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re-partitioned hard drive


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#1
The Admiral

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*scream of anguish*
so here was my drive before:
<Dell Recovery( R: )><Vista( C: )><XP( E: )><Ubuntu (ext2)>
here is my drive now, after repartitioning with Gparted from a Ubuntu LiveCD.
<Vista( R: )>unpartitioned<XP( C: )><Ubuntu>

After repairing the BCD, I was able to get into Vista. But when I got in, a bunch of core components failed to start. Then it loaded me into a temporary profile (i'm surprised it started at all). Well everyone knows you can't just change drive letters at whim, especially the system drive. So I went into the registry (to HKLM>System>Mounted Devices) and played around in there, and got my Vista back and operational. But I can't with XP, because i can't get into the registry. I tried restoring from a hive backup, but that didn't work. Safe mode and LKGC didn't work either. I can't repair the OS, because Setup doesn't even detect the fact that XP is already installed. Is there any way I can change the drive letters back for XP? How did these get changed in the first place??
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#2
The Skeptic

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Sorry about your problem. I'll say right away that I don't know what can be done. I'll just say this: I never repartitioned a multi operating system disk. Even with a single OS the process can go so wrong that you are strongly, and rightly, recommended to back up your data or even clone the entire disk. I try to avoid resizing at almost any cost.

I hope someone will have a solution. I am eager to learn.
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#3
The Admiral

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[RESOLVED]
w00t!
If anybody ever needs to know anything about multi-booting, expecially on Dells, or anything about Dell HDDs in general, check out goodells.net. He even explains Virtual PCs by installing Windows 98 on a virtual hard disk in a virtual machine, using a virtual DOS boot floppy, virtual Win98 CD, and satisfying the upgrade check with virtual Win3.1 floppies. :) I have referred to that site many times, and this time it managed to pull me out of a hole. goodells referred me to a program called savepart, available here. By putting that on my FOB, and booting to the Vista DVD, and running the program from there, I was able to modify the registry and change XP's drive letter.
6 chkdsks later (darn dirty flags), I'm back up and going!

@The Skeptic
repartitioning isn't all that bad... of course I say that after this whole fiasco. The only time you really run into problems is if your partitions change order, or if the partition is moved to the left, because that moves all the reference data too. I use a program called EasyBCD to manage the Vista bootloader, which manages booting everything else. If the partition table does change, restoring functionality is as easy as a Startup Repair to get into Vista so you can fix the bootloader and get everything else to start again. So while I wouldn't recommend repartitioning a multi-boot (especially a quad-boot like mine) to a first-timer, if you understand partitions, volumes, and MBRs you should be good to go.

Edited by The Admiral, 02 April 2008 - 02:34 AM.

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#4
The Skeptic

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Hi Admiral,

Glad it worked for you. The truth is that I am not using Vista, nor do I plan to do so in the near future. As for my part, I still regard certain operations as hazardous and try to avoid them as much as I can. Resizing is among them. It's true that many times you end without problems but sometimes the damage is awful, especially when important data is not backed up. There are very few people whom I know that back up their data properly.
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