Dual boot system has an HP_Recovery first partition followed by the C: partition. Then there is an Extended partition with various logical partitions, none of which need to be bootable, although one of the logical partitions is a copy of the HP_Recovery partition.
The system is hanging on bootup when the screen says "starting windows". I've been doing a buncha partition shifting with Partition Magic 8. Then I got the dreaded "hal.dll" problem. Cleared that by putting the first two partitions back where they belonged, now I feel like I'm so close to a breakthrough!
Note: There is no "Recovery CD". Tried two XP installation CDs to get into the recovery module, but its demanding a password even though I know for FACT there is none. (Even verified it) So I plan on using a ME boot disk into an A:\ prompt then just use attributes ("C") for the Fixboot, Fixmbr, and BOOTCFG/rebuild commands.