Dual Boot W8 and W7

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Dual Boot W8 and W7

Postby vyper » Thu Apr 04, 2013 4:35 pm

Hello all,
This is my first post here, so greetings to everyone. I will get right to the point, because this is going to be a treacherous read for you all.

History:

I have an Acer netbook, which came with windows 7. Now, for those of you unfamiliar with Acer laptops, they come with three partitions.
1. A hidden partition called PQSERVICE containing factory image etc.
2. System Reserved that Windows creates.
3. Regular C drive with windows on it.

I reformatted partitions 2 and 3 in order to install Windows 8. While installing W8, it created a 350 MB System Reserved Partition, and installed W8 on the rest. Now W8 boots up fine. The hidden restore partition is intact.

Present:

As, you might have guessed already by now, I want to dual boot W8 and W7. I would ideally resize the current C drive, make room for windows 7, then run the Acer factory restore on the newly created partition.
I do not want to get rid of W8.

This however, has its own problems. The new bootloader will be that of Windows 7. And there is the age old problem of http://support.microsoft.com/kb/926185/en-us missing restore points in a dual boot situation. I want to avoid all of that.

I also have a backup image of a W7 machine, so I dont have re-install all the apps etc. Yesterday, I tried resizing the C drive, and then put that backup image on the newly created partition. Then, installed bootit, which detected all 3 OS's (W8, W7, and Acer Recovery Environment). There were 3 entries. Not counting the RE entry, one was simply called Win 8, the other Win 8 with Windows Media Center. When I clicked on Win 8 entry, it loaded the old windows 7 bootloader somehow, and from there I could either go to Windows 7 or WIndows 8. Mind you, I had not re-installed WIndows 7, merely restored an old image on the newly created partition. So this should not have created a Windows 7 bootloader, or maybe I am completely wrong. Anyway, This was fine.

But When I clicked Win 8 with WIndows Media Center entry, then I got a bootloader error. So I booted into Windows 8 from the other, older W7 entry, and then ran Bcdboot c:\Windows. After which when I clicked the Win 8 entry again in Bootit, it would load the Windows 8 bootloader.

But the Windows 8 with Media Center entry was still not working.

This would have been okay with me, except the restore points issue was very evident. So Bootit was not able to hide the two OS's from each other.

Problem:

1. Could someone please give me a more detailed guide on how to proceed with the dual boot scenario?
2. I want to be sure that BootIT takes care of the system restore points missing issue, because I am one of the few people still left on this earth that actually use that feature. I know I know...
3. What's the deal with the System Reserved partition? Is it necessary, if one uses Bootit? Or does it have have some necessary Windows 8 components?
4. All I am really seeking a beginner's guide on how to proceed really.

Thanks for toiling through this long and winding post. Your help is much appreciated.
vyper
 
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Joined: Thu Apr 04, 2013 4:14 pm

Re: Dual Boot W8 and W7

Postby vyper » Fri Apr 05, 2013 11:00 am

Update: I am using BootIt 1.16. Last night, I tried reinstalling the whole thing all over again. I took an image backup of the Windows 8 C drive, then reformatted, and re-installed Windows 7 from the recovery partition. After which I re-installed Win 8 on the other newly created partition.
So the Windows 8 bootloader showed both entries. Then I installed Bootit again. But the same problem persists.
BootIt cannot hide the two OSs from each other, or I cannot boot into one of them.

Am I missing something? Thanks
vyper
 
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Joined: Thu Apr 04, 2013 4:14 pm

Re: Dual Boot W8 and W7

Postby Brian K » Fri Apr 05, 2013 11:58 am

vyper,

You are using the wrong method.

See Installing "Windows 7 to its Own Primary Partition (video)" on

http://www.terabyteunlimited.com/howto/index.htm

This will avoid using the Microsoft Boot Manager.
Brian K
 
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Re: Dual Boot W8 and W7

Postby vyper » Fri Apr 05, 2013 1:26 pm

Thanks for the link to that video. However, I am still confused.
Doesn't Windows 8's bootloader come with additional options to do stuff like system restore etc.? And if I manage to install Windows 8 without the System Reserved Partition, or its bootloader, then would I not be missing out on those features that new graphical bootloader brings?

