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Dual boot from 2 separate HDD's


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#1 Dave Clark

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Posted 13 July 2013 - 08:11 AM

Hi,
I've got windows 7 set up on a 1tb HDD which has 3 partitions and XP on another,which also has 3 partitions the reason being that I am in the process of migrating from XP to 7 but am doing it bit by bit to see which of my existing programs run on Windows 7 and wanted both HDDs configured the same. I would like to have the option on startup to select either system because at the moment I have to physically swop the SATA lead from 1 disk to the other and eventually I can see me damaging the connections.
I read up via google and loaded EasyBCD but when I ran it from the XP system I got the message "Boot configuration data store could no be opened. The system cannot find the file specified.
Would you like to manually load a BCD registry for Easy BCD to Manage? Please note that Easy BCD requires the Windows 7 bootloader and will not work in an XP only environment.

Anyone managed to do what I'm attempting ????


Edited by hamluis, 06 August 2017 - 05:13 PM.
Moved from Tips/Tricks to Disk Management - Hamluis.


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#2 JHMcG

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Posted 13 July 2013 - 09:19 AM

If you have them setup on two separate drives, what you can do is go into the bios, and set the HDD Boot priority to whichever drive you want to boot from.

 

Catch is XP does not support SATA drives and you have to set another setting in the bios as : (SATA Native Mode - Enabled & SATA ACHI Mode - Disabled) in order to boot from the XP SATA drive, while Windows 7 will require the SATA setting to be : (SATA ACHI Mode - Enabled & SATA Native Mode - Disabled).



#3 Dave Clark

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Posted 13 July 2013 - 09:54 AM

Hi JH,

XP does support sata as I've used them for years. When I disconnect/reconnect the different drives they boot up no problem to their relative system ie Windows 7 or XP. There has got to be a way to do what I'm after.

Dave

#4 JHMcG

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Posted 13 July 2013 - 10:09 AM

Then hookup BOTH drives, and go into the bios to set which one you want to boot from. It will then boot from that drive every time you boot, until you go into the bios and set the other drive as being the boot drive. I have my machine setup that way. "C" drive is a boot drive, and so is "D" drive, though they are both XP boots.

 

See : http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/493633/how-to-make-a-computer-super-reliable/


Edited by JHMcG, 13 July 2013 - 10:16 AM.


#5 opapazis

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Posted 21 September 2013 - 07:59 PM

I just did this successfully. The main point is that the Boot Drive has to be whatever drive XP is on, and NOT W7's Drive. XP can only boot if its OS is on the main boot drive; W7 does not have this restriction. EasyBCD has a function that can do this, but you must use EasyBCD in W7/Vista to do this, since XP accordingly, for the obvious reasons aforementioned, does *not* allow EasyBCD (or anything else!) to relocate its boot menu.

 

1. Get into EasyBCD 2.2 from inside W7 and hit the "BCD Backup Repair" tab/button.

 

2. Under "BCD Management Options", select the third entry: "Change Boot Drive", then hit the "Perform Action" button. In the pop-up that opens, select the drive XP is on. *That's* gonna be your new boot drive.

 

3. After you execute this, a very helpful window pops up admonishing you to make certain that the boot drive selected must be first among all other hard drives in the booting sequence. To arrange this, first verify your boot settings in EasyBCD by clicking the topmost "view settings" tab.

 

4. Next close all programs, reboot, and get into your BIOS settings the usual way,  before you clear POST. In the Boot section, make the necessary adjustments to have the XP/boot drive *ahead* of the W7 drive (as well as all other HD's, naturally) in the boot sequence. Save the settings and exit the BIOS.

 

5. On automatic reboot, the Dual-Boot menu will come up again, only this time.....you *will* be able to get into either OS successfully.

 

Good luck, and let me know if any issues.


Edited by opapazis, 21 September 2013 - 08:00 PM.


#6 JHMcG

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Posted 21 September 2013 - 08:46 PM

Actually, you can put XP as the first partition on any drive in the machine, and it will BOOT if that drive that it is on is set as being the first BOOT HDD in the bios. Unfortunately doing this will change the letter designations of other BOOT partitions, unless you go to the trouble of setting up one of your BOOT partitions with a letter other than "C". That is what I did with this machine. I cloned my WINXP "C" drive onto another HDD with  "D" drive on it. Then I used the Windows registry editor to change every instance of "C:\" in the registry to "D:\" --- about 17,000 of them, but now the computer BOOTS perfectly from either "C" or "D". All I have to do to choose which drive to BOOT from is go into the bios and set whichever drive I want to BOOT from as being the "PRIMARY" drive.

 

Might add, just to be safe, I also made Norton GHOST Images of both "C" drive and "D" drive, so in the event that either gets screwed up, I can restore it from the GHOST Image, (Without having to redo 17,000 registry edits.) - Which is why I keep all the files I want to keep somewhere other than on my BOOT drives.

 

Might also add, that doing it this way will NOT give you a BOOT menu showing both BOOT drives and giving the option of booting from either. What it does do is automatically BOOT from whichever drive is set as being the PRIMARY in the bios, and it will BOOT from that drive EVERY time, until you go into the bios and set the other BOOT drive as being the PRIMARY.
 


Edited by JHMcG, 22 September 2013 - 12:40 PM.





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