Windows 10: EasyBCD Dual Boot management for Win10 and Win7 on separate drives Solved

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  1.    11 Jan 2017 #1

    EasyBCD Dual Boot management for Win10 and Win7 on separate drives


    Hi - I am thinking about transitioning from Win7 to Win10.

    I have been running Win7x64 for a very long time on my main PC. I have done a lot of installs over the years along with low level customizations. To me, it probably would be best to do a clean install of Win10 on a separate SSD and start from scratch rather than "upgrading" a clone of my Win7 drive. I have no idea what sort of latent instabilities would occur if I did a Win10 upgrade.

    I want to have both systems easily available over the months as I make my transition. There is also a possibility that I may scrap the Win10 installation and stick with Win7, since I am not a fan of the Win10 interface right now.

    If all goes well, though, I will eventually pull out the Win7 drive and stick with Win10.

    So, I want both drives to be bootable - If I pull out the Win7 drive, I want to be able to boot my Win10 drive. I also want to be able to boot the Win7 drive if I scrap the Win10 drive.

    Will EasyBCD will let me do this? I was planning on pulling my Win7 drive out temporarily, and then installing Win10 fresh on the new SSD. After that, I was going to reinstall my Win7 drive and configure EasyBCD to run off the Win7 drive.

    Will this work? Is there anything special that I would need to do for the Win10 installation or EasyBCD installation?

    Thanks,

    AzJazz
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    11 Jan 2017 #2

    You don't even have to use EasyBCD. Once you get Windows 7 installed and booting on it's own drive (you have that now), and have Windows 10 installed and booting on it's own drive (by installing it with the Windows 7 drive disconnected), reconnect both drives and boot from whichever one you want to. The other Windows partition that you are not booted into should get a drive letter. If it doesn't, go into disk management and assign it a drive letter. Let's say it get drive F:\

    Open a command prompt with administrator privileges and run:

    bcdboot F:\Windows /d /addlast

    Change the drive letter F: to match what you need to. That will set up the dual booting on the current drive you are booting from. You can run msconfig and look at the boot tab to adjust your timeout.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    11 Jan 2017 #3

    AzJazz said: View Post
    I was planning on pulling my Win7 drive out temporarily, and then installing Win10 fresh on the new SSD. After that, I was going to reinstall my Win7 drive and configure EasyBCD to run off the Win7 drive.
    You can use the "bcdedit /export" command to create a backup file of the current system store contents.

    bcdedit /export c:\bcd.bak

    You can then use the "bcdedit /import" command if you want to restore the state of the system store.

    bcdedit /import c:\bcd.bak

    How to use BCDBoot to add or repair the boot menu on a dual-boot PC (works on both GPT and MBR disks)

    If you've installed more than one copy of Windows on a PC, you can use BCDBoot to add or repair the boot menu.

    For example: How to add Windows 7 entry to the boot menu.

    On the Windows 10 desktop, open a command prompt as administrator and type the following commands.

    diskpart
    list volume (note the volume letter where the Windows 7 is installed)
    exit

    bcdboot x:\windows (replace "x" with the volume letter of the Windows 7 partition)

    Now you should see the Windows 7 and Windows 10 entries on the dual-boot screen.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Windows 7 style dual-boot screen (see screenshot below).

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Windows 10 style dual-boot screen (see screenshot below).

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Click image for larger version. 

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    How to restore the Windows 7 style dual-boot screen

    On the Windows 7 desktop, open a command prompt as administrator and type the following command.

    bcdboot %windir%

    How to restore the Windows 10 style dual-boot screen

    On the Windows 10 desktop, open a command prompt as administrator and type the following command.

    bcdboot %windir%

    Click image for larger version. 

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    How to fix the Windows 10 bootloader

    Look at post #24 in this thread: How do I restore w10 bootloader? dual boot with ubuntu on separate hdd
    Last edited by Avocado; 24 Jan 2017 at 10:28. Reason: more info
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4.    13 Jan 2017 #4

    Thanks, guys! This really helped!

    Avacado's recommendation worked for me - I was running on Win7, and the commands were compatible.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  5. Posts : 90
    Microsoft Windows 10 Home 64-bit/Windows 7 dual boot
       25 Sep 2017 #5

    Having just installed W10 on a separate drive to my W7 stable configuration, I was initially surprised, the dual boot window did not appear at start-up until I realised this was for two OS on the same drive.
    I followed the instruction as per post #3, working out of my W10 OS, however on start up I get the W7 menu, it works fine, but why the W7 screen?
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  6.    25 Jan 2018 #6

    Dual boot problems???


    Avocado said: View Post
    You can use the "bcdedit /export" command to create a backup file of the current system store contents.

    bcdedit /export c:\bcd.bak

    You can then use the "bcdedit /import" command if you want to restore the state of the system store.

    bcdedit /import c:\bcd.bak

    How to use BCDBoot to add or repair the boot menu on a dual-boot PC (works on both GPT and MBR disks)

    If you've installed more than one copy of Windows on a PC, you can use BCDBoot to add or repair the boot menu.

