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BCDEdit issues for dual boot (clone upgrade then removal of original disk)

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#1 drwmbt


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Posted 17 October 2013 - 10:05 AM

Hi guys,


I'm having some issues here, after cloning SSD-a to another larger SSD-b (extending the partition table to take advantage of the extra space), I go to add it to boot list in BCDEDIT (even though the ssd-b is set to 1st boot in bios windows doesnt seem to care) and a new entry is created and confirmed (with drive letter of new partition given) it takes several reboots and re-checks in bcdedit before it finally appears in windows boot menu, is chosen, and then, boots from SSD-A ANYWAYS...


Then, I figure ok, well maybe thats just a fault of some sort, go back into BCDEdit feeling satsified that both of my drives are adequately cloned and still in good health, and delete ssd-a from BCDEdit with the /f and /cleanup switches (completes successfully) and its STILL showing up in the boot list, and if ssd-b is chosen, ssd-a is still booted and is the primary partition


(cannot format the drive in windows as its "the partition windows is running from" which makes no sense as SSD-b was chosen)


Can anyone shed any light on this? because this is really stupifying.



Edited to add: just opened up the recovery envrionment and its only showing the ssd-b in the boot list, so BCDEdit did in fact remove the entry but its STILL showing in the boot list... upon further investigation into BCDedit once more ssd-a re-appeared as {bootmgr} shedding its original 30+ key unique id {xxxx-xxxx-xxx.....} was deleted and restarted, reappeared AGAIN at boot and will likely give the same results if ssd-b is chosen (ssd-a is in fact booted) 


Im going to be deleting this partition from linux shortly if nothing works out...

Edited by drwmbt, 17 October 2013 - 10:11 AM.

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#2 hamluis



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Posted 17 October 2013 - 03:01 PM

Well...just about any software that I've used to clone a drive onto/from...including SSDs...probably makes the clone in DOS mode when both drives are inactive...and, as part of the cloning process, suggest shutting the system downl after the process.  This is so that the two individual drives can be checked out for proper booting individually.


If that works...then it's a simple matter to dual-boot them, using EasyBCD, if a dual-boot is what you want.


If it doesn't work that each can boot individually...that problem should be addressed when encountered before proceeding to attempt the dual-boot.


I've never even thought once of using BCDEdit to do anything since I've never seen anything that noted it as "user-friendly".  I need "user-friendly" to do anything on a PC :).


I've cloned SSD to SSD with no problems, using Macrium Reflect and Easeus Partition Master software.



#3 boyans


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Posted 18 October 2013 - 09:12 AM

Boot process for BIOS/MBR disks is:

1. MBR of first disk is loaded and executed.

2. PBR of active partition is loaded and executed.

3. bootmgr on active partition(first disk) is loaded and executed

4. bootmgr reads BCD from /boot folder on active partition(first disk).


A. You have to check and update boot records(and MBR) using bootsect utility.

B. See if there is the proper partition marked as active on ssd-a and ssd-b. (Disk Manager or diskpart.exe)


To examine the "system" BCD or another BCD residing on any drive/disk you can use

Visual BCD Editor - shows complete BCD contents in a structured way.


With VBCD editor you can edit every element, path, loader and easily create new loaders for other drives/disks.



On UEFI/GPT disks the boot sequence changes to:

1. bootx64.efi (\EFI\BOOT\BOOTX64.EFI) from EFI System Partition is loaded and executed

2. if bootx64.efi is equal to bootmgr.efi (Windows efi boot manager) it reads the BCD from

\EFI\Microsoft\Boot folder.


I use PartitionGuru Pro to examine contents of hidden system partitions or alternatively you can temporarely map a hidden system partition using the "mountvol" command and list contents using dir command.


#4 drwmbt

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Posted 31 October 2013 - 09:51 AM

Thank you for the help, it seems that what you have mentioned is precisely the reason causing this issue, since disc a is being cloned (upgraded then formatted as a 2ndary drive) it's MBR/PBR needs to be removed completely.


I'll start here thanks for the help.



so essentially after clonezilla was done i just popped into the command line and deleted the first 512 bytes of clone A's disk effectively removing that MBR and there were no further problems after


even though clone B is set as 1st priority in boot device list (its in the WWAN port of this laptop) the MBR was being read from the sata 0 clone A ssd then trying to be employed (however an O/S did not exist on that drive) then, windows tried to fix the issue and it bungled it up even further, simply removing the MBR from clone A resolved the issue entirely.

Edited by drwmbt, 31 October 2013 - 01:43 PM.

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