Solved How to unscramble a dual-boot system


nitewulf

Well-known member
Local time
11:55 PM
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20
OS
Windows 11 (beta)
I need some advice on how to unscramble this scenario. I upgraded in-place from Windows 10 to 11, but without keeping files, apps, etc. I ended up with some issues and against my better judgment decided to reinstall using an ISO on usb . Because I have 3 1TB SSDs in my system, I accidentally selected the wrong one for the second installation. The original C drive from the first installation is now "J" and the new one for the second installation is now "C". See pictures.

Upon startup, I'm presented with a dual-boot menu and both open to their respective Windows 11 desktops. My ideal situation now would be to somehow switch drive J with drive c. I would then reformat what is now C and use it for more storage. C now shows it has the boot info, but J has the UEFI and recovery partitions. If this is too complicated, I can just leave things as they are as I have adequate storage,. Disregard Drive M in the pictures; it's just a mechanical storage drive.Screenshot 2021-11-09 164637.pngScreenshot 2021-11-09 164949.png
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 (beta)
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Self-Built
    CPU
    i9-9900KF
    Motherboard
    Asus ROG STRIX Z390-E Gaming
    Memory
    G.Skill DDR4-2132 32GB XMP 2.0
    Graphics Card(s)
    Asus Turbo GeForce RTX 2080 Ti
    Sound Card
    Creative Soundblaster G6
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell P2715Q
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 970 Evo 1TB x 2
    PSU
    EVGA 750
    Case
    Fractal 5
    Cooling
    Fractal Celsius S24
    Keyboard
    Corsair K55
    Mouse
    Razer
    Internet Speed
    300
    Browser
    Edge, Chrome and Firefox
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
I am really confused. Which disk number do you want the computer from? Disk 0 or Disk 2?
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Homebuilt
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 7 3800XT
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Crosshair VII Hero (WiFi)
    Memory
    32GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Education
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Inspiron 7773
    CPU
    Intel i7-8550U
    Memory
    32GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Nvidia Geforce MX150
    Sound Card
    Realtek
    Monitor(s) Displays
    17"
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1080
    Hard Drives
    Toshiba 512GB NVMe SSD
    SK Hynix 512GB SATA SSD
    Internet Speed
    Fast!
From what I understand, you want what occupies New Volume C on Disk 0 to occupy volume J on Disk 2?
if so, you could clone C to J using a program like Macrium Reflect Free.


In Disk Management, you would need to right-click C and select shrink volume (the source can't be larger than the destination)
 

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My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win 11 Pro 23H2 22631.3235
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Me Myself and I
    CPU
    Intel® Core™ i7-12700F
    Motherboard
    ASUS TUF GAMING Z690-PLUS WIFI
    Memory
    G.SKILL Ripjaws S5 Series 64GB (2 x 32GB) DDR5
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA GeForce RTX 3050 XC Black Gaming
    Sound Card
    RealTek on-board 7.1
    Monitor(s) Displays
    ASUS TUF Gaming 27" 2K HDR Gaming
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1440
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 990 Pro 1TB NVMe (boot)
    SK hynix P41 500GB NVMe (Win 10)
    SK hynix P41 2TB NVMe (x3)
    PSU
    Corsair RM850x Shift
    Case
    Antec Dark Phantom DP502 FLUX
    Cooling
    Noctua NH-U12A chromax.black + 7 Phantek T-30's
    Keyboard
    Logitech MK 320
    Mouse
    Razer Basilisk V3
    Internet Speed
    350Mbs
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    Winows Security
    Other Info
    Windows 10 22H2 19045.4123
    On System One
  • Operating System
    Win 11 Pro 23H2 22631.3235
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Me Myself and I
    CPU
    Intel Core i7-11700F
    Motherboard
    Asus TUF Gaming Z590 Plus WiFi
    Memory
    64 GB DDR4
    Graphics card(s)
    EVGA RTX 2060 KO Ultra Gaming
    Sound Card
    Realtek
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Samsung F27T350
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 980 Pro 1TB
    Samsung 970 EVO Plus 2TB
    Samsung 870 EVO 500GB SSD
    PSU
    Corsair HX750
    Case
    Cougar MX330-G Window
    Cooling
    Hyper 212 EVO
    Internet Speed
    350Mbps
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    Windows Security
Thanks for the replies, guys. Let me see if I can explain this a little further. Drive C (Disk 0) is the second installation of Windows 11 that I don't want as it's on a slower SSD. Drive J (Disk 2) is the faster NvME SSD and is the original copy of Windows 11 and used to be the C drive. What I'm wondering is do both drives have a boot record? In other words, can I boot up to the copy of Windows that's on Drive J (the original installation) and from there simply reformat drive C and use for storage? I obviously don't need 2 copies of Windows 11. I've never tried to reformat a drive C (disc 0) from within Windows, but if I've booted up to Windows using Drive J, it sounds like it might be possible, but I wanted to ask you guys first. It looks like C is just one large partition. Once I'm able to reformat C, I can change it's drive letter and J would then become C and the only copy of Windows. Since J is the original installation of Windows 11, I assume it would have the boot record and all the files it needs to boot. If I can't reformat C within Windows even booting up from the other drive, could I do it in diskpart> So, I don;' want to move data from C to J, I want to reformat C altogether. Hope I've explained this better.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 (beta)
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Self-Built
    CPU
    i9-9900KF
    Motherboard
    Asus ROG STRIX Z390-E Gaming
    Memory
    G.Skill DDR4-2132 32GB XMP 2.0
    Graphics Card(s)
    Asus Turbo GeForce RTX 2080 Ti
    Sound Card
    Creative Soundblaster G6
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell P2715Q
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 970 Evo 1TB x 2
    PSU
    EVGA 750
    Case
    Fractal 5
    Cooling
    Fractal Celsius S24
    Keyboard
    Corsair K55
    Mouse
    Razer
    Internet Speed
    300
    Browser
    Edge, Chrome and Firefox
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
Start Windows on your faster NVME disk through the bootmanager. Windows will then automatically assign drive letter C: for it. From there you can then format the other drive.
The bootmanager itself can be removed later by booting into WinPE eg from the installation media and running some appropriate commands from a command window. I don't have the exact commands at hand, was something with fixmbr .. but it will depend if you have GPT or MBR. Probably someone else here in the forum can help further with that - or maybe there is even a tutorial from @Brink

