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  1. #1


    Member Since
    Oct 23, 2010
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    Removing bogus startup disk option
    Hi there,
    I installed Windows with boot camp, but now when I hold down option to choose a startup option, three drives appear instead of two: Macintosh HD, WINDOWS, and WINDOWS again. One of the WINDOWS drives is bogus; clicking on it leads to a "no operating system found" DOS error and reboot. It's driving me nuts having a dummy option just hanging out there, I just want two simple options that both work. How can I delete the dummy option?

  2. #2

    Buzzard2010's Avatar
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    I believe (although not used personally) that you can go into bootcamp assistant> advanced option, and delete the bogus option from there, let me know, if not then i'll have a look into it for you

    If you have been helped, don't forget to use the Reputation system at the top right of their post.
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  3. #3


    Member Since
    Oct 23, 2010
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    where are you seeing "advanced options?" I only see a click-through guide to set up Windows.

  4. #4

    harryb2448's Avatar
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    Go into System preferences > Startup Disk and see what is recorded there.

  5. #5


    Member Since
    Oct 23, 2010
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    There is "Mac OSX" on drive 'Macintosh HD,' then WINDOWS on drive 'BOOTCAMP' and then WINDOWS on 'disk 2'. The last one is the one that doesn't work.

  6. #6

    chscag's Avatar
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    Which version of Windows did you install? Was it XP by chance? Post back and we can go from there...

  7. #7


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    Oct 23, 2010
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    It was indeed XP. I've tried both Home and Corporate editions and they both have this same problem, I think it's a mainly OSX/Boot Camp issue.

  8. #8

    chscag's Avatar
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    Do you by chance have a flash drive or any other drive attached to the Mac when you're dual booting between OS X and XP? That will sometimes confuse the boot loader into thinking there is an additional boot option.

    Also, I'm assuming your hard drive is divided into two partitions: MacIntosh HD and Boot Camp. If you have a third partition on the drive that may get the boot loader to think there is another boot option.

    The reason I asked in the last post if you were running XP is because I've seen this same thing several times but only when running XP. It does not happen with Vista and so far not with Win 7 either.

  9. #9


    Member Since
    Oct 23, 2010
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    No flash drives, no partitions either. The drive is a separate disk altogether.

    edit: in retrospect, I think I know what it is. It's the small partition the XP installer creates to load the installer software for the first restart. So it has bootloader information and maybe is thus being recognized. I'm not sure how to delete it though.

  10. #10

    harryb2448's Avatar
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    As a suggestion, move the Computer/Library/Preferences/com.apple.systempreferences.plist file to the Trash, empty, and log out of and then into your account and see if that makes a difference.

  11. #11

    chscag's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stereodan98 View Post
    No flash drives, no partitions either. The drive is a separate disk altogether.

    edit: in retrospect, I think I know what it is. It's the small partition the XP installer creates to load the installer software for the first restart. So it has bootloader information and maybe is thus being recognized. I'm not sure how to delete it though.
    That's strange. It should have been deleted on the second reboot during the installation process. Can you actually see it from the Windows file explorer and does it have a drive letter assigned to it? If it does, we can safely delete it. But we have to first make sure that XP is not actually booting from there.

    Take a close look at your "boot.ini" file (system hidden in root of C) and pay close attention to what it says. The file is a text file and can be read with notepad. That file contains the boot loader information.

  12. #12


    Member Since
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    Deleting the preferences file didn't do it unfortunately.

    I may have been wrong about the partition assumption. There is a partition, however it is the GPT partition required by Windows to run, and cannot be deleted...no separate drive letter, invisible in Windows explorer. Therefore I don't think it's what's causing the bogus boot loader option.

    I am familiar with the boot.ini file, and it only has the one correct configuration.

  13. #13

    chscag's Avatar
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    OK. That leaves us with the possibility of a bad partition table. And really, the only way to clear that error is to wipe everything clean and start over. That includes your Snow Leopard partition.

    What you can do (if you want to go thru all that trouble) is make a clone backup of your Snow Leopard partition or use Time Machine. Then download and use the free "WinClone" to make a backup image of your Win XP partition.

    Boot with your SL DVD, use Disk Utility to remove the partitions and erase the drive. Reinstall and use your Time Machine backup. Afterward, create a new partition for XP using the BC assistant, and then restore XP from the WinClone image. Lots of work and always a chance of something going wrong in the process.

  14. #14


    Member Since
    Feb 28, 2016
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    1
    Extra startup disk
    Quote Originally Posted by stereodan98 View Post
    Deleting the preferences file didn't do it unfortunately.

    I may have been wrong about the partition assumption. There is a partition, however it is the GPT partition required by Windows to run, and cannot be deleted...no separate drive letter, invisible in Windows explorer. Therefore I don't think it's what's causing the bogus boot loader option.

    I am familiar with the boot.ini file, and it only has the one correct configuration.
    Did anyone ever figure out how to get rid of this??

  15. #15

    harryb2448's Avatar
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    No idea but I would imagine after five years he got it sorted, probably by an erase of the drive, and a clean install from there.
    Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!

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