No boot manager after cloned HDD to (newly added) SDD


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Pete a beginer
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I am not an IT geek, just a silver surfer who is self-taught in the little bit of knowledge that I have.
I have a dual boot W7Pro/W10Pro PC with 2 x 1TB hard drives. W7Pro is on one HDD & W10Pro on the other. I have both drives separately cloned to external 1TB HDDs using Macrium Refelect v7.1.12963.
I have just added 2 x 1TB SSDs and more RAM to my Desktop PC to boost its performance when using Photoshop (my ailing PC is 8 years old).
I used my cloned copy of my W10Pro (CSmile drive from my external HDD as the source drive to clone one of my newly installed SSDs (target drive), again using Macrium reflect. Before the cloning I converted the installed SSD into a simple volume (designated drive 'O')
Everything seems to have been cloned across OK but my PC will now not boot automatically (all 4 drives are powered up). I have a UEFI  boot sytem and all the drives are 'MBR'. I simply get 'Boot manager missing Press Ctrl + Alt + Del' on start-up.
After executing Ctrl+Alt+Del and entering the UEFI boot menu (F2) my PC only boots if I then select F8 (Boot Options) and left click my W10Pro HDD in the list of drives that then appear. The list comprises the two new SSDs the W7Pro HDD, the W10Pro HDD and my desktop CD drive.
My W10Pro HDD OS was obtained from a W10 ISO image and activated using my W7Pro activation code, an allowable free 'upgrade' during the months before the recent withdrawal of W7 support by MS. 
I cannot get the W10Pro SSD to boot. I've even tried used the Macrium Windows PE boot (using the 'Boot Problems' option) but all to no avail. How do I get my W10Pro SSD to boot on start-up please?     
jphughan
jphughan
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I don't spend a lot of time with dual boot systems, but try the following if at all possible:

- Disconnect your two new disks and confirm that your system still boots as expected from your old drives.  If not, I would try to solve that before proceeding.
- Once you've got your system booting normally again, update Reflect to the latest release.  Assuming the version you meant to type was 7.1.2963, that's almost two years old at this point, and there have been quite a few fixes and enhancements since then, including one that's required if you want to capture image backups of a system running Windows 10 1903 or later.  There are also several enhancements just from moving up to the Reflect 7.2 track.
- Boot your system from Rescue Media (ideally that you recreated after updating Reflect) and clone each of your source disks to the corresponding target.
- Shut down your PC and physically disconnect the old disks.
- See if your system boots.  If it doesn't, try running Fix Boot Problems at this point where only the disk pair you intend to keep using into the future are visible to Reflect.

And just as a few general notes:
- You do not have to "convert" or otherwise do anything to prep a new disk before using it as the target of a clone or image restore operation, in fact outside of some specific custom clone/restore operation scenarios, it's a waste of time to do so.  The reason is that if you're performing a typical type of job where you're cloning/restoring the entire disk, then Reflect will just overwrite anything you've done beforehand anyway.

- If you have a UEFI system but the disks are MBR rather than GPT, then your UEFI system is booting your OSes in Legacy BIOS mode through the UEFI CSM (Compatibility Support Module), not booting in true UEFI mode.  That might become an issue for you going forward because I've read that Windows 10 will sometimes refuse to update to new releases if you have a UEFI-capable system but are using it in Legacy BIOS mode.  It will instead force you to perform an in-place conversion to a GPT disk (including creating the appropriate boot partitions for a GPT disk hosting an OS partition), which can be booted in UEFI mode.  But the fact that you're still using Windows 7 may complicate that.

- Speaking of Windows 7, considering that it's no longer receiving security updates and the fact that you have Windows 10 Pro, and therefore have access to Hyper-V, have you considered simplifying your setup so that you simply use Windows 7 as a VM when needed? You could even use Macrium viBoot to get that solution up and running very quickly.  Ideally the fact that Win7 is end of life would mean you’re relying on it less by this point anyway, because if XP's retirement is any indication, it probably won't be too long before browser vendors stop providing updates to installations that reside on Windows 7, which will further increase the security risk of staying on that OS.  And eventually you'll then have functional problems Web standards evolve and your browsers won't have been updated to support them.  If you've ever tried to get on the Internet from a fresh XP SP3 system in the last year or two, it's basically impossible because the included IE browser doesn't support some of the security standards commonly used on websites these days, and most websites now require HTTPS, so the end result is that you basically can't browse anywhere -- not even to a website where you'd download a different browser.

