Windows XP - How do I Configure Dual Boot Environment?

narroyo99
narroyo99 used Ask the Experts™
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I have a Shuttle PC running XP on the master hard drive (HD), and a second XP (backup) installation on a second HD. A third HD is used for data only. The configuration worked well - I booted up and had a choice of the two operating systems. I then had a major error with my first HD - I thought it was a virus but after researching, it was probably an unknown "windows sucks" type error. So i had to re-intstall XP on the first HD, but now I don't have the choice of operating systems as I had before. This seems like some type of boot.ini or BIOS issue, but I don't want to play around with those on my own. Please help - is it just a matter of editing the boot.ini file, or is it more complicated? Thanks to all in advance. Also, would three HDs in one small shuttle box be advisable? Are there heating issues? Maybe this is why the first HD failed.
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Nope, should just be the boot.ini
As for the 3 drives, I guess I don't know what you mean by a "shuttle box"
Heat may be an issue, yes, but a bigger case fan may be all that is needed (if the case is cramped).

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Commented:
thanks for responding so quicklu, drmarston - so how do i edit or change the boot.ini to meet this need?
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Start > Run > 
notepad c:\boot.ini
and edit to look something like this:
<<< DONT COPY AND PASTE THIS!! you will need to modify to fit your disk / partitions >>>>>

[boot loader]
timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(1)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Other Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect

More detailed info and explinations:
http://vlaurie.com/computers2/Articles/bootini.htm
(they show a way to modify using the msconfig utility, I find it is eaiser to just edit the boot.ini file in notepad)

Author

Commented:
drmarston, what do i type after run>?  You left it blank. My disks are not partitioned; I will try this tonite. Thank you.
Top Expert 2007

Commented:
Also the Boot.ini file is normally hidden/ system,

You may need to set your file -view - to see bot types and / or remove the attributes to edit it.

Backup the original before making any changes.

I hope this helps !

Author

Commented:
sysexpert and drmarston: please see drmarston's comment above.  It reads: Start > Run> notepad...  it seems like there's a step missing or command missing.
The instructions are to click on Start
Click on run
Type: notepad c:\boot.ini
click OK


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