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ElAguila

Change boot info without reinstallation

5 posts in this topic

I have a friend that had a pc with Vista installed on a 320gb drive. He added a 2TB drive to his system. Then he upgraded to Windows 7. When he did the upgrade it wrote the boot info to the 320gb drive(now his D drive) instead of the 1tb drive(now his C drive) but Windows installed to the 1tb drive.. He wants to remove the 320gb drive but when he unplugs it it the system won't boot. It says it can't find the boot drive. Is there a simple way to get it to boot from the drive where the windows 7 installation is without having to install windows again?

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I did this, but now I can't find the exact page which explained it step by step. This looks close enough. It was something with BCDEDIT, for sure.

GL

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... when he unplugs it it the system won't boot. It says it can't find the boot drive...

Hello!

He may try EasyBCD to create a new boot path alongside the existing one, selecting it afterwards at the boot list.

HTH

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Yes and no.

The issue is not so slightly different from the ones that the suggested remedies may "fix" because of the two disks.

The normal boot sequence is this one:

  1. First disk (in BIOS)
  2. MBR on first disk
  3. PBR of active partition on first disk
  4. BOOTMGR on active partition on first disk
  5. /boot/BCD on active partition on first disk
  6. WINLOAD.EXE (that can be on *any* disk/partition set in /boot/BCD)
  7. rest of Windows (Vista :ph34r: or 7) on same *any* disk/partition as above

So, a number of requisites on the "2 Tb disk" need to be fulfilled to have it work "independently", i.e., on the "2Tb disk"

  1. the MBR code must be present and suitable to chainload active partition
  2. there must be at least one active primary partition on it
  3. the PBR CODE on that partition should invoke BOOTMGR
  4. BOOTMGR must be present in the root of the active primary partition
  5. a /boot/BCD (or more generally a whole copy of the /boot/ folder must be present in the root of the active primary partition on the "2Tb disk"
  6. the /boot/BCD must have a suitable entry to boot the Winload.exe and "rest of windows"

The easiest (IMHO) way to recreate this situation is to disconnect the "320gb" disk, boot from a Windows 7 install disc and "startup repair" the install:

http://pcsupport.about.com/od/toolsofthetrade/ss/windows-7-startup-repair.htm

To do so, only the pre-requisite of a primary partition existing should be needed, and the "startup repair" should take care of all the other points.

jaclaz

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I rectify my previous post:

EasyBCD only allows booting different drives at the same HDD, I'm afraid.

Sorry.

Thanks, jaclaz!

Edited by cannie
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