drivers lised on their page?