This page deals with setting up a dual-boot between an existing XP installation and a new installation of Windows Vista/7/8 or with Windows XP and a newer OS already on separate disks or partitions.

By default, installing Windows Vista, Windows 7, or Windows 8 after Windows XP will result in an automatic dual-boot, as the newer versions of Windows will automatically detect and configure the dual-boot.

However, you may want to use EasyBCD to perform one or more of these post-install configurations:

  • Rename the Windows XP entry from “Legacy Windows Entries” to “Windows XP” (or whatever name suits your desire),
  • Change the timeout from the default of 30 seconds to a more reasonable 5 to 10 seconds.

If you have more than one Windows XP copy installed on different partitions prior to attempting a dual-boot with Windows Vista/7/8, you’ll find that the boot menu selection will take part in two stages – you’ll first be prompted to select between the newer Windows install or “Legacy Versions of Microsoft Windows”, and upon selecting the latter you’ll be presented with a second menu asking you which copy of Windows XP you’d like to boot into. EasyBCD alone can merge these into a single menu.