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Running Windows (or anything else) on your Mac Discussion of Classic or running Windows, Linux and other OSes on the Mac.

Damaged my Windows 7 Bootcamp partition - need help

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Member Since: Mar 30, 2009
Location: NJ
Posts: 19
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Mac Specs: New "unibody" macbook pro 2.4Ghz, 250 SSD, 4GbDDR3 RAM; Mac OS X Leopard, Parallels (Vista Ult, XP)

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Hello all. I did a really dumb thing a couple nights ago. I attached an external drive to my Windows 7 bootcamp partition. I did this because I just needed to format the external drive. I didn't eject it properly, and now Windows is looking for that device (in the BCD). when I try to start my bootcamp partition I'm getting the dreaded "windows failed to start. A recent hardware or software change might be the cause...etc" "Info: The boot selection failed because a required device is inaccessible."

I'm familiar enough with Vista/Win 7 that there's no more MBR...but that awful BCD. I've got a pretty good GUI based BCD editing program that I downloaded a while back...which was very useful on a regular "PC". But this is a different story....I'm dealing with a Macbook...and I really can't afford to lose my Mac I don't really want to start playing with the BCD until I know what the results will be...particularly on the Mac partition. Obviously, I could CCC the Mac partition...and I do have a Winclone backup of the Bootcamp partition...but some things have been added to my Windows/bootcamp partition since I took that backup...quite a bit to restore it could result in some data loss...even if I were to manually backup the bootcamp partition.

So here's what I'm hoping. Has anyone run into this problem? there a quick fix...a way to access the windows 7 boot manager from the Mac side? I know it's a bit of a longshot...but any help would be greatly appreciated. Otherwise, I'm going to have to rebuild my bootcamp OS.

Please let me know if you need anymore info....I appreciate any replies

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Moved to appropriate forum.

Let's try to startup Windows 7 in SAFE mode and see if we can get rid of the unwanted external drive. Choose Windows as your startup but hold down the F8 key during the boot cycle. That should get you into a menu; Look at this.

You can select what you'd like to do from this menu. I do not recommend the repair route because that will lose all your updates and you'll be back at square one again. Also, did you try hooking up that drive again and rebooting to Windows 7 to see if you can get in that way?

If all else fails, copy what data you can from your Windows 7 partition and use your copy of WinClone to restore.

My recommendation: I would use the Windows 7 backup from now on. I guess you know that it has clone imaging built in? Which means you can (from Win 7) clone your installation to an external NTFS formatted hard drive. Restoring in case of a crash is real easy. Just boot your Mac with your original Win 7 DVD, and choose restore from backup. Read up on it, it's documented real well in the Windows 7 backup restore help.

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