Windows 7 / XP Multiboot

#1
Sorry for the post. I know this has been asked a billion times but I have tried everything to the best of my ability on this forum.

I installed Windows 7 on a seperate HDD yesterday (EDIT - I should add that XP was already installed on another HDD). I had the usual multiboot problems so I dl EasyBCD and run it - multiboot worked perfectly. I could easily switch back and forth between 7 and XP.

Last night before bed XP failed to boot. The only thing I did prior to that was installed DX11 and my video card drivers for the Win7 HDD, rebooted into Win7 and everything was fine until I tried to boot into XP.

I got the "windows failed to boot press ctrl, alt, del to reboot". I checked for the 3 files (boot.ini, ntdetect.com and ntldr) in the root of both the XP HDD and Win7 HDD. I found them on the XP drive in the follwoing folders:

ntldr = D:\WINDOWS\ServicePackFiles\i386
ntdetect.com = D:\WINDOWS\ServicePackFiles\i386
boot.ini = D:\WINDOWS\pss

I copied them and placed them in the Win7 root and made sure that EasyBCD was pointing the XP boot to that drive and it was. When I booted I got "invalid boot.ini" and "ntdetect failed".

My questions:

1) Can someone show me what a proper boot.ini looks like. This is what mine looks like:

[boot loader]
timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(0)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(0)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition" /fastdetect /NoExecute=OptIn

2) Would an XP repair correct this?

Thanks everyone
RB
 
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#2
[boot loader]
timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(0)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(0)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition" /fastdetect /NoExecute=OptIn
Hi RB. Welcome to NST.
One thing I've noticed from your post is your boot.ini partition ( ) values are definitely incorrect, because boot.ini counts partitions starting from 1, not 0. Which means that the partition 0 doesn't exist. Though you may have other problems, you could try looking in your Disk Management in Win 7, and your "Drive" menu under the Linux tab in the Add/Remove Entries section of EasyBCD, and obtain the correct partition values to enter into your boot.ini that way, making sure to change it in both lines, not just one.

GL and let me know if this fixes the problem.

-Coolname007
 
#3
Is my disk management normal?



F: is strictly a backup drive - there are only backed up files on it (photos etc) nothing else.
C: is the Windows 7 drive
D: is the XP drive
G: is a partition that I did not create - it showed up as 9MB of unallocated space after I installed Windows 7.

Thanks again
RB

Addendum:

I think this is simply that I don't have my boot.ini, ntdetect.com and ntldr files anymore for some reason. Nothing in my XP root or in my Win7.

Thanks for the help
RB
 
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#4
I think this is simply that I don't have my boot.ini, ntdetect.com and ntldr files anymore for some reason. Nothing in my XP root or in my Win7.
Have you checked on your F: partition for the XP boot files? Since it is the "system" partition, that is where they need to be...:wink: Remember...you may have to unhide them first in Folder Options (under the View tab) in the Control Panel, making sure to unhide both the system files, and the normal hidden files, before you will see them.

-Coolname007
 
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#5
Yeah nothing there. I have also changed to "view hidden folders" but still no luck.

I am burning my backup drive as I type this and I am going to gas my drives and start over :smile:

Thanks for the help

RB
 
#7
You also haft to uncheck hide protected operating system files.
Now that opened up a whole new can of worms. Wish I would have saw that earlier. I have system files and crap on every drive - including my backup drive that I didn't want used for anything but backups :scared:

I will try a couple of things now and see what happens.

Thanks.
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#8
Windows has the annoying habit of having system restore turned on for every HDD it detects. That will put hidden files on every drive. Go into control panel / system / system protection on every windows system and turn off (untick) system restore for every drive except the one containing the running OS, and any other partition which contains 3rd party apps installed on that OS (they might need to be uninstalled by system restore). That will get rid of a lot of invisible junk, and speed up your system too.
 
#9
Thanks for all the help guys. I got it working.

I unhooked my backup drive (only my backup drive) with the intent of reformatting my XP and Win7 drives to do a complete reinstall. I booted up just to make sure I unhooked the correct drive and my system immediately booted into XP with no problems. Everything in that install is intact.

Since XP decided to work now I reformatted both by backup and Win7 drives instead. Unhooked my backup drive and reinstalled Win7. I reboot and get the multiboot options screen.

I have no idea what was going on but something on my backup drive was causing problems which is why I unhooked it to make sure no system files got installed there.

Thanks again for all your help. This thread can be locked.
RB
 
#10
Thanks for all the help guys. I got it working.

I unhooked my backup drive (only my backup drive) with the intent of reformatting my XP and Win7 drives to do a complete reinstall. I booted up just to make sure I unhooked the correct drive and my system immediately booted into XP with no problems. Everything in that install is intact.

Since XP decided to work now I reformatted both by backup and Win7 drives instead. Unhooked my backup drive and reinstalled Win7. I reboot and get the multiboot options screen.

I have no idea what was going on but something on my backup drive was causing problems which is why I unhooked it to make sure no system files got installed there.

Thanks again for all your help. This thread can be locked.
RB
Glad you got it working. :smile:
I believe the reason unhooking the backup drive, and reinstalling Win 7 worked, is because the backup drive was "system", meaning basically your boot files were on that drive, but when you reinstalled Win 7, it put the boot files on your other drive, and automatically added the entry for XP at the same time.

Cheers,

-Coolname007