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I have a PC with 2 HDDs and both have Windows 7 installed.

How can I set up Windows 7 to make sure that when I boot from one HDD, I can't see the other?

I want to be sure that neither I nor any installed software can write to or even read the other disk.

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As written, I'm not sure this is possible 100% - you could unmap the drive but that doesn't sound like what you're asking. – Shinrai Sep 10 '12 at 22:35
@Ernstr - What version of win7? – Logman Sep 10 '12 at 22:44
i'm using win7 ultimate – Ernst Sep 10 '12 at 22:59
@Shinrai thank you, I'll try it. – Ernst Sep 10 '12 at 23:07

1. Besides un-plugging the power cable or sata cable from the hds directly,

2. you can use VHD. Boot from VHD (Windows 7 Ultimate/ENT only)

Boot from VHD is a new technique for installing and maintaining operating system environments. Unlike virtual machines, the operating system that is running from a “boot from VHD” environment is using the actual hardware instead of emulated hardware.

Instead of dual booting (installing different OS on different partitions) or running multiple OS's at the same time with virtual machines you use a VHD. You choose which OS to start on boot. You can use linux too with VHD (not sure, I have not tried it myself.) Can I boot Linux from a VHD?

3. Use a virtual machine. Run one OS inside another with Virtual Box, Virtual PC or VMWare. You create a VHD/VM of the hd and run it from within the OS. Two separate machines running at the same time. Boot from VHD runs only one OS at a time, EDIT: Can not boot VHD within a VHD. But you will need to upgrade OS to ENT/Ultimate to use it.

It is very clean, as the entire OS is in a VHD file. Having the OS fully encapsulated in a VHD means no changes are needed to partitions, and there is no confusion as to what files are for what OS.

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Thank you for the very interesting link (2). I'm going to watch the video. But if the vhd boot uses the actual hardware than the so loaded will be able to see other partitions/disks, right? I'm reading. – Ernst Sep 10 '12 at 23:09

If you just remove the drive letter mapping through disk management it should make the disk inaccessible.

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Not sure if that's isolated enough for what you're after though – Miles Hayler Sep 11 '12 at 16:25

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