Multiboot EPIC FAIL... Please Help

Well first off, I am running Windows 7. Its been the best to me except one thing. My printer only has 32 bit drivers and I have a 64bit OS. What I did was partition my drive and install Windows XP home on that partitioned drive. The installation was successful except that XP was now the only only thing that was bootable. I couldn't multiboot. It would always start in XP. To make things worse, I couldn't even go online on XP. I had found a solution to dual boot but it required me to download something from windows update. Even if I was able to dual boot, I still wouldn't be able to go online. So I put my Win 7 disk and repaired it which made windows 7 my boot again. Then I deleted my whole windows xp partition (I hope that doesn't damage it)

So... Now I need help. I want to try to install xp again but I want win 7 to be my main boot instead of xp taking over like it did. Also not being able to connect to the internet with xp. What could be the problem?

I appreciate any help. Thank you.
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  1. Normally, when you want to install multiple operating systems, you install the older OS first, then the newer OS which allows it to recognized that the older OS is there and lets you multi-boot. I think there's some software out there (EASUS?) that would let you repair the boot sector so they both work. I just can't think of the name right-offhand.

    If you decide to reinstall, install XP first then Win 7 and you'll have your multi-boot scenario.

    I once had an older system that could multi-boot Win 98, Win NT, XP and a Linux distro, but it's been a while...

    Some people might say that scenario is impossible due to file format limitations, but it all works if you have a samll FAT 16 boot partition. In your case, both of your OSes speak NTFS, so you shouldn't have any problem, except for the current situation.

    Did you check to see if your printer manufacturer had 64 bit Vista drivers available? They should work in Win 7.
  2. When you install XP it overwrites the Windows 7 boot loader. Unfortunately the XP boot loader can't boot Windows 7, hence your problem. But the Windows 7 boot loader can boot XP, so really you need to install XP first, then Windows 7. That would set up a menu allowing you to choose at boot time which OS to boot.

    OK, you probably don't want to reinstall Windows 7, so:

    1. Install XP again, and you'll end up in the same situation.

    2. Do the repair again, so that Windows 7 boots (but not XP).

    3. Now download EasyBCD. This makes it easy to set up a boot menu that will boot Windows 7 or XP (you could do this from the Windows command line, but EasyBCD makes the process easier and safer).

    Not sure what your network problem with XP could have been - possibly you need to install a driver for your network card. Get the dual-boot working, then have a look in the XP Device Manager to see what it shows in the way of network cards. If you've still got a problem post again and I'm sure someone will be able to help you.

    Aren't computers fun!
  3. you need to install xp first then 7 and all will play nice
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