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Author Topic: Dual Boot System
Luke Skywalker
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Icon 1 posted June 29, 2007 17:55      Profile for Luke Skywalker     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
So Im thinking of redoing my 2 harddrives again. But this time putting Linux and Windows on the same HD instead of one on one, and the other on the other. Ive never done that before, and was wondering what would be the best way to do this? This includes advice for size of partitions, number of partitions, etc. My primary HD which all this is going on is 60GB. Mostly I plan right now on doing about 4, one for Windows, one for Linux, one for swap space of Linux, and maybe a small one for the boot space of Linux. Any advice to this would be greatly appreciated.

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Use the Force, Luke.

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Rhonwyyn

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Icon 1 posted June 29, 2007 18:55      Profile for Rhonwyyn   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Just don't disable LiLo. I did, 'cause my mom hated having to deal with it when she needed to use the computer. (She has very limited computer skills.) After that, I could never get my Linux distro to boot. It probably would've helped if I had had an external boot disk, but since I had used a friend's install CDs and neglected to create a boot disk, I was up a creek without the proverbial paddle. There's a thread about it on here somewhere.

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Posts: 3849 | From: Lancaster, PA | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
Richard Wolf VI
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Icon 10 posted June 29, 2007 18:55      Profile for Richard Wolf VI   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
As far as I know, Linux let's you manage your partitions when installing, however, it's recommended to install windows first.
In Ubuntu, for example, you can let the partition manager to set the partition sizes for you, but you can also make it yourself, setting the size of the win partition, the root directory and the swap file.

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MacManKrisK

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Icon 1 posted June 29, 2007 19:09      Profile for MacManKrisK     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
my drive layout recommendation....

/dev/hda1 Windows fat32 or ntfs 29GB
/dev/hda2 /boot ext2 32MB
/dev/hda3 swap swap 512MB (or 1GB if you wanna')
/dev/hda4 / ext3 whatever's left

If you can, boot off a LiveCD and set up your partitions with Linux's fdisk, or pdisk, or cfdisk, or parted. Then boot the Windows installer and install Windows in the partition you already created for it. If you can't boot off a LiveCD of Linux, use Windows to set up the first partition (the Windows partition) and leave the rest as unused, then set up the rest when you install Linux. When you install grub (or lilo.. but really.. does anyone use lilo anymore?) make sure to set it up to boot Linux and your windows partition.

Not really all that complicated...

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Posts: 2331 | From: Southwest Michigan, USA | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
Luke Skywalker
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Icon 1 posted June 29, 2007 20:39      Profile for Luke Skywalker     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
If you can, boot off a LiveCD and set up your partitions with Linux's fdisk, or pdisk, or cfdisk, or parted. Then boot the Windows installer and install Windows in the partition you already created for it. If you can't boot off a LiveCD of Linux, use Windows to set up the first partition (the Windows partition) and leave the rest as unused, then set up the rest when you install Linux. [/QB][/QUOTE]

Fully intend to do this. I love gpartide, hell of a bunch better than Windows partition manager program.

Also, wouldnt you want to do the boot partition first?

Last thing, Ill probably do the windows and the Linux partitions opposite to what you have, as I have stuff that will go on the internal that is needed with windows. All the other files (games, docs, etc) goes on the other HD (an external).

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Use the Force, Luke.

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MacManKrisK

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Icon 1 posted June 30, 2007 09:11      Profile for MacManKrisK     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
You can put /boot wherever you want, you're going to install grub (or lilo) into the Master Boot Record anyway (make sure you have your BIOS's "Virus Protection" turned off). Grub will load and you'll have it configured to point at your /boot partition, wherever it may be.

Also it shouldn't make any difference where you put windows and Linux on the first hard drive (though some hard-core people will argue that the latter partitions are *technically* faster because the outside of the drive is spinning faster than the inside.. blah blah blah). For the external, just format the whole thing as one big FAT32 (vfat) partition and Windows and Linux will be happy sharing it.

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Posts: 2331 | From: Southwest Michigan, USA | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
CommanderShroom
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Icon 1 posted July 01, 2007 06:24      Profile for CommanderShroom     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I generally set my partition scheme like this on a dual boot.

/boot
Winderz
/root
/home

And swap wherever you damn well please.

You can cut it up with windows partition editor, and then do your Win install. Then add Linux to the rest of the drive. Done. Try out Windows a couple of times, and not be bothered with it after. Though be happy in the fact that if your Linux breaks you have a "healthy" Windows install to get you by.

On a dedicated *nix system I cut up the partitions even more, but with the limited space on a dual boot to one drive, I tend to keep the cutting up at a more reserved level.

