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#26
jaclaz

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I have had Win2k, XP, and Win7 installed, each on its own drive, using bios setup to select boot order in order to boot the desired system.

But this way, if I get it right, on each system you get as C:\ the actual disk partition or volume on the disk that you set a "boot" priority in BIOS, right?
Besides the inconvenience of accessing the BIOS to "switch" between or the other, isn't this the actual result you would like?

One of the things I am unable to fully understand is the mechanism of drive letter assignments.

Actually (simplified) it is very easy.
When a Windows NT based system finds for the FIRST time a disk (a whole hard disk drive) it writes a "signature" to it, and writes in the Registry a "conversion table" between that signature (and the partition/volume offset) and a drive letter.
The drive letters are assigned along a set of "rules", that are not relevant now in detail, suffice is to say that the First Active Primary partition (the partition the PC was booted from) gets normally first drive letter, i.e. C:\.
The FIRST time a disk is seen by any given NT system is during install.
The combined effect of the above two leads, unless some "special" setup is used, to have always first active partition as C:\ on each system.

But I want a clean and straightforward setup, with C: as the pivot regardless of which Win version I boot, and with all other volumes always having the same drive letter.

This is where I am failing to understand you, what do you mean by "pivot"? :unsure:
Can you post a practical example of how you would your setup to be?
Please also post (with as much detail as you can) how exactly is each disk partitioned.
Example:

With Win2k booted:
disk 0 (Win2K)
disk 0/Partition 0 (first partition of first disk) gets C:\
disk 0/Partition n gets ?
....
disk 1 (XP) Partition 0 (first partition of second disk) gets ?
disk 1 (XP) Partition 1 (second partition of second disk) gets ?
....
disk 2 (Windows 7) Partition 0 (first partition of third disk) gets ?
disk 2 (Windows 7) Partition 0 (first partition of third disk) gets ?
....
With XP booted:
disk 0 (Win2K)
disk 0/Partition 0 (first partition of first disk) gets C:\
disk 0/Partition n gets ?
....
disk 1 (XP) Partition 0 (first partition of second disk) gets ?
disk 1 (XP) Partition 1 (second partition of second disk) gets ?
....
disk 2 (Windows 7) Partition 0 (first partition of third disk) gets ?
disk 2 (Windows 7) Partition 0 (first partition of third disk) gets ?
....

With Windows7 booted:
disk 0 (Win2K)
disk 0/Partition 0 (first partition of first disk) gets C:\
disk 0/Partition n gets ?
....
disk 1 (XP) Partition 0 (first partition of second disk) gets ?
disk 1 (XP) Partition 1 (second partition of second disk) gets ?
....
disk 2 (Windows 7) Partition 0 (first partition of third disk) gets ?
disk 2 (Windows 7) Partition 0 (first partition of third disk) gets ?
....

My ideas:

1. disk 0, one partition for each of the three Os's. But can/will they all be C: respectively after booting?

2. disk 0, all three Os's in the same partition. I assume it would always be C: regardless of OS. But I am afraid I'll run into trouble and won't be able to get all three in there, not least because I suspect the next installation will delete the previous one. Is there a workaround solution for that problem?

3. Each system on it's own drive, with a partition for common data (text/music) on one or two of the drives. That looks like the most problematic approach.

I wish I knew how to obtain the desired result. Am tired of installation problems, want to use the computer as the toy it is supposed to be. BTW, I am 82, please don't be too critical of me.

If all else is right, I think I could edit or create the boot.ini file that I would need if the installation process could not do it.

There are quite a few possible solutions, though unfortunately they will be a little (but dont' be afraid :)) more complex thatn just a boot.ini entry.
While 2K and XP both use the same "boot mechanism" through NTLDR and BOOT:INI, Windows 7 uses a different approach through BOOTMGR and \boot\BCD.

I don't want to risk confusing (or scaring:w00t:) you with links to the details until I have fully understood your requirements, but rest assured that "simplifying" the boot choice by avoiding to enter the BIOS each time is perfectly possible.

jaclaz


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#27
Roffen

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Thanks for the replies!
'Pivot' was my way of saying that I want C: always to be the system drive regardless of version active.

But I've made an important decision: I have found XP a decent replacement for Win2k (rest in peace) and therefore need only Win XP and Win 7!

That should simplify the setup.

