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Guest Vincent

Dual Boot On 2 Different Hdd

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Hi guys,I have 2 hdd and I am planning to format my computer after my school is done. I have Vista Home Primium and XP Home and would like to put one OS onto each hdd. I am just wondering if it's the same way as putting both on the same drive. Any ideas?Vincent

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Hello,I run Dual Boot XP SP3 and Vista SP1 on 2 different HDDs. an IDE for XP an eSata for Vista.FYI I had XP running and after I installed Vista.

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Your motherboard may allow you to choose which HDD is chosen at boot time by pressing F8. If this is the case then the one way to do it is to remove one of the drives and install one OS, then when its completed install, remove the HDD and put in the other one and install the other OS. You now have 2 totally separate operating systems that are in no way dependent on one another to work or boot properly. As long as you dont go using both drives in one OS, you could at a later date totally remove 1 of the OS's without effecting the other in any way whatsoever.

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Your motherboard may allow you to choose which HDD is chosen at boot time by pressing F8. If this is the case then the one way to do it is to remove one of the drives and install one OS, then when its completed install, remove the HDD and put in the other one and install the other OS. You now have 2 totally separate operating systems that are in no way dependent on one another to work or boot properly. As long as you dont go using both drives in one OS, you could at a later date totally remove 1 of the OS's without effecting the other in any way whatsoever.
This is very topical for me as I was thinking of doing just that.Just so I get this right;Say I have Vista on HDD1 and XP on HDD2.If, while in Vista, I save a file to HDD2, the location of that file will be saved on the HDD2 MFT which will not be read by XP should I boot up to that, thus the file will not be seen under XP? Or is the MFT readable by either OS and so I could store files on HDD2 while I was in Vista (and visa versa)?Or, if, while in Vista, I install a program to HDD2, the registry entries will be in my Vista registry on HDD1, thus if I attempt to run the program while under XP it will not work because XP will be consulting its registry on HDD2?

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Basically both OS's can see files saved by either OS, I personally share some files between OS's but they are only data files not program installs. I tried this with FSX itself shared between Vista and XP (you have to make 2 installs one on each OS then do some copy and pasting and renaming, its complicated), and while it worked performance in Vista was down very much, where as a clean and separate install of FSX in Vista was actually faster in Vista 64 than it was in XP, which goes against the grain if you read most peoples comments on the performance differences between Vista and XP.Some files created in Vista wont be accesable in XP because of ownership rights etc. P.s. a program installed in Vista probably wont work in XP and vice versa, especially if it has registry dependencies.

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P.s. a program installed in Vista probably wont work in XP and vice versa, especially if it has registry dependencies.
If there are no registry entries, programs will even work across a network between Vista and XP as well as on a dual boot system. However, I install all programs to a drive other than that on which both OS's reside.George

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Hello,I run Dual Boot XP SP3 and Vista SP1 on 2 different HDDs. an IDE for XP an eSata for Vista.FYI I had XP running and after I installed Vista.
How do I do that?
Your motherboard may allow you to choose which HDD is chosen at boot time by pressing F8. If this is the case then the one way to do it is to remove one of the drives and install one OS, then when its completed install, remove the HDD and put in the other one and install the other OS. You now have 2 totally separate operating systems that are in no way dependent on one another to work or boot properly. As long as you dont go using both drives in one OS, you could at a later date totally remove 1 of the OS's without effecting the other in any way whatsoever.
So, see if I get this right. Should I keep both HDD connected when I install the OS? Say I do, I put in the Vista and installed on HDD1. Then I install XP, WHILE my Vista HDD is connected, onto the other HDD. When I start up I need to press F8 and choose the boot up disk. Am I correct?P.S. Both of my HDDs are SATA

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So, see if I get this right. Should I keep both HDD connected when I install the OS? Say I do, I put in the Vista and installed on HDD1. Then I install XP, WHILE my Vista HDD is connected, onto the other HDD. When I start up I need to press F8 and choose the boot up disk. Am I correct?P.S. Both of my HDDs are SATA
Not quite right. In the olden days, the BIOS would boot whatever OS was on the first disk that it could see, and there was no way to change that (you could use an OS chooser to select an OS, but that OS chooser had to be on the first physical disk.)Today, modern BIOS's allow you to select which physical disk will be the boot disk. Some BIOS's make it even easier by providing a way to select the disk during the POST. Other BIOS's make you go into the BIOS setup and change the selection, then reboot.If you wish to install two OS's on physically separate disks, you have two options.The first option is to use the OS's OS chooser. If you install XP on the first disk, and THEN install Vista on the second disk, Vista will install it's boot loader on the first disk. When you boot up, you can select XP or Vista from the OS chooser. This is generally the easiest way to set up a dual boot. This is also the way you have to set it up if you are installing both OS's on the same physical disk, but in different partitions.The second option is what was mentioned above. Plug in only one physical disk. Install XP to that disk. Unplug that disk and plug in the second physical disk. Install Vista to that disk. Plug in both physical disks. Now, you must use the BIOS to select which disk to boot from.Both methods have their pros and cons.Interestingly, I currently have Vista and XP installed using the first option, on the same physical disk in different partitions. When in XP, the XP partition is drive C: and the Vista partition is drive D:. But, when in Vista, the Vista partiton is drive C: and the XP partition is drive D:Also, once both OS's are installed, they can read and write files to the other OS's disk. (at least most of them. Some are protected.) No problem for data files. However, it is not advisable to install a program for one OS on the other OS's disk. If you have a third disk for data only, it can be shared by both OS's.Hope that helps a bit....jim

