Long long boot time caused by HD with Windows install?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by dryjoy, Dec 26, 2010.

  1. dryjoy macrumors regular

    Mar 19, 2009
    I had a spare drive bay in my Mac Pro, so decided to install an extra HD, partition into two, and put on Windows XP on one partition and Windows 7 on the other.

    I've now done this. I didn't install using Bootcamp, since it doesn't support two Windows partitions on the same drive, so I removed all my Mac HDs and then installed both versions of Windows as though installing on any other PC, only using Bootcamp to install the Windows drivers after.

    The Windows HD is formatted NTFS with MBR partition scheme. With my three Mac OS drives (1 system, 1 Audio Data, 1 Timemachine) now back in, everything is now working, with holding the option key on startup giving me the choice between Mac OS and Windows. Selecting Windows brings up the Windows 7 boot menu, with the option to boot into XP or 7.

    The only problem is that boot up now takes an extremely long time, and the part of the sequence that is taking a long time is worrying me.

    When you press the power on button, you get the boing as normal, but it's now about 50 seconds from the boing until you see the grey startup screen (or boot menu if you are holding option). Once into the grey screen, startup time is as it was before.

    Is this normal behaviour with three normal HFS+ and one MBR NTFS drive with two Windows partitions in a Mac?

    I have tried restting the PRAM but it made no difference.

    If it's normal, I suppose I can put up with it, but it would be great if I could do something about it.

    This is a 2009 Mac Pro, Quad 2.66 GHz, 5GB RAM.

    Any ideas?

  2. johnnymg macrumors 65816


    Nov 16, 2008
    Do you get the LONG boot delay (into OSX) even after setting the 'startup disk' (in System Preferences) to your native OSX drive?

  3. gullySn0wCat macrumors 6502

    Dec 7, 2010
    Did you try taking the Windows HDD out and booting again to see if thst fixed your problem? Otherwise, what JohnG said.
  4. dryjoy thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 19, 2009
    Thanks for the suggestions.

    First I tried taking the Windows drive out... still the long boot time.
    But then checked the bootcamp control panel in Windows, and sure enough it was set to reboot in Windows. Having switched that to OS X, everything is back to normal.

    I should have tried the control panel settings first, before taking all the HDs out, but never mind.

    Thanks again for your helpful suggestions, much appreciated.
  5. AmethystZhou macrumors newbie

    Dec 27, 2010
    Try SSD if possible. You'll get just 5 sec of start-up time.
  6. supercooled macrumors 6502a

    Sep 6, 2007
    I don't know if this matters but I used Bootcamp to install my Win7 on a spare partition that I created on a storage drive in one of the bays. My boot times are at minimum 1 minute long. I have had a lot of problems with Windows on this '08 MP since day one which has deterred me from installing Windows at all but I tried it again because I bought BF2 BC2 + Vietnam expansion. The situation is exacerbated by the fact that I don't even see a Bootcamp setting in Control Panel so for me to boot back to OSX I have to reset the VRAM/PRAM ( P + R + CMD + Option) every single time. Makes it a great dilemma to even switch unless I necessarily have to.
  7. gullySn0wCat macrumors 6502

    Dec 7, 2010
    Just open your MP up and pull the HDD with Windows on it out. It's how I chose which OS to boot before I could flash my GFX card:D

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