Laptop came with Vista- Want XP as well!

By Boodyman ยท 13 replies
Feb 11, 2007
  1. I recently purchased a new Toshiba laptop that came with Vista Home basic installed. It has 80 Gig in the hard drive. I have several valid copies of XP with registration codes from my other computers in the house and have never done partitioning, etc. I need to know if I can just load an XP disc in the disk drive and hopefully get prompted to load into any drive other than "C"??

    I see lots of posts going the other way, but I want XP Back! Go easy as I'm about a "2" on a scale of 1000 when it comes to this stuff!

    Thanks! My first post to what appears to be a great help for us old folk who feel intimidated by this stuff.

  2. Ipsofacto

    Ipsofacto TS Rookie Posts: 29

    You cannot put XP or any other OS in the same drive as you have any other, i.e. Vista - Even if it is partitioned - You will crash!!!

    If you also want to use XP, you will need an seperate drive not a partitioned part.

    Once yp\ou have a second drive internal or external, you can choose at log on which one to use.
  3. Liquidlen

    Liquidlen TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,094

    From what I have read you cannot Dual boot Vista. That means you cannot attach a seperate HDD to the same computer and install XP there.
    Remember, 2 or more O/S's must use the same MBR which is on the first active partition, and the oldest Windows must be installed first. The first thing the Vista I tried to load did was to wipe out the existing XP.
    I would say the only way is for you, is to physically switch HDD's in and out of that LTP.
  4. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 4,572   +65

    Vista uses the same old NTDETECT and NTLDR stuff that XP uses, right? It also uses the same old NTFS file system that's been used for years, yes?

    I am pretty certain dual booting is possible. Here's a random guide, although I haven't read through it:

    I know that it may be impossible to boot a 64-bit version of Vista with a 32-bit boot loader, such as the XP boot loader. I imagine you could dual boot XP x64 and 64-bit Vista without problems. The 32-bit version of Vista should not have problems dual booting with a traditional x86 install of XP.
  5. Liquidlen

    Liquidlen TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,094

    I stand corrected , Thanx Rick.
  6. Boodyman

    Boodyman TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I have seen a lot of info about adding Vista Beta to existing XP, but not the other way around. I would like to set up my 80 gig HD with about 50 gig for Vista and rest for XP. I already need another printer as Lexmark does not show X125 running with Vista. This is the part the sux when your peripherals become obsolete such as printers. The geek squad says it can be done, but likely will have to start from scratch. Luckily I have no files to lose!

    Still looking for help adding XP back~

  7. Boodyman

    Boodyman TS Rookie Topic Starter

  8. chamillitarysk8

    chamillitarysk8 TS Booster Posts: 128

    Vista supposedly wont let any other os run because it messes with the master boot record
  9. Boodyman

    Boodyman TS Rookie Topic Starter

    There are posts literally everywhere saying it can be done. There is one today on this board! Does it have to be done XP and then Vista added or can vista exist first and XP loaded after. I am running vista home basic 32 bit.

  10. tweaks_sav

    tweaks_sav TS Rookie Posts: 186

  11. Boodyman

    Boodyman TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Reading skills are important boys and girls.

    I read all these links and more BEFORE posting to this forum for help. Every one of these is about starting with XP and then upgrading to vista as well. I have Vista and want to now add XP back. None of these links discuss this. I stated from the get go that I'm a novice old fart who needs someone who can "WALK ME THROUGH IT".

    Now, if you read the replys I have received they fall into two distinctly different camps... A) Can't do it- forget it- Vista takes over, etc...
    B) It can be done but not one person has said "sure, you can add XP back and here is how you do it". I'd rather not wipe the OS off completely, then try to boot from an XP disk and then try to upgrade Vista last. Most of these links refer to Vista Beta. I have an OEM loaded version of Vista already on the laptop.

    I'm starting to like Vista so I think I'll forget the whole deal. Thanks to all that responded even though it seems like there are people in either camp A or B that don't know what they are talking about, but that doesn't stop them from giving advice. I certainly fall in the clueless camp right where I started!
  12. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 4,572   +65

    Well, if you want a direct answer, I can lay down the skeleton for what you'd have to do.

    • Partition the drive - You need to use a partition manager software to resize your current partition and create a new one for your Windows XP install. (gParted is a free one)
    • Install XP on the new partition ( D: )
    • Windows XP will install its own boot loader which will not load Vista, I imagine. So you need to repair your Windows Vista boot loader to get your Vista install back up and running
    • Repair your Windows Vista boot loader using the Vista install CD
    • Use for a simple solution to add XP to your boot menu
    This 'solution' is indeed based on the information (links) posted above and my own knowledge of Windows.

    I have not tested this, but I cannot see why this will not work. The only real challenge is to get Windows XP on your system on a seperate partition... Which is definitely straight forward. The next part is fixing your boot loader with a bootable Vista install disc (it apparently has some repair options which can do this) and then adding XP to your boot menu will be possible.
  13. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

  14. Boodyman

    Boodyman TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Excellent reply Nodsu- I had not seen this MS tech article. Thanks for the direction. I think it fair to say try this is not for the beginner or those of us (me) that may become frustrated or easily in over their head. This would just lead to more "someone please help me I can't boot my computer at all" posts or "I've lost Vista can anyone help me" posts.

    For those with the patience, skills, and resources- go for it. For those that are faint of heart or will be seriously inconvenienced if their computer is flaky for awhile, maybe buy a second, cheap laptop and load XP on it for those printers, games, other hardware or software that need it and chill for awhile.

    I think I fall into that camp. What is worth saying is that my initial impressions of Vista are changing. With 2 gig of ram instaed of the meager 512k that came with this POS, along with using hibernate more, I find the OS faster than XP for sure and more likeable day by day.

    I just hope that the hardware makers actually put their full resources into helping make peripherals work with Vista-like my old Lexmark X125 4-in-one printer rather than seize the chance to force us to buy new merchandise...I might just have to NOT buy another Lexmark in favor of whoever appears to do the best job of updating their drivers. Thanks for all those who took the time and the effort to help! Great forum~

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