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Old 03-21-2010, 09:28 PM   #1
Ringmaster
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Dual Boot


I installed Linux on a laptop once.. i'd like to do a dual boot but i've never done it before. Is there anything special i need to do? i don't want it to write over my current operating system..

that would be bad..
 
Old 03-21-2010, 09:41 PM   #2
GrapefruiTgirl
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Hi there!

There are LOADS (positively loads!) of threads detailing how to dual-boot. But the basics are like so:

1) if necessary, adjust (shrink) your Windows partition, or otherwise ensure that you have some space on your hard disk for a Linux root partition where you will install the Linux OS, as well as maybe a partition for your /home folders (user's home folders go there-- a separate partition is optional) and a SWAP partition (used like additional memory, when needed). Most or all Windows have a partition tool built in which can be used to resize the Windows partition, but if not, you can use a tool like "Gparted" or "partitionmanager" or "Qtparted" to do the partition resizing. These tools are usually available as stand-alone bootable ISO images which you can burn to CD to make a bootable partition editor CD, and Gparted for example is also included with many Linux OS's such as Ubuntu for example.

2) Boot your Linux CD or DVD, and proceed to the Installer. You will be asked questions and given options which will allow you to select which partition you want to install Linux into, and most Linux distros will also tell you that they have found a Windows partition, and will offer to add that partition to your boot-loader menu, so that when you turn on the machine, you can boot either Windows or Linux, using a menu.

That's the basics

Search around a little and you will definitely find lots of threads which address more specific concerns; if you cannot find the exact details you need, or are still unsure of something, feel free to ask some more

Use LQ's Search page, and search for "dual boot" or "dual-boot"


Sasha

Last edited by GrapefruiTgirl; 03-21-2010 at 09:42 PM.
 
Old 03-21-2010, 10:02 PM   #3
Ringmaster
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Yeah i ran a search first, i'm sure there's pages talking about it but it all looked like specific problems with dual-boots. At least to me, i'm sure someone would be capable of finding it without bugging everyone. Sorry!

I do have one more question though, i have 20 gigs free on my C drive.. already have the drives partitioned up, do i have to create a partition for Linux all by itself, or can i just install it in the same partition as windows is in?
 
Old 03-21-2010, 10:10 PM   #4
GrapefruiTgirl
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No problem! You're right, many of the existing thread probably DO deal with various problems, so maybe they will be more helpful *after* you get your system set up.

You say you have 20 Gib "free" on the C drive (note that "C" or other letters is a Windows thing -- in Linux there are no C or D drives) and that the drives are partitioned up already. If I understand you right, this means you do not have some empty, UNpartitioned space?

Well, there *are* a couple way of intalling Linux INSIDE windows -- one of these ways is called "Wubi" and is a method of installing Ubuntu Linux inside Windows -- but I myself have never used any method like this, so I can't give any help specific to that.

Another way is to use a VM (Virtual Machine) whereby you run a VM on one OS (in your case, Windows) and install a Linux inside the VM. I don't do this either, so again, I cannot tell you how it might go.

Aside from those above ideas, AFAIK the answer is 'no' -- you need to install Linux to its own partition, with its own file-system formatted onto it. Free space inside your existing Windows partition will not work for a 'normal' installation. The Windows file system (NTFS) does not support features that Linux requires to work properly, such as user/group/ownership permissions.

Hope this answers your question, but if not, or you need more, then ask away

Sasha
 
Old 03-21-2010, 10:16 PM   #5
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oh that helped thanks!

I can clear out a drive i guess but this will take a bit longer to do then i care to spend on it today.

I was hoping i could have a dual boot by the end of the weekend so i could work on a project for class but it looks like i'll have to use a live cd for the time being..

Thanks for the info! saved me a headache
 
Old 03-21-2010, 10:26 PM   #6
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Cool, have fun with the LiveCD for now.

When you get the time to try setting up for an actual install, you'll likely find it really doesn't take very long at all, but definitely best to wait until you're not on some sort of deadline -- since that's when things tend to go awry: when you're on a schedule!

P.S. - depending what Live CD you have, you might even find Gparted on it already but if not, just Google for 'gparted' and you'll easily find the homepage and links to a downloadable ISO of it which you can use to make the CD.

Sasha
 
Old 03-22-2010, 12:11 AM   #7
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Well my problem is that i have 3 partitions right now, i install most of my programs on the second one but the third one is all data.. and there's about 100 gigs of it. A lot of it's random but there's things like home movies and pictures and stuff i don't want to lose.

So i'll need to back up everything before i destroy that partition. Ack.. tired..

Yeah i know all about things not working right when there's a deadline. Thx for all the help!
 
Old 03-22-2010, 12:56 AM   #8
divyashree
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ringmaster View Post
I installed Linux on a laptop once.. i'd like to do a dual boot but i've never done it before. Is there anything special i need to do? i don't want it to write over my current operating system..

that would be bad..
You want to dual boot to use both OS ,

If u wanna use both the OS simultaneously u can use virtualization ,use vmware or kvm to install the 2nd OS inside your installed OS .

OR if ur h/w is quite old then its better to do a dualboot as described above .
 
Old 03-22-2010, 05:26 PM   #9
jefro
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If the laptop is new enough you might consider a virtual machine instead of a dual boot.

Oopps that was said.
 
Old 03-27-2010, 12:32 AM   #10
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i already have a virtual machine, i hate the damn thing. it's just a command line but it keeps breaking when i need it most.

So i'm breaking down and doing a dual boot. Besides i don't really see any reason having linux on my computer could be a bad thing. So i'll be going for the dual boot.

Just need to clean up my hard-drive first.
 
Old 03-27-2010, 12:43 AM   #11
paulsm4
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Hi -

Virtual machines, of course, needn't be command-line only. And they can be the "greatest thing since sliced bread" of you want to experiment with lots of different OS's, or even with lots of different software.

But...

You absolutely need:

1. A fair amount of disk (it isn't unreasonable to expect a single VM to take 5 - 20GB or more). And the disk should be reasonably fast: external USB disks, for example, are NOT recommended!

2. A fair amount of RAM.
For example, if I allocated 512MB to the VM; I'd want at least 1GB of RAM on my physical server. More realistically, I'd want 2++GB for a 32-bit host, and 4++GB for a 64-bit host.

3. A fair amount of CPU
A cheap (under $100USD) 64-bit, dual-core CPU is more than adequate.

I've had good luck with VMWare; others seem to have equally good luck with VBox and others.

So please don't discount VM's ... they can be great. Honest!
 
  


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