And my personal preference is to keep the Windows partition down to enough space to run what I need and a bit of storage space. Since it is very rare (if ever) that I am going to boot to it.

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Posts: 2465 | From: Utarrrrggggghhh!!!!!!!! | Registered: Mar 2003  |  IP: Logged
Luke Skywalker
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Icon 1 posted July 01, 2007 15:11      Profile for Luke Skywalker     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Now, whats the advantage of doing seperate partitions for root and home? I know boot is good to leave on a seperate, as if it gets screwed, you have to reinstall it, before you can do anything (chances of just it getting messed are low, if its by itself).

Just to check, NTFS, or more to confirm; It can be read, but cant be written to. I know the linux type partitions cant be read or written to in windows.

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dragonman97

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Icon 1 posted July 01, 2007 16:08      Profile for dragonman97   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Actually, IMHO, there's little reason to put /boot on a separate partition from /, but a bunch of distros seem to do it. It's *very* good to keep / and /home separate, in case you reload or whatnot...everything is just there and works. (So long as you keep your UID & GID the same...)

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Richard Wolf VI
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Icon 10 posted July 01, 2007 20:21      Profile for Richard Wolf VI   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
NTFS usually can be read on Linux, writing capabilities can be added by 3rd party apps but are discouraged since they're not reliable enough.
There are also tools for reading and writing EXT2 and EXT3 on Windows, I've tried them and they work pretty well in my opinion.

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Metasquares
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Icon 1 posted July 01, 2007 20:47      Profile for Metasquares   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Rhonwyyn:
Just don't disable LiLo. I did, 'cause my mom hated having to deal with it when she needed to use the computer. (She has very limited computer skills.) After that, I could never get my Linux distro to boot. It probably would've helped if I had had an external boot disk, but since I had used a friend's install CDs and neglected to create a boot disk, I was up a creek without the proverbial paddle. There's a thread about it on here somewhere.

Have you tried GRUB instead? It's much more user-friendly than LiLo.
Posts: 664 | From: Morganville, NJ | Registered: Oct 2005  |  IP: Logged
Rhonwyyn

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Icon 1 posted July 02, 2007 14:51      Profile for Rhonwyyn   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
By now it's a moot point. My brother has since dismantled that computer and built multiple others. Plus, now that I've been living on my own (and now with my husband), I haven't had to use Mom's computer anymore.

And besides, my new household is a MacHouse. [Smile]

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Posts: 3849 | From: Lancaster, PA | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
Luke Skywalker
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Icon 1 posted July 03, 2007 13:51      Profile for Luke Skywalker     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
*Dman97*
I get why, but about how much space would you say you would want for /home?

*For the rest*
Grub is whats on now, and what will be put back on.

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Use the Force, Luke.

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dragonman97

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Icon 1 posted July 03, 2007 15:21      Profile for dragonman97   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Lots of space. [Razz]
That's where your personal files/music/movies go!

/ needs space as well, especially /usr, but one's files tend to take much of an HD these days...

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The Famous Druid

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Icon 1 posted July 03, 2007 21:56      Profile for The Famous Druid     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Get the free VMware player from www.vmware.com then download a vm image of your linux distro of choice from the same site, and Bob's your uncle.

Far easier than dual boot, and makes much more efficient use of your precious disk space.

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Slack User
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Icon 1 posted July 04, 2007 12:02      Profile for Slack User   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
If you install Slackware (not for the click n' go mentality people) you can keep your linux install on your current box, disable the boot loader (grub or lilo or whatever) and just plop in the CD when you wanna run slack, when you plop in a slack CD you can do a whole "<kernel image> root=/<device containing root> ro" and boot the sucker whenever you want.

http://dev.slackware.it/docs/howto.php?page=14

But of course you could do the cheesy VMware style, or whatever else. There's like 19123912391239 ways to install/boot linux, hell you can run it straight off a CD, the entire OS, never installing anything (ubuntu, slax, knoppix has this feature).


But bottom line if you currently have 2 HDD's and have linux on one and windows on another there's no reason to repartition it to one HDD.. There's no direct advantage to this, unless you have space constraints with your current setup.

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Posts: 63 | From: Las Vegas | Registered: Jun 2007  |  IP: Logged
Luke Skywalker
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Icon 1 posted July 04, 2007 20:20      Profile for Luke Skywalker     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Slack User:
But bottom line if you currently have 2 HDD's and have linux on one and windows on another there's no reason to repartition it to one HDD.. There's no direct advantage to this, unless you have space constraints with your current setup.

Right now the /boot is on an external drive, and id like it on the internal drive.

Also, I want to redo my total setup of drives. I messed up my external the other day with partitions, and cant do any more (too many physicals, not enough logicals).

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Use the Force, Luke.

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