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Old 11-12-2012, 06:45 PM   #1
Bat123Man
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Default Win8 installation failure.

Hello,

I am trying to install Win8, but the installation routine fails when it is time to pull the USB thumb stick and reboot.

I have 4 drives (all drives are SATA):
500 GB 7200 HD which is my System partition (XP was installed on this drive years ago)
80 GB SSD boot drive with Win7
brand new 120 GB SSD drive I am trying to install Win8 on
1.5 TB 7200 external drive in an enclosure connected via USB

I have been using Win7 booting from an SSD for 2 years, works great. The boot manager comes up with "previous version of Windows" as an option, but I haven't booted into XP in years. I only keep the system partition on that drive because I thought it would be much easier to install new SSDs if they only needed to be boot partitions.

I purchased Win8 pro and downloaded it onto a USB thumbstick. I then changed my boot drives in my BIOS to boot from the thumb stick. That worked fine, Win8 installer started up, asked for my Product Key, and started copying files. When it was done, there was a message saying "Please remove your external drive H". Initially I thought H meant my 1.5 TB drive connected via USB (because under Win7, that is drive H), but quickly figured out it wanted me to pull the thumb drive. It rebooted, and then tried 3 times in a row to boot, before telling me there is an error it cannot overcome (Windows 8 installation has failed).

I had to go back into the BIOS and turn off the boot sequence which sent it to the Windows Boot Manager first, and revert to my original SSD as the primary boot drive. That worked, Win7 came up like it always did. But then I tried the whole thing again, same problem. As soon as it gets to the point where it asks me to remove the USB stick and reboot, the reboot fails.

I contacted MS support and the support rep told me that the only way it would work is if I partition my original SSD which has win7 on it, and then install Win8 to the same drive (but different partition), else do an upgrade install. I can try the same-drive-diff-partition, but the original SSD is only 80 GB, and without having installed any apps on it in the past 2 years, it has grown to 60 GB used space (uninstallers, user directories, win7 fixes, etc.). I could also clone the original SSD to the new 120 GB SSD and partition that, but it would still be pretty close at 60 GB per partition and I would rather not.

Is there any way I can get Win8 installed on my brand new SSD and end up with a dual boot sytem with Win7 on my original SSD?


System :
Intel 3570K CPU
Gigabyte Z77X-UD3H mobo
16 GB DDR3 RAM

Thanks,
BM.
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Old 11-12-2012, 06:59 PM   #2
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With only one drive connected, fully install Win8. After installation is complete, reconnect the other drives and boot into the Win8 installer again. Now do a repair and it should detect and recover the Win7 installation. Reboot and you should now get the boot manager where you can choose between Win7 and Win8.

Be sure you have backups of your important data.
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Old 11-13-2012, 12:25 PM   #3
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Hi,

Thanks for the reply** I pulled all SATA cables out of the other drives, and did a full Win8 install** That worked** Then I reconnected all SATA cables, and put the USB thumb drive back in, and changed the BIOS boot options to boot from it**

When Win8 installation routine started, I chose Repair this ***puter, and then went into Troubleshoot, and Advanced options, and the Automatic Repair** It chugged for a while, and finally told me it was unable to repair the ***puter** When I rebooted, if the Windows Boot Loader was selected, the ***puter would just try to boot 3 times in succession before giving up** If I change the boot device to be my new Win8 SSD, the Windows 7 boot manager ***es up and Win7 successfully loads**

I need to get the Win8 Boot Manager fixed so that it can see both OS's** Any ideas?

Thanks,
BM**
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Old 11-13-2012, 01:36 PM   #4
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OK, never mind. After fighting with Win8 all day, I finally got Win7 back up and running. All sorts of crazy things started to happen under Win8. I reinstalled <again>, and it worked but found no other drive. There was just the Win8 SSD, and my BluRay burner. No amount of fiddling with it could get it to show the other drives. I could see them in the BIOS, but in Computer Management in Win8, there weren't there. I reinstalled from scratch with only the SSD plugged in, that worked, but I still couldn't see any other drive after shutting down, plugging them all in, and rebooting.

