Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums

How to access multiboot menu from Windows 8 startup

  1. #1

    How to access multiboot menu from Windows 8 startup

    I have been using Windows 7 Pro (64) for several years, and today installed a newly purchased Windows 8 Pro (64) OS. I looked on-line and found many articles on how to multi-boot back to Windows 7 after installing Windows 8, and believe I have done this correctly (more below), but when booting up I do not ever see a multi-boot menu, my system boots directly into Windows 8.

    When installing Win 8, I booted from my CD/DVD drive with the Win 8 OS media in the drive. (I had previously reduced the volume of my Windows 7 drive and created a new partition that I called "Windows8". ). At the appropriate time in the Win 8 install I chose "Custom", then chose the newly created "Windows 8" partition, then proceeded with the Win 8 OS install. As mentioned above, I do not see the multi-boot menu when booting up, however when in Windows 8 I can see the Windows 7 drive in "Computer", so it was not over-written.

    I looked through the forums here and found this post:
    Startup Options - Choose a Default OS to Run at Startup in Windows 8

    and am wondering if I should try Options 2 through 4 (1 of)? I build my own PCs so know something about PC's, bt not much about booting to an OS.....

    Another options might be installing a third party boot manager, which I have not yet done, but if this is an idea I should pursue then any recommendations would be great.

    Thanks- my reason for getting back to Win 7 is to be able to use the PC while I learn and setup Win 8 over time. I went into this believing that getting a multi-boot capability would be very easy. It's possible that I have screwed up, but any suggestions would be much appreciated.

    THanks, Bruce.

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2

    Posts : 5,592
    ME, XP,Vista,Win7,Win8,Win8.1

    Welcome to EightForums.

    Can you post a screen shot of Disk management?

    Screenshots and Files - Upload and Post in Eight Forums

    How to Use the Snipping Tool in Vista - Vista Forums

    Do you have a uEFI/BIOS firmware?
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3

    Posts : 835
    Win 8.1 Pro

    I would first start with Option 4,, and run bcdedit to see if the entries are all there for Win7 and Win8
    If not, you will have to do Option 4 completely,
    If they are listed,, you can then try Option 2 and 3,, but,,, if the OS is not showing up there at all.
    Then something went wrong during the install.

    You can also take a look at EasyBCD,,,,

    I can't tell you it will fix your issue, but it might. Or it might Help...

    EasyBCD - NeoSmart Technologies

    In the end, you may have to try to add the Boot Menu Option in for windows 7. I am trying to locate something on that now.

    However, you can try this using EasyBCD.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4

    Posts : 835
    Win 8.1 Pro

    I was thinking though... depending on how you shrunk the partition.
    It is possible that the Boot manager got really messed up and now resides on Windows 8's partition.

    As theog requested,, it would be easier to troubleshoot with screen shots if what I posted doesn't help.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5

    Quote Originally Posted by theog View Post
    Welcome to EightForums.

    Can you post a screen shot of Disk management?

    Do you have a uEFI/BIOS firmware?
    Yes, I have uEFI, my mobo is a P8P67 (ASUS), about a year old.

    My disk management: You can see Disk 2, E: is where I want to be able to boot up into for Win7, C: is Win 8

    Thanks for the help, Bruce

    Click image for larger version
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #6

    Thanks Tepid,

    I tried "Option 2" and I can't see anything other than "Windows 8" under "Startup and Recovery". I assume that this is what sets the properties for the multi-boot screen, as I see the timeout "Time to display list of operating systems" (defaults to 30 seconds).

    As far as how I shrunk the volume of this HD- I was in Disk Management in Win 7, right clicked on the drive, selected "Shrink Volume", then I created a new partition in the (now) empty space, called it Windows8, and proceeded to install Win 8 as previously described.

    Thanks for your help, I might look at EasyBCD.

    Thanks, Bruce.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #7

    OK, I have just looked around at Disk management and found something. I could swear that I installed Win 8 on the same HD as Win 7 (after shrinking the previous partition). I can recall looking at the used size of the original volume to determine what size I wanted to shrink to. But what I am seeing now is that the HD that is partitioned into 2 segments (one containing and named Windows 8) has it's other partition empty, no files. But the Windows 7 files are on a separate HD. Win 7 is on Disk 1, and Win 8 (plus the partition with no files) is on Disk 2. The only HD that I had with no files at all was one I installed yesterday, an SSD that I was intending to use for my flight sim. So, based on what i "THINK", Win 8 is on a partition on my new SSD, Win 7 is on another totally separate HDD media. What does this mean? Should I try to boot up to the other drive (Win 7) through uEFI/BIOS? Or should I try to assign it through EasyBCD (that I already have downloaded and opened, but no changes yet).

    Is there a significance to all of this? Thanks, Bruce.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  8. #8

    Posts : 5,592
    ME, XP,Vista,Win7,Win8,Win8.1

    Physically disconnect the I: HD.
    Make the Windows 7 HD, disk0 & first HD boot in BIOS.Also connected to the first Sata port on the MOBO.
    Make the Windows 8 HD, disk1

    Than do a repair.
    How to do a Automatic Repair:
    Automatic Repair - Run in Windows 8
    Note: You may need to do startup repair 3 to 4 times.
    Startup Repair - Run 3 Separate Times - Windows 7 Forums

    How to do a Refresh:
    Refresh Windows 8
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  9. #9

    Thanks theog,

    Before I saw your post (I assume you have seen the followup posts), I ran EasyBCD and and added an entry to the boot menu, selected the other media as Windows 7 (where I can see my Win 7 files). I now get a multiboot menu, when I selected Windows 7 the PC back through POST (I assume that's normal?), and came up in Windows 7. I'm not sure what the PC will try to do next time I re-boot, I assume that it will need to always use the Win 8 HD to access the boot menu? I assume this is what you are saying in your last post, to get all the media back to normal hierarchy as far as the boot process is concerned?

    Thanks- I really appreciate the help here.

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #10

    Posts : 5,592
    ME, XP,Vista,Win7,Win8,Win8.1

    As your screenshot in post 5.
    You have Windows 8 boot files on I:
    Windows 7 boot files on D:

    Should be all on the same partition.

    EasyBCD not need.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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How to access multiboot menu from Windows 8 startup
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