You can't do it starting from Vista.Follow what I have here!
Well, my favorite software is Partition Magic and Microsoft said "sorry, it will not work on Vista".
So I set out to see if it was true. You be the judge.
I like to see how things work so I played around with Partition Magic and Vista.
If you perform my test you will be astounded.
Use a PC you can play with and do this and you will not believe "Boot Magic" automatically programs all Vista "boot loaders". I was astonished. Keep in mind two things if you try my test-You can not start from a Vista operating system and boot magic must be installed and enabled.
1. Powermax 4.22 Drive Eraser....Maxtor...Put it in the CD rom drawer and it writes the hard drive to zeros like it was when it was brand new.
2. Windows XP Professional, or Home Edition. Only used for "Repair" features.
3. Powerquest Drive Image 7.0
4. Symantec Recovery Disk (Norton Ghost (9.0).I only use this in case you try to restore a drive and it says, incorrect parameter, target is smaller than source". This disk ignores the difference.
5. Powerquest Partition Magic
6. You must run partition magic and make two emergency rescue floppy disks, one to boot to any partition (boot magic floppy) and one to load partition magic.
You must have a large external hard drive.
You must have the Windows XP CD that came with your PC or the recovery disk before you can do anything.
First copy or save and data or pictures or stuff you DON'T want to lose to an external hard drive and than. Use a TEST computer.
1. Run powermax and erase the drive to zeros.
2. Install the Windows XP operating system.
3. Install Microsoft net framework 1.1
4. Install Partition Magic Powerquest Drive Image 7.0 (Looks just like Ghost 9.0)and immediately make two floppy disks for recovery environment, one for "Boot Magic" as stated above" and one for "partition magic".
5. Partition the hard drive into four partitions using partition magic. How this is done depends on the size of the hard drive. Don't change the active partition. When you partition the hard drive give them names so you know which is which. Lets say the hard drive is 200 GBs, make the partitions 35, 35, 35, 80. The 80 will be an extended logical drive with a partition 2 GBs of Fat32 file system. (Needed for Boot Magic.
6. Boot to the installed operating system into windows.
9. Click on Powerquest Drive image and click on "back up drive". Select the drive you are using.
10. Make the target a folder you created in the external hard drive.
11. When it is finished copying the partition to the external hard drive open "Powerquest Drive Image" again and click on "restore a drive" and browse to your source in the external hard drive and make the target the BLANK partition#2.(With a name)
12. When it is finished writing the drive you than have two perfect operating systems totally independent of each other.
13. But when you get to this point now how do you go from one operating system to the other without installing "boot magic". It is easy, just click on "partition magic" and right click on the operating system you want to boot to and at the bottom click on "advanced" and click on "set active" and boot.
14. When you get to this point you will fail (probably) to boot correctly into the new operating system.
You will get, " autocheck missing , skipping auocheck and it reboots over and over and over.
Or you will get a black screen that says "hal.dll is missing, reinstall hal.dll...
All are fixed using Windows CD repair feature that you can get into by loading Windows XP and choosing R for repair. (Need password) I made my own by slip streaming SP2 on to Windows XP.
When you get into command prompt select the operating system you want to logon to and type: bootcfg /rebuild
What: Windows XP Home Edition
Notice the space after bootcfg before the slash mark and no space after fastdetect and the slash mark.
This will rebuild the correct boot loader.
Why I always load two or three XP operating systems instead of just using
the "Symantec recovery disk"? I do it because it is faster and I like it; however if you get into this stuff you will need the recovery disk at some point when you get the " incorrect parameter, target is smaller than source".
I always take care to match my source and target size but sometimes I have to use the Symantec recovery disk which came with Norton System Works 5. It loads exactly like Norton Ghost 9.0.
Now you can install Vista on any partition either as an upgrade (must go on top of Home Edition) or as a full install Vista DVD.
Once you have installed Vista save a drive image using powerquest drive image 7.0 or copy a drive to a drive. Both of these are targeted to an external hard drive and I leaned that if I copy a drive to a drive I can do this to it
Say I copy a Vista Drive to an external hard drive partition (copy drive to drive) and the Vista Hard Drive is 60 GBs and the external hard drive is 60 GBs.
After I finish I right click on the drive in the external hard drive and select properties and see that it is only using 16 GBs Are you ready for this????
Not only can I copy a Vista Drive to an external hard drive but now I open Partition Magic and right click on the partition in the external hard drive that holds the 60 GB copy of the Vista Operating system and resize it to 24 GBs.