Edited 3 March 2020 7:56 PM by jphughan
jphughan
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Oh, one more thing: If you'll be running Fix Boot Problems, then since your disks are MBR, you'll need to make sure you boot your Rescue Media in Legacy BIOS mode, NOT in UEFI mode.  The way you tell is by looking at the title bar along the very top edge of the Rescue environment.  If it says "[UEFI]" at the end, you're in UEFI mode.  If it doesn't say that, then you're not.  The reason this matters is that the fixes that the Fix Boot Problems wizard attempts are based on how the Rescue Media itself was booted, i.e. if you boot it in UEFI mode it will attempt fixes appropriate for OS disks that are meant to be booted in UEFI mode.  But your disks are MBR, which means they're set up for Legacy BIOS booting, so to get Fix Boot Problems to attempt the fixes suitable for your setup, you'll need to boot the Rescue Media in Legacy mode.  This is one of the hazards of having a system that supports booting in both modes.  Some systems that support both BIOS and UEFI mode allow you to configure them in so that they only support one mode or the other at any given time in order to mitigate this type of thing, but yours might not allow that.

Pete a beginer
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Thank you for your replies.
I have updated my Macrium Reflect to the latest version.
I have solved the problem.
I can only surmise that MR doesn't clone the boot data (although I enabled all the partition boxes on the source drive before I cloned my W10 Pro HDD).
I went into my W10 Pro HDD command prompt and executed from there a 'bcdboot (SSD Drive)\windows' command which then enabled the SSD to boot.
With 2 x W10 Pro OSs now bootable, my dual boot start-up screen now offers a choice of either W10Pro drive to boot up or, indeed, my W7Pro HDD if I so desire.
It still remains a mystery to me as to why MR doesn't clone everything across. I believed that was the purpose of cloning. 
jphughan
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With respect to your two original disks, if you had the Windows 7 environment set up first, then the "old" Windows 10 disk wouldn't have had a Windows Boot Manager instance set up.  The way dual boot Windows setups work is that the first instance contains a Windows Boot Manager instance, and if you choose to dual boot with another OS, even one installed on a completely different disk, then a pointer to that second disk's Windows installation is simply created in the first installation's Boot Manager.  And then at a system level, your system always technically boots from the first disk to load its Windows Boot Manager instance, which gives you a menu from which you can either boot the Windows installation on that same disk or the new one on your second disk.  If you were to remove that first disk, you would find that your second disk would not be "independently" bootable without some further work -- such as running BCDBoot in order to create a BCD directly on that disk, as you did.

The alternative dual boot mechanism would be for each disk to be "independently" bootable, but in that case switching between Windows environments would involve telling your SYSTEM to boot from a completely separate disk.  Many systems have one-time boot menus that make this relatively painless, but on some systems that would involve going into your BIOS to reconfigure your boot order every time you wanted to switch OSes -- which is why the design I described above is employed instead.  But the result is that if you simply clone your original Windows 10 disk -- which did NOT have a BCD on its own disk -- over to a new one, then the new one of course won't have one either, until you create one by running BCDBoot.

So Reflect didn't skip over anything in the clone operation; what you needed simply wasn't there to begin with. Dual boot systems present some unique considerations (read: aggravations).

Edited 4 March 2020 8:14 PM by jphughan
Pete a beginer
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Well! Even at 70+ you learn something every day!
Have you ever considered changing your name from jphughan to 'Google'?
That would have minimised my hair loss due to substantially reduced frustrations.
Many thanks.

jphughan
jphughan
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Ha!  Well I'm nowhere near omniscient the way Google seems to be, but I am an IT guy by trade, so I do have some subject area knowledge for this particular stuff.  Glad you're all set, and happy to help! Smile

GO

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