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Old 12-17-2003, 10:06 AM   #1
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On Windows and LInux dual boot - why install Windows first?

I've seen strong advices to install Windows first before Linux... why exactly?
Old 12-17-2003, 10:12 AM   #2
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Because Windows installations act like they own the computer. It over writes the MBR which is no problem for someone who has been around for a while but a first time Linux user gets off to a bumpy start that way.
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Old 12-17-2003, 10:14 AM   #3
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I guess it's because Windows overwrites your boot loader when you install it, so if you don't know what you're doing, you won't be able to boot your linux. Of course, i could be wrong. Just my 5 cents.

Last edited by rkngl; 12-17-2003 at 10:15 AM.
Old 12-17-2003, 10:32 AM   #4
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They are both right. Win9x/Me will assume that it is the only OS on the system. Win2k/XP does have a boot loader, but it will pretty much assume that it is the only OS, or that there are more Windows OS's on the system.

The Linux boot loaders will "play well with others", and so this is why it's best to do it last.
Old 12-17-2003, 11:16 AM   #5
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so if i don't 'know what i'm doing' but would like to ... how would i get linux to boot if i installed it first, and then installed windows?
Old 12-17-2003, 11:39 AM   #6
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When installing linux put the bootloader on a floppy then install windows.This way windows will boot at start up.To boot linux just put the floppy in at boot.
Old 12-17-2003, 12:08 PM   #7
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Yes..put the floppy in at boot then when u get in linux..
run install-grub (or 'grub-install') in terminal.
then your GRUB will be reinstalled.
Old 12-17-2003, 12:33 PM   #8
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The only thing is, you then have to edit your grub menu.lst file so you can boot windows from grub.
Once you have booted your linux system, type info grub for detaled information about grub.

Last edited by rkngl; 12-17-2003 at 12:42 PM.
Old 12-17-2003, 12:36 PM   #9
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Windows assumed it was my only OS, and after reformatting my first hard drive to NTFS, it began reformatting my Linux hard drive without even asking.

What I did was just unplug my Linux hard drive(IDE and Power), booted off the windows CD, installed to the HDD so windows thought it was all alone. Then when finished, hooked up linux hard drive, configured lilo, all is well.
Old 12-17-2003, 12:44 PM   #10
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no bootloader floppy?

I'm a super noob here and I just installed XP literally 10mins ago.
I posted a thread on "Will my linux get screwed in XP install" and was told in no uncertain terms "NO".

Well now I can't load linux (no lilo prompt) but the partition is still intact.
I have no boot disk (apart from a mandrake9.2 install boot disk which I presume is of no use).

I'm holding no grudges to linux so can you please free my system from XP oppression?

(Preferably without a fresh install)
Old 12-17-2003, 12:50 PM   #11
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If your Linux installation is intact, try booting to it from the CD or floppy. If this succeeds you can install grub or lilo to the mbr, overwriting XP's bootloader....hopefully.
Old 12-17-2003, 02:07 PM   #12
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maybe you can try the rescue feature of mandrake and see if that is of any help (maybe itll let you reinstall the bootloader)?
Old 12-18-2003, 10:03 AM   #13
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I figured it out.
I needed to use the rescue feature in the command line.

No mention of it anywhere in the "Advanced Help" section but I rememberd something from a LILO config template I saw once.

Thanks for your help guys!
Old 12-18-2003, 10:20 AM   #14
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It's not a "dyed in the wool" thing, though with a lot of people it's a recommended method, because when you install windows, as has been mentioned their boot loader overwrites lilo/grub, hence because linux will see windows but not the other way round, if you install windows first, then install lilo/grub it's the lilo/grub that overwrites any windows boot info in the MBR, you just then have to modify the linux boot loader (either lilo or grub) so it boots to your satisfaction i.e. the correct defaults and so on.

But I point this out, because if you check out the partitioning howtos at the linux documenation project, then you will see methods of "doing it differently that allow you to modify things so linux is first etc etc shit like having a /boot partition first and installing the boot loader there, but then making sure that it still knows where you've got windows and so on.

But putting windows in first, followed by linux will normally leave you with the linux install as default and it's a lot easier/less stress when first getting into linux.




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