Windows 7 boot.ini file

sabrehagen

Millenium Celebration Award Winner
Premium Supporter
#1
Hi,

I'm currently setting up a Dual Boot Windows 7 and Windows XP. I installed Windows 7 first, then installed XP second, both installed on seperate partitions. Windows 7 is on the first partition, and XP on the second. When XP installed it overwrote Windows 7's boot.ini with it's own and now I have to add in the Windows 7 boot option manually. I tried adding the line "multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows 7" but this hasn't worked for me.

In summary, could you please post the contents of your Windows 7 boot.ini file from the root of your drive so I can see how it is initially set up?

Thank you in advance,



sabrehagen
 


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#2
Windows Vista/7 doesn't use boot.ini. You have to repair your boot sector so that it loads Windows 7's bootmgr instead of Windows XP's ntldr. I don't really know how to do that, though. It involves the Windows 7 DVD.
 


davehc

Essential Member
Premium Supporter
Microsoft MVP
#3
Josh's comment is correct, but you will still need a boot.ini to load XP, pluss all the root files. These may still exist on the non boot partition.
An average Boot.ini reads:

[boot loader]
timeout=5
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(1)partition(1)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(1)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition" /fastdetect

You might have to adjust these parameters to suit your own setup.

The normal boot files in XP will also be
Autoexec.bat
Config.sys
IO.sys
Msdos.sys
NtDetect.com

As I said, these may exist on the no boot partition.
If you have them, search and download, EasyBcd (Free) and install it in Windows 7. It has options to repair a dual boot.
 


#4
Since it seems to be a new install with both OS's, it might be best to just start again.

But this time, install XP first and then W7. That way W7 will pick up the boot manager function correctly.
 


sabrehagen

Millenium Celebration Award Winner
Premium Supporter
#5
I managed to fix it by using easybcd to put XP and Windows 7 in the startup list. I then copied boot.ini from the XP partition to the Windows 7 partition so that after selecting XP in the boot menu and it went looking for the boot file, it was on the first partition, i.e. the Windows 7 partition. Boot.ini then pointed to the second partition where XP is installed and now both dual boot successfully!

Hope this helps people in the same predicament in the future!


sabrehagen
 


#6
Boot.ini missing

All,

I have a Windows Vista (Production) and now along with it Windows 7, I seem to be liking the windows 7 and would want to do away with the Vista install.

I can delete the Windows.old partition on the C Drive and create enough disk space for my self; but the problem would be with the boot loader? How can I remove the otpion of selecting the OS from the inital boot screen and load Windows 7 by default?

Thanks
Ankur
 


#7
All,

I have a Windows Vista (Production) and now along with it Windows 7, I seem to be liking the windows 7 and would want to do away with the Vista install.

I can delete the Windows.old partition on the C Drive and create enough disk space for my self; but the problem would be with the boot loader? How can I remove the otpion of selecting the OS from the inital boot screen and load Windows 7 by default?

Thanks
Ankur
easy bcd has the option to copy/move the boot ini file onto another partition ;)
 


#8
I managed to fix it by using easybcd to put XP and Windows 7 in the startup list. I then copied boot.ini from the XP partition to the Windows 7 partition so that after selecting XP in the boot menu and it went looking for the boot file, it was on the first partition, i.e. the Windows 7 partition. Boot.ini then pointed to the second partition where XP is installed and now both dual boot successfully!

Hope this helps people in the same predicament in the future!


sabrehagen

How did you do this? May I have step by step instructions because i did the same thing!!

Thanks!
 


SIW2

New Member
#9
To install Easybcd on XP, you need to first download and install .NET Framework 2.0 from MS

Download details: .NET Framework Version 2.0 Redistributable Package (x86)

D/L and install Easybcd

Download EasyBCD 1.7.2 - NeoSmart Technologies

A. Click Manage Bootloader

View attachment 1093

B. Make sure "Reinstall Vista Bootloader" is selected, Click Write MBR

View attachment 1094

C. Select Add/Remove Entries

View attachment 1091

D. Select Windows NT/2k/XP/2k3 in Drop-down, Click Add Entry, Click Save

View attachment 1092

Don't worry it says Vista - NT6 compatible MBR is the same for Vista and 7.

You could do it with command line instead , if you are familiar with that.

