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Old 06-21-2011, 11:08 AM   #1
Blackened Justice
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Newbie questions regarding multiple OSs coexisting and general virtualization

Hey everyone, I have Linux Mint and Windows 7 on my laptop right now, each on its own partition (plus the Windows System Reserved partition). Is it possible to boot both operating systems simultaneously, assigning, for instance, a CPU core and 2 GBs of RAM to each, and then switch between the two OSs with some kind of key combination? Or have one of them dormant, loaded into a portion of the memory while the other one uses the CPU cores?

If not, can I, within Linux, run a program that's installed on my Windows partition, like a game or Office?
Old 06-21-2011, 11:41 AM   #2
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There are quite a lot of Windows programs that can be run under linux using wine ( This includes some games and office. However, if you are interested in running office then you might take a look at Sun Star Office instead. That can manage windows word documents.

Incidentally you might want to use something that linux can easily manage for the partition. Its a good idea to be able to write confidently on that partition. I use FAT32 for shared partitions. I'm not sure what the current situation is with NTFS.

My very scant knowledge of virtualisation suggests that it more suitable for servers.

Last edited by greenleaf; 06-21-2011 at 11:51 AM.
Old 06-21-2011, 02:39 PM   #3
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Well actually, your question is not about virtualization. You cannot run two operating systems at the same time using the same resources. Of course you can create a VM in either Mint or windows and run the other os in a VM. For this you can use e.g. VirtualBox or VMWare Player.
As greenleaf already state you can use Wine or Crossover in Mint to emulate windows applications. However you might experience some issues during installation or afterwards. Some windows applications don't even install in Wine.
Old 06-21-2011, 03:35 PM   #4
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Yes. You can do what you want in a virtual machine. While most newbies should not try to use a VM on a real partition it can be done. Many web pages on it. Vmware's VMplayer can be made and maybe virtualbox to run a real partition. Most people use a dedicated virtual hard drive (really a file) since it has advantages.

You can't fully power down the host but the VM could request as much resources as you allow in setup.

It may be that you can run some applications on the windows drive but it is not a suggested way. It would be an advanced setup. The most easy is to run apps from They seem to work pretty good in wine or crossover office's product.

Last edited by jefro; 06-22-2011 at 03:38 PM.
Old 06-22-2011, 10:27 AM   #5
Blackened Justice
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Which is smoother, running Linux within Windows 7 or vice-versa?

And is it possible to use Wine or Crossover on a real partition?

Old 06-22-2011, 10:59 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Blackened Justice View Post
Which is smoother, running Linux within Windows 7 or vice-versa?
The guest OS will probably be less "smooth". Anyway, I'd use the main OS as the host and the OS used just for certain apps as the guest.

Originally Posted by Blackened Justice View Post
And is it possible to use Wine or Crossover on a real partition?
Wine and Crossover don't rely on an installation of Windows. Instead, they understand the Windows executable format and implement the Windows API.
Old 06-24-2011, 08:50 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Blackened Justice View Post
Which is smoother, running Linux within Windows 7 or vice-versa?

And is it possible to use Wine or Crossover on a real partition?

I have both of these situations running. . ..

With VMPlayer, they run equally well for me. The only difference is, I have NOT been able to get Windows 7 "starter" loaded under Linux. I have easily loaded Windows XP under Linux and love it. Here at work, I have linux under Windows 7, and love it.

It is the best of both worlds. . .One big advantage, is that windows under linux, the "Virtual Disk" is extremely small. (Mine is about 6 gig in size). I make a backup copy of that disk on a thumb drive, and I am actually bcking up my entire windows operating system and everything inside. I could care a less if I get a virus while in the windows operating system. . .I just delete the Virtual disk, copy from my thumb drive my Virtual disk, and presto . . 3 minutes later I am up and running on a fresh copy and installment of Windows XP. And my computer is completely isolated from virus, because of the Virtual disk. It has made playing around with viruses a new kind of fun. Also, installation of new programs that you are unsure of, are a breeze. If they fail, you have lost nothing but 3 minutes of your time deleting the old VD and copying the backup VD from your thumbdrive to your disk. (or you can make a copy of the VD right on your harddrive in another folder for a faster recovery.


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