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Multi-Boot puzzle

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August 22, 2006 4:24:17 PM

Current state of harddrive
Maybe i should mention this is 1 HD with 3 partitions

C: 50GB_ NTFS_ d(0)p(1)_ Primary/Active_XPSP2
D: 50GB_ NTFS_ d(0)p(2)_ Primary_XPx64
E: 50GB_ NTFS_ d(0)p(3)_ Primary_DataArchive

When I installed XPx64 as a second OS, I couldnt seem to get the Multiboot menu working properly until I installed 'Acronis Disk Director', even then I still had to manually edit the boot.ini, because Acronis coudnt detect it, Recently, while having defrag problems I noticed a 12GB file called Bootwiz, apparently related to acronis.

So I decided to uninstall Acronis, guess what, Multi Menu gone, replaced with 'Ntldr missing'

However using an emergency boot disk containing the following files:

BOOTCAT.BIN
BOOTIMG.BIN
BOOT.INI
WINNT.INI
WINXP.INI
NTLDR
NTDETECT.COM
README.TXT

I managed to boot XPSP2 on the C: partition, reinstalled Acronis, but it doesnt detect XPx64, on the D: partition, it only detects the C: OS(full circle), so now c: boots without the boot disk!

Acronis refuses to boot the D: partition for some reason

If I edit(msconfig) the boot.ini file on c: to create multi-boot menu it doesnt appear because acronis hijacks it and automatically boots the c: partition XPSP2, But I know XPx64 is there because I can see the files

I would like to uninstall Acronis, and manually create my own Multi-Boot, without reinstalling x64 or Acronis

Can someone please help

More about : multi boot puzzle

August 22, 2006 5:15:26 PM

Have you tried to merge the data from both boot.ini files? I would try to manually edit these files with notepad.exe not with msconfig. First unhide system files on both the C: and D: drives then try to paste the path from the [operating systems] section to XP_64 from the D:\boot.ini to the c:\boot.ini.
Should look something like this:
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /fastdetect /NoExecute=OptIn

Note:The numbers within the brackets are the info needed to find the right disk and partition.

So copy this portion of the D:\boot.ini to the [Operating Systems] section of C;\boot.ini below the current entry for WinXP32

I have done this before with 32bit versions and it worked fine. I'm not sure about 64bit but at worst you'll have a bum entry in your boot menu, but the original entry will boot OK.

Be sure to backup both files before you edit them!
Another work around would be to set the boot drive in the BIOS to the desired boot drive (Cumbersome but effective)
I think the problem is WinXP(32) want's to control the boot device. I had a simular situation with a Linux/WinXP dual boot from two separate drives. I tried to edit the config files to no avail. So I opted for the old Floppy boot for Linux and let WinXP think it owns my hardware. :lol: 
August 22, 2006 7:37:18 PM

Quote:
Have you tried to merge the data from both boot.ini files? I would try to manually edit these files with notepad.exe not with msconfig. First unhide system files on both the C: and D: drives then try to paste the path from the [operating systems] section to XP_64 from the D:\boot.ini to the c:\boot.ini.
Should look something like this:
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /fastdetect /NoExecute=OptIn

Note:The numbers within the brackets are the info needed to find the right disk and partition.

So copy this portion of the D:\boot.ini to the [Operating Systems] section of C;\boot.ini below the current entry for WinXP32


The problem with that is,
Acronis uses its own boot loader to boot c: XPSP2, any attempts to create/edit the 'boot.ini' to make multi-boot menu are useless, its as if the file is not being called during boot

If i uninstall acronis I will get NTDLR missing error and will have to use the boot disk(see first post) to boot c: XPSP2

Quote:
Another work around would be to set the boot drive in the BIOS to the desired boot drive (Cumbersome but effective)


You mean I can choose which partition to boot from the bios???

When i installed XPx64 it rebooted at the end, and I waited for windows to come up, instead i got something like 'system hardware
configuration problem' 'please consult hardware documentaion etc. etc...

I then had to use the magic boot disk again to get back into my old c: XPSP2 and change the boot.ini to point back to c:, its llike u said c: XP32 is keeping control of the 'booty'

Basically I think I need to put some files on the c: ..maybe the same ones from the 'magic boot disk' then I should be able to uninstall Acronis without t losing boot??? Will this work

But then how do i get d: XPx64 to boot, I already know the 'magic boot disk' gives the 'system hardware
configuration problem' 'please consult hardware documentaion etc. etc...
Which is back to when it was just installed and attempting to reboot...for some reason it could boot before when Acronis was installed, but now I cant re-create that!!! I get the feeling I need to put some files on the d: x64 to make it bootable too????

Guys!!! Im pulling my hair out here
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August 22, 2006 8:32:43 PM

if you can boot the computer at all you could make your boot.ini visible and make a copy of it. Alter the copy to point to all the correct partitions for your os's in its final state.

the next step is to copy your boot.ini and XP64 boot files to a floppy
uninstall acronis
boot from the floppy that contains the boot files by setting the bios to do so and copy the boot files and boot.ini from the floppy to the active partition, that being your C drive reboot and you should be good to go.


[boot loader]
timeout=20
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Windoze XP Professional" /fastdetect /NoExecute=OptIn
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS="Windoze 64 Professional" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect


that boot ini should do the trick
August 23, 2006 2:19:50 AM

Yes, this is what I meant. Only I wasn't sure about WinXP_64 boot files.
:) 
Well put....
August 23, 2006 12:40:08 PM

Uninstalled Acronis
Acronis boot loader still in place but cant find some file or other
repaired installation using XP disk(press r to repair)... run fixmbr command on XPX32 partition

XPX32 now boots without 3rd party help

XPX32 Multi-boot cannot load XPx64

Copied ntldr and ntdetect.com files from x64 disk to the x32 boot folder, these files can boot x32 or x64, which is why x64 never worked after its first reboot
using the x32 multi-boot menu

edited boot.ini file as suggested

Everything works perfect, Multi-boot x32,x64 and Acronis is completley uninstalled including bulky
bootwiz file

Thanks guys for all your help!!
!