;)
 


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#10
Want to remove windows 7 from boot selection screen

Hello sir,

I was using Windows XP SP3 initially. Later I installed windows 7 evaluation pack in a different drive

Now I want to remove windows 7 and also want to remove the boot selection screen which ask for me to choose between XP and windows 7

I have the boot.ini as follows:

[boot loader]
timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOW S
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Micro soft Windows XP Professional" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect



Right now my boot screen offers me to boot in windows 7 by default. i.e after 30 seconds it starts loading windows 7

I am not a pro but still i guess something i missing here

Please let me know what to do to solve my problem

Also let me know what to edit in the boot.ini file

At least if i could make windows XP the default one that also would do my work.

Thanks & Regards

Niladri
 


#11
Hi,

Boot into 7.

Put 7 dvd in the drive.

Open an elevated cmd prompt ( type cmd in start search - when it pops up, right click and run as admin).

At the prompt ( this bit >), type:

[dvddriveletter]:\Boot\bootsect.exe /nt52 SYS /force /mbr

then press enter.

You should then boot straight to XP every time. You can delete the 7 partition.
 


#12
Similar but different Windows 7 boot problem.

I have a slightly different problem with the same end result...I can't boot Windows 7 anymore. I have three OSs on my system. All three are on the same disk in different partitions. I have XP, Windows 7 and Ubuntu. I first installed Windows XP, then Windows 7, then Ubuntu. Since I installed Ubuntu last, it created an MBR using GRUB so that Ubuntu's GRUB boot menu comes up when I boot up my computer. Before I started having problems, the boot menu from GRUB listed the standard linux choices along with a "Windows Boot Loader" selection. If I selected it, it performed a "chainloader" and brought up a Windows boot menu with XP and 7 as options. I could choose either and bring up the correct OS. Everything worked fine. I was able to choose from 3 OSs with no problem. Here's where my problems began....

I corrupted my XP install with a virus. Prior to all of this, I had previously created an image of XP from a previous installation on another hard drive with Acronus True Image. I restored that image using Acronus into the partition where the corrupted XP install resided. Now, Ubuntu and XP boots fine but Windows 7 does not. The Windows 7 boot choice didn't exist in the boot.ini file so I had to create it manually. The Windows 7 partition data shows up as a drive D: on my XP image. I've tried following directions of copying the \Windows\Boot folder along with bootmgr to various locations but I keep getting error messages stating a corrupt hal.dll to a corrupt ntosldr.exe... I've tried running bootvispro but it complains of a corrupted bcd. Again, Windows XP boots up and runs fine.

This has become a challenge to understand how the Windows bootloaders work. I could easily reinstall from scratch but would like to understand how to recover manually. Any help would be appreciated.

Cheers! Jeff.
 


#13
Hi Jeff,

XP'S bootmanager/bootloader (ntldr) consults boot.ini to find the location of XP in order to start loading the o/s.

ntldr cannot load Win7 - even if you have the boot.ini entry .


Vista and Win7 (NT6 operating systems ) work differently.

They use a boot manager (bootmgr) which consults bcd ( inside the Boot folder) to find the location of the bootloader ( winload.exe).

The function of boot manager and boot loader are separated .

When you installed XP , ntldr and boot.ini were installed on the XP partition and an NT5 compatible mbr and bootsector code were written to the drive.

When you later installed 7 - bootmgr and the Boot folder were installed to the Active partition - that would be the XP partition , and an NT6 compatible mbr and bootsector were written to the drive.

The rest of 7 ( including the boot loader -winload.exe) were installed to the partition you pointed the 7 installer at.


An entry for ntldr would be created in 7 bcd. The bootmgr boot menu menu would offer XP or 7. If you chose XP, bootmgr would hand control to ntldr which would consult boot.ini and load XP.

If you selected 7 - bootmgr would have consulted bcd to find the location of winload.exe - hand control to that and winload.exe would load 7.

It seems when you restored the XP image - everything relating to 7 boot process that had been on the infected XP partition was not in the restored image.

One way forward is to boot the 7 dvd to system recovery options and run startup repair ( it should start automatically).

It will probably take several runs.

You should then be able to boot into 7 and XP, but not Ubuntu

You would need to reinstall Grub.

You may be better using Easybcd (which is a free utility) and avoid installing Grub to the mbr.

Download EasyBCD 1.7.2 - NeoSmart Technologies

Instructions here:

Ubuntu - NeoSmart Technologies Wiki

Hope it helps.
 


