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Old 08-02-2005, 09:00 AM   #1
Registered: Mar 2004
Location: <----- there
Distribution: Mandrake 9.0 - 9.2, Slackware 9.1 - 10
Posts: 98

Rep: Reputation: 15
Dual boot - 2 hard drives

Just got a new computer and would like to take my old hard drive and install only linux on it
(right now a partitioned drive with XP and Slack10.1)

So, I would really hate to install over my nice clean XP hard drive so I was wondering, would it be best to just unplug the new hard drive, install the old one and load slackware on it (getting rid of the partitions) or just go ahead and install Linux on the slave drive?

Seems to me that it would "safer" if I just do the "unplug the new hard drive" situation.

So here is what I am thinking of doing...

1. Unplug new hard drive
2. Plug in old hard drive
3. Install Slackware on old hard drive
4. Set WindoZe to Primary and Linux to Slave (understand there are some problems having Windows set to slave, not sure though)
5. Set my BIOS to boot from the secondary (slave drive)

However, I would need to configure LILO to recognize the primary drive so I still have the option of which to boot from. Not sure how to do that. Guess I could look at lilo.conf and see how it lists the partitions and just label the Windows drive as /dev/hda?

Or, I could just unplug the drive and install slack on the old drive, put them both back in with Windows being Master and Slack being slave and then just go into the bios on reboot and choose which drive to start from? Seems kind of a pain to do it that way though.

Make sense? If there are some previous discussions on this, please post a link. I couldn't find anything in the search, it kept timing out on me

Thanks in advance!

Last edited by cadkins; 08-02-2005 at 09:11 AM.
Old 08-02-2005, 10:53 AM   #2
Registered: Oct 2004
Location: Gothenburg, Sweden
Distribution: Slackware, Opensuse
Posts: 32

Rep: Reputation: 15

My suggestion is that you unplugg your new hdd and then wipe the old one (after an backup ofcourse ).

Then you plugg in both hdd and then install slackware on the second hdd (old). By doing it this way you don't have to touch your bios and you will get a very nice dual-boot system.
Just make sure you install lilo in the MBR.

I have done this myself and it works great! Hope it works for you too!

Old 08-02-2005, 02:31 PM   #3
Registered: Mar 2004
Location: <----- there
Distribution: Mandrake 9.0 - 9.2, Slackware 9.1 - 10
Posts: 98

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 15
That's what I think I will do. I just want to make sure that the install of linux goes on the slave drive. So i guess that when installing I tell it to install on /dev/hdb?

Thats my bigges concern. Accedentaly wipping out my new hard drive and installing linux over it


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