OS inception

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by subsane, Apr 15, 2013.

  1. subsane macrumors newbie

    Apr 15, 2013
    I have a unique situation on my hands and I'm not sure if there's a way out of it. Skip to the end for the problem.

    Here it is:

    -Bought Mac Mini server in 2011. Learned to use and love OS X.

    -Except it doesn't run certain Windows-only applications, mostly games. I decided to use boot camp and set up Windows 7.

    -I partitioned the server HD in half and installed Windows 7 on one of them. The machine now has OS X 10.8.3 and Windows 7. I can play those games. All is well.

    -Then I encountered a game made for Windows 98. I bought this game, hoping to run it on my new Win 7 install. It won't run on Windows 7 in any mode. My solution is to run it on Windows XP.

    -I free up 10 GB of space from the Windows 7 partition and try to install Windows XP on it. After some troubleshooting I finally got setup to run and it finished without errors.

    The Problem: Now, when I select my Windows HD at the boot screen it presents a system configuration error. I suspect it's checking for a boot.ini or some such, but I can't get to any of the usual BIOS stuff because this ain't a native Windows machine.

    Is there a way to get XP to show up as a separate selectable HD at the boot menu in OS X (when I hold Alt at startup)?

    Or, failing that, is there a way to get Windows 7 to load properly again?
  2. Brian Y macrumors 68040

    Oct 21, 2012
    Boot into the Windows 7 DVD, and choose startup repair. It should find both Windows installations and reinstall the boot manager.

    With Windows, you always need to install from oldest to newest, or you'll end up with boot manager chaos :p.

    I'd also look into rEFIt :).
  3. monkeybagel macrumors 65816

    Jul 24, 2011
    United States
    What is the exact error that you get?

    Chances are, if the game is designed for Windows 98, it would run adequately in a Virtual Machine environment. I would look at VMware Fusion or Parallels Desktop for OS X, and install Windows XP (or even Windows 98) in that environment and run the game that way.

    I don't think Windows XP would be supported on any 2011 Macintosh computer due to its age. Apple dropped Boot Camp support for Windows XP some time ago.

    If your machine came with Snow Leopard Server when it was new, there may be a way to install the drivers for Windows XP using the original Snow Leopard Server recovery disk as Snow Leopard's version of the Boot Camp drivers did indeed support Windows XP.

    What happened was Windows XP overwrote what it thought was the MBR that had an NT60 boot sector for Windows 7 with an NT52 boot sector for the Windows XP/Server 2003 era bootloaders. You will need to boot from the Windows 7 DVD and it should automatically detect the boot errors and fix them for you if you chose to repair the installation. Windows XP (or Previous version of Windows, as it's called in the bootloader) may appear, allowing you to boot into Windows XP.

    Although triple booting is possible on a Macintosh, you are venturing into unsupported territory doing such.
  4. dbroncos78087 macrumors regular

    Feb 27, 2013
    Northern Virginia
    That's insane. I put Windows Virtual PC to run XP on my Windows desktop but I have never tried or even imagined running XP on anything Mac related.

    But my best guess is that you are better off trying to install XP through Bootcamp or you might have to spring for something like VMWare/Parallels. Personally, I use VMWare because that is what my work uses so I'm more familiar with it.
  5. subsane thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 15, 2013
    Turns out I still have access to the windows directory via OS X. I copied out the few files I wanted to save and reinstalled Win 7 using boot camp. It's back up and running without that funky XP partition.

    A little more research revealed that Windows 7 has something called XP mode built into it. It emulates a XP environment within Win 7. I'm going to give that a shot.

    Thanks for the tips, everyone.

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