Boot.Ini editing question

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Boot.Ini editing question

Postby chris purkiss » Wed Oct 09, 2002 1:25 am

I’ve been trying sort out an XP install issue (see my other topic Windows XP Pro Install).

Installed XP to an old drive I have and it worked fine so used Drive Image to create an image file and then installed this to a new partition on my working drive.

When I tried to run XP however I got an error that “Windows cannot start <Windows Root>System32\hal.dll missing or corrupt”.

I think/hope the error was caused by the XP boot.ini being incorrect for the new setup. The drive I’m now trying to run XP on has three partitions:

C: Primary Boot, Windows ME (my default OS)
F: Logical, Data
H: Primary, Windows XP

(Although I’m running WME drive H: is currently visible so that I can look at the boot.ini file).

The boot.ini file created on the single drive was:

[boot loader]
timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /fastdetect

If my understanding of the boot.ini is correct this shows 1 partition with XP on partition 1.

I now want to amend the boot.ini for the new setup.

When I switch to XP using the PartitionMagic activate command the current C drive (WME) becomes hidden and XP becomes the C drive so at any one time only two partitions the Data (F) partition and XP partition (C) itself are visible.

If I change the partition(1) entry on line three to partition(2) I think this should be correct.

What I’m not sure of is whether I have to change the partition(1) entry on line four to partition(2) as well (as shown below) so that the boot.ini points correctly to the XP partition, or does that stay as partition(1) because there is only one operating system visible?

[boot loader]
timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /fastdetect

One other question. Currently all three partitions are visible whilst I play about with things. When I make the XP partition active WME becomes hidden until I make it active again.

If I want to look at the XP files whilst running WME I need to unhide the XP partition with PartitionMagic but it gives a warning about having two Primary partitions visible at the same time and possible data loss. Can I ignore the warning as I can’t see it’s any different to the situation I have now.
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Postby ab630 » Wed Oct 09, 2002 7:10 am

You could always try putting the WinXP install CD in your CD drive then reboot and in the Win XP setup choose dual boot, and install XP onto the partition you want, you should get a boot menu at startup then, instead of using Partition Magic. Dunno if this is any help.
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Postby Hardware Junkie » Wed Oct 09, 2002 11:44 am

Change it to this:

[boot loader]
timeout=30
default=multi(0)rdisk(0)disk(0)partition(3)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)rdisk(0)disk(0)partition(3)\WINDOWS="Windows XP"
C:\="Microsoft Windows Me"

If you change it to 2, then it will try to load the OS off the "Logical, Data" drive. The number has to match the partition number. 1 is the first partiton on the drive, 2 is second...and so on...
And by adding the last line, it should allow you to boot intoi Windows me aswell...
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Re: Boot.Ini editing question

Postby rg560 » Wed Oct 09, 2002 1:45 pm

chris purkiss wrote:Installed XP to an old drive I have and it worked fine so used Drive Image to create an image file and then installed this to a new partition on my working drive.

What was the drive letter of the "old drive" at the time you installed XP on it?

It would have to have been drive H for XP to work correctly or even load for that matter, as everything on the operating system is referd to as H:/ file/file/etc:

Because you used a image it needs to be installed on a drive or partition with the same drive letter.
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Postby chris purkiss » Thu Oct 10, 2002 2:30 am

Thanks for the replies.

Hardware Junkie Wasn't sure about whether it would need 2 or 3 as I didn't know how the hidden partition was treated.

Made the changes you suggested and the Windows cannot start <Windows Root>System32\hal.dll missing or corrupt”. error didn't show but instead I got the problem I started off with when I originally did a clean install of XP to the partition (before I tried the image restore method) namely that the system hangs at the "Verifying dmi pool data" stage of POST.

All efforts to resolve this problem have drawn a blank, the only conclusion I can come up with is that PartitionMagic 6 does something with the partition that my BIOS doesn't like. Contacted Soltek my mainboard manufacturer as they bundled PM 6.0SE with the board and are supposed to provide support. They could only suggest

Sir, could you please try install your multiple system without using the Partition Magic?
Thank you!


I suppose they are suggesting I use FDISk to create the partition but I'm a bit a nervous about doing that in case I upset my working ME system. I've never used FDISK to change things, only to set things up originally.

rg560 The image was taken from drive 'C'. When it's restored and the partition is made active it becomes 'C' as my default OS of ME becomes hidden.

I've now moved some data around and restored the image to drive D which is my Primary Slave. PM shows that as active, presumably as a result of the image restore, and I was wondering if/how I can boot from there just to see if it works. There is now unallocated space on the drive as it is bigger than the drive I took the image from.

Should I use PM to switch the Active off or could I use BootMagic to switch between the two? I wanted to see if XP would boot and then resize the partition to the full drive size to see if it would still boot. If it doesn't then it's definitely a PM issue.

If I get into trouble can I use FDISK MBR to restore back to boot in ME?
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Postby Mr T » Thu Oct 10, 2002 4:10 am

I can see your problrm is using PM6 with win XP. I've found it doesn't like it at all(I think it interferes with XP's own disc management software). PM7 is the one to use with XP, but you should't have to use it as a bootloader, windows has it's own.
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Postby chris purkiss » Thu Oct 10, 2002 5:05 am

Hi Mr T

Thanks for the reply.

I'm not doing anything with PM6 from within XP (I can't get it running) all my changes etc. are made running PM6 in ME so don't know what PM is doing to the XP partition to cause the problems I'm having.

Incidentally, I was told that if I got XP running then other than PQBOOT, which causes a system freeze, everything else in PM6 would run ok.

Since my earlier posting I'be been trying to get XP running from the restored image file on the Primary Slave drive, but again no success.

I have BootMagic installed (but not enabled) and have both ME & XP showing on the configuration menu. I have ME set as my default. If I enable BootMagic I get the menu with the two options shown but if I select XP my system just does a restart and shows the BootMagic menu again so unless I select ME, which starts ok, it just goes into a perpetual loop. I've now disabled BootMagic again.

Tried the Advanced Partition Hiding option but got the same result, other than it hid the primary partition on my third drive which is used for my personal data.Thought I'd lost all my data and had to unhide the partition manually to get it back.

Noted your comments about not using PM as a bootloader. Because of the way I've installed XP it's completely separate from ME so there are no XP files in the root directory of my ME partition, which is what I wanted. I was just going to use PM to switch about until it was all working ok and then use BootMagic.

I'm now at my wits end as to what to try next to get XP running in some form or another.
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