Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums

Dual booting Win 8.1 x64 and Win XP

  1. #1

    Posts : 3
    Windows 8.1 Enterprise x64

    Dual booting Win 8.1 x64 and Win XP

    Good day,

    I'm a new user here and thought that I should ask my question here as well before attempting to setup a dual boot with Win 8.1 and Win XP.

    Just a quick break down of my current setup:

    a) Win 8.1 x64 is currently installed on my SSD on C:\ drive partition
    b) On a different SATA hdd I have an old Win 7 x64 installation that I'm not using any more on one partition

    I simply want to replace my old Win 7 x64 installation with Win XP. Why do I want to install Win XP you may ask ? The answer is simple, I want to play some older games that aren't fully compatible with Win 8.1 x64 and neither run good in a virtual machine environment on Win 8.1.

    The only thing that is stopping me from attempting this is, has to do with the Win 8.1 bootloader. I simply don't want to lose my bootloader, and I'm afraid that when I install Win XP it might overwrite my Win 8.1 bootloader which will most likely leave me without gaining access to Win 8.1. At the moment the Win 8.1 bootloader lists along with Win 8.1 my old Win 7 x64 installation.

    Given my setup of hdd's up top, what would be the easiest way for me to load Win XP on my old Win 7 partition that will still allow me to have the Win 8.1 bootloader with a Win XP boot option on the bootloader menu ?

    Should I disconnect my SSD and then proceed to install Win XP on the Win 7 partition and then afterward reconnect my SSD and then using EasyBCD add an entry for Win XP to the bootloader? Or will I run into an issue along the way?

    Looking forward to any suggestions or confirmations to the procedure that I want to follow.

    Thank you,

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2

    Posts : 3
    Windows 8.1 Enterprise x64

    I can't believe that after 64 views and 11 hours later, nobody hasn't replied yet . I'm not expecting an essay for a reply, just a simple "yes, your suggested method could work" or "no, rather do this or that instead" or "watch out for this".
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3

    Posts : 879
    Windows 10

    Installing Windows XP on a PC already with Windows Vista, Windows 7, or Windows 8

    If you follow these instructions, you should be able to add Windows XP to a system that already has a newer version of Windows installed – with minimal headache and no loss of data.
    If you’re installing Windows XP to a separate physical drive, do not disconnect the Windows Vista or Windows 7 drive, and do not change the drive boot order in the BIOS. This will not help and will make it terribly difficult to get your dual-boot working again!
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4

    Posts : 3
    Windows 8.1 Enterprise x64

    Thanks genet for the reply, I'll check out the link you posted, looks promising

    The only thing I'm wondering about after reading those steps are:

    • If all has gone well (assuming you followed the directions here to a tee, there is no reason for it not to have), you should be presented with the EasyBCD boot menu when you restart your machine.

    The "you should be presented with the EasyBCD boot menu" , does it mean that EasyBCD will install it's own "bootloader" screen or will it reinstate Win 8.1's bootloader ? I suppose if it installs a custom bootloader it's not the end of the world, when I format again in the future to reload Win 8.1 it can overwrite the EasyBCD one then.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

Dual booting Win 8.1 x64 and Win XP
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