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How to fix my dual boot. Formated removed the primary windows 7 now dual boot dont show

Posted on 2014-11-29
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Last Modified: 2016-11-23
Hi,

I'll try to explain the issue in the most detailed way I can:

Heres the issue:

Dell Laptop With pre-installed Windows 7 64-bit. Used the Windows 7 for a while but wanted to start using Windows 8.1. So I made 3 partitions out of my 1 harddrive. Resualting in 1 disk C: With Windows 7, one disk for D: DATA and then a empty one where my E: Windows 8.1 installation would be.

Installed Windows 8.1 into the E: drive and enabled Dual boot. I got the new and fancy Windows 8.1 / 2012 boot menu and everything was working fine. Switch the primary boot selection to Windows 8.1 and I started using it. At the time flew I only used my Windows 8.1 and since I didnt have any important  files on the Windows 7 drive I decided too format that drive too free up some Space. I probably shouldnt have done that. When i tried booting after I formatted the drive I couldnt boot at all. I got the warning that the system couldnt find any bootable Device and i should try deattaching any other harddrives etc etc.

So i figured that I had screwed things up so I installed WIndows 7 again on the drive I formatted, and got to boot and my Windows 8.1 drive are still there With all the files, so all good. But now I dont get the option to choose my Windows 8.1 when booting.

So the question boils down to this, is there any way to fix this? Can I make Windows aware of my existing install so I can boot into my Windows 8.1 again?

Optional: Lets say I can Windows aware of the Windows 8.1 partition and fix the dual boot. Is there any way to make that THE one and ONLY primary disk so I can remove the Windows 7 installation and only use Windows 8.1?

Any advice would be be highly appreciated since this is my work Laptop and i kinda need it up and running this weekend.

Best Regards.
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Question by:Anders Thoresen
3 Comments
 
LVL 93

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 40471662
I am not sure and I would certainly back up any data you can.

The Microsoft Support posts below suggests using Windows 7 Startup Repair to fix the Windows 7 boot manager. I do not know what this will do to Windows 8.

http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_7-system/windows-7-bootmgr-is-missing-resolved-using-winre/8bb148bc-8035-4847-9696-888f7a0a9720

I always use VMware and Virtual Machines now. Safer.
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Accepted Solution

by:
rindi earned 500 total points
ID: 40471687
The easiest thing would be to install EasyBCD. With it you can setup dual boot easily again. Besides, the Windows 8.x dual boot utility is terrible, as it is slow, and if you select the not default boot OS, it first does another post. The Windows 7 Dual boot option is much faster and doesn't do that, but of course it isn't mouse driven. With EasyBCD you'll get the old type boot behavior again:

http://neosmart.net/EasyBCD/
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Author Closing Comment

by:Anders Thoresen
ID: 40472023
Thanks! That worked, allthough I had some problems since it wouldnt "work out of the box" since it didnt trust the driver signature. And hitting F8 in the boot menu didnt work either to turn of driver signature thingy. So i actually had to go to the winload.exe file, find the certifcate and install it in the right place. That should have worked right? But no, still didnt trust the signature, but now I could hit F8 in the boot menu on the windows 8 without getting an error so I now could go in and disable the driver signature.

Thanks!
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