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Thanks Jim, that's a far better explanation than I would have been able to come up with. It takes me that long to type that I've usually forgotten what I was going to say by the end of the sentence :(

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Thanks also Jim. I'd previously noted on mobo (Asus P5E-Extreme) that if I hold down the F8 key while booting, it gives me a menu to choose which disk I want to boot from (instead of the usual safe mode screen).Do you know, if I have two HDDs with an OS on each, will the BIOS detect this and automatically pop up the boot-selection screen, or will I have to hold down F8 each time I want to choose the OS on the non-boot HDD?

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You still have to choose a default boot drive in the BIOS settings, I for example used to have it automatically boot into windows XP all the time, when i wanted to boot to Vista I just hit F8 at the appropriate time and then chose the other drive. Now I hardly use XP anymore (I think its nearly a month since I last booted to it) so I changed the default boot drive to the Vista drive instead.Unfortunately I'm fairly certain you cant get it to ask you everytime you boot, I cant on my Rampage Formula I dont think, and I wouldn't want it too either especially if you have a power out and you need the default OS to load automatically when the power returns for some scheduled tasks to execute etc.

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Vincent, keep it simple and get yourself an Idex Hard Drive Switch. I tried the dual boot thing and had nothing but problems. The switch allows you to change between 4 separate boot drives. Basically it works by simply supplying power to the drive that you want to boot from. No messing around with the BIOS. The BIOS will automatically boot from the drive that is powered. For you either XP or Vista. This is the exact same system that I have.Andrew

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Hi Andy, and everyone."…separate install of FSX in Vista was actually faster in Vista 64 than it was in XP, which goes against the grain if you read most peoples comments on the performance differences between Vista and XP."If you test apples to apples, and be very careful to have all the right drivers, in my experience, the only time I got better performance in Vista it's when it dropped the AA, AF, without really alerting you in any way. Try to look at a mountain peak and look for the jagged edges, that may be the only sign that something is different. Otherwise I always got about 15% better performance in XP. Typically the Vista Bootloader Manager takes over the XP in a dual boot on the same drive installation.For, the OP, if you deicide to install both OSs on the same Physical drive, on separate partitions, most people have better luck if you install cold boot from Vista DVD first. Good luck. TV

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Hi guys,I have 2 hdd and I am planning to format my computer after my school is done. I have Vista Home Primium and XP Home and would like to put one OS onto each hdd. I am just wondering if it's the same way as putting both on the same drive. Any ideas?Vincent
One of the issues with dual booting XP and Vista is that XP deletes Vista restore points unless you apply one of the suggested work arounds. However I was wondering if this is still the case if you install the two OSs on separate physical drives and have the other OS drive disconnected while doing each install. Grateful for some insights on this. My plan is to install have XP and Vista installed on separate physical drives with programs on different partitions for each OS (but not necessarily on separate physical drives).Bruceb

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XP definitely does not remove my restore points in Vista using the 2 separate OS installs with only 1 drive installed process. Although I must admit that I no longer use restore points as I make backups with Norton Save & Restore.

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Interestingly, I currently have Vista and XP installed using the first option, on the same physical disk in different partitions. When in XP, the XP partition is drive C: and the Vista partition is drive D:. But, when in Vista, the Vista partiton is drive C: and the XP partition is drive D:
That is interesting. In my installation, Vista is on C: and XP on D: no matter which OS is running.George

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Hmmm... What order did you install them? In my case, XP was already on the drive, in the first partition. Vista was installed second, in the second partition.I believe the drive letter that Vista uses for it's own system drive is controlled by a setting in the BCD. (From a command prompt (run as administrator,) type BCDEDIT to see what's in your BCD, if you wish.) There may have been an option during the installation that allows one to select the drive letter to be used. I don't recall it, but then, my memory isn't what it used to be.Regards,...jim

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Hmmm... What order did you install them? In my case, XP was already on the drive, in the first partition. Vista was installed second, in the second partition.
Yes, my XP was installed first.disklayoutkw9.jpgHowever, I am at present trying to clone the drive and on the cloned drive, from the boot menu I can select either XP or Vista but only Vista will load, XP will not.George

