DDD? (Disk Director for Dummies?)

Discussion in 'Acronis Disk Director Suite' started by drbob424, Nov 25, 2005.

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  1. drbob424

    drbob424 Registered Member

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    I hope this question does not appear unbelievably dumb, but I am at a loss as to how to install multiple operating systems using Disk Director 10. I would like to install multiple operating systems - Windows XP Pro and Home, Windows 2000, Windows 98, Windows ME (just kidding), Xandros, Fedora, Xandros Open Source, Mandriva, Damn Small Linux, and a hard drive install of Knoppix in "beginner" mode (so that it automatically detects my hardware).

    So far, all I have been able to accomplish is to dual-boot Xandros Deluxe with Windows XP Pro on the same machine, and I don't need Acronis Disk Director to do that. I purchased Disk Director 10 because the possibility of booting a zillion operating systems would be very useful, fascinating and downright fun. I have read the manual over & over, and frankly, I just don't get it. When I try to install, say, the beginner install of Knoppix on a separate partition and then reinstall Acronis Boot Selector using the CD, my Xandros still shows up as a selection, but it will not boot when I click on it. Meanwhile, Mr. Hard-Drive Beginner Knoppix gives me a "Kernel Panic" message that I believe has something to do with installing it too far from the beginning of the disk.

    I am clueless regarding the proper technique of installing multiple Windows OS's without having them mess each other up royally.

    I am a medical doctor and not a computer genius and I don't have a huge fund of knowledge about these subjects, but I am able to follow instructions and am seen as a go-to guy for friends & family when it comes to repairing their Windows systems or setting up their hard-wired & wireless networks. In other words, I believe I have the innate ability to use Disk Director 10 if provided with clear, very basic instructions. I know such instructions must exist somewhere for the geek-speak challenged, but my searches have been unproductive.

    Could anybody suggest a "For Dummies" version of instructions for what appears to be an extremely useful program? Thank you in advance!
     
  2. drbob424

    drbob424 Registered Member

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    Hmm...31 views and no suggestions?

    I tried my best this morning to install my Windows XP Home that came with my Dell 8250 on my computer that is already successfully running Windows XP Pro and Xandros Deluxe 3.

    Followed the instructions to the best of my ability. Created a 15 Gig NTFS partition and set it as active. Started computer and let Acronis OS selector came up as usual. Put WinXP Home disk into CD drive where it was detected by Acronis. Booted the disk from Acronis, and the usual XP installation routine started. Instructed it to install XP to the newly created partition, and it appeared to be doing its thing as usual.

    However, when the computer restarted, I got the message that Windows could not start because some file was missing or corrupted - don't remember which file, I got called in to hospital for emergency, where I am as I write this...reactivated Acronis OS selector using the bootable disk I had created, but the OS selector was unable to detect my new XP install. I explored the partition where the install was attempted, and there appeared to be the usual folders that one would expect after a new install of XP.

    The manual suggests that this process should be easy, but I am obviously missing some fundamental step here. Help! Thanks.
     
  3. bodgy

    bodgy Registered Member

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    Are you using the trial or full version?

    It might be the trial version has been 'hampered' in this respect.


    Colin
     
  4. mrtee

    mrtee Registered Member

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    The install needs to be told to start from the "A" drive.

    It will fail (as it should).

    Reboot with the install CD in the drive and it will proceed to install.

    From page 103 of the manual;
    8.2.2 Installing another Windows on a separate partition
    • Prepare a free primary partition for the new Windows system.
    You can do this by using unallocated space (for partition creation instructions see 3.1 «Creating A New Partition» and 4.1.1 «Creating partitions»). If there’s no unallocated space, you can free it by resizing respective partitions (see 4.1.4 «Resizing and/or moving a partition»).
    Acronis Disk Director Suite allows conversion of free logical partitions into a primary (for more details see 4.2.2 «Converting a file system»). Still, you must remember that there can't be more than four primary partitions in a system.
    • Set the prepared partition active for the new operating system.
    When installing a new OS from CD, select the CD item in the Operating systems area of the Acronis OS Selector main window.
    When installing a new OS from diskettes, create a new Boot from floppy item by selecting OS → New → Boot from floppy in the Menu line.
    Then right-click on that item, select from the context menu Operating System Properties → Partitions and flag the partition you want the OS on as Active.
    • Reboot and select your CD or floppy bootup from the boot menu, having inserted the disk with the OS distribution.
    • Once booted from a disk, follow instructions to install the OS.
    During installation, the Windows bootable part will automatically place itself on the primary partition you have previously set as active.
    When you boot either version of Windows using Acronis OS Selector later, each OS in the list will recognize the partition where its bootable part is located as active.
     
  5. drbob424

    drbob424 Registered Member

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    Thank you both very much, that is extremely helpful. I sort of figured out how to do multiple XP installs on my own, and it appears to work. I just had difficulty understanding the manual.

    Popular, basic computing magazines such as Smart Computing and PC Magazine have been having a lot of articles on installing Linux and the programs used to make this easier. That is going to draw more casual and untrained hobbyists like me to try them out. It is definitely a lot of fun, and this Disk Director program is the most interesting program I have seen in a long time.

    BTW, I didn't bother with a trial version but instead purchased the download. I also purchased the backup disk, which I just received in the mail yesterday. It was listed as a "domestic version" on the online order form. Does anybody know if that makes it different than the version I downloaded? I know that some computer technology is not to be distributed outside of the United States, or at least that used to be the case - I remember when one had to certify themselves as a U.S. resident in order to download the higher-encryption version of Internet Explorer.

    Next up, attempts to install multiple Linux distro's. Hope I don't turn my computer into a doorstop!
     
  6. drbob424

    drbob424 Registered Member

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    Oops

    I wrote too soon. After installing WinXP Home on a separate partition, and after Acronis OS selector came up, attempting to boot the WinXP Pro was not successful. Error message reported a missing dll file.

    I repaired the XP Pro install and reactivated OS Selector. It only saw the XP Pro and Xandros installations that were present in the first place. An attempt to detect the missing operating system was unproductive.

    Attempts to start Disk Director or OS Selector under XP Pro resulted in a message that Acronis did not see ANY partitions on my computer. Had to uninstall and reinstall the Acronis program, which still could not see the missing installs of XP Pro. The files of the install were still in the partition, but no operating system was detected.

    Also noticed that Partition Magic no longer works - it reads my first hard drive only as "BAD". Norton Ghost also will not make an image of my first partition. I thought that my antivirus & antispyware software might be causing problems but disabling them has no effect, and Disk Director only runs from the boot disk.

    I keep going over the manual, but obviously I am missing something.
     
  7. drbob424

    drbob424 Registered Member

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    Think I found the problem

    I got this all to work when I installed my second Windows install to my second hard drive. About this time I started getting this message when I booted my computer that some sort of Dell hard drive monitor discovered that my (first, original, factory-installed) hard drive was operating outside of normal parameters, that I should immediately back up all of my data and call Dell for a new hard drive.

    So, it looks like the problem was not with Acronis but with a fried four-year-old computer hard drive. Instead of calling Dell, I went to Sam's Club and picked up a new hard drive. Wish I had been able to detect the impending hard drive failure before I had gone through all of that work...

    I am posting this only in case somebody needs to search on these difficulties and had not considered hard drive failure as the root of the problem.
     
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