I have three SATA drives, two 320GB and one 250 GB.

I will start with blank drives so you are free to recommend whatever partition/assignment scheme you might find appropriate.

So it all boils down to:

Dual boot XP/7, with data (Music library and the My Documents folder) accessed using the same drive letter under both XP and Win7.

I might get there by myself but am afraid I'd have to do some experimenting before I got it running and appreciate your kind help.

No more loading of disk drivers, no more EnableBigLBA. I will have fulfilled a belated the transition to the 21st century.

Rolf

#28
jaclaz

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But I've made an important decision: I have found XP a decent replacement for Win2k (rest in peace) and therefore need only Win XP and Win 7!

That should simplify the setup.

Not really.
For the reasons explained, 2K and XP "share" a same booting method whilst Windows 7 uses a newer "different" one, so you need anyway to "combine" two "different" boot methods.
Before you were in situation:
Method 1->| Windows XP
          | Windows 2000
-------------------------------------
Method 2->| Windows 7
Now you are:
Method 1->| Windows XP
-------------------------------------
Method 2->| Windows 7


I have three SATA drives, two 320GB and one 250 GB.

I will start with blank drives so you are free to recommend whatever partition/assignment scheme you might find appropriate.


Good, but how are you normally used to/like it like?
There are mainly two "lines of thought":
  • my personal one (actually with some reasons behind) that find "safer" and "more convenient" to have a number of partitions
  • what most people use (making a single big primary partition and put "everything" on it

There are some minor (personally I would tell you that "my" approach is "far superior" ;)) with each, but ultimately it is just a matter of preferences.
What I would suggest you is to use anyway the "third" disk and a dedicated (small) partition on it to the pagefile, this should provide (in the nowadays quite rare cases where a pagefile is actually needed/used, some distinctive better speed in operation, and possibly some wider compatibility with backup programs, etc.

So it all boils down to:

Dual boot XP/7, with data (Music library and the My Documents folder) accessed using the same drive letter under both XP and Win7.

Yes, and it shouldn't be a problem at all, though we might need some help from the other good guys more familiar with the "unattended" settings to have the "Music Library" and "My Documents" system folders moved to another partition. :unsure:
For XP (and for the "My documents" folder) it is very easy to move right after install):
http://www.techsuppo...y_documents.htm
http://support.micro...kb/310147/en-us
(and I seem to remember that the procedure for the "Music Library" is the same), or one could use this:
http://windowsxp.mvp...rredirector.htm
The issues may be (as I am no at all familiar with Windows 7) if the procedure is the same (or similar) to it or if it is different (I seem to remember that the "standard" layout of "users" folders is different :ph34r:
http://www.makeuseof...r-data-windows/
http://headstrongfar...ng_My_Documents
(the difference might be relevant only if you have several accounts on each of the two OS)

I might get there by myself but am afraid I'd have to do some experimenting before I got it running and appreciate your kind help.

Yes, though nothing overly complex is not the most basic setup.

No more loading of disk drivers, no more EnableBigLBA. I will have fulfilled a belated the transition to the 21st century.

But also "having to deal" daily with a "toyish interface" (actually two of them) :angel .

Generically (and before going into the gory details of the partitioning and installing) I would suggest something like (this represents a simplified version of my "standard" setups):
  • Disk 0 (set as first disk in BIOS boot order):

    1st partition (primary, active) with Windows 7 system and bootfiles (and possibility of loading the XP NTLDR/BOOT.INI) <- Letter C:\ assigned when 7 is booted
    Extended partition containing:
    *any* number of other volumes <- with any letter assigned to it (these can be changed at will, anytime, from each OS)
    1 volume for a backup of the Data <-without a letter assigned normally
  • Disk 1 (set as second disk in BIOS boot order):
    1st partition (primary, active) with Windows XP system and bootfiles (and possibility of loading the 7 BOOTMGR/boot\BCD) <- Letter C:\ assigned when XP is booted
    Extended partition containing:
    *any* number of other volumes <- with any letter assigned to it (these can be changed at will, anytime, from each OS)
    1 volume for a backup of the Data <-without a letter assigned normally
  • Disk 2 (set as third disk in BIOS boot order)
    1st partition (primary, active), very small with yet another copy of both Windows XP and Windows 7 boot files <- no letter assigned normally but I ould personally make it a little bigger and have on it an even minimal "emergency" install of XP
    2nd partition (primary) small partition dedicated to the pagefile (for both the systems) <- with letter (say) S:\ (as "Swap file") assigned
    Extended partition containing:
    the DATA volume <- Letter D:\ assigned when booted in EITHER of the OS
    *any* number of other volumes <- with any letter assigned to it (these can be changed at will, anytime, from each OS)
This is what I see as the most "safe" approach, as even if first hard disk completely fails to boot, you can actually even physically remove it and second disk will boot XP normally, and even if this would fail to boot you have still the third disk with the "emergency" install. If the third disk (containing the actual DATA) fails, you have TWO copies of them one on first and one on second disk, or if you prefer each of the disk can (independendtly) boot AND contains the "DATA".

