Question about installing with dual boot

Discussion in 'Windows 7' started by murdercitydevil, Sep 8, 2009.

  1. murdercitydevil

    murdercitydevil MDL Member

    Sep 7, 2009
    Ok, so ever since I started using multiple hard drives for multiple OS's, I've had issues with drive letters and boot settings. I've come to understand that Vista, when installed, decides that regardless of whether you have multiple drives or multiple OS's, will selfishly make itself the C drive no matter what. This became a problem for me when I installed it, having XP pro on my second drive (which was already the C drive). After vista was installed, my drive letters got f*cked up and I eventually uninstalled XP. More recently, I installed Windows 7 RC1 on that same secondary drive, but it recognized that vista was C, and made itself the D drive. However, upon a reinstall of Vista that I had to do a few weeks ago, my boot settings got screwed up and the boot files got allocated onto the W7 drive rather than the main system drive. I dont know if this makes any sense; its confusing, I know, but the bottom line is that dual booting always caused problems when I had to install/uninstall an OS.

    Here's my situation - I have 3 drives. One 150gig main system drive that has Vista on it. Second 250gig drive that has an unused W7 RC1 install. Third drive is 1TB and has nothing but storage. Drive one is C, drive 2 is D, drive 3 is Z. Right now everything works as it should. Here's what I want to do:

    1. Uninstall Vista from the main system drive.
    2. Uninstall W7 from the secondary drive.
    3. Reinstall W7 RTM on first drive as C, make it my main system.
    4. Reinstall Vista on secondary drive as D, make it a backup in case something screws up with W7 (OR I might not install anything on this drive at all. With vmware, it's becoming less and less necessary to have a dual boot system)
    5. Keep storage drive untouched.

    What is the best way to achieve this and get all the drive letters properly assigned? I'm thinking it's definitely a must to unplug all drives except the one I'm installing on, but my fear is that once W7 is on the main drive, and I decide to get Vista back on the second drive, it's going to steal the drive letter and f**k up the W7 install. Any thoughts/suggestions are appreciated. thanks!
  2. Bloodbat

    Bloodbat MDL Novice

    Aug 1, 2009
    It's kinda confusing...but here's what I gather and how I would do it.
    You want two installs, 7 and Vista, 7 being main, Vista being secondary and placed on different drives.
    Both 7 and Vista assign to themselves the C letter as system drive, that's a fact, no matter where they're installed when you explore your system drive in Vista the drive holding that install will appear as C and the others, at least at first, most likely will be D (7 one) and E (storage), in 7 it will be similar C is 7, D is Vista and E is Storage. Theoretically the 7 bootloader will be smart enough to assign the correct entries for boot.
    It's quite easier installing Vista first on the secondary drive, and 7 second on the primary one. In order to clean out the bootloaders, backup whatever needs backing up (you have an storage drive after all...) and with the Vista or 7 boot discs, destroy whatever partitions live in the primary and secondary drives (NOT THE STORAGE ONE) and set Vista to install in whatever drive you choose, afterwards, install 7, don't destroy any *should* work.
    *continues next post*