How can I make each OS always boot as C: ?

Discussion in 'Acronis Disk Director Suite' started by Dforion, Aug 1, 2006.

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  1. Dforion

    Dforion Registered Member

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    One of the primary reasons to use Disk Director is to have more than one OS on the same HD.

    I have one HD with 2 XP Pro OS's installed, each in their own primary partition.

    Background
    one HardDisk
    OS #1, installed as Primary on Partition #1
    OS #2, installed as Primary on Partition #2

    OS #1 boots up as C:, while OS #2 boots up as D: . The registry in the OS #2 also references D: .

    I've been looking for a clear answer, but still confused on how to ensure that each OS always boots up as C: .

    I am willing to re-install OS #2 if necessary, but how can I make each OS always boot up as C: when it is active?

    I am using Acronis OS Selector on the first partition. Do I need to install this on each partition? Is it possible to have each OS always boot-up as C: ?

    I don't care what letter shows for the non-booted OS and I know I can change this with the Windows Disk Management facility. But the currently running OS must always be C: as I will be copying settings from the first OS to the second OS and need to maintain path integrity.

    Thank you!
     
  2. Batfink

    Batfink Registered Member

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    I had a slightly different approach.. I have 4 oses all of which share the same letter, in my case D...

    I have a 100mb C drive, primary partition.. and 4 logical partitions... during first OS setup, boot files are installed to C, then I choose D as the locaiton for windows. I then install DDS, and install OS Selector onto the C drive.

    I then copy the D drive to the other 3 remaining paritions, edit the boot.ini file on C, so that OS Selector will detect the other OSs, and then hide each of the OSs from each other....

    I can then boot into any of them, each a clone of the original install, and all hidden from each other, and all are D. I can have 4 OSs built in around half an hour..!!!

    Im not sure if you could achieve this with C, as you need to hide partitions, and as C is usually the active primary, and where OS Selector is installed..
     
  3. Dforion

    Dforion Registered Member

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    Thanks Batfink.

    I am getting the impression the problem is not a DDS issue but an issue with how Windows installs 2nd, 3rd,..... OSes on the same HD. And thus the only way around this is to copy OSes that were initially installed as C: .

    I only need the two OSes temporarily while I selectively rebuild the second, from the first, and that is why I MUST have internal references (in all registries and program settings) set to the same C: .

    So, I am considering:
    1) Backing up my current OS (OS#1) installed on Main HD C: to an external HD.
    2) Deleting all OSes from my main HD.
    3) Installing a fresh copy (copy #2) on the primary HD in the 1st Partition so it installs as C:.
    4) Then copying OS#1 to Partition #2 on Main HD. It may appear to be on D:, but all internal references will still be C:.

    I don't know if this will work and if OSS or DDS or Windows will get lost?

    Any suggestions are welcome and appreciated!

    Thank you!
     
  4. Batfink

    Batfink Registered Member

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    I dont really understand what you are trying to achieve...

    Why would you want on OS on D, but all internal references to C?? This makes no sense at all...o_O?

    Can you elaborate on what you are actually trying to do.....o_O

    This is the way it is done..

    You cant have 2 active/visible partitions sharing the same drive letter. I dont understand why you would want the OS on D, to refer to the registry etc of the OS on C.. this would cause all sorts of problems....... cross linked files, registries..etc.. I dont think it would even boot!!!

    The only way you could effectively have 2 C drives, is if you hid one, then installed the OS on the other.. however, for a partition to be bootable, it must be within the first 2gb of the HD.. so the first partition would have to be less than 2gb.....

    If you want to tell me what you are actually hoping to have, I may be able to help.. Ive been experimenting with multiple os installs/setups for many years, until I found a solution that suited me.. but it wasnt without its pitfalls!!!
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2006
  5. Dforion

    Dforion Registered Member

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    Thank you for your reply.

    What I am trying to do is really quite simple.

    My current install on C: , which has many programs already installed and configured on it, has system problems, so I've decided to do a fresh re-install and start over. But it is highly desireable to migrate as many of the individual program settings from the current install on C: , to the new install.

    Every program will have to be re-installed, but with care I have been successful at exporting settings from the old registry and then importing these into the new install's registry AFTER each program has been re-installed. There are also many .INI files that all reference C: that will be copied over to the new install AFTER the programs have been reinstalled. It is for these reasons I must maintain referential drive integrity.

    Finally, it doesn't matter what drive letter gets assigned for the NON-BOOTED OS, from the booted OS. But when all done, the new install must appear as C: when it is Booted.

    This is why I am presently considering deleting everything on the HD; then re-installing the fresh install so it appears as C: (This will become my primary main OS); then creating a second primary partition and copying the full backup of the old install (that was originally on C: to the D: partition.

    There must be a way to have each of these two OS boot up as C:, even if they are on different partitions with different partition letters.
     
  6. czhower

    czhower Registered Member

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    I just spent several days trying things. What you have to do is this.

    In OS selector select the OS CD and hide the other partitions. Then install the OS to the partition you want or into freespace. Then you can unhide other partitions and assign drive letters as you want.
     
  7. Acronis Support

    Acronis Support Acronis Support Staff

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    Hello all,

    Please accept our apologies for the delay with the response.

    Thank you for using Acronis Disk Management Software

    to Dforion:
    Actually the workaround provided by czhower is most suitable and very helpful in this case.

    Thank you
    --
    Alexander Gladkov
     
  8. 5compsmike

    5compsmike Registered Member

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    I have read these threads and am trying to achieve exactly what you guys did, but I must be missing some details since I can't get it to work. I want to partition a single hard drive in a laptop into 3 different partitions, each of which has its own entirely independent operating system (All 3 will be differently customized versions of Windows XP). I apologize for not being as savvy as you guys, so my questions may seem somewhat basic. Do I need to set up a 4th partition for Boot only files like Dforion did? If so, how do you get only boot files on the partition. If I don't need the 4th partition, how should the 3 partitions be set up, Active, primary or logical. Also, do I install OS Selector first, and then add OSes later, or install OS on all 3 partitions and then add OS Selector at the end? Should I install the OS on 1 partition and then make an image with TrueImage and copy it to the other partitions? If anyone has the time, a detailed step by step procedure, without skipping any apparently obvious steps would be immensely helpful to me and I believe a lot of people. It also should be entered permanently in the FAQ files. By the way, congratulations to you guys for succeeding at this tricky task.
     
  9. SuperFreak

    SuperFreak Registered Member

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    - What do you mean boot files? Do I need to copy those "boot files" manually some way? eg. from Windows XP OS disc?

    - How can you next virus-scan all that hidden partitions under XP Pro Main System? Or you need to install antivir, antispy, anti-etc. softwares to all partitions?
     
  10. Batfink

    Batfink Registered Member

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    when you install xp, it will automatically install the boot files (boot.ini, ntdetect, ntldr etc) to the active partition.. when you get to the section where it asks you what partition to install windows on, choose the partition you want to install it to...

    In my case, my C drive is 100mb primary, active... and I chose to install windows, when asked, on my first logical partition, D (25gb)... this way, the OS files can be kept serparate from the boot partition, and is easily managable...

    I dont have a "main system"... each of them is a bootable OS independant of each other, so I can either clone the first install with virus, antispy already installed, to the other partitions, or if it is a clone of just a clean OS only, then install them on the partitions one by one...

    See here...

    https://www.wilderssecurity.com/showthread.php?p=823983#post823983
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2006
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