Inserting new partition

Discussion in 'Acronis Disk Director Suite' started by Earthling, Apr 21, 2008.

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  1. Earthling

    Earthling Registered Member

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    If a new primary partition is created Windows will assign it a new drive letter which precedes any logical partition lettering, all of which then have to bump up one letter. This then stops lots of things from working properly afterwards - all those reg entries pointing to the wrong place.

    I seem to remember when I had PM8 under XP that it had a utility bundled with it (Drive Mapper I think) that could sort this mess for you if you gave it the old and new drive letters that had been affected.

    Is there anything comparable for DD10 in Vista?
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2008
  2. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    Earthling:

    DD10 does not have an equivalent to DriveMapper. There was some discussion of this issue here about a month ago; here is a link.

    As long as your system partition's drive letter does not change then you can use Windows Disk Management console to change the other drive letters to whatever you'd like to have and, once stored in the registry, those new drive letter assignments will be persistent.
     
  3. Earthling

    Earthling Registered Member

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    Mark

    Cutting a rather long story short, could the fact that my VistaPE partition on the eSATA is positioned right at the end of a 320GB drive cause it not to boot?

    Or could the fact that to avoid the problem referred to in #1 I have used Disk Management to assign it the letter J instead of the D that both Windows and VistaPE prefer also be the cause of it not booting?
     
  4. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    Earthling:

    Is the main problem that your VistaPE partition is no longer bootable?

    If so, it will have nothing to do with the drive letter -- drive letters are a Windows "thing" and only have meaning when Windows is running. At boot time, drive letters are meaningless. There is low-level assembly language code running that is unaware of drive letters.

    What caused VistaPE to stop booting? Is it still in a primary, active partition? Did you move or relocate the VistaPE partition?
     
  5. Earthling

    Earthling Registered Member

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    Mark

    Yes, that is the problem. In the aftermath of losing Vista a week ago I removed the VistaPE partition, determined that I would never again use anything labelled Acronis after losing Vista doing nothing more than a test disk backup and restore.

    I've since reconsidered that, and although after our earlier efforts I'm confident that I fully understand the process of creating the VistaPE partition it persistently fails to boot and I'm really scratching my head as to why this should be. It is in a primary, active partition identical as far as I can see to the one it was in when it did boot.
     
  6. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    What differences, if any, are there between the working VistaPE partition and the non-booting one? Same hard disk as before? Is the disk the BIOS disk #1 as before? Same slot in the partition table as before? Same format? Any specifics would be helpful in identifying a cause.

    I am unfamiliar with your failed Vista restoration attempt but with multiple hard disks each with active partitions then the chances are that Windows reassigned drive letters at first reboot. Then again, that's another topic...
     
  7. Earthling

    Earthling Registered Member

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    This what is so puzzling. Apart from setting up a 2GB partition v. 4GB before everything else is identical, same disk, no BIOS changes, both FAT32, both positioned at end of disk. DD confirms partition is Primary, Active, and the bootsect.exe command is being executed onto a freshly DD formatted partition using the Command Line in the Repair Computer option when booting from a Vista DVD.

    It's a puzzle.
     
  8. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    From one of your previous threads in the TI forum, I thought that you only were able to boot VistaPE when the partition was formatted as NTFS:

    https://www.wilderssecurity.com/showthread.php?t=204580&page=2, posts #26-30.

    Two other thoughts come to mind:

    1. A screen shot of your disk partition layouts from DD running in Windows, manual mode, may be helpful.
    2. Perhaps it's worth a try to boot VistaPE from Grub4DOS - one advantage is that you can locate the partition anywhere on either disk. For example, if you locate it on IDE-1 then Grub4DOS can do a drive map to fool VistaPE into thinking that it is running from IDE-0.
     
  9. Earthling

    Earthling Registered Member

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    Here's the view from DD
     

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  10. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    Earthling:

    Would you mind doing a test? Install Grub4DOS as a boot manager on Disk 2. You can follow the instructions in MudCrab's VistaPE guide starting at step 3. Be sure to select Disk 2 as the destination when installing Grub4DOS to the MBR.

    I'm curious to see if using a boot manager will allow VistaPE to start. Often, a boot manager will overcome some of the limitations of a PC BIOS.

    If you can boot from Disk 2 and see the Grub4DOS menu come up but VistaPE still does not start, then insert the following two lines into the VistaPE boot stanza of GRUB's menu.lst file and try again:

    Code:
    title VistaPE
    [B][COLOR="Red"]map (hd0) (hd1)
    map (hd1) (hd0)[/COLOR][/B]
    chainloader /bootmgr
     
  11. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    On my internal backup drive, I have VistaPE installed to a small FAT32 Primary/Active partition at the end of the drive. Grub4DOS is installed into the MBR of the drive. To boot the drive I just select it as the boot drive in the BIOS. No mapping was needed.
     
  12. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    Paul:

    Agreed. That's the way it should work. But if it doesn't, then I was suggesting to swap disk order with GRUB.

    Because of the problems Earthling had (described in this thread), I suspect that his BIOS does not enumerate the booting disk as Disk 0 (80h). One of the posts stated that VistaPE would only boot if the disk was physically connected to the primary IDE cable on his problematic PC. If that is indeed the issue then the disk order swap with GRUB should fix it.
     
  13. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    It will be interesting to see what works. VistaPE may work with the drive mapping, but there have been cases with OSS and using the Disk Order feature (which does the same type of thing) where Vista won't boot properly if it's swapped. VistaPE may be a little less sensitive.

    Perhaps dropping to the GRUB command prompt and doing a find to find out how it sees the drives. It may not be what we think.
     
