How to dual boot 2 XP's?

Discussion in 'Acronis Disk Director Suite' started by tombuur, Nov 22, 2007.

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  1. tombuur

    tombuur Registered Member

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    I have spent hours trying to do this. Months ago I gave up, and now once again I have tried in vain. No help searching this forum. I have Acronis Image Home and Disk Dir. Suite.

    I want to make a copy of a well-functioning XP to the same hard disk so that I can boot up with the second copy to test new software before making changes to the main system. I have managed to make a copy so that I have two partitions with XP on drive 1. The OS Selector also shows two Windows systems, but always boots to the same one no matter what I do.

    I have searched this forum and found stuff about sysprep and editing boot.ini etc. But this is certainly no simple way of selecting OS as the impression the adverts for Acronis software try to make you think. Do I have to make all these tweaks manually? Where is the FAQ describing the procedure in simple steps?
     
  2. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    tombuur,

    This web site explains how to do it so that the OSs are independent. Make sure your destination partition is unallocated space when you create the WinXP image. Or make sure the destination partition is unallocated space when you clone the WinXP partition. Otherwise you will have drive letter issues as the original WinXP will have "seen" the destination partition.

    http://www.goodells.net/multiboot/index.htm

    I have two WinXPs at present but as a test I had 15 on the one HD.

    Don't install your boot manager until the final step. So if it's there now, uninstall it.
     
  3. tombuur

    tombuur Registered Member

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    Thanks, will try again tomorrow.
     
  4. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Any questions? Just ask.

    You needn't read the section on OSs in Extended Partitions.
     
  5. thecreator

    thecreator Registered Member

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    Hi tombuur,

    You can't simply copy an operating system from one partition to another partition and have it work.

    You need to install it. I have two copies of Windows XP Home Edition installed on the same Hard Drive. One is Drive E:\ and the other is Drive G:\ and the Windows XP Boot Manager is controlling the Boot and works fine.

    Problem exists with the installed programs in the operating system and the Windows Registry pointing to another drive, instead of the current drive partition and the problem is compounded if your documents exist on another Hard Drive as well.

    Works fine.
     
  6. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    This is only really true if you are using the Windows Boot Manager (as you are).

    In the simplest form, XP can be copied (or restored) to another partition and boot just fine as long as...

    • it was copied (or restored) outside of Windows
    • the booting partition is Active
    • the boot.ini file on the booting partition points to the correct partition(#)
    • all the other OS partitions are Hidden
    This can be done manually with just DD by changing the Active and Hidden partitions to the correct settings for the OS you want to boot.
     
  7. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Hi thecreator,

    That's one of the ways I create a multi-boot system. You can do multiple restores of the same image or multiple clones of the same partition. See this page on "The Microsoft Way" and "The Third Party Way". Interesting reading.

    http://www.goodells.net/multiboot/principles.htm
     
  8. tombuur

    tombuur Registered Member

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    Sorry, I can't figure this out. Just more confused today by reading the links. Nowhere is there a clear step by step instruction about how to set up a dual boot system. Particularly with Disk Director/Acronis Image.

    Looks like the only realistic solution is to get a swapable harddisk for booting and then insert the system I want before start up. If I cannot make a copy of my preferred working system, but have to install again from bottom up, then Disk Director is no use at all.
     
  9. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    tombuur,

    I'm happy to go through this with you. If you want to.
    How large is your HD? How many partitions? How large is each partition? Where do you store your TI images? One or two HDs? External HD?
     
  10. tombuur

    tombuur Registered Member

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    Okay, thanks, so let's try to create a step by step procedure.

    I have 3 internal harddrives in my computer. But only one is used for system (drive 1, 120GB), and that's where I want to boot from and have the OS installed, preferably as drive c when working. The others (2x500GB) are used for data and backup. That's where I store Acronis images too.