Then I tried to run a repair install to see if I could get the Windows Boot Manager going, but it just stated that Win8 could not repair the computer. Then when I rebooted, it crashed 3 times in a row and said it had an unrepairable error. I tried to boot from the Win7 DVD, which worked, but when I attempted a repair it said it can't repair the system because it was newer than Win7. Uh oh. So now I was really up the creek, Win8 wouldn't boot or repair, and neither would Win7.

I pulled the SATA cable out of the Win8 SSD, and booted into the Win7 DVD. I figured at the very least I could repair that, and get back to where I started. No go, it was still mad about a newer version of Windows. So now I was really stuck, I didn't know what to do. So I shut down, plugged in all drives, and rebooted, not really having any idea what I was going to do next. And the Win7 boot manager magically came up!!! I couldn't believe it, good old trusty Win7. I am typing this from that OS.

I have decided to give up on my Win8 dreams for now, the new Windows Boot Manager doesn't seem to be very robust.

Thanks,
BM.
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Old 11-13-2012, 02:06 PM   #5
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It sounds like your boot manager is on a separate drive from the OS itself. If so, this is one of the reasons you should never install a Windows OS with more than one hard drive connected. My guess is that you're boot manager is on the hard drive with the original XP install, in which case you've got a real mess on your hands (especially if that hard drive dies).

You might have better luck with something like Easy BCD.
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Old 11-13-2012, 03:36 PM   #6
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Hi, yes, that is exactly where the boot manager is. I actually thought that was a good thing since I could add other drives with other OS's whenever I felt like it. The boot manager has been on that drive since XP. Vista successfully used it, as did Win7. I thought this would be an easy one for Win8. In each previous OS install (vista, Win7), I just added a new drive and installed fresh to that drive. When I rebooted, the boot manager was correctly updated (with kind of goofy names, but they worked).

Windows 7
Previous Version of Windows
Some other odd name for XP...

I don't mind completely reinstalling, but the reason I was trying to avoid it was so that I could clean install the new OS and just move progs over to it slowly. I could still boot into Win7 if I needed to.

I'll have to look at Easy BCD, that may be the solution I need.

Thanks,
BM.

Last edited by Bat123Man; 11-13-2012 at 08:58 PM.
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Old 11-14-2012, 03:55 PM   #7
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OK, wasted most of my day on this, still not working. I found a Lifehacker article on how to clone drives. So I formatted my 120 GB brand new SSD, partitioned it in two, and cloned the Win7 drive to it. I spent most of the day whittling the Win7 install down from 67 GB to 37 GB first before cloning the drive. Then I unplugged all drives except the new SSD, and booted with the Win7 DVD in the drive.

I asked Win7 to run a repair on the install in the hopes that it would build me the files necessary to make this a bootable Win7 install. It declined to do that. Instead, it ran for at least 10 mins, and then said it believed it had fixed the problem, and that I should reboot. I rebooted, and got non-system or disk error.

I plugged all my drives back in (including my SATA HD listed as System in Computer Management), and old Win7 came up. I can see the new Win7 partition in Computer Management, it is listed as healthy. Does anyone know how to make the new Win7 on the SSD bootable ?

Thanks,
BM.
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Old 11-14-2012, 04:43 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bat123Man View Post
OK, wasted most of my day on this, still not working. I found a Lifehacker article on how to clone drives. So I formatted my 120 GB brand new SSD, partitioned it in two, and cloned the Win7 drive to it. I spent most of the day whittling the Win7 install down from 67 GB to 37 GB first before cloning the drive. Then I unplugged all drives except the new SSD, and booted with the Win7 DVD in the drive.

I asked Win7 to run a repair on the install in the hopes that it would build me the files necessary to make this a bootable Win7 install. It declined to do that. Instead, it ran for at least 10 mins, and then said it believed it had fixed the problem, and that I should reboot. I rebooted, and got non-system or disk error.

I plugged all my drives back in (including my SATA HD listed as System in Computer Management), and old Win7 came up. I can see the new Win7 partition in Computer Management, it is listed as healthy. Does anyone know how to make the new Win7 on the SSD bootable ?