bzw recently I had the same with two parallel Win11 installs, one was on a SSD, one on a HDD. Wanted just to keep the one on the SSD adn also got rid of the boot manager screen so now PC starts with the SSD :)
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    W10 Enterprise LTSC
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    custom
    CPU
    i7-2700K
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte GA-P67A-D3-B3
    Memory
    24GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    MSI GeForce RTX2060 Super
    Sound Card
    onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Samsung curved
    Screen Resolution
    FHD
    Hard Drives
    Samsung EVO870 SSD 1TB
    Seagate Barracuda HDD 8TB
    PSU
    be quiet 550W
    Case
    CoolerMaster
    Cooling
    be quiet PURE ROCK SLIM BK008
    Keyboard
    KLIM Domination k852
    Mouse
    Logitech standard cordless
    Internet Speed
    10/1 DSL (the fastest line speed available here...)
    Browser
    Mozilla FF 91.2.0esr
    Antivirus
    Defender
    Other Info
    W10 GUI heavily modified with Stardock Blinds "7 for 10" skin and Startmenu.
    No MS Account and no MS apps.
    I upgraded to W10 only for gaming purposes, otherwise I'd kept my beloved W7 Ultimate x64
  • Operating System
    W11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    custom
    CPU
    Intel Core i5-2500
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte PH67A-D3-B3
    Memory
    4GB
    Graphics card(s)
    MSI Geforce 1050Ti
    Sound Card
    onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    FujitsuSiemens 19"
    Screen Resolution
    1280x1024 (oldschool 4:3)
    Hard Drives
    Samsung EVO850 SSD 250GB + Samsung 1TB HDD
    PSU
    be quiet 550W
    Case
    Mars MCNW ATX Gaming
    Cooling
    be quiet PURE ROCK SLIM BK008
    Mouse
    oldschool Dell optical wired
    Keyboard
    Dell German 102
    Internet Speed
    slow DSL, 10/1Mbps, but thats the best offer here
    Browser
    Mozilla 91.2.0esr
    Antivirus
    Defender
    Other Info
    This is an older PC for testing new OS,
    Furthermore: 4 Dell/HP laptops on Win7 Ultimate x64, used for NAS, Media server, browsing, workshop and sound studio
Hello nitewulf, :-)

Are you wanting to change the default OS to load at startup?


Afterwards, you could safely delete the OS you don't want.

