Won't boot into XP or W7 anymore after adding/removing extra hard drive

My computer won't boot into XP or 7 anymore after adding/remvoing extra hard drive
I have 1 hard drive
3 partitions:

1 XP (C)
2 7 (E)
3 Documents (X)

I plugged in an extra ide hard drive to see what was in it, after unplugging it, all of my drive letters became messed up so the windows 7 bootloader wouldnt boot into either OS.

I booted into a separate hard drive that had 7 on it and kept my main hard drive plugged in.
All the partitions were still accessible from my computer and all my data was still there.
I went into disk management and changed the letters back to what they were before (XP C, 7 E, Documents X) I could tell which was which by opening them in through my computer.

So I got rid of all the extra hard drives and set everything up as it were before, hardware wise.
The bootloader still won't open either os.

XP says something to do with ndtlr or whatever and windows 7 tells me to try inserting windows 7 cd and repair.

Is there anything else I can try before I go get my W7 cd from my parents place to run the repair option? (will that even help?)

Can I edit the bootloader of a different hard drive using easybcd?, I've got it running on a different hard drive but I can't get into the bootloader for my main hard drive.

luckily I kept my documents and other important stuff in a separate hard drive so I could reformat but that would mean losing programs...

Any help is appreciated, thanks

Is there anything else I could try, I don't have my W7 disc with me.

I'm downloading that torrent now :)
I'll let you know how it goes.


Excellent Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
You did not do anything to change the active partition on the original drive, did you?

Check the bios and make sure the original drive is showing as first in the drive order. Without other drives, it should revert automatically, but you might want to check to make sure.

I ran the repair tool, it booted up and then said this copy of windows is not genuine blah blah.
It is a genuine copy, I bought it. It wouldnt let me enter my product key.
I ran out of patience and reinstalled windows.


Essential Member
You should have posted back before you reformatted, we could have provided a registry hack for changing your product key.
So I'm assuming the problem is "fixed" now?

Yeah, reinstalling window 7 meant that the bootloader would be re configured so I can boot into XP and W7 now.
Thanks for all help anyway, I'm glad to have the repair tools on disc now, I think that will come useful later.


Essential Member
thanks for using the forums, see you around :)

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