But you must tell me if you find this overly complex or not suited to your view, habits, etc. :).


jaclaz

#29
Roffen

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I like the structured configuration you suggest.

My interpretation:

Drive 0 (250GB)
1. 30GB Basic (Win7 System, C:)
2. 100GB EXT Data
3. 100GB EXT (Backup)

Drive 1 (320GB)
1. 30GB Basic (XP System, C:)
2. 150GB EXT Data
3. 150GB EXT (Backup)

Disk 2 partitions (320GB)
1. 10GB Basic, System
2. ?? GB Primary (Pagefile, S:)
3. EXT (Common Data, D:)
(4. EXT ...)


Maybe system volumes don’t need to be as large as 30GB?

I am in the habit of disconnecting all drives except the one I am installing a system on.

Should I have them all connected all the time from first installing Win7 on the first, XP on the second, and the other things on the third drive?

I need some info about what it means, and how to make the “possibility of loading the XP NTLDR\BOOT.INI” on the first drive.

Same goes for “possibility of loading the 7 BOOTMGR\boot\BCD” on the second drive.

With respect to drive 3, I am afraid I need some info about how to get “yet another copy of both XP and Win7 boot files” installed on it.

I have the habit of installing programs on the second volume instead of the default of C: whenever that option is available. If you don’t think there is any merit to that, I won’t do it on this installation. Maybe the size of the C volumes ought to be different from what I suggest.

I don’t know how to set the path for the pagefile but I probably can find out.

ETA: "The FIRST time a disk is seen by any given NT system is during install.".
Where can I read more about the intricacies of drive letter assignments?

Edited by Roffen, 26 July 2012 - 01:01 AM.


#30
jaclaz

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Maybe system volumes don’t need to be as large as 30GB?

Well, there should be some "difference" between the XP and the 7 one.
I mean, official requirements for a plain XP are stated as 1.5 Gb.
Same requirements for 32 bit 7 are 16 Gb. :w00t:

I would rather use the 250 Gb disk to host XP, like:
Drive 0 (250GB)
1. 10GB Basic (XP System, C:)
2. 90GB EXT Data
3. 150GB EXT (Backup of D:)

Drive 1 (320GB)
1. 30GB Basic (Win7 System, C:)
2. 140GB EXT Data
3. 150GB EXT (Backup of D:)

Disk 2 partitions (320GB)
1. 10GB Basic, System
2. (2/4/6/8) GB Primary (Pagefile, S:) <- this depends on the RAM you have available (and by a number of other factors, mostly phylosophical ones)
3. 150GB EXT (Common Data, D:)
(4. EXT ...) <- you could use this for "Programs" that are not "forcibly" installed to C:\Programs

I see as "vital" (for the intended setup) that the partitions on the first two disks dedicated to the backup of the DATA D:\ partition on the third disk have the SAME size of the latter, if you need more size for D:\ you should reduce the size of the "other EXT" volume to allow the threee (original + 2 backups) to be the same size.

I am in the habit of disconnecting all drives except the one I am installing a system on.

This is a good habit, and you may need to use it during the installation of the new setup.

Should I have them all connected all the time from first installing Win7 on the first, XP on the second, and the other things on the third drive?