    I imagine having partions around 40GB on the system drive. I only need the two XPs. In principle XP1 will be the one used for production. From time to time I will make a copy of that, XP2, to test demo programs, updates etc. before installing them in XP1. My current XP1 takes up about 16GB.

    So from here I can start with XP1 installed in a single partition on the drive 1 and make whatever copies and partitions necessary using Arcronis Image Home 10, and Disk Director 10. If you recommend the recent Acronis Image 11 I will buy the update. As I understand it can do a "roll-back" so it might come in handy for testing purposes of XP2, anyway. On the other hand a new clone of XP1 could do the same.
     
  11. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    OK. Let's assume your WinXP 1 partition is 40 GB. Delete all other partitions from your first HD so you have around 80 GB of unallocated space. Uninstall any boot manager you have installed. Now create an image of WinXP 1 with your Acronis TI. Write the image to somewhere on your second or third HD.

    Shutdown your computer and don't restart until we are finished the following steps. Boot to your Disk Director 10 CD and create a primary partition of 40 GB (actually make it the same size as WinXP 1) to follow your current partition. You will still have unallocated space at the end of the HD. We'll deal with that later.

    Now boot to your TI CD and restore your image to the second partition. You don't have to restore the MBR or set the partition active.

    Now boot to your Disk Director 10 CD and make sure the first partition is active. Make sure the second partition is "hidden".

    ONLY NOW, boot to Windows. Your WinXP 1 will be C: drive and the new OS won't have a drive letter. But you will be able to see the new partition in Disk Management. It should be Healthy (Unknown partition) with no drive letter.

    I'm going to bed soon but let me know when you have completed the above steps. Don't go any further yet. Your WinXP 1 will operate normally.

    Could you copy and paste the boot.ini of your WinXP 1 to your reply when you have finished the above steps.
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2007
  12. tombuur

    tombuur Registered Member

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    "Now boot to your TI CD and restore your image to the second partition. "

    Can't do that.

    I never get the option of installing to nothing but the original XP1 partition or MBR and track 0.

    Sorry, TI confuses the user here. It says please select a partition ... to restore and only gives XP1. But if I proceed I get get another please select ... to restore to. Not very clear. Should be improved by Acronis. I will see what happens now.
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2007
  13. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    I'm still awake.

    When you created the image, as source did you choose the C: partition or the whole HD? It should be only the C: partition.
     
  14. tombuur

    tombuur Registered Member

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    I found out how to proceed (added in above post) and I used an image of the partition, not the whole disk.

    I now have XP2 in Computer Management\Disk Management, but without a letter and healthy. BTW Where is "Computer Management". I always have to use the help function and its link to get to it.

    Here is my boot.ini

    [boot loader]
    timeout=30
    default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
    [operating systems]
    multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect


    I found this in System Properties\Advanced\Startup and Recovery\Edit
    Just by coincidence I knew. Because boot.ini is hidden to the search function, so where on the disk is it? Another hurdle for the dummy here.
     
  15. Texcritter

    Texcritter Registered Member

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  16. tombuur

    tombuur Registered Member

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    Yeah, that's what I thought. Looks like you need to uncheck "hide operating system files" in tools\folder options... to see it. I only checked "show hidden files" which is another thing clearly (or not so clearly).
     
  17. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    tombuur,

    Good work. Now to examine the boot.ini of WinXP 2.

    Boot to your Disk Director 10 CD and follow this procedure

    https://www.wilderssecurity.com/showthread.php?t=176064#10

    to make your boot.ini like this. (you are changing a 1 to a 2, twice)

    [boot loader]
    timeout=30
    default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS
    [operating systems]
    multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect

    It's possible Acronis TI has already made the alterations for you. If so, good.

    Shutdown and boot to WinXP 1 to make sure things are still OK. Shutdown and boot to your Disk Director 10 CD again. Do what MudCrab suggested above...

    As you want to boot WinXP 2, make that partition active and make WinXP 1 "hidden". Vice versa when later you want to boot to WinXP 1.

    Report back when that is working.