Or is that a necessary sacrifice I would need to make if I want to use BootIt?
vyper
 
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Joined: Thu Apr 04, 2013 4:14 pm

Re: Dual Boot W8 and W7

Postby Brian K » Fri Apr 05, 2013 1:29 pm

The Win7 and Win8 Recovery environments are still present with the BIBM method.
Brian K
 
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Re: Dual Boot W8 and W7

Postby vyper » Fri Apr 05, 2013 4:48 pm

So now that I have 3 partitions:
1. Recovery Windows 7
2. Windows 8 Sys Reserved 350 MB
3. Windows 8

I am gonna give this a try tonight.
1. Install BootIt.
2. Resize the Win 8 partition to fit a Windows 7 install
3. Create a BootIt entry like shown in the videos.
4. Restore a Windows 7 image on this new partition.
5. ReActivate Bootit.
6. Hide the Windows 8 OS in the Windows 7 entry, so that the system restore points issue is solved.

This should give me a working dual boot machine, with both recovery environments intact, right?
And no need to delete the Sys Reserved Partition?

If this is an incorrect method of proceeding, please let me know.

So far, I cant thank you enough for your help.
vyper
 
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Joined: Thu Apr 04, 2013 4:14 pm

Re: Dual Boot W8 and W7

Postby Brian K » Fri Apr 05, 2013 4:58 pm

You could "Separate" your two OS....

http://www.terabyteunlimited.com/kb/art ... 879c32041b
Brian K
 
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Re: Dual Boot W8 and W7

Postby TeraByte Support(PP) » Fri Apr 05, 2013 6:07 pm

Windows 8 puts WinRE into the 350MB System Reserved partition. So you'd generally want to keep it or make sure to move it to the Windows partition if you want to delete that partition (otherwise, you'll lose WinRE). If you install Windows 8 without the System Reserved partition WinRE ends up on the Windows partition (just like Windows 7).

If you're using unlimited primary partitions there isn't any problem with keeping the partitions since you can have as many as you need. No "hiding" is necessary this way either since only the partitions needed will be loaded into the MBR. Each OS will never even know the other partitions exist.

What I would do is install BIBM on it's own small partition (enable unlimited primary partitions), setup the boot menu entry for Windows 8 and make sure you can boot into it successfully. Then resize the Windows 8 partition to make room for the Windows 7 restore. After the restore, you should just need to setup the Windows 7 boot menu item. The Windows 8 item would have the Windows 8 System Reserved partition and the Windows 8 partition loaded. The Windows 7 item would only have the Windows 7 partition loaded.
Paul Purviance
TeraByte Support
TeraByte Support(PP)
 
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Re: Dual Boot W8 and W7

Postby vyper » Fri Apr 05, 2013 8:14 pm

Thank you for the responses. Everything worked smoothly EXCEPT now the Windows 7 entry leads to a BOOTMGR IS MISSING error. I have extensively tried to understand the article http://www.terabyteunlimited.com/kb/article.php?id=411
As far as I can tell my windows 7 partition is set as active, after the restore. Earlier the System Res partition which booted Windows 8 was set as active.

I feel like there is something really small that I may be missing...
vyper
 
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Joined: Thu Apr 04, 2013 4:14 pm

Re: Dual Boot W8 and W7

Postby vyper » Fri Apr 05, 2013 8:23 pm

There is one curious thing that I am seeing. In the Work With Partitions window, when I click 'View MBR' I can only see the newly restored Windows 7 partition with the right label. And that is set as Active. Every other entry is 0 0 0 0h 0 0 0, Without any labels or anything. So, I am guessing I messed something up in the process.

But I did follow the above instructions diligently...
vyper
 
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Joined: Thu Apr 04, 2013 4:14 pm

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