Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

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Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Mon Feb 08, 2010 6:15 pm

Hello everyone,

I'm currently having some issue with dual booting my Windows XP and Windows 7 installations (both of which are on separate hard drives). Using EasyBCD I was able to detect the Windows XP installation and I am currently getting a dual boot selection screen upon booting. However, when I try to load the XP install I keep getting an "/ntldr missing error". This can't be because I installed both ntldr and ntdetect.com myself on the XP drive using the Windows Recovery mode on the XP install disk. I even used /fixboot, /fixmbr and bootcfg /rebuild respectively during my troubleshooting process and everything seems to work fine as far as running those tools. Yet, I still can't boot into the XP drive. Also, if I try to boot manually into the drive by selecting the it from a pre-boot list, I get: "NTLDR is missing" as well. I've placed ntldr in different locatoins on the drive, like in my windows folder and on the root directory of the drive at different times (I do not have two ntldr files in both locations) and tried booting, but I'm still getting the same results. From Windows 7, my Windows XP drive is detected and I am able to browse its contents with no issue...just can't boot into it. Any ideas as to a potential solution here? Thank you all in advance!

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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Tue Feb 09, 2010 4:48 am

Have you tried putting the XP boot files (ntdetect etc) on the Win7 drive instead?

I assume you're using the Win7 boot manager (I'm not sure what EasyBCD is btw).
mikeymike
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Tue Feb 09, 2010 9:01 am

ntdlr missing usually requires a repair of windows. But i've never encountered it in a dual boot situation.

You did install XP before Win7 didn't you?
"...and she says, 'That's not my expansion slot.' So my friend says, 'That's not my gold plated 22-pin connector!! Ah-hahahaHA!"
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Tue Feb 09, 2010 11:39 am

Try using a program called "Dual boot pro" http://www.vistabootpro.org
It will scan all your drives and make a new set of boot files,and clean up the old ones.
Has always worked for me.
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Wed Feb 10, 2010 6:26 pm

mikeymike wrote:Have you tried putting the XP boot files (ntdetect etc) on the Win7 drive instead?

I assume you're using the Win7 boot manager (I'm not sure what EasyBCD is btw).


Yes, I put them on my Win7 drive which was the only way EasyBCD would detect my XP drive on the system. I am using the Win7 boot manager. Here is a link to NeoSmart Technologies EasyBCD boot manager: http://neosmart.net/dl.php?id=1 .

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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Wed Feb 10, 2010 6:28 pm

roont wrote:ntdlr missing usually requires a repair of windows. But i've never encountered it in a dual boot situation.

You did install XP before Win7 didn't you?


I have the installations on two separate drives and this copy of XP is an older installation.

Trellot
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Wed Feb 10, 2010 6:30 pm

sgie87 wrote:Try using a program called "Dual boot pro" http://www.vistabootpro.org
It will scan all your drives and make a new set of boot files,and clean up the old ones.
Has always worked for me.


See, sounds like Dual boot pro is something similar to EasyBCD. However, my problem lies in not being able to boot to my XP drive regarding this ntldr error...but I am able to setup the dual boot window in Win7 without any problems.

Trellot
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Wed Feb 10, 2010 7:50 pm

The file boot.ini on the root of the Windows boot drive specifies the drive and partition of the windows installation. If the BIOS drive order was switched or the partition entry in the partition table was changed, this file needs to be updated.
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Thu Feb 11, 2010 2:35 am

dwhess wrote:The file boot.ini on the root of the Windows boot drive specifies the drive and partition of the windows installation. If the BIOS drive order was switched or the partition entry in the partition table was changed, this file needs to be updated.


That would have been done by the recovery console commands he's used.
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Thu Feb 11, 2010 2:57 pm

I've even run chkdsk /r and it did find one file system error which it corrected. However, I'm still receiving the "ntldr is missing" error. I"m not sure what this suggests about the drive itself? I've run Spin Rite on the drive and all checks out tip-top. Would a complete reformat and repartitioning be in order? I'd like to avoid doing so, as fixing the issue at hand, if possible, is always more appealing to me :)

Trellot
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Thu Feb 11, 2010 3:12 pm

Have you tried copying the basic boot files to the Win7 partition? Assuming you did things in the order of:

1 - Install XP onto partition 1
2 - Install Win7 onto partition 2

I think ntldr, boot.ini, and ntdetect.com should go on the win7 partition, but it did this for me when I was using XP and Vista dual-boot for a while.
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Fri Feb 12, 2010 12:50 am

1 - using an old installation of XP on drive1
2 - installed Win7 on new drive2 (both drives are SATA)
3 - setup dual boot for Win7 and XP using EasyBCD after installing ntldr and ntdetect.com on Win7 drive.
4 - can boot into Win7 but not XP (can't even boot into XP manually without getting "NTLDR IS MISSING" error).

