Worried about "breaking" a working EasyBCD dual boot system

LemZ

New Member
#1
I have a working EasyBCD dual boot XP media center SP3 (32bit) / Vista (32bit) set-up and I want to complicate things. Presently 3 drives: one with XP, one with Vista & one for data. I can access all 3 drives from XP or Vista.

I need to install Windows7 (64bit) over the Vista system drive (OEM upgrade version, I must do a new install, format, etc. over Vista). Problem A: I have EasyBCD 1.7.2 installed on both the XP and the Vista drives. Should I install version 2.1.2 before installing Win7 or after? Do we install EasyBCD over the old version or must we uninstall? Also from what I can gather, EasyBCD does not need to be installed on the XP drive. Correct?
To further complicate things Problem B: I found out about EasyBCD after I had started to try to make my system dual boot by moving SATA drives & cables around, installing Vista, etc. (SATA drive boot order cannot be set in bios). I do not remember how I actually got it to work a year or two ago. I am worried that I will loose access to one or more drives as I need to keep on working with XP while I install & test applications on the Win7 drive before completely switching over.
Am I overcomplicating things here? I would appreciate any insight. Thank you. LemZ

Here is more info:
XP drive on SATA 0, Vista on SATA 3 (optical drives on SATA 1 & 4).

From within XP, Administrative Tools, Disk Management: Disk0: 698GB (this is XP drive) Basic, Online, C (C:smile: NTFS, Healthy, System // Disk1: 465GB (Vista drive) Basic, Online, C (G:smile: NTFS, Healthy, Active // Disk2: Basic, Online, F (F:smile: NTFS, Healthy.
And from EasyBCD in XP:
There are a total of 2 entries listed in the Vista Bootloader.
Bootloader Timeout: 20 seconds.
Default OS: Windows Vista
Entry #1
Name: Windows Vista
BCD ID: {default}
Drive: G:\
Bootloader Path: \Windows\system32\winload.exe
Windows Directory: \Windows
Entry #2
Name: WINDOWS XP
BCD ID: {ntldr}
Drive: C:\
Bootloader Path: \ntldr

From within Vista: Disk0: 698GB Basic, Online, C (G:smile: NTFS, Healthy, System, Active, Primary Partition // Disk1: 465GB Basic, Online, C (C:smile: NTFS, Healthy, Boot, PageFile, Active, Crash, Dump, Primary Partition // Disk2: Basic, Online, F (F:smile: NTFS, Healthy.
And from EasyBCD in Vista:
There are a total of 2 entries listed in the Vista Bootloader.
Bootloader Timeout: 20 seconds.
Default OS: Windows Vista
Entry #1
Name: Windows Vista
BCD ID: {current}
Drive: C:\
Bootloader Path: \Windows\system32\winload.exe
Windows Directory: \Windows
Entry #2
Name: WINDOWS XP
BCD ID: {ntldr}
Drive: G:\
[FONT=&amp]Bootloader Path: \ntldr [/FONT]
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#2
XP is "system" i.e. that's where all the boot files for Vista and XP reside.
When you install W7 over Vista, XP will be detected as "system" and W7 will replace the Vista boot files on XP with its own and automatically dual-boot XP.
It doesn't matter what level of EasyBCD is on the system or where it is. EasyBCD is completely passive until you execute it for a specific purpose. If you intend to use it, make sure you're using the latest level. You can install a new version at any time. You do not need to uninstall earlier versions, that will all be taken care of automatically.
You must have been lucky not to have needed system restore at any time in the last couple of years. XP should not be allowed to "see" any newer version of Windows. It will corrupt the restore points and backups of Vista/7/8.
You should make sure that you run this XP hack to prevent corruption.
System Restore Points - Stop XP Dual Boot Delete - Vista Forums
 

LemZ

New Member
#3
Less worried now

Terry,
Thank you for the prompt reply ... and the good news. What a relief !
When I say that XP can see the Vista drive & vice-versa , I mean that from a file manager I can browse the Vista drive but not all directories like My Documents & others (access denied). I was very careful to not modify any of the files. I am just glad that both XP & Vista have access to my "neutral" (F:smile: data drive (also backed-up on an external drive). Once I am satisfied with testing Win7 (64) bit & programs, I should be able to copy the data files from the data drive to the Win7 drive, leaving the files on the data drive in their original state in case ... Eventually I plan to phase out XP.
As per your suggestion, I will make sure to run the XP hack to prevent corruption of the system restore points. I was lucky to not need to do a restore but then I had pretty much stopped tinkering with XP itself (10+ years old operating system already). Will be doing the Win7 install in the next few day & will report on how it went.
Again Terry, thank you ever so much ... I actually stopped panicking ! (Douglas Adams Fan?)
LemZ