Daul Boot Win XP & Win 7 (Please Help)

  iamlinxx 14:04 16 May 2017
Locked

Hi Everyone, I am new here and I am stuck. I have a dual boot operating system Windows XP and Windows 7 (Windows XP was installed first and on the boot loader screen appears at the top so I have to select down in order to boot up Windows 7).

I hardly never use Windows XP it is my back up OS however over the weekend I went into it, tried to installed an old iTunes (10.1) it wouldnt do it, hit me with an error code (I thought nothing of it) restarted the systems and went into Windows 7.

Today however I booted up my PC and got hit with the:

"NTLDR is missing Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to restart"

I have had this is the past and resolved it but not today and I have tried everything (and I mean everything).

Hirens (Failed), Spotmau (Failed), Copying the files off the original Win XP i386 folder (NTDETECT & NTLDR) - Failed Windows Unnistaller (Failed), Windows XP Repair (Failed) - sort of for some reason it wont give me the option to repair just re-install windows XP, I am sure it used to?, Windows 7 Ultimate Repair (Failed) found the issue restored my system but only Win 7 didnt seem to touch Win XP.

So right now I am accessing my Windows 7 OS using Hirens to boot the BOOTMGR and send this message to you asking for help.

Hirens was loading Windows XP but my last attempt hit me with the error message:

"Windows could not start because of a computer disk hardware configuration problem. Could not read from the selected boot disk. Check boot path and disk hardware. Please check the windows..." etc you get the picture.

So I have a partitioned Drive Windows 7 being on my C: drive and Windows XP being on my F: drive.

The Question Is

What I need advice on is if I reinstall Windows XP over its current destination (the F: drive) will that prevent me from booting into my Windows 7 normally? (I.E. how I used to at the boot screen?)

If yes is there anyway I can remove Windows XP and just keep my Windows 7 without having to use Hirens to boot all the time?

Please remember that Windows XP was installed first so that is what I am guessing my PC is using to boot from and hence these issues.

The other way I was going to try was to format the : drive with the Windows XP files on it from in Windows 7 but I am worried that will have the same result (once the Windows OS is gone I will know longer be able to boot into Windows 7 at all).

So please can anyone, some body help me. I have searched online, YouTube etc and no one seems to answer this.

Thanks in advance Linx

  Jollyjohn 15:53 16 May 2017

Having read your post carefully I think you should be able to boot from a W7 cd/dvd and use the Bootrec tool to rebuild the MBr - click here This won't give access to XP but should allow W7 to boot.

Then you can rescue any files you need from the XP partition before formatting it.

If you still need XP for anything, can I suggest using VirtualBox, and install XP as a virtual PC. I do this, running a Linux box, with XP, Vista & W7 as virtual PC's for troubleshooting purposes.

  iamlinxx 16:43 16 May 2017

Thanks Jollyjohn, I am in the process of trying this now i have hit a hurdle however.

At the bootrec /rebuild section (c:\ cd boot) the command prompt is stating "the system cannot find the path specified"

and running a scan doesnt show any os apparetly?

  iamlinxx 17:30 16 May 2017

Just an update I have tried and got no where unfortunately. so I guess my original question remains.

is it possible to remove my windows xp and still boot into my windows 7?

  beeuuem~2 20:57 16 May 2017

I have XP. W7 and W10 on a triple boot, don't ask !!

Have you tried using EasyBCD to reset the boot paths? A free version is available from click here if you go for the non commercial version and register at the bottom of the page.

  iamlinxx 21:53 16 May 2017

Thanks Beeuuem, triple booth paths you must like punishment lol.

I checked out the link thanks again and it seems like I have to pay for each OS version which I dont mind doing if I know it will 100% work but at this stage I have tried so many things and they all have failed I think I will just bite the bullet and format the partition with XP on it. I know that probably means I will have to re-install win 7 again too but I dont see what other options I have.

Thanks again for your help though

  beeuuem~2 22:55 16 May 2017

While they do ask for your name and mail address there is a version click here I normally use version 1.7.2 in XP as it doesn't need Net Framework 4 but I have downloaded it from this link and it works within W7 Pro.

  beeuuem~2 23:05 16 May 2017

If you are unable to reset the MBR with EasyBCD there are some other options.

I assume that your W7 is working and set up as you want it. Rather than reinstalling W7 why not create an image using say Macrium Reflect, click here as an example - other programs are available !

Once you have the image you can restore it to the original partition or another partition without having to set up W7 from scratch.

  iamlinxx 08:06 17 May 2017

Hi Beeuuem,

I tried the EasyBCD and yup that didnt work either (I knew it wouldnt to be honest).

I dont think there is a programme around at the moment that can resolve this.

Yeah my Win7 works fine (kind of I need to boot it using Hirens).

All I want to do at this point is either delete WinXP or reinstall WinXP over its currently location, but before I do that I need to know if I will loose the ability to boot into my Win7?

  Archonar 09:22 17 May 2017

Deleting the windows xp partition won't remove your ability to boot to windows 7, as long as the windows 7 boot partition is not deleted. I believe that both windows 7 and xp will have separate boot partitions (i.e the C: drive is the win7 boot partition and F: is the xp boot partition). If this is the case then you should be fine to delete the xp partition and start again. To check that they do have separate boot partitions, open disk management (type diskmgmt.msc into the search bar) and check that both the C: and F: drives have the "boot" label associated with them.

Boot files are always fiddly, so I would say before you do any uninstalling, back up any vital files from win7 just in case something does go wrong.

  beeuuem~2 16:51 17 May 2017

I would strongly recommend making an image of your W7 partition and even the XP partition using Macrium Reflect or a similar program before going any further. While this may take a little time initially it is much easier to restore a partition in a few minutes than having to re-install everything. As you had XP installed first you will be using a Master Boot Record to give the boot options

My EasyBCD page shows the following Getting the correct boot path is essential else you get the error message you reported. That is, if you are in W7 the XP boot path will be to whichever partition has XP installed which you indicate is partition F:

Should you re-install XP it is likely you will be able to boot into W7 although you may need to use the W7 installation disk to repair the start-up.

You will need EasyBCD to reset the MBR so that you have dual booting to XP and W7.
1]: [click here

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