Windows 2000 doesn't like XP's ntldr

By richardscarfe ·
I'm trying to set up a dual boot system with Windows 2000 Pro SP4 and XP Home SP2, but it won't work.

Win 2k is installed on disk 0 partition 1 and works fine. Disk 0 partition 2 is a newly formatted partition for XP.

When I install XP it replaces the Win 2k boot.ini and ntldr. As I understand things, XP won't boot with Win 2k's ntldr but Win 2k should be able to boot with XP's ntldr.

After installing XP I get a boot menu with XP Home as the first entry and Win 2k as the second entry.

XP loads fine and runs perfectly. However if I try and load Win 2k I get an error saying \WINNT\System32\System is missing or corrupt. If I replace the XP ntldr with a backup of the Win2k ntldr then Win 2k boots fine but XP won't.

Everything I've read on the Internet says this setup should work and I can't find any information on this particular problem.

I was hoping ultimately to have a multiboot system with Win 2k, XP and Vista, but if I can't get past this problem it's not going to happen.

If anyone has a solution for this issue I would be grateful to hear from them.

Thanks in advance


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Recovery Console

by IC-IT In reply to Windows 2000 doesn't like ...

Use the XP CD to run the first R for Repair (Recovery Console).
Run Bootcfg /rebuild

You may end up needing these also;

Note You may ID the OS (the Part between Quotes) with anything you like.

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by richardscarfe In reply to Recovery Console

Thanks for the suggestion. I will try that and let you know.

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dual boot win2k / XP ntldr problem

by pwvoogt In reply to Thanks

The same problem happens to me. No hints whatsoever on the internet (recovery console with fixmbr and fixboot - win2k or XP version, neither the Win98/Dos fdisk /mbr won't work).
Perhaps my registry of win2K is too big with 40MB (system is 6,4 MB) for the XP-ntldr.
I made a workaround with a batch file for both OS, that copies the ntldr and files of the other OS to C when I want to restart and change the OS.

Did you already found the solution? I would be glad to hear!

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I finally got the solution

by pwvoogt In reply to Windows 2000 doesn't like ...

I had the same problem and only a view people on the internet mentioned it, no one with a solution. Then I encountered the same error message in MS Knowledge Base, meaning that the size of the "system" file of the registry (the HKLM part)could be too big (the maximum is according to Microsoft about 10,3 MB). Although mine Win2K 'system'-file was 'merely' 6,4 MB and compression programms didn't work to decrease the size, I borrowed a Win2K system file (4,3 MB) from my laptop which could be started by the WinXP bootloader.
So then I knew that there is a fault in the XP ntldr: it won't start Win2K if the size of your registry's HKLM is bigger than (I guess) about 5MB. Therefore this problem is seldom mentioned: most PC configurations with Win2K don't exceed this size.
Then I started to try out older (before SP2) bootloaders of XP professional (ntldr & That didn't work either.....
untill I used the ntldr/ from Windows XP HOME edition.
So you should try to get the HOME edition of the XP bootloader.

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