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Partition Letter Not proper after restoring clone image of Windows XP

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  #1  
Old 14-12-2011
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Join Date: Dec 2011
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Partition Letter Not proper after restoring clone image of Windows XP

I have a licensed XP setup that I'm content with, (tried W7 but hated it) so I was looking to clone my XP drive onto a SSD that I have (yes I know I won't see that much of an inprovement in speed but anyway).

Problem is, when my XP system was setup with 3 partitions on a 1TB drive, for some reason the system file partition became F: and the other 2 partitions C: and E:. So the C: partition is the boot partition but all the system files are on the F: partition.

The F: partition is 48GB and the SSD is 64GB so it'll fit but I've tried Acronis, Macrium, HDClone, Minitool and EaseUS amongst others and I cannot get the SSD to boot after cloning just the F: partition. The cloning programs don't seem to be able to clone just the F: partition AND make it bootable (possibly due to the drive letter issues).

So I cloned the entire 1TB drive onto another 1TB drive and that boots fine but if I delete the C: and E: partitions on that cloned drive and just try to boot F: then it won't boot. My reasoning is that if I could change the F: drive letter to C: it would then boot but I tried that but then it just bootloops.

Is there any way to get this right or am I trying to do all this in vain and rather re-install from scratch?

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  #2  
Old 14-12-2011
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Join Date: Aug 2011
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re: Partition Letter Not proper after restoring clone image of Windows XP

This is a issue of overwritten mbr. It is possible to modify and make the system boot from the drive you want. You must have a valid image file of the boot partition. I had used Norton ghost for the same. I backed up my C drive which was windows partition and restored the image file as it was. It necessary to get the right mbr overwritten on the hard drive to get all your existing partitions and boot partition.


How to change system boot drive letter
You cannot change the system volume drive letter after Setup
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Old 14-12-2011
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Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 19
Re: Partition Letter Not proper after restoring clone image of Windows XP

Have you tried to relabel the drives' letters to the old sequence?
Right click on My Computer, select >manage>disk management. When then new screen appears, move all the drive letters to another letter higher in the alphabet. Now re-letter the drives as C:, D:, E:, etc. to try the boot sequence that may be selected in BIOS setup.
later....Joe
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  #4  
Old 14-12-2011
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Join Date: Dec 2011
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Re: Partition Letter Not proper after restoring clone image of Windows XP

Unfortunately the C: (& E:) drive/partition is just a data partition, it has none of the OS files on it, they are all on F:. I have all the data backed up so don't need those 2 partitions but seemingly C: is needed to boot so I can't remove it.

I thought to use the clone drive, delete everything from C: & E:, resize those partitions to 1GB each and then clone that to the SSD. At least then it should boot but it doesn't solve my original problem of the OS being on F: but C: is the boot partition.

BTW, I have tried FIXMBR (& BOOTCFG /REBUILD & FIXBOOT) from the recovery console but still no luck.
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  #5  
Old 14-12-2011
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Join Date: Dec 2007
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Re: Partition Letter Not proper after restoring clone image of Windows XP

I think that Windows XP setup sets C: letter for a partition which is flagged as active or boot. So iit means that if the Recovery partition is an assigned letter C: then it's probably marked as a boot partition (this doesn't mean that Windows will necessary try to boot from it). This can be solved by using one of many bootable partition managers. There is a free software called gparted that will do the trick for you. Just boot from gparted live CD. After that you have to right click on your Recovery partition > Manage Flags > unselect “boot”. Then just right click on your OS partition > Manage Flags > select “boot”. After this Windows XP setup should set your OS partition as C:.
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