Computer folks: Help me with Partition Magic

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Keith Paynter, Feb 13, 2002.

  1. Keith Paynter

    Keith Paynter Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 1999
    Messages:
    1,834
    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    110
    Has anyone successfully used this program in order to have multiple operating systems on their computer?

    I'm trying to partition a computer so that it can run W98v2 along with XP. If I try to install 98 after Boot Magic and Partition Magic are installed (as detailed on the web page help) The computer essentially threatens to overwrite the XP operating system by demanding to format the drive.

    Any practical suggestions? I have several programs and devices that will not operate on NT/2000/XP even with updated drivers and want to continue running them under 98v2.
     
  2. ChristianW

    ChristianW Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2001
    Messages:
    101
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Just start from scratch with your installs. First backup everything you need. Then FDISK your harddrive into whatever partitions you want. Install 98 first, then XP.

    XP will detect 98 and create all the dual boot stuff you need.

    It's a good idea to clear out the Micro$oft system every few months anyway.
     
  3. Steven K

    Steven K Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2000
    Messages:
    830
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Hi Kieth,

    I'd stay away from applications such as Partition Magic (and FIPS on Unix). I used to use them in the past, and Partition Magic had failure rate of around 50%... NOT very good.

    You might want to check out a program called Master Booter. It's really quite nice; it allows you to have up to 4 primary drives on your system, each with 4 different OSes. You write MasterBooter into the MBR, then on boot it presents you with a menu. You make your selection, and MasterBooter hides the other 3 primary partitions and treats the one you selected as the C drive (or Unix equivalent).
     
  4. Craig S

    Craig S Producer
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2000
    Messages:
    5,792
    Likes Received:
    237
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    League City, Texas
    Real Name:
    Craig Seanor
    I just have to respond to Steven's statement. I've used Partition Magic at work and home ever since its first release. I've probably run it on hundreds of computers, working with FAT, FAT32, HPFS, NTFS, and Linux partition types. I've never lost even a single byte of data. When it's "failed", it's because it detected a problem on the drive (partition table, etc.) and therefore wouldn't attempt any disk-altering operations. I think it's the greatest PC utility ever written and I wouldn't be without it.



    I'm not doubting Steven's experiences, but just pointing out that they are not universal.



    That said, working with their Boot Magic utility IS tricky (they used to bundle IBM's Boot Manager, which worked similar to the Master Booter utility Steven described). I'm assuming you already have XP installed, and you have free space on the drive to install 98. Here's what I would do:
    1. Boot into XP and create the Partition Magic boot diskettes. These will let you run PM independant of any OS you have on your machine.
    2. Boot the PM floppies. In PM, set up an empty partition in the free space into which you want to install Win98. Make that the active partition. Hide your XP partition.
    3. Now boot your 98 install media (floppy or CD). The 98 installer will NOT see your hidden XP partition and so will install into your new empty partition.
    4. Complete the 98 installation (including any reboots).
    5. When you are happy with your 98 setup, reboot to the PM floppies.
    6. Make your XP partition active. Reboot your machine from the hard drive (remove the PM floppies).
    7. XP will come up. Run Boot Magic, and set up your XP partition and your new 98 partition as the boot choices.
    Now when you boot Boot Magic will appear and you can choose between your two OS partitions.



    I've use this method several times and it works fine. It also keeps your two OS's on separate partitions so they can't mess with each other. Christian's method is the Microsoft-prescribed plan and works just fine, but both OS's are on the same partition and in my experience that can cause problems down the line.



    However, be aware of this: if you use the Boot Magic/separate partition method, anything on your 98 boot partition will NOT be visible when you're running XP, and vice-versa. You will need a separate partition (that will be seen by both OS's) for data and perhaps applications. If you don't want to mess with this, then Christian's method will probably be better for you, albeit more time-consuming because you'll have to backup and re-install everything.