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XP definitely does not remove my restore points in Vista using the 2 separate OS installs with only 1 drive installed process. Although I must admit that I no longer use restore points as I make backups with Norton Save & Restore.
It is a well known problem with XP Vista dual boot setups and Microsoft has a couple of suggested work arounds that involve messing with the registry. It occurs because XP doesn't recognise the format Vista uses for restore points and therefore treats them as corrupted and deletes them - no problem the other way, Vista doesn't delete XP restore points. However I was wondering, if you have completely independent installs on separate physical drives with the other OS disconnected during the install process, whether this hassle can be avoided?Bruceb

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I believe a simple solution, if your BIOS supports it, is using the Select Boot Device (or something like that) dialogue that you bring up for example with an Alt-F8 on my ASUS P5E3 Premium during boot up. You can install XP on one drive. Vista on another, etc, and simply decide which one will the most commonly used, set that in the default position and that's it. You now have OS' that are unawares of each other. Seems a simple solution if your BIOS offers boot device selection during boot up.Noel

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Thanks Noel but see post #3 that's where this whole thread started for me :( If you had both HDD's plugged in when you installed Vista or XP then you haven't got a completely separate install as the last installed OS will always write something to the MBR of the other OS's drive. This is why I said only have the one HDD installed when installing the OS. It's not a major problem, but it just makes things a lot simpler and cleaner if you do do it that way from the beginning.

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Thanks Noel but see post #3 that's where this whole thread started for me :( If you had both HDD's plugged in when you installed Vista or XP then you haven't got a completely separate install as the last installed OS will always write something to the MBR of the other OS's drive. This is why I said only have the one HDD installed when installing the OS. It's not a major problem, but it just makes things a lot simpler and cleaner if you do do it that way from the beginning.
Yeah, I would also disconnect one drive before doing this just to make sure, then use the BIOS boot device select from there.

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It occurs because XP doesn't recognise the format Vista uses for restore points and therefore treats them as corrupted and deletes them - no problem the other way, Vista doesn't delete XP restore points. However I was wondering, if you have completely independent installs on separate physical drives with the other OS disconnected during the install process, whether this hassle can be avoided?
Even if you have independent installs on 2 separate hard drives (by keeping the other drive disconnecting during the install), restore points in Vista will still be deleted by XP once you boot up XP with the Vista drive connected. I know this from personal experience. :( Basically the bottom line is, if XP sees Vista, it will delete Vista's restore points. Vista's restore points are written in a different "shadow copy" format that XP doesn't recognize. XP thinks it is corrupted data and simply deletes it. There are a few work-arounds to this problem, all of which unfortunately have their drawbacks.1. One option to keep the Vista drive disconnected whenever you boot up XP, so XP never sees the Vista drive. This is a hassle to do every time and not really practical.2. Another option is a registry tweak explained by Microsoft. The disadvantage here is that whenever you use XP, you will not be able to access any data on the Vista drive.3. The third option is to use the Bitlocker function on Vista. However Bitlocker only comes with the Vista Ultimate and Enterprise editions. And even using Bitlocker, you still will not be able to access data on the Vista drive if you are in XP.So three solutions, all with their disadvantages. The best solution would have been for Microsoft to add an update to XP that would allow it to recognize Vista's restore points. So far this has not happened, even with the release of the SP3 update for XP. :( You can read more here:http://support.microsoft.com/kb/926185

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Even if you have independent installs on 2 separate hard drives (by keeping the other drive disconnecting during the install), restore points in Vista will still be deleted by XP once you boot up XP with the Vista drive connected. I know this from personal experience. :( Basically the bottom line is, if XP sees Vista, it will delete Vista's restore points. Vista's restore points are written in a different "shadow copy" format that XP doesn't recognize. XP thinks it is corrupted data and simply deletes it. There are a few work-arounds to this problem, all of which unfortunately have their drawbacks.1. One option to keep the Vista drive disconnected whenever you boot up XP, so XP never sees the Vista drive. This is a hassle to do every time and not really practical.2. Another option is a registry tweak explained by Microsoft. The disadvantage here is that whenever you use XP, you will not be able to access any data on the Vista drive.3. The third option is to use the Bitlocker function on Vista. However Bitlocker only comes with the Vista Ultimate and Enterprise editions. And even using Bitlocker, you still will not be able to access data on the Vista drive if you are in XP.So three solutions, all with their disadvantages. The best solution would have been for Microsoft to add an update to XP that would allow it to recognize Vista's restore points. So far this has not happened, even with the release of the SP3 update for XP. :( You can read more here:http://support.microsoft.com/kb/926185
Thanks. Well option 1 is quite impracticable and as I have Vista Home Premium option 3 is out also so that leaves option 2. However,in my case the only stuff on the Vista partition will be the Vista install so no problem if XP can't access it. Just one question, if your XP system restore only scans the XP system partition (which only has the XP install) will it still delete Vista restore points?Bruceb

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