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Thread: Dual Boot Q's

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  1. #1

    Dual Boot Q's

    Okay, I've read helpful information bits and pieces around the forums, so I'm just going to spell out my questions here, and see if anyone can tackle them all at once:

    MY GOAL: Have a dual boot Windows XP & Ubuntu machine, using only 1 hard drive, and preferably w/ XP under FAT32 (if possible), so that the OS's can read (and write? maybe not bi-directional..) each other's data.

    I was previously starting off by booting off ubuntu, and writing the partitions with that. Let me know if I should do something else, or if it is sufficient.

    My harddrive is 102 GB, I'd like the windows to have 76GB, and ubunto to have 20gb, w/ 6gb of swap.

    1) Describe how I should partition the drive, including the general paradigm for linux partition (swap, /, and /home? or swap, /, and /usr? or just swap, /?):
    Provide the following information for each partition: mount location, filesystem, bootable flag, formatting options, mount options (if any)

    2) Previously when I wrote the partition table, Ubuntu would start installing the base filesystem. I believe the general consensus is to stop here, and install Windows first. How do I make it only write the partitions and not install Ubuntu? I think i read Ctrl+Alt+F1 somewhere?

    3) If installing windows xp under FAT32 is possible, what do I need to do to get around the "NTLDR missing" problem after the initial restart?

    4) After windows is installed, how do I install Ubuntu w/o having the partitions destroyed? I believe it says it has to write the partitions before it installs. If no changes were made, will it still "write" them without deleting what was on there?

    If anyone can tackle these questions, I'd appreciate it, thanks.

  2. #2
    Linux Guru dylunio's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    This is how I'd go about it:

    I'm not sure if XP will install on FAT32, so you might have to use ntfs, if so I'd create another FAT32 partition so that you can share files between both OS's.

    I'd make e.g. 50GB Windows; 26GB FAT32; 25GB /; 1GB SWAP

    I'd make the / partition ether ext3, or reiserfs, id format SWAP as SWAP.
    I'd mount / at /, and then you can mount the FAT32 partition /mnt/share,

    Firstly install Windows, and then defragg it before installing Ubuntu (using the tools it has to shrink the ntfs partition, if it doesn't do this check out Partition Magic, or QTParted on knoppix live cd), and create the partitions set above.

    I hope this helps;

    Registered Linux User #371543!
    Get force-get May The Source Be With You

  3. #3
    Linux Enthusiast
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Windsor, CO
    If XP can be upgraded to from a system running FAT32, it would make sense that you can install it on FAT32 too.
    Emotions are the key to the soul.
    Registered Linux User #375050

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