    One final caveat: if any of this is unclear to you, PLEASE come back and ask questions. It would help greatly if you could post some details about your PC (hard disk size and current partitioning info would be key). I can do this stuff in my sleep, but I've been working with the PC since I bought the very first IBM PC 20 years ago this month. If you are a novice or are unsure don't hesitate to ask more questions, or find someone experienced near you who can come and work with you directly on your machine.
     
  5. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Studio Mogul

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1999
    Messages:
    38,788
    Likes Received:
    498
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    I also have enjoyed using Partition Magic when I need it. It mainly boils down to application and how complicated of a setup you want.

    Christian's suggestion is the best course of action for this setup. If Win98 is ever involved on a hard drive, it's always best to install it first, and then let the more newer/advanced OS's install themselves in another partition.
     
  6. Keith Paynter

    Keith Paynter Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 1999
    Messages:
    1,834
    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    110
    Thanks for some of the info guys. In Detail, the computer is a Sony Vaio, with a 60gig drive partitioned to 15 gig (c) and 45 gig (d). The OS is XP.I installed Partition Magic and Boot Magic as per the instructions, created a separate partition, but could not get it labelled. I Therefore partitioned the C drive again (for the purpose of installing the 98 OS, but the compputer would not let me name the partition (ie. drive G). I have made backup disks for PM and BM to run when re-booting, and BM starts up to give me the options for selecting the OS.

    Once again, where the biggest difficulty lies is in trying to install the 98 OS. When I try to install W98, I cannot install to anything other than the C; drive - I cannot put it into the D: drive, etc ('does not exist').

    This is on a work computer, and I am at home right now, but please offer what ever other info you can - I will continue to check and reply at work as much as possible.

    Thanks again.
     
  7. Darren Lewis

    Darren Lewis Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2000
    Messages:
    534
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Hi Keith, I've used PM successfully in the past (and even now I use it). I once set up a dual boot with Win98 and Win2000 using PM and BootMagic.

    Make sure that the additional OS partition that you create is a PRIMARY partition (not a logical drive in an extended primary partition)

    Only one Primary partition can be active at any one time and this is essentially how BootMagic works.

    You can put your data into logical drives on an extended primary partition so that you can access it from both OSs.
     
  8. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Studio Mogul

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1999
    Messages:
    38,788
    Likes Received:
    498
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    I don't think you can install Win98 to a partition greater than 32GB in size due to FAT32.
     
  9. Steven K

    Steven K Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2000
    Messages:
    830
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
     
  10. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Studio Mogul

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1999
    Messages:
    38,788
    Likes Received:
    498
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Win98 is evil in that it'll blast away the MBR if it's installed after another OS, thus the need to install Win98 first, and on the C: drive.
     
  11. Keith Paynter

    Keith Paynter Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 1999
    Messages:
    1,834
    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    110
    Thanks for all your suggestions. Here's the big problem.

    The XP operating is pre-installed. There is no separate O/S package, only 'recovery disks'.

    I would essentially have to format the C drive, buy a full-blown XP (for several hundred $$), install '98 first, then use PM and its components, then install the full XP O/S.

    Since '98 only installs on the C: drive, I have no choice there. Not owning a full XP O/S package, I don't know if you can actually install it on a drive other than C:

    What about choosing between XP Home and XP Professional? Will this affect the installation of XP after the fact?
     
