Review your favorite Linux distribution.
Go Back > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Newbie
User Name
Linux - Newbie This Linux forum is for members that are new to Linux.
Just starting out and have a question? If it is not in the man pages or the how-to's this is the place!


  Search this Thread
Old 11-23-2010, 10:12 AM   #1
LQ Newbie
Registered: Nov 2010
Posts: 3

Rep: Reputation: 0
Dual Boot Windows 7 and Ubuntu using 2 Different Hard Drives


I just started working with Linux over the weekend. I do have a working dual booting system but it's not configured exactly how I want it to be. Currently Windows 7 Ultimate and Ubuntu are on the same hard drive but different partitions. The Windows boot screen comes up and I can select Windows or Ubuntu fine. Grub comes up when I select Ubuntu and I can successfully select any choice in the menu and it will run properly.

Everything works great now so you may wonder why I even want to keep tinkering, well, it's not working how I want it to. This is what I want it to do. I want Windows 7 on disk 0 and Ubuntu on disk 1. I want each OS to have it's own hard drive. I want Grub to be the only boot loader that comes up with the option to select Ubuntu or Windows. I want to skip the window's OS selection screen all together. I can modify Grub, I've already done some of that on my work computer.

I've been installing from windows. Should I use a CD instead? Would that accomplish my goals without doing anything special? I think this is more a Windows issue than a Linux one but I'm sure someone here has experience with this.

Old 11-23-2010, 10:33 AM   #2
Senior Member
Registered: Dec 2005
Location: Massachusetts, USA
Distribution: Ubuntu 10.04 and CentOS 5.5
Posts: 3,873

Rep: Reputation: 334Reputation: 334Reputation: 334Reputation: 334
I used to do this when disk drives were smaller. I would install Windows on the first disk that shows up in the motherboard BIOS and Linux on the second disk that shows up in the motherboard BIOS. Then I would tell the BIOS to boot from the second disk if available, otherwise boot from the first disk. (Boot sequence: CDROM, disk 2, disk 1)

Once that is configured you can install Linux from a CD. Tell it to install GRUB on the second disk's MBR.

Once Linux is running you may or may not see Windows in the boot menu. This is because some distributions' installer apparently don't configure it. However it is easy to do this yourself. Instructions differ depending on whether you are using GRUB legacy or GRUB 2.

And there you have it. If the computer never had Linux on it then the Windows boot loader is still going to be available on the MBR of disk 1. If GRUB is installed on the MBR of disk 1 then you could use Windows Recovery Console to run fixmbr. That will restore a Windows MBR boot code onto that disk's MBR. Once the Windows boot code is installed in the MBR of disk 1 you could remove disk 2 and Windows will still boot.

Last edited by stress_junkie; 11-23-2010 at 10:42 AM.
Old 11-23-2010, 11:03 AM   #3
LQ Newbie
Registered: Nov 2010
Posts: 3

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
I'll give that a try soon. Those instructions make perfect sense. I burnt a CD while I waited for a reply so I'm good there. I can set up Grub to find Windows if it doesn't on it's own.

Thank you very much. I'll let you know how it goes once I've gotten to it. I'll see if I can work on it today or tomorrow because once Thanks Giving is here I won't have time.

Old 11-23-2010, 02:20 PM   #4
LQ Newbie
Registered: Nov 2010
Posts: 3

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
It worked perfectly!! I'm writing this from my Ubuntu Linux installation. Windows and Linux have their own hard drive, Grub is the boot loader being used and Windows is a choice on the boot loader. Thank you very much. This can be marked solved.



Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Dual Boot Issue after Ubuntu attempted upgrade-using two hard drives boilers78 Linux - General 2 10-27-2008 09:35 PM
Problems dual booting with Ubuntu and windows xp using two separate hard drives Iceman99one Linux - General 3 08-19-2008 08:52 PM
How to dual boot linux and windows installed on 2 hard drives? Iltbreg Fedora 3 08-25-2007 11:17 PM
Dual boot, linux + windows, two hard drives already installed Hikaru_K Linux - Software 2 09-10-2006 01:27 PM
Want to dual boot Windows and Linux, BUT on 2 hard drives hanchey Linux - Hardware 4 12-02-2003 10:52 PM > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Newbie

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:47 PM.

Main Menu
Write for LQ is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
Facebook: linuxquestions Google+: linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration