I previously had a Windows 8 and Ubuntu dual boot on my SSD in my desktop. Before that I had a Windows 7 and Ubuntu dual boot on my HDD. The only BIOS setting I changed was I put my SATA controller in AHCI mode from IDE in order to support booting from my SSD.

I had some issues with support for programs I needed in Windows 8 so I decided to re-install windows 7. But after installation my computer couldn't find an operating system.

I tried installing again multiple times, clearing both internal drives, trying different combinations, and using boot-repair under an Ubuntu live CD to fix the MBR, nothing worked and it would occasionally tell me Windows could not install to the drive I had selected. Now I managed to install Ubuntu by itself on a partition of my SSD.

Now when I tried to install Windows 7 SP1 onto the other partition, it simply wasn't recognized and Ubuntu would just boot up instead. Using boot-repair to reinstall grub fixed the recognition issue, but when I booted Windows to complete the setup it told me "Windows Setup could not configure Windows on this computer’s hardware" and the setup just failed. Each time I try to boot into Windows again it tells me I need to re-install.

I've never had these problems before and I don't understand why Windows 7 refuses to install.

  • That error message is also caused by this bug, however it has suppository been fixed in SP1 so I doubt this applies to your case. – AnnanFay Nov 27 '12 at 11:05
  • This question lacks details. It is not clear if the HDD is used for anything. It is not clear in what order OP attempted to install Win7 and Ubuntu on the blank SSD. It is not clear how the drive was partitioned after installing only Ubuntu. It is not clear if UEFI or BIOS booting is used. – jiggunjer Jan 11 '17 at 6:29

Windows has to live on the first primary partition. Use your favorite partitioning tool (cfdisk, for example) to make a primary partition for windows. Install windows. Then make a second partition and put grub (or the whole ubuntu root) on it. When you install grub, make sure you install/write to hd0 (or similar) and not hd0,0 because if you install the grub-mbr on the first partition (windows) then you will erase the windows boot loader.

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  • Are you sure windows 7 must be installed onto the first primary partition? I've heard otherwise, "More recent Windows operating systems (Windows 7, XP, etc.) can be located on any partition" - wiki – AnnanFay Nov 27 '12 at 11:01
  • More recent Windows (...) can be located on any partition, <b>but the boot files (bootmgr, ntldr, etc.) must be on a primary partition.</b> You could maybe work something out with a (shared) /boot formatted with fat32, or even have two boot partitions. Practically though, this may turn out to be a cumbersome task. Perhaps it's easier than I think with "recent Windows". The solution I offered is the <i>simplest</i> way to get things working. I chose the easy way which is to not fight windows and let it occupy the first primary partition. This may (not) be suitable for you. – Ярослав Рахматуллин Nov 27 '12 at 14:14

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