  12. Francois Caron

    Francois Caron Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 1997
    Messages:
    2,167
    Likes Received:
    21
    Trophy Points:
    1,610
    Location:
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Real Name:
    François Caron
    My two cents.
    I have three partitions on my computer.
    Partition 1 - Primary - Windows 98
    Partition 2 - Primary - Windows XP
    Partition 3 - Logical - shared FAT32 partition
    The best approach is to have all three partitions created in advance before you even install anything.
    Now before you actually start the install, boot off the PartitionMagic floppies and use PartitionMagic to hide all the partitions not involved in the installation. Only the target partition should be visible.
    If you have a boot manager installed in the MBR such as MasterBooter (I use it myself), you might want to reset it before the installation. Use the Win98 FDISK utility with the /NEWMBR (or /MBR?) parameter to reset the MBR to a default configuration. This is especially important if you plan to install Windows NT.
    Once that's done, go straight to the installation. The installation program should properly see the target drive. If you can go into a command prompt, check out the contents of C:. If it's empty and the correct size, you have the right drive.
    You may now proceed and hope for the best, although it's better to expect the worst! [​IMG]
    One final note. If you already have Windows NT or XP already installed on your hard drive, DON'T CHANGE IT'S POSITION IN THE PARTITION TABLE! If it's the first partition on the disc, leave it there! If it's located in the middle of the disc, make sure you always have the same number of partitions before it no matter what you do! There's a file called BOOT.INI in the root directory that points the operating system to the logical location of it's own partition. If you change the order of the partitions and move the WinXp or WinNT partition to a different position, the operating system will not boot. And if the drive is formatted NTFS, a DOS disk will not see that drive at all. Not even Win98 can see it.
    If you're a bit scared, you may want to avoid all of this altogether especially if you don't have a backup. Even worse, PartitionMagic does have a few bugs, and more than once I had to use the PTEDIT utility to rescue a partition that was misplaced by PartitionMagic.
     
  13. ChristianW

    ChristianW Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2001
    Messages:
    101
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Ask yourself if you really need 98 on the PC at all. XP is a good operating system, and should cater to all your needs. (I am not affiliated with Micro$oft in any way).

    If you do need it...

    If you had a stand alone version of XP it does allow you to install it to whatever partition you like.

    Because your willing to use 98, your probably not to concerned with file security, so you will have no problems reading both partitions with both OS's as long as you install XP onto a FAT32 drive. XP has no problems with this.

    As for XP Home or Professional, either will be just fine.

    PS. XP has it's own Dual Boot system that is compatible with other Micro$oft OS's, that is why it must be installed after 98. It will detect 98 and do all the necessary stuff for ya.
     
  14. Darren Lewis

    Darren Lewis Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2000
    Messages:
    534
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    You should be able to install XP back using the recovery discs. Just because you've partitioned the drive shouldn't affect things. As far as I understand (I've never used teh recovery discs for my vaio - yet!) the recovery discs contain the OS and all of the additional bundled software in one install package. I'm sure that I read that you could choose which pieces to re-install.

    If things go wrong you can always format the drive into one partition (using the PartitionMagic DOS discs) and reinstall XP using the recovery discs.
     
  15. Jon_R

    Jon_R Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2001
    Messages:
    174
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    In my experience those recovery disks just wipe the drive clean and copy an image to the clean disk. In other words, if you partition the drive and then use one of those disks, I believe it will remove all the partitions you made and copy an image to the hard drive overwriting everything you have done. This holds true for every recovery disk I have ever seen (compaq, acer, gateway, dell, micron, ast, pacbell, hp, and I think vaio, ironically thats the one i'm not 100% sure of.)

    This makes sense, this keeps the end user from having a copy of XP and any of the other applications used. Also when you are restoring a PC you would have to manually set everything up (applications and what not) but with this method it just copies a bunch of files to the drive and boom, its done. I personally hate restore disks. From day one with a prebuilt PC I would have removed all the excess crap they give you. But with those disks it puts it all right back.

    I'm not sure about Windows authorization in XP but its really unlikely you can borrow someone's disk and use your code. Even though you did purchase a computer with the software on it. I suppose you didn't purchase a copy of the software though.

    Oh well, thats just the way it is.

    Jon
     
  16. Francois Caron

    Francois Caron Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 1997
    Messages:
    2,167
    Likes Received:
    21
    Trophy Points:
    1,610
    Location:
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Real Name:
    François Caron
    Jon, there is one exception to your rule. IBM's recovery disks give you the choice between loading the image on drive C: and rebuilding the entire hard drive. Even then, I'm always having a heart attack whenever I have to use a recovery disk on a machine where the other partitions must be kept even when I've made backups. There's no way for me to know if the recovery disk will actually work properly. And if it doesn't, it's a real pain to restore the other partitions.
     

Share This Page