No. The general "rule of the thumb" which applies specifically to this case is to ALWAYS install Operating Systems in the order they were published.
Specifically, and this may partly answer your following question, the "new" BOOTMGR+\boot\BCD "booting mechanism" can boot BOTH the "previous" OS (the XP) AND the new one (the 7) whilst the "old" NTLDR+BOOT.INI "booting mechanism" can boot ONLY the XP and NOT the 7.
In the intended setup (though this can be changed using a third party application, such as grub4dos) the BOOTMGR+\boot\BCD will become your "primary" bootmanager and the NTLDR+BOOT.INI will be used either as secondary bootmanager or as "simple" bootloader.
You may want to check this site, where the topic is clearly discussed and includes some nice, "immediate" graphics 8or all that matters you can read "7" instead of "Vista" :ph34r: throughout the site):
http://www.multibooters.co.uk/

I need some info about what it means, and how to make the “possibility of loading the XP NTLDR\BOOT.INI” on the first drive.

Same goes for “possibility of loading the 7 BOOTMGR\boot\BCD” on the second drive.

See above.

With respect to drive 3, I am afraid I need some info about how to get “yet another copy of both XP and Win7 boot files” installed on it.

we'll get to it as soon as we have a more detailed "plan" :)

I have the habit of installing programs on the second volume instead of the default of C: whenever that option is available. If you don’t think there is any merit to that, I won’t do it on this installation. Maybe the size of the C volumes ought to be different from what I suggest.

Well, in the proposed setup you could use third disk, see my modified list at the beginning of the post.

I don’t know how to set the path for the pagefile but I probably can find out.

Sure it is easy, and anyway it is something that you can do "post-install" and "revert" any time.

ETA: "The FIRST time a disk is seen by any given NT system is during install.".
Where can I read more about the intricacies of drive letter assignments?

You can have a look to the dedicated page on the site I posted a link to:
http://www.multibooters.co.uk/mbr.html
If you want to delve a little deeper, read this:
http://www.911cd.net...showtopic=19663
and check this site:
http://thestarman.pc.../mbr/index.html (warning: this is "pretty much advanced", don't worry if you cannot undersand something at first)

jaclaz

#31
Roffen

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I shudder at the thought of what it would cost to have this kind of expert advice ready at your fingertips.

I really appreciate it!

With what I've got so far I think I am ready to get cracking. You deserve a breather. :thumbup

#32
Roffen

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I am ready for the next step, creating the boot.ini file. All I am in doubt about before I begin is just where do I put it?

With
drive 0 = XP
drive 1 = Win7
drive 2 some other stuff,

Drive 1 seems the logical choice to me, but I could be wrong.

In the meantime, I'll go outside to continue painting the parapet. A tough job for me, until 2100 yesterday for the primer.

#33
jaclaz

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There is still one litlle point that needs to be decided upon, whether to use the XP partitioning offsets/boundaries or the Windows 7 ones. :unsure:
This is normally very "transparent" to the end user but since it carries with it some possible DANGER :ph34r: and since we are still on the drawing table, it may be relevant.
All Operating systems up to XP/2003 used a "convention" stating that any partition should begin and end on a cylinder boundary.
Vista :ph34r: and later changed this "basic" and started using a scheme that aligned partition to cluster multiple.
The potential issue is that any third party tool made before the Vista :ph34r: advent may threat this "abby" values ;):
http://www.imdb.com/...es?qt=qt0504329
as an error and/or attempt to modify them.
Much worse than that :w00t: , the built-in XP Disk Management will (if certain operations are performed) make some partitions disappear (and though perfectly doable recovering them won't be a "piece of cake").
You can read about the gory details here:
http://reboot.pro/9897/
and here:
http://www.dcr.net/~...gPartitions.htm
The advantage of using the new "alignment" is to have (theoretically and much to be actually proved in everyday usage on hard disks) faster access times.
But if you use it, you must be sure to NOT EVER use the XP Disk Management tool to perform some operations AND know that when using *any* third-party tool made before (say) 2007 or 2008 these may produce errors and/or create issues.

Personally, I find that the good ol' method is anyway "good enough" and "safer" (and does not provide on hard disks any really noticeable lag or delay when compared to the new one) but obviously the "new" paradigm is good in itself, once you know the issues with older software.

Are you going to start from "wiped" disks? (not really any need to actually wipe them, in this case "wiped" means "unpartitioned" or with just the MBR wiped).

jaclaz

Edited by jaclaz, 27 July 2012 - 07:48 AM.


#34
Roffen

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I have installed both XP and 7 on separate drives according to plan. I used an old partitioning tool before installing the systems but have done no changes after installing the systems. So my two systems ought to be quite clean so far.

