Massive Boot Partition Qty and Drive letter issues

By Hath
Aug 30, 2005
  1. I have an odd question that I have never seen asked before (although I am sure there is a solution out there). I work in a motherboard repair facility as a test engineer, and one of our customers has many different models (150+) that we currently repair. Due to driver stability issues under our Windows XP test area, we have been charged with building up a test HDD with seperate bootable partitions for each model when there is hardware differences. Obviously having 150+ bootable partitions raises some questions.

    My main concern is when we get to model numbers 16-18, meaning that all drive letter will be used up (A: for floppy, B: reserved, 4 USB flash drives, 1 ODD, and the rest XP partitions). I would like to see each boot only show the system disk, the ODD and flash drives. I tried hiding all partitions so that only the booted partition is assigned a drive letter, but I always get this message in the light blue screen during boot "Autochk program not found...", then the system reboots. So, my question is how can I work around this? It seems hiding the system partitions from each other should work just fine except for this autochk issue. Can I remove the scan for the autochk program? Or is there a better way to make these other partitions invisible to the booted OS? :knock:
  2. RealBlackStuff

    RealBlackStuff TS Rookie Posts: 6,503

  3. Hath

    Hath TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Well, we considered the OS boot CD's, but the load time compared to a HDD is significantly slower, and test time is crucial for our production line. I read the linked post and will definately try to disable the autochk function. Does XP look for autochk whether is has it enabled or not? If I get rid of the autochk issue, will I just run into another file missing issue later or not? argggg

    It seems this may be a problem with XP in that hidden partitions cannot boot? My problem is that I "want" to hide the partitions, or otherwise find some way to keep them un-registered in my disk manager. Ahh headaches...
  4. RealBlackStuff

    RealBlackStuff TS Rookie Posts: 6,503

  5. Hath

    Hath TS Rookie Topic Starter

    LOL, my bosses say this must be done without buying any software!! (Cost down is our middle name)! Anyway, I found this link:

    And I'm a little ashamed I didn't try this before. I just need to install 1 OS, then hide it, then install another, and hide it, etc and so on. Then I can addon Bootmagic and it should activate+unhide the partition upon boot. I will post my results upon further testing...
  6. RealBlackStuff

    RealBlackStuff TS Rookie Posts: 6,503

    Good find!
    I always thought you could have no more than 4 partitions on any HD.
    Let us know how far (how many partitions) you get, please.
Topic Status:
Not open for further replies.

Similar Topics

Add New Comment

You need to be a member to leave a comment. Join thousands of tech enthusiasts and participate.
TechSpot Account You may also...