 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro for Workstations
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom self build
    CPU
    Intel i7-8700K 5 GHz
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Maximus XI Formula Z390
    Memory
    64 GB (4x16GB) G.SKILL TridentZ RGB DDR4 3600 MHz (F4-3600C18D-32GTZR)
    Graphics Card(s)
    ASUS ROG-STRIX-GTX1080TI-O11G-GAMING (11GB GDDR5X)
    Sound Card
    Integrated Digital Audio (S/PDIF)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    2 x Samsung Odyssey G75 27"
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    1TB Samsung 990 PRO M.2,
    4TB Samsung 990 PRO M.2,
    8TB WD MyCloudEX2Ultra NAS
    PSU
    Seasonic Prime Titanium 850W
    Case
    Thermaltake Core P3 wall mounted
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro H115i
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless K800
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master 3
    Internet Speed
    1 Gbps Download and 35 Mbps Upload
    Browser
    Google Chrome
    Antivirus
    Microsoft Defender and Malwarebytes Premium
    Other Info
    Logitech Z625 speaker system,
    Logitech BRIO 4K Pro webcam,
    HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M477fdn,
    APC SMART-UPS RT 1000 XL - SURT1000XLI,
    Galaxy S23 Plus phone
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    HP Spectre x360 2in1 14-eu0098nr (2024)
    CPU
    Intel Core Ultra 7 155H 4.8 GHz
    Memory
    16 GB LPDDR5x-7467 MHz
    Graphics card(s)
    Integrated Intel Arc
    Sound Card
    Poly Studio
    Monitor(s) Displays
    14" 2.8K OLED multitouch
    Screen Resolution
    2880 x 1800
    Hard Drives
    2 TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD
    Internet Speed
    Intel Wi-Fi 7 BE200 (2x2) and Bluetooth 5.4
    Browser
    Chrome and Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender and Malwarebytes Premium
Hello nitewulf, :)

Are you wanting to change the default OS to load at startup?


Afterwards, you could safely delete the OS you don't want.

Brink, my goal was to get rid of the second installation of Windows 11 and I just fixed it taking the easy way out. I simply removed the older SSD that contained the 2nd installation of Win11 from my computer. I replaced it with a spare SSD I had lying around and that will be for storage. Now I can fool around with the SSD I removed and attach it to a cable and reformat it using diskpart when I have the time. So I'm good to go now except for the dual boot-loader entry and with your tutorial, I'm sure I can figure that out. So now I'm back to my original C drive. Thanks everyone for their help.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 (beta)
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Self-Built
    CPU
    i9-9900KF
    Motherboard
    Asus ROG STRIX Z390-E Gaming
    Memory
    G.Skill DDR4-2132 32GB XMP 2.0
    Graphics Card(s)
    Asus Turbo GeForce RTX 2080 Ti
    Sound Card
    Creative Soundblaster G6
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell P2715Q
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 970 Evo 1TB x 2
    PSU
    EVGA 750
    Case
    Fractal 5
    Cooling
    Fractal Celsius S24
    Keyboard
    Corsair K55
    Mouse
    Razer
    Internet Speed
    300
    Browser
    Edge, Chrome and Firefox
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
:shawn:
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro for Workstations
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom self build
    CPU
    Intel i7-8700K 5 GHz
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Maximus XI Formula Z390
    Memory
    64 GB (4x16GB) G.SKILL TridentZ RGB DDR4 3600 MHz (F4-3600C18D-32GTZR)
    Graphics Card(s)
    ASUS ROG-STRIX-GTX1080TI-O11G-GAMING (11GB GDDR5X)
    Sound Card
    Integrated Digital Audio (S/PDIF)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    2 x Samsung Odyssey G75 27"
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    1TB Samsung 990 PRO M.2,
    4TB Samsung 990 PRO M.2,
    8TB WD MyCloudEX2Ultra NAS
    PSU
    Seasonic Prime Titanium 850W
    Case
    Thermaltake Core P3 wall mounted
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro H115i
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless K800
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master 3
    Internet Speed
    1 Gbps Download and 35 Mbps Upload
    Browser
    Google Chrome
    Antivirus
    Microsoft Defender and Malwarebytes Premium
    Other Info
    Logitech Z625 speaker system,
    Logitech BRIO 4K Pro webcam,
    HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M477fdn,
    APC SMART-UPS RT 1000 XL - SURT1000XLI,
    Galaxy S23 Plus phone
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    HP Spectre x360 2in1 14-eu0098nr (2024)
    CPU
    Intel Core Ultra 7 155H 4.8 GHz
    Memory
    16 GB LPDDR5x-7467 MHz
    Graphics card(s)
    Integrated Intel Arc
    Sound Card
    Poly Studio
    Monitor(s) Displays
    14" 2.8K OLED multitouch
    Screen Resolution
    2880 x 1800
    Hard Drives
    2 TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD
    Internet Speed
    Intel Wi-Fi 7 BE200 (2x2) and Bluetooth 5.4
    Browser
    Chrome and Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender and Malwarebytes Premium
Okay, so you just wanted to switch the drive letters around, cool. As for the boot loader, EasyBCD 2.4 can do wonders.
 