  14. Earthling

    Earthling Registered Member

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    Mark

    The thread you have been studying, and which you linked to in your last post, related to trying to get a VistaPE partition booting on my old XP comp, so is not really relevant to the newer Vista + XP comp in the pic above.

    Right now I'm not going to tamper any more with the boot setup, as during my efforts to persuade VistaPE to boot I went into BIOS and disabled Disk 1, the system disk. Even having done that VistaPE still would not boot from Disk 2, but when I re-enabled Disk 1 it then failed to boot automatically to the boot order. I'm having to use F8 atm to tell it which disk to boot from. Nothing at all happens if I just leave it to the BIOS. After having lost Vista just last week this is making me a bit nervous.

    I will come back to your suggestions when I am happy that everything is stable and booting normally.
     
  15. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    Earthling:

    OK, I got confused about which computer you were describing.

    It may be worthwhile to take a good look at the disk order choices in your BIOS. There may be more than one or two screens with selections. Some PCs have a disk order screen (which disk in considered disk 0, disk 1, etc) and a separate boot order screen (which device boots the PC).
     
  16. Earthling

    Earthling Registered Member

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    We've got a bloke just like you Mark on the Tiscali forum in the UK. Always puts his finger on the problem when everyone else is scratching their head.

    Booting normally from BIOS again, so now when I've got a spare hour or two I can start to look at your other suggestions.

    Thanks :)
     
  17. Earthling

    Earthling Registered Member

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    Mark:

    Grub4DOS has sorted it, no mapping necessary. Well done.

    When you have nothing better to do - ha - would you please take a look at this short thread please? I would like to know what may have gone wrong and how I ensure it doesn't happen again.

    https://www.wilderssecurity.com/showthread.php?t=206513
     
  18. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    Earthling:

    Glad to hear that you have VistaPE booting again.

    For the Vista restore with TI 11 problem:
    Whenever the error mentioned in item 7 occurs it means that Vista's Boot Configuration Database (BCD) is not pointing to the correct location on the drive. I suspect that all you would have needed to do was to repair the BCD to make Vista bootable. But I don't understand why the Vista automatic repair was unable to do so.

    Here is a little conjecture on my part. We don't know (or should I say I don't know) how TI 11 is able to move a partition upon restoration and avoid the "winload.exe is missing" error message. Acronis is doing something behind the scenes to avoid this, but I suspect that they have only worked this out for a plain-vanilla Vista installation that boots and runs from the same partition.

    In your case you have a dual-boot system with the Vista boot files in the XP partition and Vista in another partition. So my guess is that however TI 11 handles this, it does it incorrectly for your dual-boot setup.

    Since you have experience with running the Vista DVD, it would be a simple matter to do a manual repair of the BCD. Again, the automatic repair should have sorted this, but you could certainly do it manually.

    If you don't mind, could you boot into Vista and copy the output of the command bcdedit and post it back here? The details might let us make a more-educated guess as to what went wrong.
     
  19. Earthling

    Earthling Registered Member

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    Here you go


    Windows Boot Manager
    --------------------
    identifier {bootmgr}
    device partition=D:
    description Windows Boot Manager
    locale en-US
    inherit {globalsettings}
    default {current}
    resumeobject {b339c4d1-f144-11dc-92e2-ce65acb18766}
    displayorder {ntldr}
    {current}
    toolsdisplayorder {memdiag}
    timeout 30

    Windows Legacy OS Loader
    ------------------------
    identifier {ntldr}
    device partition=D:
    path \ntldr
    description XP SP2

    Windows Boot Loader
    -------------------
    identifier {current}
    device partition=C:
    path \Windows\system32\winload.exe
    description Vista SP1
    locale en-US
    inherit {bootloadersettings}
    osdevice partition=C:
    systemroot \Windows
    resumeobject {b339c4d1-f144-11dc-92e2-ce65acb18766}
    nx OptIn
     
  20. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    Thank you. All you have to watch out for if you run into this problem again is that the four entries highlighted in red come out properly. If any of the partitions are moved or relocated during the TI restore then the above entries will instead be listed as "unknown". From your described symptoms, the two pointers to D: were correct because the boot manager started and XP was able to be booted. But the two pointers to the C: partition must have been "unknown".

    To fix it's a simple matter of:

    1. Booting from the Vista DVD
    2. Starting a command prompt
    3. Typing "bcedit" to see what condition the BCD is in
    4. Fixing any "unknown" entries to point to the correct partition. See the "bcdedit set" command. Type bcdedit set /? for the help file.
     
  21. Earthling

    Earthling Registered Member

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    Great, but let's hope I never need it!

    All the same I think it might be quite some time before I stop also taking a Ghost image of Vista from XP from time to time, after all it saved me this time.

    Anyway atm everything seems to be just as it should be, largely thanks to you.
     
  22. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    Earthling:

    I have a strong suspicion of the underlying cause. If you've got some time tomorrow, run DD and view sector 0 "as partition table". Post a screen shot here. Make sure your window is enlarged enough horizontally to view all of the window contents.

    If my hunch is correct I can tell you how to permanently fix it so that TI will do the restore without needing any repairs after restoration.
     
  23. Earthling

    Earthling Registered Member

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    No time like the present -
     

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  24. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    In the above figure there is an "Enter" button to the left of the extended partition entry (second "slot" in the partition table). Press it to display the parameters of the first logical partition.

    The first line at the top of the next screen will be an entry for your Vista partition. Is "Relative Sectors" set to 63 or 1024?
     
  25. Earthling

    Earthling Registered Member

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    It's 63
     
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