Trellot
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Fri Feb 12, 2010 3:57 am

Is it using the Win7 boot management system?

Did you try my suggestion about copying the ntldr, ntdetect.com, boot.ini files to the Win7 partition?
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Fri Feb 12, 2010 2:02 pm

It's using the Win7 boot manager, and I have placed the ntldr, ntdetect.com and boot.ini files on the Win7 drive as well. But, I'm having the same results. One thing I've noticed...if I go into Recovery Console and do a bootcfg /rebuild it detects just the one XP installation (which is fine, it obviously won't detect my Win7 64-bit install)...the problem, however, is that when I manually check the boot.ini file afteward it hasn't changed. I used to have two XP installations in my boot.ini file set up for dual boot...those two entries are still there, it did not change to just the one XP install that I have now. What's up with this? Should I manually delete boot.ini and try another rebuild?

Trellot
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-XFX Radeon HD 7970 3072MB, GDDR5, PCI-Express 3.0
-Corsair Enthusiast Series TX850 V2 PSU / Corsair 600T case
-G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 16GB / Hitachi Deskstar 750GB
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Fri Feb 12, 2010 4:13 pm

I was about to suggest that actually - well, rename boot.ini to boot.iniold or something.
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Fri Feb 12, 2010 7:46 pm

Man this is a weird problem. I got rid of boot.ini and tried the bootcfg /rebuild command and it doesn't create a new boot.ini file. I had to manually create it in Win7 and paste it onto the XP drive. And, of course, I'm still not able to boot...even tried to just run the XP drive on my system and go for a single boot scenario, but nothing. Although, now I'm getting this error message: "bootmgr is missing"!

I just remembered somelthing. Right after I installed Win7 on its drive, I accessed my XP installation drive through Win7 and it prompted something like, "Would you like permenant access to this drive?" and I clicked Yes. It took a few seconds, but finally I was able to get into the drive. Has that action perhaps caused this boot issue?

Last thing I tried was a repair of the OS system files for XP using the install CD and still getting "bootmgr is missing" error.

Trellot
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Sun Feb 14, 2010 4:37 pm

Well, strangely the problem is fixed! All I had to do was download the EasyBCD 2.0 BETA and it auto-configured the boot setup for XP (I was using version 1.7 something). Now all is working as it should. Thanks for all the assistance mikeymike! I appreciate it. :)

Trellot
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-XFX Radeon HD 7970 3072MB, GDDR5, PCI-Express 3.0
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Thu Feb 18, 2010 2:43 am

It would have been interesting to compare the two BCD configs, before and after, to see what the problem was.
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Wed Feb 24, 2010 4:20 am

mikeymike wrote:It would have been interesting to compare the two BCD configs, before and after, to see what the problem was.


I agree. Should have thought about that, because I like to "know" what is fundamentally wrong with things also! But I'm a tinkerer, so I'll probably go back sometime, remove BCD and try again manually...it can be done. But for now I'm just enjoying my dual boot setup, lol!

Anyway, thanks again for the help!

Trellot
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Fri May 28, 2010 2:23 am

Well, one of the things I think you are getting confused on is there is only 1 ntldr and boot.ini file, not one for each os. It goes on the active partition. the reason your config fixes didn't fix the ini file on the xp partition was that is not the ini file being used.

Preboot sequence:
1. POST
2. BIOS runs MBR
3. MBR scans partition table, loads boot sector of active partition into memory
4. NTLDR loaded

Boot:
1. Initial boot loader phase-ntldr switches to flat memory mode
2. Operating system selection-NTLDR reads boot.ini
3. Hardware detection-ntdetect.com and ntoskrnl.exe detect hardware
4. Configuration selection-hardware profile/configuration recovery menu

Hope this helps you a bit.
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Re: Dual Boot with WinXP and Win7 not functional

Postposted on Sat Jul 24, 2010 5:46 pm

lordofall wrote:Well, one of the things I think you are getting confused on is there is only 1 ntldr and boot.ini file, not one for each os. It goes on the active partition. the reason your config fixes didn't fix the ini file on the xp partition was that is not the ini file being used.


Thanks for the tips. I definitely won't forget the next time I run into an issue like this one.

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