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-   -   Is it possible to quadruple boot? (http://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/linux-newbie-8/is-it-possible-to-quadruple-boot-829407/)

xenosaga001 08-30-2010 07:58 PM

Is it possible to quadruple boot?
 
Im crazy, I know. But I want to quad install/boot my laptop. I was thinking Either
1. Windows Vista 64bit Home Prem, Debian 5.05,openSUSE 11.3, and WIndows Xp

Or

2. Windows Vista(Same as Above), Debian 5.05, openSUSE 11.3, Backtrack 4


is this even possible, and if so, any advice on how to do so? I am completely new to linux, my only experience being a dualboot with Ubuntu and my vista that resulted in me having to reformat back to vista.

thorkelljarl 08-30-2010 08:07 PM

Yes and No...

Yes, you can boot more than one kind of operating system, and more than one example of each kind.

No, you are not crazy, although I am of course less sure of this fact than I am of the truth my previous statement.

I think you should first use google to research dual-booting two Windows installations.

If you are thinking of using one HDD for linux, you can format one of the four permitted primary partitions as an extended partition in which you can format many, many logical partitions. Depending upon your hardware and the size of your linux installations, you may need to use a "/boot" partition for linux.

If you are serious, you need to translate your fantasy into to a proposed plan, do some searching on your own, and post back with details.

sycamorex 08-30-2010 08:09 PM

Hi and Welcome to LQ.

It's nothing uncommon. Just make sure you start with Windows Systems and then install linux ones. It'll make it easier for you to configure grub.

btw, I remember reading about a guy who had over 100 systems on one machine.

rokytnji 08-30-2010 08:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by xenosaga001 (Post 4082914)
Im crazy, I know. But I want to quad install/boot my laptop. I was thinking Either
1. Windows Vista 64bit Home Prem, Debian 5.05,openSUSE 11.3, and WIndows Xp

Or

2. Windows Vista(Same as Above), Debian 5.05, openSUSE 11.3, Backtrack 4


is this even possible, and if so, any advice on how to do so? I am completely new to linux, my only experience being a dualboot with Ubuntu and my vista that resulted in me having to reformat back to vista.

Yes. You can multiboot as many Operating systems as your hardrive will fit by making one partition Primary NTFS (for Vista which you should install First) Windows XP second on Logical partition.

Another Primary Partition for Swap (unless you have 2 gig of ram or more. Then you don't need swap.) I base this on your lack of knowledge and don;t see you doing any heavy compiling of anything.

After that. The rest of the drive can be a Logical Partition carved up to infinity (or till you run out of drive space). If needing a GUI interface for manual Partitioning. Gparted comes in any of the distros you mentioned to do this and partitioning can be done while running above distros as a live CD session,


LQ Wiki Article

kindofabuzz 08-30-2010 08:20 PM

Each Linux grub should see the other OS's. I recommend just installing each individual grub on it's own partition and keep your "main" grub on the MBR. Then just update the main grub after each installation. BTW, I boot 7 different OS's.

xenosaga001 08-30-2010 08:57 PM

Wow that was fast. Thanks for all of your guys answers. I also have a quick question about hardware. I intend to boot all 4 on a gaming laptop.
It is a Toshiba Qosmio x305-q701. It has a Core 2 Duo processor @ 2.00ghz, 4 gb Ddr3 ram, a sweet graphics card, and one 120gb harddrive, and a 500gb hd. Is this enough to do what I am planning? It is an ACPI x64 based PC. Is there any problems you might be able to foresee?

Thanks Again for your help!

pr_deltoid 08-30-2010 10:32 PM

You have plenty of hard drive space for four operating systems, yes. I could easily triple-boot (including a Windows partition) from my 80gb hard drive, although I don't really take a lot of room up. I don't download movies, mp3 files, etc. It depends on how much room you need or want to take up. Unless you fill everything up with DVD movies and music and multimedia of some kind, etc., I can't imagine you'd easily run out of room. Just make sure that you put thought into which one will take up the most room, and make its partition(s) larger if possible.
Personally, I've had my 80gb hard drive set up for triple-boot and like I said, I'd have no problems with it.
Now I have FreeBSD using the whole hard drive, and I'm most likely going to use CrunchBang in VirtualBox (unless I come up with a better one).

xenosaga001 08-30-2010 10:41 PM

Thanks prdeltoid.