As soon as I have got my setup configured the way I want it - and that boils down to the ability to choose XP or 7 at startup, with XP as the default. With both systems seeing a couple of default folders common to both systems: music, and documents, I don't expect to do anything with the disk drives, but I won't have any problem restricting any access to disk management to WIn7 only.

I find the subject we are into a veritable can of worms and I'll be glad if and when I can lean back and forget all about it.

I find reading a thread like
http://windows7forum...boot-ini-3.html
quite "intimidating"

As long as I restrict my experiments to just editing the boot.ini on the Win7 drive, can anything go wrong?

No, I have not wiped the drives.

Edited by Roffen, 27 July 2012 - 09:34 AM.


#35
jaclaz

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I have installed both XP and 7 on separate drives according to plan. I used an old partitioning tool before installing the systems but have done no changes after installing the systems. So my two systems ought to be quite clean so far.

And most probably you have the "old", "safe" boundaries partitioning. :)

As soon as I have got my setup configured the way I want it - and that boils down to the ability to choose XP or 7 at startup, with XP as the default. With both systems seeing a couple of default folders common to both systems: music, and documents, I don't expect to do anything with the disk drives, but I won't have any problem restricting any access to disk management to WIn7 only.

Good, though if you are using the "Old" standard there won't be *any* problem with *any* tool.

I find the subject we are into a veritable can of worms and I'll be glad if and when I can lean back and forget all about it.

I find reading a thread like
http://windows7forum...boot-ini-3.html
quite "intimidating"

Well, in this you are perfectly right, not only it is a can of worms, it is an open one! :ph34r:

As long as I restrict my experiments to just editing the boot.ini on the Win7 drive, can anything go wrong?

Sure :) at the most you won't be able to boot an XP.

No, I have not wiped the drives.

Good, but how exactly did you install/re-install the XP and the 7?
If you left both (please read as "all three of them") drives connected and first drive in boot sequence (BIOS) is the "XP one", and you installed first XP and then Windows 7, what should have happened is the following:
The XP installs make the first disk have the active, primary partition (which is both "system" and "boot" partition when you boot the XP) with a bootsector invoking NTLDR and copy to the root of the drive NTDETECT.COM and BOOT.INI, writing to it some valid values, such as:
[boot loader]
timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Windows XP Professional" /fastdetect
Then the install of Windows 7 should have created on the same first disk a file BOOTMGR and a \boot\BCD, and it will have modified the bootsector of the partition to invoke BOOTMGR instead, and an entry to boot XP from the BOOTMGR will have been created, BUT the Windows 7 won't get C:\ when booted.
On the other hand if you installed by disabling disks as you were used to, the BOOTMGR and \boot\BCD will be on the first partition of second disk, or if you prefer you have two completely independent installs.
Is this what you have now? :unsure:

jaclaz

#36
Roffen

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I installed each of the systems with all other drives disconnected.

I find a boot.ini on XP, but not on the Win7.
Searching Microsoft, I didn't find anything about boot.ini for Win7.

This is the XP file:

[boot loader]
timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect

The way I read what your wrote, I might add this line to the XP file

multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(1)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect

and either of the systems would start with the system partition as C: which is what I want. Right?

Edited by Roffen, 28 July 2012 - 10:48 AM.


#37
jaclaz

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and either of the systems would start with the system partition as C: which is what I want. Right?

NO. :no:
Please re-read my previous posts.
The Windows 7 uses the BOOTMGR/\boot\BCD (that you have now only on the WIndows 7 disk)
The XP uses the NTLDR/BOOT.INI that you have now only on the Windows XP disk.
Your next step should be to have both disks visible, with the XP boot disk first in boot sequence, boot the XP and from it copy from "drive 1" to "drive 0" (the XP drive is now "C:\" and the Windows 7 will get another drive letter):
  • BOOTMGR <- this is a file
  • \boot\ <-this is a directory containing several files, including one named simply "BCD"

Now we need to make an "intermediate" step (to make sure we have a way out if needed :ph34r: )..
Get bootpart from here:
http://www.winimage.com/bootpart.htm
unzip in a directory like "C:\bootpart", open a command prompt, navigate to it and run just "bootpart" with no arguments.
You will get an output similar to this:
C:\BOOTPART>BOOTPART
Boot Partition 2.60 for WinNT/2K/XP (c)1995-2002 G. Vollant (info@winimage.com)
WEB : http://www.winimage.com and http://www.winimage.com/bootpart.htm
Add partition in the Windows NT/2000/XP Multi-boot loader
Run "bootpart /?" for more information