    For example: How to add Windows 7 entry to the boot menu.

    On the Windows 10 desktop, open a command prompt as administrator and type the following commands.

    diskpart
    list volume (note the volume letter where the Windows 7 is installed)
    exit

    bcdboot x:\windows (replace "x" with the volume letter of the Windows 7 partition)

    Now you should see the Windows 7 and Windows 10 entries on the dual-boot screen.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	How to use BCDBoot to add or repair the boot menu on a dual-boot PC.png 
Views:	74 
Size:	46.1 KB 
ID:	116982

    Windows 7 style dual-boot screen (see screenshot below).

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Windows 7 style dual boot screen.png 
Views:	8 
Size:	14.3 KB 
ID:	117014

    Windows 10 style dual-boot screen (see screenshot below).

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Windows 10 style dual boot screen.png 
Views:	100 
Size:	13.0 KB 
ID:	116979

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Change defaults or choose other options.png 
Views:	100 
Size:	14.7 KB 
ID:	116980

    How to restore the Windows 7 style dual-boot screen

    On the Windows 7 desktop, open a command prompt as administrator and type the following command.

    bcdboot %windir%

    How to restore the Windows 10 style dual-boot screen

    On the Windows 10 desktop, open a command prompt as administrator and type the following command.

    bcdboot %windir%

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	bcdboot.png 
Views:	72 
Size:	12.0 KB 
ID:	117036

    How to fix the Windows 10 bootloader

    Look at post #24 in this thread: How do I restore w10 bootloader? dual boot with ubuntu on separate hdd
    For the life of me I can not figure out what is wrong and do not know why. I ran 7/10 for couple years with 10 dual boot menu never 1st problem but just built a new rig and maybe I'm tired and over analyzing but nothing seems to work or make sense. Both on separate drives 10 ssd and 7 hdd. 7's partition however is hidden and that is I suppose bcdboot D:\windows will not work from 10 desktop (cmd) but why do I get the same error in 7 trying to bring 10 in?
    Both seem to boot fine individually when I choose in bios, bios sees boot manager for both, and 10 is primary and if miss bios str8 into 10 it goes. (UEFI I know). 1st boot wiped out 7 boot mngr. Had to rebuild it but couldn't do that with both drives installed for errors there. Is there a sure fire no holds barred guaranteed way to ensure the option besides bios or override? Last dual was not gpt and dont recall any hidden partitions even after a clean install and guessing thats why was easier but at this point i dont know up from down. Even easybcd would not work. Lol
    Help greatly appreciated. Thanks
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7.    25 Jan 2018 #7

    You have to temporarily assign a drive letter to the Windows 7 partition in Windows 10. Then use the bcdboot command to add it to the boot menu. Then you can remove the drive letter again.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  •    25 Jan 2018 #8

    NavyLCDR said: View Post
    You have to temporarily assign a drive letter to the Windows 7 partition in Windows 10. Then use the bcdboot command to add it to the boot menu. Then you can remove the drive letter again.
    I went into disk management to do just that but not an option for whatever reason unless I overlooked it last night. Can I do that with diskpart although I don't really care to mess with something "live" like that unless absolutely necessary?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  •    25 Jan 2018 #9

    [QUOTE=NavyLCDR;1277582]You have to temporarily assign a drive letter to the Windows 7 partition in Windows 10. Then use the bcdboot command to add it to the boot menu. Then you can remove the drive letter again.

    want to make sure i have this straight before i waste even more hours only to mess something up or be right back at square one again. both the efi partitions 7/10 are hidden. i can not use "bcdboot D:\windows" from either installation with a failure copy error. so i can just use diskpart? to unhide and temp. assign a drive letter to both ESP's to add to each others boot menu and then remove the temp. assigned letters? does it hold true if ssd 10 and hdd 7 are both gpt? or does that even matter? seems to be the only thing holding up progress other than my unfounded intellectual ineptness. thank you and hope this is only question remaining (fingers crossed). the more layman terminology used the better. lol


    p.s. 30 + years ago my drill sergeant once told me the only stupid question was the question not asked and that has both plagued/helped me ever since. which of those two is the more pronounced i am afraid to say.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  •    25 Jan 2018 #10

    NavyLCDR said: View Post
    You have to temporarily assign a drive letter to the Windows 7 partition in Windows 10. Then use the bcdboot command to add it to the boot menu. Then you can remove the drive letter again.
    ok so im not having any luck. greyed out in disk management and disk part tells type not in the correct format?
    is this because gpt?

    i"m thinking a few more unwanted and un-welcomed changes have been intertwined into the windows 10's OS code. i admin and don"t have the privileges i should but i can change all that if need be
      My ComputerSystem Spec


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