    PS Look in Disk Management to confirm which is the System Partition. When you are in WinXP 2 the second partition should be System (and also be your C: drive).
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2007
  18. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    Also, note that if TI 10 changed the partition table order, then partition 1 will be in slot 2 and partition 2 will be in slot 1. If this happens, then you'll need to reverse the values in the boot.ini files for the partition(#) entries.

    For example: XP1 will have partition(2) and XP2 will have partition(1)

    As Brian said, TI 10 should have made the boot.ini file changes for you.
     
  19. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    MudCrab, I well remember your posts on this topic and I was hoping tombuur would be an exception. Looks like he is as his WinXP 1 boot.ini is partition(1).

    Could you take him through the OSS stage after he can boot both OSs with the Disk Director 10 technique?
     
  20. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    I noticed this too and wondered why. It would be nice to see a screenshot of the partition table and the DD disk/partition screen (in manual mode).

    I can certainly try. I would suggest that if he's going to use OSS, than he create a small Primary FAT32 partition at the end of the drive (100MB or so) and OSS be installed there (custom install of OSS) instead of to one of the XP installations (especially since he's indicated that he intends to "update" his XP2 with XP1 from time to time).
     
  21. tombuur

    tombuur Registered Member

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    Well, I don't what you are going to pull me through, but so far I cannot make any of the partitions active/inactive. That choice is greyed out in the Disk menu in DDS. So I am not getting in further with Brian's advice right now.

    ... And now it is close to bedtime in Europe. Just need get my wife from the airport.
     
  22. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    If you boot to DD from the DD CD and select Manual mode, it should show your partitions. The Primary partitions will be yellow and the logical partitions will be blue. Only Primary partitions can be set Active.

    When you created the new partition for XP2, did you make it Primary NTFS? DD defaults to Logical for new partitions.

    When you restored the XP1 partition image with TI to the XP2 partition did you select Primary as the partition type or was it Logical? If the partition is Logical, that would explain why your boot.ini in XP1 still referenced partition(1) instead of being changed to partition(2).

    Do you have TI 9, build 3,677? If so (and it works properly on your system), you could use it to image and restore the XP1 partition and not worry about the partition table changes. However, you'd need to manually edit the boot.ini file on the XP2 partition. If you don't have (and use) TI 9, build 3,677, TI 10 should automatically adjust the boot.ini files for the new partition table order and you shouldn't need to make any changes to the files.
     
  23. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    tombuur,

    Have you already edited the boot.ini for WinXP 2? Good. Continue from here....

    When you boot to the Disk Director boot CD, choose Manual mode.

    As MudCrab mentioned we expect to see two primary partitions, coloured yellow. In the Flags column, WinXP 1 should be Pri, Act and WinXP 2 should be Pri, Hid.

    Right click the WinXP 2 partition and click Advanced. Click Set Active and click OK for the warning.

    Again right click the WinXP 2 partition and click Advanced. Click Unhide and click OK for the warning.

    Right click the WinXP 1 partition and click Advanced. Click Hide.

    Now the flags should be reversed. In the Flags column, WinXP 2 should be Pri, Act and WinXP 1 should be Pri, Hid.

    Click the Commit button. etc and restart.

    Now you should boot to WinXP 2.

    Problems?
     
  24. tombuur

    tombuur Registered Member

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    Good morning from Denmark.

    I made XP2 partition logical, because I was not given the choice of making it primary. It was greyed out.

    So I guess we are in a blind alley here and need to go back?
     
  25. tombuur

    tombuur Registered Member

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    Good morning from Denmark.

    I made XP2 partition logical, because I was not given the choice of making it primary. It was greyed out.

    So I guess we are in a blind alley here and need to go back?

    -----

    I have now gone back to the step where the XP1 image is restored to the XP2 partition. Strangely, this time I get the "primary" option which I definately not did the last time. But then I also used unallocated space, I believe.

    If this works I will eventually go back and test the whole procedure from the very beginning.
     
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