I finished with this test and did it over and over an as long as Boot Magic is installed and enabled I can do anything with Vista I did with XP.
Here is a control test to confirm my findings.
1. Partition one and two has Vista installed by simply restoring a drive on the selected partition.
2. Partition three has XP Home Edition.
3. Ran Norton Ghost 9.0 recovery and installed Vista on partition three.
4. Made two mistakes (good mistakes) before testing Forgot to correct and delete incorrect boot loaders in VistaBootPRO for partition one and two and turned off Boot Magic; as a result I could not get into any operating system. I tried running the Vista DVD repair, boot magic rescue floppy, all aspects of the Norton Recovery Disk, Partition Magic rescue floppy and nothing would work. Vista DVD repair fixed the problem but still would not boot using the correct boot loader.
5. It cost me an hour because I had to use the Norton Recovery Disk and reinstall Windows XP Home (from drive image on external hard drive) back on partition three and run bootcfg /rebuild to get back into it. When I ran R repair it only recognized the XP partition and let me right in.
6. After I got in I went to the fat 32 partition that has Boot Magic on it and set it active with partition three as the default.
7. I then booted to the two Vista partitions first and ran VistaBootPRO and deleted the incorrect boot loaders.
8. Next I booted to Ghost 9.0 recovery and restored Vista V2i image to partition three.
9. Booted perfectly using Boot Magic and booted correctly to partition one and partition two. Partition three would not boot (I already knew it wouldnt) so I made sure partition three was set to default OS in Boot Magic configuration and ran Vista DVD repair and it corrected it and booted to the Vista and got this message what operating system do you wish to logon to it gave me a choice of four to pick from. One, two and four were WRONGchoice three was correct. In VistaBootPRO the correct one says Drive C.
10. I then opened VistaBootPRO and deleted choice 1, 2 and 4.
11. So in this test I now have three operating systems running Vista and one logical drive (fat 32) with Boot Magic installed on it. On my logical drive the fat 32 is 1.5 GB's and the other 78 GB's I can divide and divide any way I choose. Remember, I only have ONE hard drive.
12. Test complete and turned out exactly how I thought it would.
13. Conclusion to this test is as follows. Boot Magic MUST be active in order to boot into the operating systems when restoring Vista drives.
14. The Vista drives will never boot correctly(on first boot) and the user must run the Vista DVD repair feature to correct the boot loader. Then run VistaBootPRO and delete the incorrect boot loaders.
15. Boot Magic always works perfectly booting into any Windows operating system. It must always be enabled but any partition can be the default partition.
16. Final conclusion: 1.Boot Magic must be enabled. If disabled you must not boot to Vista; only boot to Windows XP. If you do boot to Vista it is weird, sometimes you can get back to XP by using the boot magic floppy rescue disk but not always. When you cant get back it is erase disk time.
17. None of this can be done if Vista is installed first on the computer. Vistas NTFS is different. NOTHING WILL WORK using Partition Magic starting with Vista.
18. But if you start with a hard drive written to zeros and follow my methods all aspects of partitions can be manipulated, copied, transferred and restored from external hard drives just as we could do with Windows XP.
All of this stuff is just me trying to figure out how things work. All these operating systems are 30 day test public keys Vista put out.
So, in conclusion, say I have a full copy of Windows XP Home and Windows XP Professional that I am not using and I buy a new computer with Vista on it.
Here is what I would do.
Erase the hard drive to zeros
Install Windows XP and follow the procedure I listed above.
I would install XP Home, XP Home, XP Professional
Install Boot Magic on the Fat 32 partition.
Install Vista of the first XP Home
Boot and have my choice of Vista, XP Home and XP Professional
PS: The most amazing part of my test was when I copied a Vista drive to a external hard drive I could then make it smaller using Partition Magic. I really like copying drive to drive because of this.
You must realize that all I did in my test was convert Vista NTFS to XP NTFS thus making it visible to partition magic.
Tell me what you think.
Retired Science Instructor
I love to experiment.
I tried to explain this to this web site and they refused to listen to me and would not perform my test and
banned me from their web site.
Isn't that terrible? ; an old man pushing 80 years of age and they stifle free thought and expression out of fear and ignorance.
Tip: After I erase the hard drive ( Powermax 4.22 Drive Eraser) I just put the Norton Recovery Disk in and restore a drive to the 200 GB drive from a drive image stored on an external hard drive.
It most often boots to "missing operating system" when I do this and all you have to do(to correct) is boot from the boot magic rescue floppy and choose 1 and boot. When it opens look at what it says. The reason it booted to "missing operating system" is because it was not visible.
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