Windows 7/XP dual boot help please

I just installed a full version of Windows 7 and I don't know how to set it up as a dual boot with XP. Prior to installing this full release version, I successfully had XP (installed first) on one hard drive, and Windows 7 RC on my second hard drive, in a dual boot setup. Now with the full version installed, which I installed on the same hard drive that the release candidate was installed on, I can only boot directly into the new Windows 7, there's no boot selection screen. What do I have to do to set it up so I can choose either operating system?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you very much.


Excellent Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
The easiest way is to go to the NeoSmart Technologies forum and join that so you can download EasyBCD 2.0 beta. It will set up the boot for you and add the necessary files.

If you feel you need to do it yourself, you will have to move 3 files (ntdetect, ntldr, boot.ini) into the Win 7 partition. The boot.ini file will probably need to be altered to show the partition of XP. You then need to add XP to the boot menu using bcdedit.

There are tutorials, so let us know what you would like to do...

Thank you very much for the response Saltgrass. I guess I will go the EasyBCD 2.0 beta route. If you could please help me with instructions it would be appreciated.

Thank you


Essential Member
Saltgrass has the right idea.

Just for fun, go to Start > Run, and type msconfig, click the Boot tab, and see if Vista shows up here.

The only thing that shows up is Windows 7. I was told that when I install Windows 7 it should notice XP, but that obviously wasn't the case.


Excellent Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
It will only pick up XP if XP is already installed and is on the primary hard drive. Win 7 will then put its boot files in the XP active partition and incorporate XP into those.

After you download and Install EasyBCD, start the program. Pick the Add/Remove entries, select Windows tab and type as Win 2k/XP...

Click the Add Entry button, and when asked to transfer files, allow it to do so.

You should be able to reboot and have XP as an option.


Essential Member
yes, if you installed Windows 7 last, it should have found it.

Are you absolutely sure you chose the correct drive and partition?

It was a "clean" install, correct?. Did you save all your important Documents, Picturees, Videos, etc to a flash drive?

Could you posrt a screen shot of Disk Managment? Expand the window so we can view all the information.

I'm absolutely sure that it's on the right hard drive. As far as installing, I was told to just boot from the Windows 7 DVD and choose the appropriate hard drive. I never actually physically deleted the hard drive prior to install; I was told the install would take care of that. Should I have? And yes, I did save all of my important documents on an external hard drive. I'll post a screen shot in a minute.


Hope this works.

Well, I just did some reading on installing Windows 7, and it says that if I'm installing it over another operating system, I should format the drive first. Is this the case? Does this mean that I should format the drive and reinstall it? Errr

Sorry for the questions.

Thanks again.


Essential Member
No, when you installed it formatted the old Windows 7 installation.

Have you tried EasyBCD as Saltgrass suggested?

No I haven't tried it yet, as I was replying to a question first about posting a screen shot. I am physically handicapped and won't be able to try his suggestion until someone is here to assist me (around supper). Is there anything I should be aware of if it doesn't boot properly? Anything I should know before trying it?

Thank you very much.

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