 0 : C:* type=6 (BIGDOS Fat16), size = 1044193 KB
 1 : C:  type=a (OS/2 Boot Manag.), size = 8032 KB
 2 : C:  type=5 (Extended), size = 8032 KB
 3 : C:  type=7  (HPFS/NTFS), size = 8001 KB
 4 : D:  type=6 (BIGDOS Fat16), size = 261104 KB
 5 : D:  type=5 (Extended), size = 769024 KB
 6 : D:  type=7  (HPFS/NTFS), size = 102384 KB
 7 : D:  type=5  (Extended), size = 369664 KB
 8 : D:  type=7   (HPFS/NTFS), size = 369648 KB
 9 : D:  type=83  (Linux native), size = 296944 KB

The XP disk will be the one with the asterisk, and the Windows 7 disk will probably be "D: " and the partition something like "D: type=7 (HPFS/NTFS), size = <the size you made it> KB"
Jolt down the number on first column correspondent to the volume on which 7 is installed, let's say that this number is 5.
Now run bootpart as follows:
bootpart 5 C:\Windows7.bin "Windows 7 disk"
It should do two things:
  • create a 512 byte file C:\Windows7.bin
  • add in BOOT.INI an entry like "C:\Windows7.bin="Windows 7 disk"

Now, if you reboot, you should be able to choose the Windows 7 entry and boot the Windows 7.
Please try and report.

jaclaz

#38
Roffen

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This is what it looks like on the Win7 disk:
C:\Windows\Boot\
___ PCAT\BOOTMGR
___ DVD\PCAT\
______ en-US\bootfix.bin
______ BCD
______ BOOT.sdi
______ etfsboot
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
(I use __ since indenting doesn't work)

I presume I may just copy the entire Win7 Windows\Boot folder to the XP Windows folder since as far as I can tell, there is no folder of that name present so there shouldn't be any conflict. Right?

I am tempted to put the entire project far back on the burner and see if XP perhaps may be all that I need. My brain is begging for peace - it has been running at full throttle for more than 80 years an deserves a break. We'll see.

Edited by Roffen, 29 July 2012 - 03:55 AM.


#39
jaclaz

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This is what it looks like on the Win7 disk:
C:\Windows\Boot\
___ PCAT\BOOTMGR
___ DVD\PCAT\
______ en-US\bootfix.bin
______ BCD
______ BOOT.sdi
______ etfsboot
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
(I use __ since indenting doesn't work)

I presume I may just copy the entire Win7 Windows\Boot folder to the XP Windows folder since as far as I can tell, there is no folder of that name present so there shouldn't be any conflict. Right?

I am tempted to put the entire project far back on the burner and see if XP perhaps may be all that I need. My brain is begging for peace - it has been running at full throttle for more than 80 years an deserves a break. We'll see.

Well :), it is entirely up to you, but I would guess that your brain has got to 80 + years in perfect working order EXACTLY BECAUSE you have used it intensively before :thumbup .
Come on, giving up is NEVER an option! :w00t:

You can do it! Go, Roffen, Go!
*\O/*
  |
 / \

Posted Image

But there is something that does not sound "right".
You should have in ROOT (i.e. C:\) :
C:\BOOTMGR <- this is a file, possibly around 380 Kb in size
C:\boot\ <- this is a folder, containing a file called BCD and other directories/files (local languages)
Compare with this:
Posted Image
They might be "hidden" files, and you have to set explorer to show them.

jaclaz

Edited by jaclaz, 29 July 2012 - 05:00 AM.


#40
Roffen

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Takes some time to learn screen hunter, but maybe the attached file is ok. Folder option set to show hidden files, but they are not there. The disk seems to have had an OS before installation, maybe I should try again, full formatting the partition first?

Attached Files



#41
jaclaz

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Takes some time to learn screen hunter, but maybe the attached file is ok. Folder option set to show hidden files, but they are not there. The disk seems to have had an OS before installation, maybe I should try again, full formatting the partition first?

NO.
You must set settings so that you see both hidden and system files.
Posted Image
You want to have "Hide protected operating system files (Recommended)" UNchecked.