Thanks,
BM.
Try these 3 commands: fixboot, fixmbr, bootcfg /rebuild.
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Old 11-14-2012, 06:22 PM   #9
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Try a repair with just the new SSD and the old XP drive. That might work to get the cloned Win7 working, but might require the XP drive stay connected. Then try what ViRGE suggested without the XP drive connected.
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Old 11-14-2012, 11:01 PM   #10
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Hi,

The problem is that I don't think this will ever work because of the requirement to have that separate partition used just for boot. For me, that remains on my 500 GB drive. No amount of fixboot or bootcfg is going to create the partition for me. Both of those will try to fix the boot partition, but in my case they can't find it because they assume it is on the wrong drive.

So here is what I tried. I pulled the SATA cables from all drives but the 120GB SSD, formatted the new 120 GB SSD, then installed Win7. That created the boot partitions I needed. I let the install go all the way until the system was up on just that drive. Then I tried to use EaseUS to copy the old Win7 on the SSD to the new one and overlay the new install, but keep the boot partition. EaseUS wouldn't do that, it would not allow me to pick a partition which was not unallocated. So I killed the new Win7 partition, and left the boot partition, and then told EaseUS to copy the Win7 partition from my old SSD to the newly created unallocated space on the 120 GB SSD. It allowed me to do that, but insisted the partition had to be the full 80 GB and would not let me reduce it to 60 GB as I had wanted even though there was only 37GB of data. I allowed that process to complete, and then shut down. I pulled all SATA cables again except for the new 120 GB SSD which now has a boot partition and a new partition copy of Win7. Rebooted, and it failed, but because the Boot Partition was confused. So I booted into the Win7 DVD, and ran a repair install, which successfully repaired Win7. I rebooted, and it came up with my normal login screen. I thought I was in business, but when I logged in (it accepted my password), it said "Preparing desktop...." for about 10 mins and then rebooted on its own. It came up with the login screen, I logged in, and same thing except this time it didn't reboot. Instead, it said that my copy wasn't a genuine copy of Win7 and the screen just sat there with no icons, and no Start button.

Ho hum. I rebooted to my BIOS, de-selected the Windows Boot Manager, and after connecting up all drives, am back to my old Win7 on my old SSD. <sigh>

I think I have done all I can. I no longer think there is a solution to this problem, other than to reinstall Win7 from scratch on the new 120 GB SSD. Once that is done, then I can install Win8 into a second partition on the same SSD. I'll have to reinstall all apps, etc, but at least I will get a working Windows Boot Manager on the new SSD.

Thanks,
BM.

Last edited by Bat123Man; 11-14-2012 at 11:03 PM.
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Old 11-15-2012, 12:13 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bat123Man View Post
Hi,

The problem is that I don't think this will ever work because of the requirement to have that separate partition used just for boot. For me, that remains on my 500 GB drive. No amount of fixboot or bootcfg is going to create the partition for me. Both of those will try to fix the boot partition, but in my case they can't find it because they assume it is on the wrong drive.
A separate boot partition is advised, but it is not required. Windows is perfectly capable of booting off of a single partition as long as the necessary files are there. If your cloned installation is missing its Boot directory, then track it down, copy it over, and then run the aforementioned commands and you should be golden.
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Old 11-16-2012, 07:12 AM   #12
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The suggestion to use EasyBSD is a good one. Win 8 has a totally new boot manager, which as you found out older versions of Windows don't understand. The latest EasyBSD can deal with it and make it work the way you want it to.
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Old 11-19-2012, 03:31 PM   #13
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Ok, thanks. Too bad I just saw your response today because I finally just threw in the towel and installed a fresh copy of Win8 onto the new SSD. I spent all weekend installing all my apps, progs, drivers, etc. I have now gotten it to a point where I don't have to boot into Win7 any longer. I still have the possibility of booting into Win7 by manually changing the boot order in my BIOS as the old boot partition is still there. I was going to try EasyBSD, I even posted to their forum and confirmed that it was capable of moving the old boot partition off of the 500 GB HD and onto the new SSD, but I had already spent too long trying to get both OS's installed.

Thanks for the replies. Oh, and now I am worried because I just had my first complete hang of Win8 (mouse pointer frozen, kb not working, light not even on on the bottom of the optic mouse which is always a bad sign). I don't remember ever hanging with Win7 (I probably did, but it must not have been memorable). I did find this :

BCEDIT /SET DisableDynamicTick Yes

Not sure if that bug has been fixed yet, but since Win8 for me is not on a laptop, I am not sure I benefit by having that on anyway.

BM.
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