Windows 7 and XP dual boot problem - I want to uninstall Win7

I'm having a problem and I was wondering if EasyBCD has the features to help me or if someone here can help me.

Skipping some details, my Win7 is installed on my 2nd drive (called F) and my Winxp is installed on my 1st drive (called C). I want to uninstall Win7, but the option to format the F drive is grayed out in disk management and in my computer. I think the reason for this is because my system partition is located on the F drive and my boot partition is located on the C drive (which actually means that my OS is installed on my C drive and my boot information is located on my F drive - the drive that has Win7 on it and that I want to delete).

screenshot of disk management below:

Is there anyway for me to get the boot information for only WinXP onto my C drive so that I can format my F drive and be rid of Win7?

So far I've tried pretty much everything I can think of to get it to work. I should mention that i just removed the vista bootloader and replaced it with the XP one (i used the option to uninstall the vista bootloader in the manage bootloader tab) so tell me if i need to reinstall the vista bootloader to proceed with whatever I need to do.

Thank you for the help.
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Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
Hi Far, welcome to NST.
Your problem is that XP is on a logical drive, not a primary partition.
Windows can only boot from a primary (the MBR looks for the "active" primary)
It doesn't matter whether you have the W7 bootmanager on F:\ or you've used EasyBCD to uninstall it and put XP's NTLDR in control. The boot files (either variety) have to be on a primary, and that's why it won't let you format the partition, and why you can't move the boot to C:\.
If C: were primary, you could simply copy the XP boot files there, set it "active", reboot the PC and format the F: disk.
With the boot files on F:\, you could use a live linux boot to delete the W7 installation, leaving all the XP boot files intact and regain the space that way, or if you have a 3rd party partition manager capable of converting your logical drive to a primary, you could take the first option.
ssiw2, I downloaded that bootable cd and burned it properly but when I changed my logical drive to a primary and restarted it gave me an error of something like <system root>/somewhere/somewhere/hal.dll is missing or corrupt and it wouldn't load into windows xp.

I changed it back to a logical and now my windows xp loads fine. Do either of you have any idea why this is? Did I make a mistake?


Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
Did you do what I said ?

"If C: were primary, you could simply copy the XP boot files there, set it "active", reboot the PC "

Remember, none of your boot files are in the XP partition, so just making it primary isn't enough.
If you're not confident about which files to copy , you could always do a "repair install" of XP by booting your XP CD.
A repair install (not a full install which will totally overwrite your entire partition) leaves your system and all your installed apps and data untouched, but fixes broken system files (like the boot files).
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hey everyone, i know it's been a while but i'm a huge procrastinator and i only just started trying to fix this problem again today. this time, i tried using the partition wizard bootable cd to change my C to a primary and then putting the xp cd in when it got to the hal.dll error message so that i could boot it after the restart. it worked, but the xp cd never gave me the option to repair it, only to install it. the first message i ever got was that it couldn't identify my computer, but this time it just took me to the built-in partition manager and asked me where i want to install XP. i picked my xp drive (all the drive letters were different for some reason) and it restarted and began installing xp. i couldn't stop it, so i didn't try. i just hoped it wouldn't delete my files. luckily, it didn't, but the new xp was an actual new install of windows xp and i didn't have access to any start menu shortcuts or desktop icons. however, all my data was still where it was before (ex: program files still had all my programs).

it was actually pretty interesting to me because i've never encountered anything like this. the cd i used i believe was a slipstreamed copy of xp with sp3 so i figured that's why it just installed it. i tried using the only other xp cd i have but i think that one's a slipstreamed copy too... so now i have 3 windows xp's installed on my C drive. two are the home edition (one of those being the one i actually use) and one is xp pro. I thought that it was possible the boot information i needed was now on my xp drive so i tried loading up the home edition that was mine (at startup i get a boot menu of 3 different xp's to choose from) but it still gave me the hal.dll error. i decided to give up my attempts for today and put the partition manager cd back in and changed my xp drive back to logical so now i'm on my regular xp again. haha, on the drive there's WINDOWS, WINDOWS.0 and WINDOWS.1.

it looks like using the repair feature on the xp cd isn't an option, so can someone walk me through what files i need to transfer over from the win7 drive to the xp drive to finally fix this issue? and how can i delete the other 2 copies of xp?

also, it feels like the windows xp i use is dependent on the windows 7 on the other drive. as if it was made to go through that drive to start. this is how it feels to me. i don't have the technical knowledge i need to solve this issue so i go on feel to try to figure things out and i feel like even if i do end up copying the boot information over, i might need to edit it or something.

anyways, sorry for taking so long to do this and thanks in advance to anyone that tries to help me at this point.
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Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
If you look back at post #5, you'll see the problem.
It's not enough to make XP primary, it also needs the XP boot files NTLDR,, and boot.ini to be on there and the PBR to look for NTLDR not bootmgr.
The "repair install" will do those for you.
Look at this tutorial for the section on the repair install.
Post a screenshot of how Disk Management is looking now (instructions in the sticky)
here's my disk management:

here's my easybcd settings information:

There is one entry in the Windows Vista bootloader.

Default: Windows XP
Timeout: 5 seconds.
Boot Drive: F:\

Entry #1
Name: Windows XP
BCD ID: {default}
Drive: F:\
Bootloader Path: \NTLDR

i copied over NTLDR,, and boot.ini from my windows 7 drive (F) to my windows xp drive (C) but i don't know how to make the pbr use NTLDR instead of bootmgr.

i tried to do a repair install but when i booted from the xp cd it asked me what partition i wanted to install on and just installed it from there. i tried again with another xp cd in case this was a cd issue and got the same problem. so now i have 3 windows xp's installed on my c drive. could this be because my C drive (xp drive) is a logical drive? i was using that tutorial while trying to do the repair install both times.


Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
You can't make a logical drive bootable. The repair install can only put the boot files on a primary partition.
Even if you copy them, it won't be bootable till it's "active" and only primaries can be active.
using the bootable partition wizard cd, i can make it primary and active. the problem i have now is that both the xp cds i have take me straight to the partition manager ---> installer instead of giving me the first options.

i never get this screen or this screen:

it goes straight to this screen:

if you can help me, can you please tell me step by step exactly what i need to do to fix this problem? if you can't, then please say so.


Super Moderator
Staff member
If you've made the partition primary and can still get into an OS use EasyBCD > BCD Install/Repair > Change Boot Drive to move everything over.
I have been trying to dual boot win 7 and XP on a brand new machine for a client that I have for the last 20 hours. I was using the old stable build of easyBCD 1.7.2 and had no luck (unless you count bad luck as luck). I had to install xp on a separate hdd with my win 7 unplugged. than plug it back in, run gParted to change boot flags from one drive to the other. boot with my win 7 recovery disk for my new ASUS and reinstall. than run the easyBCD 2.0 beta. I couldn't get it to run on the same hdd with different partitions. Thx to all of you at NeoSmart that had the 2.0 beta available. couldn't find any other trusty site to download from.


Mostly Harmless
Staff member
Actually, NeoSmart is the site that makes EasyBCD itself, and we're the only people that have EasyBCD 2.0 available for download because it's still in a limited beta at the moment.
anyways, i'm strongly considering just reformatting now but thanks to all of you guys for the support, and easybcd is my favorite program for dual booting so keep up the good work.