You should also have normally in root (additionally):
  • pagefile.sys (the page file)
  • $Recycle.bin (the Recycling Bin)
  • System Volume Information (another system/hidden folder)
and probably quite a few other files that do not show in your screenshot.

OR try doing another thing.
Open a command prompt and in it issue:
CD /D C:\
[ENTER]
DIR /AS
[ENTER]
and
DIR /AH
[ENTER]
(the above list System files and Hidden ones, respectively)

jaclaz

Edited by jaclaz, 29 July 2012 - 10:10 AM.


#42
Roffen

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You want to have "Hide protected operating system files (Recommended)" UNchecked.

Oops, I wasn't aware of that one. Will check it out.

ETA: All right, they were there! Will proceed according to schedule. :whistle:

Edited by Roffen, 29 July 2012 - 10:21 AM.


#43
Roffen

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It looks like this:

[boot loader]
timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
C:\Windows7.bin="Windows 7 disk"

XP: OK
Win7: Loops back to the menu instead of booting Win7

Am tempted to change 2nd rdisk to (1).

Didn't work.

Got a 3rd line, default entry in the menu but still no Win 7. Messages flashing during the loop seems to be info only, not error msgs.

Edited by Roffen, 29 July 2012 - 12:41 PM.


#44
jaclaz

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It looks like this:

[boot loader]
timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
C:\Windows7.bin="Windows 7 disk"

XP: OK
Win7: Loops back to the menu instead of booting Win7

Are you positive that you used bootpart correctly?
Can you post the output of the boopart command (run without parameters)?
It's strange, it should have worked :unsure:

Am tempted to change 2nd rdisk to (1).

Didn't work.

Sure it did not, NTLDR cannot boot a Windows Vista :ph34r: or 7.

Got a 3rd line, default entry in the menu but still no Win 7. Messages flashing during the loop seems to be info only, not error msgs.

Well, this of course makes no difference.

Another way :).

Download the attachment.
decompress the files grldr and menu.lst in root of first disk.first partition (the XP volume)
add to the BOOT.INI the line:
C:\grldr="grub4dos"
reboot and choose that entry.
At the grub4dos menu try all the entries.
Whilst first one may fail, the other two should both work :unsure:

jaclaz

Attached Files



#45
Roffen

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Will try grub4dos tomorrow, but here is the bootpart:

Attached Files



#46
Roffen

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All right, grab4dos works! Selecting the first entry, Win7 was booted.
Second entry returned error chainmanager /Bootmgr not found

I try to simplify the setup:

I removed the Win7 entry from boot.ini so I have only the options XP or grub4dos. (g4d)
No changes to g4d.

Selecting g4d, after a flash of a 'file system' msg, Windows boot mgr loads with options Win7 or g4d - and from there I get Win7.

A little clumsy.

Edited by Roffen, 30 July 2012 - 02:28 AM.


#47
jaclaz

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All right, grab4dos works! Selecting the first entry, Win7 was booted.

Good :)

Second entry returned error chainmanager /Bootmgr not found

This is strange.
Unless the disks are somehow listed in BIOS as 0/2/1.
I mean the menu.lst I made for you is:

# This is a sample menu.lst file modified for a test with Roffen <- anything beginning with "#" is a comment


color blue/green yellow/red white/magenta white/magenta <- some minimal colour choices
timeout 30 <- this is the time out to allow user to choose

title Load Windows 7 from disk 0 part 0 <- this chainloads the BOOTMGR that you copied to first disk
root (hd0,0)
chainloader /BOOTMGR

title Load Windows 7 from disk 1 part 0 <- this chainloads the BOOTMGR on second disk
root (hd1,0)
chainloader /BOOTMGR

title Load Windows 7 from disk 1 part 0 after exchanging disks <- this chainloads the BOOTMGR on second disk after having exchnaged disks
map (hd0) (hd1)
map (hd1) (hd0)
map --hook
root (hd0,0)
chainloader /BOOTMGR

title commandline <- get to grub4dos command line, unneeded, if you press "c" you get the same
commandline

title reboot <- forces a (soft) reboot
reboot

title halt <- halts the system
halt


Can you try the following? :unsure:
Choose "commandline" (or press "c")
Then issue the commands:
root (hd0,0)
[ENTER]
chainloader /bootm
[TAB]
It should autocomplete to "chainloader /bootmgr".
Try again with the other two disks first partition, i.e. repeat the sequence changing just the number of the disk
root (hd1,0)
and
root (hd2,0)



Is it possible to simplify the setup?
I presume I may remove the Win7 entry from boot ini so that I have only the two options, XP or grub4dos.

