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Dual Booting Windows XP Home (Read 4434 times)
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Dual Booting Windows XP Home
Dec 5th, 2005 at 10:52am
 
I'm getting a new computer (custom built) with Windows XP home.  I want to dual boot with XP in two partitions, make a third partition logical and leave a primary open for Ghost.  The second hard drive will be mainly for backups.

From what I've read, I shouldn't have any trouble with product registration in the second partition since it's in the same computer with same hardware, ID's and serials, etc.  It would be as though I was re-installing the OS in the same computer.  Right or wrong??

My second question is this:  Do I need to create a partition for the second OS before starting the install process, or do I let the installation  CD do it?  If someone could give me procedure, I would appreciate it.  I use Partition Magic.

Thanks

Stu Culp
 
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Re: Dual Booting Windows XP Home
Reply #1 - Dec 5th, 2005 at 11:03am
 
sdculp

Do you plan on dual booting the *Microsoft* way--or use some other boot manager, or use PartitionMagic's *Pqboot* program.

Pqboot uses the technique of changing which primary partition is active with the OS on it, and hides the other OS.  This keeps both OS's truely separate--no shared boot files.  You can put the DOS Pqboot on a floppy and boot from it to switch active partitions, and there is also *Pqboot for Windows*--so you can reboot from Windows to the other OS.

If you want an in-depth discussion, see here:

Understanding MultiBooting and Booting Windows from an Extended Partition

 

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Re: Dual Booting Windows XP Home
Reply #2 - Dec 5th, 2005 at 11:24am
 
Before I got smart and quit fooling around with my wife's computer, I tried to set it up for dual booting using Boot Magic (like I do with my present Windows Me machine).  I got it screwed up royally, finally learning that Boot Magic and Bill Gates don't get along very well.  Also, I was trying to create the second partition using the copy/paste method like I do with Win Me which is a no-no for XP.  I finally returned it to a one OS machine and left it alone.

I am not familiar with PqBoot, and am pretty much OK with the Microsoft way.  Although if there are some advantages and it isn't too exotic to get set up I might consider PqBoot.  As I understand it, the issue is that Boot.ini requires that the OS'es be "position sensitive"--meaning that the OS must be restored into the same position on the disk that it was installed in.  That precludes the copy/paste method of creating an OS because the pasting operation would carry along the disk sector information from the original installation.  Right??

Am I correct on the licensing issue??

Thanks for the reply.

Stu
 
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Re: Dual Booting Windows XP Home
Reply #3 - Dec 5th, 2005 at 6:02pm
 
sdculp

Quote:
From what I've read, I shouldn't have any trouble with product registration in the second partition since it's in the same computer with same hardware, ID's and serials, etc.  It would be as though I was re-installing the OS in the same computer.  Right or wrong??

I think the EULA says the software can be installed on one system--so as long as the system is the same--multiple installs should not be a violation of the licensing--and should not trigger any product *activation* events.

If you want more information as to what triggers an *activation* event--see here:

Windows Product Activation (WPA) on Windows XP


With Pqboot, because the active boot partition changes, the boot.ini file has to point to the correct partition in the master boot table--or else the system says it can not find various boot files--the most common error message is the *hal.dll* is missing.  I use Ghost 2003 to clone my OS to the *hidden* primary partition--then Pqboot to change the active primary to the cloned OS--so the cloned OS is *identical* to the source at the time of creating the image.  This method also preserves the drive letter assignments--the OS partition remains C:\ regardless of which OS I activate--so all the program references in the Registry remain the same.

Norton Ghost tries to *modify* the boot.ini file to point to the correct partition when you use it to clone an OS partition to a partition that's not the same original partition--but this fails if your partition table is not in sequence (a Ghost bug!?--or a deficiency?!)--I created my final primary partition from free space long after I had created my six other partitions--two other primaries and 4 inside a logical partition--so that final partition is listed as the 7th partition, but its physical position is the 2nd on the HDD--Ghost modifies the boot.ini to point to the 7th partition and booting fails--I have to edit the boot.ini to point to the physical 2nd partition--boots fine.

I have also used PartitionMagic's *Copy* function to duplicate the OS partition--it too failed to boot the first few times I tested this function--I don't know what I did, but for some reason it now works okay--again, I had to edit the boot.ini to allow for booting when it was *failing* to boot.  But, whatever *fixed* PartitionMagic's *Copy* function--did not fix Ghost 2003's ability to change the boot.ini correctly.

 

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Re: Dual Booting Windows XP Home
Reply #4 - Dec 7th, 2005 at 12:46pm
 
After reading all the references pointed to, things are getting complicateder and complicateder.  Although I’m not a Bill Gates or Microsoft fan, the “Microsoft Way” is looking better and better.

Third party boot managers (like Boot Magic) need their own FAT 32 partition.  (that’s one).  The OS needs one (that’s two),  The extended partition for data, etc needs one (that’s three), and Ghost needs one to establish the virtual partition unless you run it from a floppy in DOS mode. (that’s four).  No more room in the boot drive for the second OS unless I run it in the extended partition (and Boot Magic doesn’t like that).  That means the second OS needs to run in the second drive, which will force a criss-cross method of backups.  Along with all this I would need to deal with boot.ini repair and fixing drive letters.  I’ve had first hand experience with how badly things can go if you try this and some little thing goes wrong.

All I need is a second XP system to use as a spare, for experiments or games.  To avoid the boot.ini problems, etc., I would do a second installation and then make sure I always restore an image to the partition in which it was created.  This is basically what is described in http://www.homerecordingconnection.com/news.php?action=view_story&id=151. ; Am I missing something, here, or is this the way it sums up?

Stu
 
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