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Moving the boot.ini file between partitions of XP

By Kiraeden
Apr 3, 2008
Topic Status:
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  1. Ok, well this is long and complex but I'll do my best to explain...
    After attempting and failing a BIOS update that was meant to correct a problem with the eSATA connection of my external hard drive, the update somehow screwed up my main partition of windows, I'm not sure how exactly, some part of the system was affected and the startup wouldn't get past the Windows screen without restarting the computer, safemode worked though. Anyway I had my 80 GB drive in two partitions, so I installed a second copy of windows XP on my empty partition and got it running. Now to the main problem, the system drive for windows is set as the former C: drive and contains the boot.ini..While my second partition is the boot drive. I would like to be able to format the useless partition and to do so without permanently screwing everything up requires that I move my Boot.ini file to my second partition; which is the main problem. How do I move this file to my new partition in such a way that windows continues to recognize it as my boot file?
     
  2. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 18,353

  3. Kiraeden

    Kiraeden TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I am booting just fine to my second partition, I just want to be able to format my old partition completely without destroying the boot file which XP has located on my old partition. So I need to change the location of the boot.ini file within my computer in such a way that the computer knows that it has been moved. But given what I found on one of those links, it might be somewhat useful... thanks.
     
  4. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 18,353

    Actually ypu don't need to move the boot.ini just edit it (the new one that is)
    Then format the old one
     
  5. Kiraeden

    Kiraeden TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Won't the computer lose track of where it is? I noticed when I went into
    MyComputer>View System Information>Advanced>Startup and Recovery>Settings>Edit
    and the file wasn't on C:\, that the computer had no idea where the file went and wanted me to create a new one on C, does that mean though, if I delete the one on C that it will move over to the edited copy I placed on G? Also the computer doesn't seem to want me to format that partition without deleting the boot file.
     
  6. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 18,353

    I've had another read through your post
    Yes eventually we can recover the original boot.ini text and edit the boot drive.

    But..

    What will happen, is that your Windows will basically be a little confused (ie drive letters and also partition location (which should be on the first partition anyway)

    Therefore...

    Backup fully; re-install your Windows CD and blow away both partitions, and re-install Windows to the first (or only, basically up to you if you want two partitions) partition.

    Lots cleaner, and this will take about 45Mins, compared to what you're doing (about 2 days!)
     
  7. Kiraeden

    Kiraeden TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I'd pretty much just like a Windows partition and the spare partition will be used for Linux next year in college.
    Anyway, so basically what I want to do is get all my data (which I keep on a separate disk anyway and just redirect My Docs to) off C:, format both and reinstall on the original? At this point I'd say you're right, sounds a lot easier...
     
  8. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 18,353

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