Yes.

Then grldr would simply load Win7 without requiring further user input.
Guess that setup is one of the things I might be able to fix myself.

Will save current files and make new ones.

Yes, but you will need to edit the menu.lst file to remove all entries but the one you found working.

To clarify (and for the record):

Right now what you are doing (to boot Windows XP) is the "normal" way for XP, i.e.:
NTLDR->BOOT.INI->Windows XP
what you are doing (to boot Windows 7) is:
NTLDR->BOOT.INI->grub4dos->menu.lst->BOOTMGR->\boot\BCD->Windows 7

This is NOT what we initially hypothized that was:
For Windows 7:
BOOTMGR->\boot\BCD->Windows 7
For XP:
BOOTMGR->\boot\BCD->NTLDR->BOOT.INI->Windows XP

If you prefer, what was planned was to have BOOTMGR as primary bootmanager (and direct bootloader for Windows 7) and NTLDR as bootloader for XP, what you are having now is instead having NTLDR as primary bootmanager (and direct bootloader for XP), grub4dos as secondary bootmanager and BOOTMGR as bootloader (for Windows 7).

Of course, since it is working, you can "stay as you are" :).

jaclaz

#48
Roffen

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Yes indeed, I had swapped SATA2 and SATA 3. Now they are in the correct order.

Think I will restore boot.ini and see what happens first.

ETA: :thumbup

My only defense is that I've become accustomed to changing BIOS boot order without consideration for logical drive sequence.

It is great to see it working as you said it ought to!

I'll archive the grub4dos stuff just in case.

I have in mind installing (I really think I already have) Win2k on the 3rd drive and add that to the boot menu as well. Ought to be quite straightforward, or?

Edited by Roffen, 30 July 2012 - 07:25 AM.


#49
jaclaz

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Yes indeed, I had swapped SATA2 and SATA 3. Now they are in the correct order.

My only defense is that I've become accustomed to changing BIOS boot order without consideration for logical drive sequence.

NO actual need for defense at all, as you evidently very well know :thumbup :

Life is "trying things to see if they work".

:yes:

It is great to see it working as you said it ought to!

Good :) if the second or third entries work allright for you, you can delete the BOOTMGR and \boot\BCD from the Windows XP disk, those files are only used by the first entry.

I have in mind installing (I really think I already have) Win2k on the 3rd drive and add that to the boot menu as well. Ought to be quite straightforward, or?

Sure, that will be in the BOOT.INI on first disk:

multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(2)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Windows 2000" /fastdetect

or:

multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(2)partition(1)\WINNT="Windows 2000" /fastdetect

the default for 2K is "WINNT", but you nay have changed the name of the install directory :unsure:

BUT, it could also be in grub4dos menu.lst EITHER of ;):
title Windows 2000 on third disk first partiton
map (hd0) (hd2)
map (hd2) (hd0)
map --hook
root (hd0,0)
chainloader +1

title Windows 2000 on third disk first partiton
map (hd0) (hd2)
map (hd2) (hd0)
map --hook
root (hd0,0)
chainloader /ntldr

In practice what this kind of grub4dos commands do is what you used to do manually by accessing the BIOS, i.e. change the BIOS hard disk order by re-mapping disks.

jaclaz

#50
Roffen

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Hi,

It seems I've got things working as intended now! Both XP and Win 7 share a 3rd disk common volume, with consistent drive letters when active.

I will have to take it easy for a while now to regain some strength, menial tasks on top of computer stuff has taken its toll.

So for now I'll just say thank you a lot for your patience and excellent assistance! I'd never have been able to sort it out on my own.

I suspect there are many subjects beside computer technology we might enjoy discussing. I am an autodidact so there are holes in most of my knowledge but I must have read more than a thousand books, all in English since I decided I'd have to learn that language at 16. Bradbury just one of my favourite writers, quite unique and surely one of the best!

So once again, tnx a lot jaclaz,

hpecuagn 73 de LA9JG as an old brasspounder (http://www.jacksjoin...rasspounder.htm) might sign off on the air - but have been QRT for a long time now.

Rolf




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