System won't boot without an OS DvD in the drive
Posted on 2012-08-25
I built a dual boot Win7/Win8 system using two separate SSDs - one for each OS. Initially I did this the simple way by creating a Win8 DvD (from the Release Preview ISO) and building the Win8 on its SSD from within Win7. This worked well until the Win8 SSD failed to wake up from sleep (and is now being RMA'd)
But I had a spare SSD, so the second time I thought I'd just build the Win8 from scratch (with everything else disconnected). I naively assumed the boot stuff would sort itself out when I fired up the two systems together. It didn't - the Win8 insisted its boot routine was broken.
Eventually I managed to get back into Win7 and use EasyBCD to create a working boot set up. However, it only works with a bootable DvD in the drive (either Win8 or Win7 will do). If I take the DvD out I get the message that there's changed or missing hardware.
If I leave the disk in and just let it time out past the 'boot from CD?' question it's fine and I get the message allowing choice between Win7 and Win8 (the bland Win7 version though not the fancy blue Win8 one).
It'd obvious at boot time that the DvD is very busy. I thought perhaps leaving the DvD in the drive when I did the EasyBCD thing had somehow involved it in the process - so I took the DVD out and did an EasyBCD 'repair.' Made no difference though.
I'd like to understand and sort this out before going to Win8 RTM code in a couple of months. The boot business has always been black magic to me so any advice much appreciated.