If you install a new operating system with the intention of booting it alongside the older one that’s there, chances are you might eventually run into a problem with the boot loader. The boot loader is a piece of “low level” software designed to tell a computer what operating systems are installed in it and present the user with a list should it detect more than one operating system. The problems people run into happen when the boot loader doesn’t do its job and detects only the older (or newer) operating system without accounting for the other one. EasyBCD helps you resolve this problem much more easily than you would with MSConfig.
What EasyBCD Does
EasyBCD is a very intuitive application that helps you rewrite boot loaders and install new ones. This allows you to reconstruct everything from the ground up to include all the operating systems installed on your computer. This kind of action will help you prevent the headache of having to write your own “boot.ini” file in MSConfig, which may take you a very long time, especially if you’re a beginner. EasyBCD can also recreate your boot loader configuration from scratch and back up your current configuration.
How to Use EasyBCD
EasyBCD gets its name because it’s, well, easy to use. The program is very self-explanatory, and can be used by people with very little understanding of computers. Let’s have a look at the boot loader backup and repair dialog:
Keep in mind that this isn’t a “repair-all” solution. It doesn’t take care of your master boot record (MBR) written to your hard drive. EasyBCD will, however, reset your boot loader completely, re-create the boot loader and repair it, and also switch the drive that you use for booting into Windows from this dialog. Once you click “Perform Action,” it will do everything you tell it to cleanly and efficiently. Within the screen, you can also back up your boot loader settings and restore from a backup if you ever encounter problems from the application.
There are also advanced options for users who are more experimented. EasyBCD allows you to manually edit the boot menu, much like how you would do it in MSConfig.
If you have problems after a Windows 7/Vista installation, you can always install its boot loader from the “Bootloader Setup/BCD Deployment” screen:
Likewise, you can also install the Windows XP boot loader in case you have problems with that particular operating system. Note that this will write everything into the master boot record, which is a special piece of your hard drive reserved for telling the computer what it has installed.
That’s pretty much all you really have to learn about EasyBCD. It’s a fantastic tool for users who are lost in the process of recovering their boot loaders and either don’t have the skills necessary to use their Windows DVDs/CDs or don’t have the installation media handy. Unfortunately, your operating system needs to be able to boot in order to use EasyBCD, but that’s usually the case in simple boot configuration problems.
Let’s hear what you have to say in the comments section below. We’re always here to help!
Download EasyBCD via this link. Note: The free version requires registration.