Setting up multiboot configuration (XP-H, XP-P x64, Vista Ult.)

Discussion in 'Windows 64 Bit' started by geraintwd, Aug 25, 2007.

  1. geraintwd

    geraintwd Guest


    I have a PC currently running XP Pro x64. As there are some programs that
    will not run or install on this platform, I want to set up a dual boot with
    Windows XP Home. I also have Windows Vista Ultimate and would like to set
    this up as well.

    I have 3 separate hard drives and I know that I need to install Vista last,
    but can I install XP Home on another drive and have it dual boot with Pro 64,
    or do I have to uninstall Pro 64 first before installing Home?

    Any tips you can offer would be gratefully received.

    geraintwd, Aug 25, 2007
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  2. geraintwd

    John Barnes Guest

    I have Vista Ultimate86, XP Pro86 and XP64 running. If set up properly, you
    get the Vista boot screen and when you select the legacy drive, you get the
    boot.ini menu.
    John Barnes, Aug 25, 2007
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  3. geraintwd

    John Barnes Guest

    Just to clarify, on the boot.ini menu you choose between the two
    installations of XP
    John Barnes, Aug 25, 2007
  4. geraintwd

    geraintwd Guest

    OK thanks, just wanted to check - do I have to install XP Home, then
    reinstall XP Pro 64 (as it is newer)? Or can I get away without having to
    reinstall XP Pro x64?

    I know I have to install Vista last no matter what.

    geraintwd, Aug 25, 2007
  5. geraintwd

    John Barnes Guest

    That would be one way. The other is to make a copy of the ntldr and files in a new folder and after the XP Home install, you will
    have to copy them back.
    John Barnes, Aug 25, 2007
  6. geraintwd

    geraintwd Guest

    That sounds easier - will put them on a USB stick for safe keeping!

    geraintwd, Aug 25, 2007
  7. geraintwd

    John Barnes Guest

    Should be fine. Been a long time, you may have to add the second entry
    pointing to the X64 to the boot.ini manually.
    John Barnes, Aug 25, 2007
  8. geraintwd

    geraintwd Guest

    Looks like they either weren't deleted or have restored themselves. I have XP
    Home installed on a PATA drive (250GB, partitioned into approx 120 and 130GB)
    and I can still boot Pro x64 from the existing SATA drive.

    However, now I have another problem. The PATA drive is a Maxtor and I used
    their Maxblast software to partition it and format both partitions in NTFS.

    The problem is I can't get either version of XP to see the second partition
    on the PATA drive (though it sees the first partition just fine). My Computer
    says "J:\ is not accessible. The file or directory is corrupted and

    Disk Management is even less helpful. It lets me delete and recreate a
    partition and logical drive in the second half of the disk, but when I try to
    format it I get an error stating that "The path cannot be used for creating a
    drive path likely because the folder does not exist or is already a drive
    path to some other volume.". It then follows with a message that the format
    did not complete successfully.

    Even stranger, if I attempt to right click -> Properties on any of the disks
    in the Disk Management console it says "The operation was cancelled due to an
    internal error".

    Finally, there is a 128MB partition that shows in My Computer. I can
    successfully format this but it does not show up on Disk Management.

    It's all a bit weird really. How I long for the days of fdisk!!!

    Any ideas?
    geraintwd, Aug 25, 2007
  9. There is no reason to use maxtor's proprietary software to partition, and
    lots of reasons not to.

    See my blog entries on multi-boot. They cover how to set up 32-bit after

    But before you go too far down that road, you might consider running the
    32-bit version in a virtual machine. It's a lot easier to live with, since
    you don't have to be rebooting every time you want to get at it.

    Be aware that running Vista in dual boot with XP will cause any saved
    snapshots from Vista to be deleted whenever you boot into XP.
    Charlie Russel - MVP, Aug 26, 2007
  10. geraintwd

    geraintwd Guest

    Thanks for that. I reinstalled XP Pro 64 anyway as it had been 18 months and
    it was due a spring clean :) so that seemed to fix the problem, looks like an
    issue with the OS rather than the drive or the Maxtor software.

    The only other issue I had was that the drive I wanted to install Vista on
    was GDT instead of MBR so I had to use the command line tool to change it but
    no biggie.

    Thanks for the tip about the VM, but I mostly use my PC for Internet and
    gaming. Pro x64 makes the best use of my 2GB RAM and 64-bit CPU so I use that
    most. I use XP Home for older games that won't run in a 64-bit environment
    but I probably won't spend too much time with Vista in the beginning.

    Thanks again
    geraintwd, Sep 1, 2007
  11. geraintwd

    geraintwd Guest

    I forgot to say, I installed in this order - Home, Pro 64, Vista Ult. 32 and
    they all work fine, though if I want to boot either XP version I have to go
    through 2 bootmenus ("Earlier version of Windows" and then Home or Pro 64).
    Probably helps that they are all on separate disks.
    geraintwd, Sep 1, 2007
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