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[How to] Install XP after Vista and Fix the Bootloader


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To install an older Windows operating system on a computer running Windows Vista, use the following procedure.

  1. Install the previous version of Windows, e.g. XP or 2000
  2. Log on to the older operating system and restore the latest boot manager by running the following.
    bootsect.exe -NT60 All

    bootsect.exe might be in your boot folder of active partition. If not there, then it's on your Vista DVD in boot folder.
  3. Create a BCD entry for the older operating system by specifying the following. Bcdedit.exe is located in the \Windows\System32 directory of the Windows Vista partition. Description is the description of the new entry for the older operating system.
    Bcdedit /create {legacy} /d 
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  • 1 year later...

Sorry mate, I don't have any pictures with this procedure. If you don't understand this what you should do here, better don't play with it since you won't be able to boot in Vista after you install one of the previous operating systems.

N1K, could you put some images? i cannot undertstand very well, i want to install XP and conservate Vista..
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What i lastly did on my system was this:

1) I booted with Windows 2008 (which is same as Vista SP1), and came through hard disk partitioning.

2) I extended/formatted my HDD with my like (50gig for 2008/30 gig for WinXP, 200gig for archive files)

3) I booted with Windows XP disk and installed windows XP.

4) Then booted with Server 2008 disc and installed 2008.

After these steps, boot manager was Vista's one and i could dual boot XP and 2008.

(I know its not the place but couldnt find another topic to post.)


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  • 2 weeks later...
Can i do this if i don't have a vista dvd it was all pre-installed

Yes, you should be able to do that, since you don't need to have a Vista DVD. In case you mess something up, you can always recover your pre-install ;)

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Thanks N1K,

I was hoping I could cheat at this - Basicallly I've copied a ghost of a nice clean working xp partition to D:\ and used EasyBCD to try and boot to it.

I got a ntdetect error. Can't make out what's wrong

Any ideas?

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Thanks N1K,

I was hoping I could cheat at this - Basicallly I've copied a ghost of a nice clean working xp partition to D:\ and used EasyBCD to try and boot to it.

I got a ntdetect error. Can't make out what's wrong

Any ideas?

Not sure mate, I haven't tried it with a ghost image :unsure:

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After instalation is done of windows xp you wil be only able to boot into xp

how to fix vista boot?

boot with windows vista dvd, select recovery open the command prompt and type in

1. diskpart

2. list disk

3. select disk 0 (O, harddisk number. select the vista harddisk)

5. list partition

6. list partition 1 (1, Select the partition where vista is installed)

7. Active

8. Exit

9. Bootrec /fixmbr

10. bootrec /fixboot


than the vista bootloader must be the one that starts

You can add vista by instaling, EasyBCD and add XP to list

I recomand always install visa on fist harddrive ( Station, C) And the first partition. xp makes no difrent

This commands are working to, to fix bootloader after instaling macosx !

if the vista wont start givin you a error of file missing just start again with the dvd from vista and select recovery and vista shoul automated detect its broken and will be fixed and reset the pc.

here is a file just copyi it to, drive C and edit boot.ini http://files.filefront.com/macosx+xpBooter...;/fileinfo.html


;Warning: Boot.ini is used on Windows XP and earlier operating systems.

;Warning: Use BCDEDIT.exe to modify Windows Vista boot options.


[boot loader]



[operating systems]

multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(2)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /NOEXECUTE=OPTIN /FASTDETECT

c:\tboot="Leopard" << add this only if you already have xp installed

and it should be automatic added to the vista bootloader menu


Edited by maccyx
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Well, I did it !! It was a bit scary - here's why...

I had loaded this xp ghost into D: (nothing happened). One reason it hadn't worked was that XP couldn't see the sata hard disk, a quick trip to the BIOS sorted that out (setting it to ata instead). Anyway there was no way XP was going to work without me putting in the disk and doing a repair (I actually ended up doing a complete reinstall).

I didn't want to do this because I DIDN'T HAVE THE VISTA DVD. Not to worry - I could use "easyBCD". So here I am in Windows XP (running really fast on this new machine). I install EasyBCD, run it and get an error "Oh NO!" Have I lost Vista forever? No, I forgot, EasyBCD needs Microsoft .Net framework2, ok install that - No, can't do that without Windows Installer3 - No, can't install that without Microsoft Genuine Advantage update (so make sure your XP is genuine!).

So, run XP - go to windows update - install genuine advantage, install installer3, install .net framework

Run EasyBCD again, Yes! ...stay calm. Hit the repair vista boot button and add Windows XP to the bootloader.



... choose Vista from the bootloader, yup, that's ok.

reboot and try XP, yup that's ok.

And it's still really fast - and stable - and my old software and hardware works again. And I can access all my documents in the Vista partition so I don't need a third partition. I can run VirtualPC again (with 98, 95 3.1 and DOS! - (Yeah I know... Why?)).

And best of all (?) I still have Vista, so when I want to do unimportant stuff, that I don't need to do anyway, I can still marvel in awe at it's beautiful see-through windows and play with it's amazing gadgets and be informed about loads of confirmation boxes. And best of all have EVERYTHING try to access the internet. (Why did defrag.exe just try to access the internet? and my print spooler?).

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  • 5 months later...

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