Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Help with issues regarding installation of Debian

Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Postby mooncake » 2017-12-27 16:08

Hi everyone!

I tried installing Debian 9 on my Windows 7 laptop this morning and have managed to break my Windows. I'd like to have it set up so I can choose which OS to boot from at start up. I used the Debian GNU installer to partition my hard drive and install. I am able to start Debian from GNU GRUB just fine, but if I select Windows 7 I get the following error:

Windows failed to start. A recent hardware or software change might be the cause. To fix the problem:

1. Insert your Windows installation disc and restart your computer.
2. choose your language settings, and then click "Next."
3. Click "Repair your computer."

If you do not have the disc, contact your system administrator or computer manufacturer for assistance.

File: \Boot\BCD
Status: 0xx000000e
Info: an error occurred while attempting to read the boot configuration data.

I'm fearful to follow the above directions without any guidance. I did search the forums assuming that my problem is common but could not find a solution.
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Re: Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Postby GarryRicketson » 2017-12-27 16:41

Sounds like a Windows problem to me, Does Debian work ?
Oh, never mind
I am able to start Debian from GNU GRUB just fine,

So it is a windows problem, sorry, since I have Debian working , I don't need
windows, and don't know why it does not work.
Have you tried reading and following these instructions ?
https://wiki.debian.org/WindowsDualBoot
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Re: Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Postby mooncake » 2017-12-27 16:53

GarryRicketson wrote:Sounds like a Windows problem to me, Does Debian work ?
Oh, never mind
I am able to start Debian from GNU GRUB just fine,

So it is a windows problem, sorry, since I have Debian working , I don't need
windows, and don't know why it does not work.
Have you tried reading and following these instructions ?
https://wiki.debian.org/WindowsDualBoot


I did follow those directions. The reason I came here to ask this question, as opposed to a Windows forum, is because whatever I did to break Windows was something I did during the Debian install. I thought someone more knowledgeable about Linux than I might have some insight. I am also afraid of doing something to ruin GRUB while repairing Windows.
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Re: Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Postby GarryRicketson » 2017-12-27 17:23

Ok, well we do have some members that may be able to help, someone should
be here shortly.
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Re: Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Postby mooncake » 2017-12-27 17:37

GarryRicketson wrote:Ok, well we do have some members that may be able to help, someone should
be here shortly.

Okay. Thanks for sending me to that link.
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Re: Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Postby acewiza » 2017-12-27 17:51

If I only had a nickel for every time a Windoze boot record got borked after somebody tried to add a Linux dual boot...
Nobody would ever ask questions If everyone possessed encyclopedic knowledge of the man pages.
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Re: Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Postby GarryRicketson » 2017-12-27 20:28

I think they (Microsoft) make it that way by design, to try to discourage people form installing a better OS, ... but I guess that is another topic.
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Re: Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Postby dilberts_left_nut » 2017-12-27 20:42

Show the output of the following (# prompt means 'run as root'):
Code: Select all
# lsblk -o name,size,fstype,label,mountpoint,uuid
AdrianTM wrote:There's no hacker in my grandma...
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Re: Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Postby dotlj » 2017-12-27 23:53

Please provide more information about your system.
Have you checked BIOS settings? Is it set to UEFI? How many disks? GPT or MBR? Fastboot turned on or off?
Did you install GRUB to /dev/sda? I'm guessing yes.
The most common problems with dual booting Linux and Windows are changing the Fastboot setting.
Any other information that you can provide about what you did to prepare before installing Linux can be helpful.
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Re: Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Postby Head_on_a_Stick » 2017-12-28 09:38

mooncake wrote:I used the Debian GNU installer to partition my hard drive and install.

^ You probably did something wrong here.

Windows is now broken so you should mosey on over to a Windows forum and ask advice from them, I think "re-install" is the standard mantra in those parts but that may be unfair :twisted:
"Only the mediocre are always at their best." — Jean Giraudoux
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Re: Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Postby GarryRicketson » 2017-12-28 11:26

I kind of stumbled on to this :
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multi-booting

Windows and Linux
Further information: Disk partitioning § Multi-boot and mixed-boot systems

One popular multi-boot configuration is to dual-boot Linux and Windows operating systems, each contained within its own partition. Windows does not facilitate or support multi-boot systems, ----snip------


It can be done however, I have seen several threads on this forum where
they have both , as dual boot.

Another option, if your Debian install is now working, you can install a Virtual Machine, and install your Windows 7 to that.
If you try to re-install windows, it will require the entire drive, so you will lose your Debian installation.
It is important to all ways make a backup , of the original system, before trying to re-partition and install a additional system as multi boot.
==========================================

Re: Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Postby dilberts_left_nut » 2017-12-27 14:42
Show the output of the following (# prompt means 'run as root'):

Code: Select all
    # lsblk -o name,size,fstype,label,mountpoint,uuid


As requested here, post this information, it will show if the Windows partition still exists, and maybe can be repaired so that it can be booted if selected in the boot loader. You might not need to re-install it.
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Re: Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Postby Head_on_a_Stick » 2017-12-28 12:48

GarryRicketson wrote:you can install a Virtual Machine, and install your Windows 7 to that

^ I strongly recommend this approach.

If the CPU supports hardware-based virtualisation then I have found that WIndows can actually perform better in the virtual environment and the inbuilt "snapshot" feature stops WIndows taking the machine hostage during one of it's numerous forced updates.

GarryRicketson wrote:If you try to re-install windows, it will require the entire drive, so you will lose your Debian installation

^ This is not true.

Whilst WIndows will always attempt to usurp the boot order, it will recognise other operating systems and offer to place itself in the "free" space rather than over-write them.
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Re: Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Postby GarryRicketson » 2017-12-28 13:14

^ This is not true.

Oh, ok, well thanks, I guess that was a myth I read some where,... sorry about that.
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Re: Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Postby acewiza » 2017-12-28 13:44

I still think Gary gave the best advice: Virtualbox. There's enough incompatibilities now with UEFI and other boot-related nonsense that dual-booting is no longer the easy-peasy approach is used to be for people wanting native dual-boot capability.
Nobody would ever ask questions If everyone possessed encyclopedic knowledge of the man pages.
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Re: Cannot boot Windows 7 after Debian 9 install

Postby p.H » 2017-12-28 14:40

Head_on_a_Stick wrote:
GarryRicketson wrote:If you try to re-install windows, it will require the entire drive, so you will lose your Debian installation

^ This is not true.

It depends on what kind of media is used for reinstallation.
Real installation media allows to keep existing partitions. However "restoration" media is only able to restore a pre-installed system to its original state, wiping any change done by the user.

Ten years ago, it was common amongst PC manufacturers to provide only restoration media instead of full installation media, or even just provide a program to create the restoration media. Not having bought a new PC since then, I don't know what is the current trend.
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