Need help with multiboot problem

By PSonic
Jan 27, 2005
  1. I have WinXP Home installed on a 160gig SATA drive. I added a second 160 gig IDE drive in order to install Windows Media Center Edition 2005.

    In the past when I had set up a multiboot environment with Win98 and XP, I got the option of picking which OS to load at the boot screen.

    With my current setup, I do not get the option to choose at all. The only way I can access the second drive (or switch back to the first) is through the BIOS. It works just fine, but is a little more cumbersome than just choosing it from a boot menu.

    Even more unusual, when I am in XP, that drive (SATA) shows up as C:, my DVD burner is D:, and the second drive (IDE) shows up as E:.

    When I start from the MCE 2005 HD, that drive shows up as C: and the original SATA drive shows up as D:.

    I've looked at the boot.ini files on both drives and they are exactly the same, other than the naming of each individual OS.

    The second HD (IDE) is hooked up as a slave with my DVD burner acting as the master.

    How do I set this up so that I can access the multiboot screen right from startup? Additionally, is there any way to have consisten drive letters within each OS?

    Thanks in advance for any assistance.
  2. Liquidlen

    Liquidlen TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,094

    Welcome to Techspot !
    You should not be switching your boot choice that way.You would be better off reloading Windows media again as it is a newer version and generally in a dual boot you load Windows from oldest version to most recent.
    I highly recommend you move your DVD writer off the same channel as your IDE drive and make that HDD a Master on it's own channel .You are going to suffer a huge speed reduction with your current configuration.
    There should be 1 MBR on the first active partition of the primary drive and it will list the both O/S's you have loaded , if you have loaded them properly.
    I suspect you made both drives 'Active' when you configured them and only 1 can be.
    Can you list the contents of your boot.ini ?
  3. PSonic

    PSonic TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Here's the contents of boot.ini:

    Both HDs show the boot.ini as follows:

    "multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\Windows" - then the name of the OS

    The SATA HD is WinXP on the Secondary IDE Master. The MCE 2005 HD is on the Primary IDE Master.
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