Now I need to find all the software to install.
I am going to install the following:
Windows Vista Home Prem 64bit,Debian 5.05, openSUSE 11.3, Backtrack 4

So, i am planning on wiping my 2 harddrives before i install all 4. I plan on installing vista on my 500gb harddrive, because i download stuff. I am planning on installing the 3 linux's on the 120gb hd.How would i setup the partitions? Also how do i use the grub? It seems like it only runs on linux.
Thanks for the help.

mjolnir 08-31-2010 07:50 AM

http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...archid=4213770

Saikee is the man when it comes to anything to do with multiboot/grub.

johnsfine 08-31-2010 08:03 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rokytnji (Post 4082940)
You can multiboot as many Operating systems as your hardrive will fit by making one partition Primary NTFS (for Vista which you should install First) Windows XP second on Logical partition.

Installing XP on a Logical partition is a messy, complicated pain. Don't try it unless you really need it that way.

You can have up to three primary partitions, plus lots of logical partitions.

Linux does not care at all whether its partitions are primary vs. logical.

If I wanted Vista, plus XP, plus multiple Linux systems all on one hard drive, I would install XP first in a primary partition, then Vista in another primary partition, then make an extended partition for the rest of the hard drive and split it into many logical paritions for Linux.

Quote:

Another Primary Partition for Swap (unless you have 2 gig of ram or more. Then you don't need swap.)
Use a logical partition for swap. No matter how much ram you have, as long as you aren't seriously short of disk space, a 2GB swap partition is a good idea.

saikee 08-31-2010 08:16 AM

Quote:

Installing XP on a Logical partition is a messy, complicated pain. Don't try it unless you really need it that way.
I disagree.

My Win2k, Xp, Vista and Win7 are all in logical partitions. You can have as many versions (32 and 64 bits) of these systems in the logical partitions. All they need is there is one primary partition to house their boot loaders. This arrangement is easier because each logical partition has no boot loader to worry about!

Their boot loaders are all inside a Dos primary partition into which I placed Grub to boot all the 40+ OSes in the same hard disk.

In Linux there is no limit on the number of partitions you can in a hard disk have but most partitioning tools are unable to display beyond the 63th partitions and "a lot" of installers have not been written to install beyond the 15th partition.

Offically Linux kernel is factory-ready to work with the gpt partition table which permits 128 partitions and hard disk in excess of 2TB.

xenosaga001 08-31-2010 05:37 PM

I am not going to run windows xp. Just vista and the 3 linux Os's. I plan on making the 500gb hd my primary hd for vista and the 120gb hd will be partioned to 40gb each for each of the linux installs. The only thing i dont know how to do that i want to is to make a recovery partition for the vista. My qosmio laptop has a recovery partion but it is on the 120gb hd. I want to put it on the 500gb. Anybody know how i might do that? Or would i probably have to ask TOshiba?

saikee 09-01-2010 03:20 AM

"Just cloning tip" in my signature refers.

Never fails me. not even once!

In a nutshell it is exactly what a Linux is good for. One line of command
Code:

dd if=/dev/sda of=/dev/sdb bs=32256
The red bit is optional but accelerate the cloning process.

The device /dev/sda is the source disk to be red and the /dev/sdb is the disk to be written on.

The /dev/sdb can be a raw disk directly from a purchase and no need to do anything (no formatting or partition cration necessary) sdb needs to be exactly in size or just larger.

Last time I did it was 24 hours ago cloning a 500Gb latop disk to another. I put both disks as internal disk and the cloning rate was 25Mb/s. If sdb is hooked up as a USB disk the cloning rate will drop to half. Thus 120Gb should take about 2.8 hours. I often use just a Linux Live CD, click a terminal, set it up in a minute. estimate the time it takes and leave the PC running for the duration.

Once cloned the 500Gb has only 120Gb used. The space space can be absorbed by resizing the partition using Gparted.

johnsfine 09-01-2010 07:27 AM

I worry about cloning the OEM boot code and recovery partition, because some manufacturers put code in that combination of boot code and recover partition to use the HPA to reduce the usable size of the drive. So after cloning a small drive to a large one and booting the result once, the large drive may be changed such that it appears to be the smaller size in a way that gparted and other partition table programs can't fix.

vinaytp 09-01-2010 07:45 AM

Hi xenosaga001,

Definitely possible to install 4 Operating systems.

Once I too have installed Fedora12, Ubuntu 10.04, Backtrack4, Windows7 on my Laptop.

Here are few tips that I can give you.

1. First Install Windows version that you have on your laptop.
2. Install any linux of your choice keeping space for other two operating systems
3. Install other two Linux Operating systems. Please make sure you do not install grub again here, It will overwrite the grub installed by 1st Linux OS.

You have to add the location of boot partition, Kernel Image (vmlinuz) and Initial ram disk ( initrd.img ) of 2nd and 3rd Linux OS into your /etc/grub.conf of 1st Linux OS

Couple of points you can keep in mind here.

1. Use same /home partiton in all Linux Operating systems
2. Also do not give swap space in 2nd and 3rd Linux OS installation. Share swap partition created in 1st Linux OS install.

You will rock !!


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