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My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win 11 Pro 23H2 22631.3235
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Me Myself and I
    CPU
    Intel® Core™ i7-12700F
    Motherboard
    ASUS TUF GAMING Z690-PLUS WIFI
    Memory
    G.SKILL Ripjaws S5 Series 64GB (2 x 32GB) DDR5
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA GeForce RTX 3050 XC Black Gaming
    Sound Card
    RealTek on-board 7.1
    Monitor(s) Displays
    ASUS TUF Gaming 27" 2K HDR Gaming
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1440
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 990 Pro 1TB NVMe (boot)
    SK hynix P41 500GB NVMe (Win 10)
    SK hynix P41 2TB NVMe (x3)
    PSU
    Corsair RM850x Shift
    Case
    Antec Dark Phantom DP502 FLUX
    Cooling
    Noctua NH-U12A chromax.black + 7 Phantek T-30's
    Keyboard
    Logitech MK 320
    Mouse
    Razer Basilisk V3
    Internet Speed
    350Mbs
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    Winows Security
    Other Info
    Windows 10 22H2 19045.4123
    On System One
  • Operating System
    Win 11 Pro 23H2 22631.3235
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Me Myself and I
    CPU
    Intel Core i7-11700F
    Motherboard
    Asus TUF Gaming Z590 Plus WiFi
    Memory
    64 GB DDR4
    Graphics card(s)
    EVGA RTX 2060 KO Ultra Gaming
    Sound Card
    Realtek
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Samsung F27T350
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 980 Pro 1TB
    Samsung 970 EVO Plus 2TB
    Samsung 870 EVO 500GB SSD
    PSU
    Corsair HX750
    Case
    Cougar MX330-G Window
    Cooling
    Hyper 212 EVO
    Internet Speed
    350Mbps
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    Windows Security
I had no trouble fixing the bootloader. I did find that I was missing a couple of apps from the Microsoft Store and I ended up having to do a system restore back a couple of days, but I'm back up and running and everything appears to be working normally.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 (beta)
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Self-Built
    CPU
    i9-9900KF
    Motherboard
    Asus ROG STRIX Z390-E Gaming
    Memory
    G.Skill DDR4-2132 32GB XMP 2.0
    Graphics Card(s)
    Asus Turbo GeForce RTX 2080 Ti
    Sound Card
    Creative Soundblaster G6
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell P2715Q
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 970 Evo 1TB x 2
    PSU
    EVGA 750
    Case
    Fractal 5
    Cooling
    Fractal Celsius S24
    Keyboard
    Corsair K55
    Mouse
    Razer
    Internet Speed
    300
    Browser
    Edge, Chrome and Firefox
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
Hi there
OK I see you've fixed it -- but for others -- or next time the easy way is to boot say winpe or macrium free stand alone recovery media then
1) in the command mode type bcdedit (macrium free has a console option on bottom taskbar), winpe boots into console mode if using winpe media.
2) type bcedit with no parameters - this will display a list of the OS'es so look for the OS you want to get rid of -- it will be in between the { } with either {default} or { a long guid }
3) copy the guid and the {} so copy the whole string -- if you type manually you will probably make a mistake(ctrl C)
4) bcdedit /delete {the guid or default} - use ctrl-v to paste the guid string including the {} into the command after the /delete
5) job done

Don't do it from your running version of windows because that can hose it all up !!!! although it might work. It's safer to use winpe or something like macrium free to do this.

BTW with bcdedit you can also change default OS or change the description to a more useable name than just say W11 if you have several versions etc

bcdedit /set {the guid} description "Your own description" . This will appear in the boot menu on your next boot.



Q.E.D !!

Cheers
jimbo
 
Last edited:

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows XP,7,10,11 Linux Arch Linux
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    2 X Intel i7
Thanks, jimbo. I guess I got a little cold feet. I will study up on bcdedit and I also want to download Macrium Reflect as I need to have periodic good backups of my system. I have 2 old core 2 duo laptops running Windows 10 that I use as test machines and backups. The first thing I want to do is wipe that 1TB SSD I removed from the computer using an external SATA cable. Yhanks for yours and everyone else's help.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 (beta)
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Self-Built
    CPU
    i9-9900KF
    Motherboard
    Asus ROG STRIX Z390-E Gaming
    Memory
    G.Skill DDR4-2132 32GB XMP 2.0
    Graphics Card(s)
    Asus Turbo GeForce RTX 2080 Ti
    Sound Card
    Creative Soundblaster G6
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell P2715Q
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 970 Evo 1TB x 2
    PSU
    EVGA 750
    Case
    Fractal 5
    Cooling
    Fractal Celsius S24
    Keyboard
    Corsair K55
    Mouse
    Razer
    Internet Speed
    300
    Browser
    Edge, Chrome and Firefox
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender

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