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#14
Hmmmm...that all makes sense. Thanks for the explanation. Before I started this exercise I thought I might need the Ubuntu boot sector so I used 'dd' in Ubuntu to copy it from the disk so I can always restore that when I'm all done. You're right about the XP image. It's a completely different installation so it never had the Win 7 boot stuff on it.

I've already tried to boot from the Win 7 disk and try a repair but it can't find the Win 7 installation for some reason. I'll try it again....maybe I overlooked something. Thanks again....I may be back with further questions.
jeff.
 


#15
May be a problem with the mbr - did you replace it with the XP image?

Can you see the 7 partition in XP Disk Management - what does it say?

D/L this free partition manager - install on XP - see if it recognizes 7 partition:

http://www.partitionwizard.com/download/pwhe-setup.exe

Partition Wizard 4.0 is a partition manager with four Editions.

It probably won't recognize the linux partitions.

Assuming it sees the 7 partition - rt click it and select Explore - see if it contains what you expect your7 partition should have.
 


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#16
Hi, I'm having a similiar problem.

At first, I had 4 Vista's installed on 2 disks. Then I formated 2 Vista's on 1. disk and joined them into 1 partion and after that I installed Windows 7. And now when I start the computer it automatically starts Windows 7 beacuse it "says" it's the only installed OS. How can I retrieve/add those missing two Vista's?

Thanks in advance
 


#17
Open an elevated cmd prompt and type:

bcdedit /copy {current} /d "Vista 1"

It will return a new {GUID}.

Use that , including the brackets in these commands:

bcdedit /set {your-new-GUID_here} device partition=D:

bcdedit /set {your-new-GUID_here} osdevice partition=D:

Replace D: with the letter of partition Vista 1 is installed on - you don't need to call it Vista 1 you can use any name you like between the " ".

Repeat for Vista 2.

Hope it helps
 


#18
Thank you SIW2 it worked=)
 


#19
You're welcome - have fun.
 


#20
Same type of problem

Hi there
I have pretty much the same problem - WIN XP on C:, WIN 7 on D: and UBUNTU - though with a twist
I had to reinstall Win XP from an external hard drive using Norton Ghost. Reinstalled UBUNTU as well. But WIN 7 disappeared. So I run the recovery option from WIN 7 DVD

"One way forward is to boot the 7 dvd to system recovery options and run startup repair ( it should start automatically)
It will probably take several runs. You should then be able to boot into 7 and XP, but not Ubuntu You would need to reinstall Grub. "



I just did that. Run repair several times. Grub did not disappear, it showed UBUNTU and XP as options. However when I go to WIN XP rather than cascade and allow either WIN XP or WIN 7 it boots straight away WIN 7. Under WIN 7 drive C: disappeared, cannot be accessed though under drive management appears with no letter.
Question: how can I get back WIN XP to boot alongside WIN 7?







Hi Jeff,

XP'S bootmanager/bootloader (ntldr) consults boot.ini to find the location of XP in order to start loading the o/s.

ntldr cannot load Win7 - even if you have the boot.ini entry .


Vista and Win7 (NT6 operating systems ) work differently.

They use a boot manager (bootmgr) which consults bcd ( inside the Boot folder) to find the location of the bootloader ( winload.exe).

The function of boot manager and boot loader are separated .

When you installed XP , ntldr and boot.ini were installed on the XP partition and an NT5 compatible mbr and bootsector code were written to the drive.

When you later installed 7 - bootmgr and the Boot folder were installed to the Active partition - that would be the XP partition , and an NT6 compatible mbr and bootsector were written to the drive.

The rest of 7 ( including the boot loader -winload.exe) were installed to the partition you pointed the 7 installer at.


An entry for ntldr would be created in 7 bcd. The bootmgr boot menu menu would offer XP or 7. If you chose XP, bootmgr would hand control to ntldr which would consult boot.ini and load XP.

If you selected 7 - bootmgr would have consulted bcd to find the location of winload.exe - hand control to that and winload.exe would load 7.

It seems when you restored the XP image - everything relating to 7 boot process that had been on the infected XP partition was not in the restored image.

One way forward is to boot the 7 dvd to system recovery options and run startup repair ( it should start automatically).

It will probably take several runs.

You should then be able to boot into 7 and XP, but not Ubuntu

You would need to reinstall Grub.

You may be better using Easybcd (which is a free utility) and avoid installing Grub to the mbr.

Download EasyBCD 1.7.2 - NeoSmart Technologies

Instructions here:

Ubuntu - NeoSmart Technologies Wiki

Hope it helps.[/QUOTE]
 


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