Duel boot issues

Alright guys, here's the issue. I'm currently taking my A+ course, and unfortunately we are learning a lot of stuff on XP and Vista :( So i decided to reload my laptop with win7, Vista, and XP all on seprate partitions. Just so I have all the resources I need. I installed vista and 7 just fine. When the computer booted I got the option to choose between the two. Then I installed xp on a 3rd partition , it installed fine, but now i dont get any boot options, It just boots directly into xp.


thanks ahead of time guys

If this is for class, then I would look into using VMs instead.... A lot less of a hassle. And a rule of thumb for multi booting with Windows 7 is to always install it last.

As for trying to boot into Win7, set your Win7 partition to the primary drive.

Go to CMD

Type "diskpart"

Type "list disk"

Type "select disk <Whatever your disk is>"

Type "List part"

Type "Select part <Windows 7 partition>"

Type "active"



Edit: Or just install EasyBCD and fix it all with that

Tried that. Somehow I killed my boot manager :( I'm just going to reinstall everything. Xp. Then vista. Then 7. Then 8. And everything SHOULD work

Yea thats the issue with dual booting with 7. It will wipe the MBR on the 7 part. If you had anything important, pop in a recovery disk and change the XP part to active and boot into that. Otherwise, just climb the ladder like you said and you should be ok. (I haven't messed with dual booting since 2009 though when I made my hackntosh)

 Nothing important on the HDD. and I perfer it to vm machines. Juat cause I like having %100 access to all the hardware

Well xp keeps BSOD so I'm just going to skip it an run it in the widows 7 vitural machine


I use this program when I need to fix MBR. Don't go reinstalling your OS because of a broken MBR. It always happens when you install XP after Vista/7/8 because XP is not forwards compatible with MBR used in Vista, 7 and 8.

Although in your case I'd rather use Windows 7 and launch other operating systems in virtual machines.

VM's can be very powerful if you have the right hardware and you configure them properly. I do a majority of my work though VMs... But it's fun ti play around with dual booting and seeing what issues you run into

Yup, EasyBCD ftw.

Although I do not believe it is an issue with XP as much as it is with the MBR of Vista - 8... When dual booting with any OS (maybe not ubuntu?) the MBR breaks. If I remember correctly, it is because the bootloader isn't installed on the same partition as the OS, but instead on the MBR.. Which gets overwritten by the new bootloader (Like GRUB or chameleon). Since there is no bootloader on the Windows part, it cannot open the necessary files to boot. Although, I could be way off as I haven't played around with this kind of stuff since freshman year of highschool

that easybcd looks interesting, i may try it in the future. But the hardware is not very powerfull, 4+ year old mid range laptop. Thats why I was avoiding VM's. But I've got vista and 7 installed now. Everything is going ok. 8 is next, and hopefully that wont break everything. 

As long as bootloader of the system you are installing is compatible with present bootloader, you will be able to boot into previously installed systems. In case of Windows, every subsequent system has bootloader that is backwards compatible with previous versions, but XP and earlier systems don't have forward compatibility with later systems. That's why when you install 7 after XP you get "Windows 7" and "Earlier version of windows" choice on boot but you don't get one when you install XP after 7.

If you make any two installations of windows Vista/7/8, second installation will always detect MBR of the first system and make an entry in it instead of creating a new one.

 I was referring more toward where the bootloader is installed. For example, when you install things like Ubuntu with the GRUB boot loader, the bootloader is installed on the Ubuntu partition instead of the MBR sector of the drive. Although last night I think I was thinking XP installed its bootloader in this fashion, which is not the case. Long day and I was just being derp, ignore me.

Just and Update guys, I got Vista, 7, and 8 installed perfectly. The windows 8 bootloader takes care of everything which is nice.