Having a second copy of Windows XP on the same partition is
not particularly desirable, as it is possible
that the second installation may conflict with
the first. If it is imperative that you have two
copies of XP on your PC (and be aware that you will
require a separate license for each installed
copy of XP on your PC) you should consider
creating a dual boot system by installing the
second copy of XP on a separate partition or
If, however, you are in the position of
having two installations on the same partition,
here is how to remove the surplus copy.
- Boot Up your PC.
- At the boot menu select the Windows copy
you intend keeping. At this point it would be
wise to make a note of whether the copy you
intend keeping is listed first or second on the
boot menu. You will need this information when
you finally come to edit the boot.
file to remove the reference to the
second (unwanted) copy of XP.
- Once XP has booted to the desktop, click
- At the command prompt type: echo %windir% and press
This will provide you with the information
regarding the current Windows folder you are
- Next open Windows Explorer
and click the Plus sign (+) next to
- Navigate to the C: drive
and delete the folder
containing the XP installation you want to
remove. Check carefully that you have the
correct folder before highlighting the folder
for deletion. The original installation will be
in the Windows folder. Additional installations
may have names such as Windows1,
Winnt, or you may have even
used a name of your own for the installation,
such as WindowsInstall.
- After deleting the 'correct'
windows folder you will need to remove the
Windows entry from the Boot.ini file. To do this click
- In System properties
click the Advanced tab and
press the Settings button in
the Startup and recovery section.
- In the Startup and Recovery
settings window click the Edit
- The boot ini file will
now open in Windows Notepad.
- Before proceeding click File
and then Save As.
- Now rename the boot ini
file to boot.inibak This is
just as a precaution.
- Now take a look at the boot ini
file. It will have two entries for Windows XP.
- Remove the line which
refers to the Windows installation you have just
removed. You were asked in step 2 of this
tutorial to make a note of the position - first
or second - of the installation you booted to.
If you booted to the first option on the boot
menu you will need to remove the second line. If
you booted to the second option on the menu you
will need to remove the first line.
- After you have removed
the line referencing the installation you
deleted look at the top of the menu for an entry
marked Set Timeout=. Change the
timeout figure, usually 30 seconds
to 0 (zero). This will enable
the PC to boot directly into Windows without any
- Now click File>Save As.
- Save the file as Boot.ini.
- After the file has been saved Exit Notepad.
- Finally reboot your PC
and you should boot straight to the XP desktop.