Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Dual boot drive letters

  1. #1


    Posts : 3
    Windows 8 Pro 32 bit

    Dual boot drive letters


    Have an issue...
    Installed Windows 8 first, then installed Win XP to a second partition on the same disk.
    In windows 8, the XP partition is seen as D:
    If I boot to XP, XP sees itself as I:
    it sees the windows 8 partition as C: and that is what I want, is C: being win 8 and XP being D:
    Is there anyway to change the lettering on the XP partition?
    Thanks

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2


    Maryland USA
    Posts : 758
    Windows 8 & Windows 7 Dual Boot


    The drive lettering is for you, windows does not look at things by drive letters.

    Heres the procedure from Microsoft.com

    How to change a drive letter

    To change an existing drive letter on a drive, on a partition, or on a volume, follow these steps:
    1. Log on as Administrator or as a member of the Administrators group.
    2. Click Start, click Control Panel, and then click Performance and Maintenance.
    3. Click Administrative Tools, double-click Computer Management, and then click Disk Management in the left pane.
    4. Right-click the drive, the partition, the logical drive, or the volume that you want to assign a drive letter to, and then clickChange Drive Letter and Paths.
    5. Click Change.
    6. Click Assign the following drive letter if it is not already selected, click the drive letter that you want to use, and then click OK.
    7. Click Yes when you are prompted to confirm the drive letter change.

    The drive letter of the drive, the partition, or the volume that you specified is changed, and the new drive letter appears in the appropriate drive, partition, or volume in the Disk Management tool.

    Reference: How to change drive letter assignments in Windows XP
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3


    My recommendation, leave it alone. Sounds like XP was I: when installed. Not sure it will take well to being D:. Vista, WIn 7 and 8 are okay as they always make themselves C: when you boot them.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4


    Posts : 3
    Windows 8 Pro 32 bit


    Quote Originally Posted by Brooklyn567 View Post
    The drive lettering is for you, windows does not look at things by drive letters.

    Heres the procedure from Microsoft.com

    How to change a drive letter

    To change an existing drive letter on a drive, on a partition, or on a volume, follow these steps:
    1. Log on as Administrator or as a member of the Administrators group.
    2. Click Start, click Control Panel, and then click Performance and Maintenance.
    3. Click Administrative Tools, double-click Computer Management, and then click Disk Management in the left pane.
    4. Right-click the drive, the partition, the logical drive, or the volume that you want to assign a drive letter to, and then clickChange Drive Letter and Paths.
    5. Click Change.
    6. Click Assign the following drive letter if it is not already selected, click the drive letter that you want to use, and then click OK.
    7. Click Yes when you are prompted to confirm the drive letter change.

    The drive letter of the drive, the partition, or the volume that you specified is changed, and the new drive letter appears in the appropriate drive, partition, or volume in the Disk Management tool.

    Reference: How to change drive letter assignments in Windows XP
    I know how to change drive letters for NON system disks...
    This is to change the letter of the partition XP resides on from I: to D:
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5


    Posts : 3
    Windows 8 Pro 32 bit


    Quote Originally Posted by Ztruker View Post
    My recommendation, leave it alone. Sounds like XP was I: when installed. Not sure it will take well to being D:. Vista, WIn 7 and 8 are okay as they always make themselves C: when you boot them.
    I just have a few older programs that won't run unless they are on C: or D:. When I did the install, the XP partition was seen as D: by Windows 8... Installed XP, ran Win 8 boot repair a couple times and had both available to boot from... In Windows 8, the partition is still seen as D, but booting to XP, it calls itself I.

    Just hoping I could change it without having to uninstall/reinstall everything... And hope it doesn't do the same thing again...
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #6


    Maryland USA
    Posts : 758
    Windows 8 & Windows 7 Dual Boot


    I just brought up a laptop with XP still in it, it wouldnt let me change the drive letter...

    "Windows cannot modify the drive letter of your system volume or boot volume"

    Now years ago when I had similar issues when moving drives, there was a program called Cybermedia Uninstaller, which let you transport programs from one drive to another, it also had the capability to remap registry entries for file locations.

    I believe Partition magic also remapped as a utility.

    If you choose this route, please backup the entire registry first, or better yet, if you have an available drive, clone your XP drive and remap the clone, leaving your original untouched until you find a solution that works..

    Ill see if I can locate drive remappers in the mneantime
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #7


    Disk Management will not change the drive letter of the OS drive. There are some utilities that claim to be able to do this but I would never trust them. Even in theory safely changing an OS drive letter is very problematic.

    Partition Magic hasn't been updated for years and is not compatible with any OS newer than XP.
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  8. #8


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


    If you install Win XP first, than install Vista, Windows 7 or Windows 8, all OS partitions will seen C; in the boot OS.

    Click image for larger version
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  9. #9


    Why dual boot XP at all. Run it as a virtual client under Oracle VirtualBox or VMWare.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #10


    Maryland USA
    Posts : 758
    Windows 8 & Windows 7 Dual Boot


    XP sees itself as I: probably because it counted your SD card slots as drives first.

    I had this issue a while back, but the letter didnt affect its operation.

    If you want to get a lower letter you should disconnect the SD/memory card reader drives first , then install XP, then Win 8

    Or you can install XP on another drive after disconnecting the card reader and it should see itself as C:

    Then reconnect the card reader.

    You will have to use the WIN8 boot repair or easy bcd in order to get the boot manager to see the XP
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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