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Thread: Not sure what to do with dual boot & external drive

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    Not sure what to do with dual boot & external drive

    Hi-

    I now have a dual boot system with Ubuntu and XP and the bootloader is GRUB. One option for me is to create 2 more partitions with gparted and load Win 7 and W98SE. However, I don't want to do this as I've looked on forums and it could get complicated with the bootloader (errors etc.)

    Another option is to get a USB flash drive and make it bootable (how?) and install Win 7 & W98SE. Again I don't know too much about this.

    The third and probably best option is to use a USB HDD drive.

    I would like to know if I can install an external HDD, boot straight from it, completely avoid my dual boot HDD and install Win7 and 98SE on the external drive, while keeping my normal HDD on the laptop. It's imperative that I can do this as I don't want to mess up my existing system.

    Thanks for any advice on the best way of doing this... (By the way my HDD is an IDE on a 2005 Toshiba laptop)

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    Re: Not sure what to do with dual boot & external drive

    I think some versions of Linux can install themselves on a flash drive, therefore making themselves bootable. I think external HDDs are treated more like HDDs than USB drives, so I think you would follow the same process as you would for a normal drive. These pages might be useful: http://kmwoley.com/blog/?p=345 http://www.thinkcomputers.org/index....rticles&id=117
    Hope this helps

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    Re: Not sure what to do with dual boot & external drive

    Thanks - if I try this maybe it's better done from another computer (ie. internet cafe) in case I mess up my system...

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    Re: Not sure what to do with dual boot & external drive

    I did a similar set up some time ago, I installed the versions of windows what I wanted 98,2000,XP then when I installed Linux I put the linux boot loader onto a USB pen. but, installed the OS on a partition on the hard drive. This way, when I wanted to use Linux I just had to boot from the usb pen (grub or lilo) otherwise the MS boot loader would give me the options for windows only. It worked well.

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    Re: Not sure what to do with dual boot & external drive

    Quote Originally Posted by tigertim71 View Post
    Hi-

    I now have a dual boot system with Ubuntu and XP and the bootloader is GRUB. One option for me is to create 2 more partitions with gparted and load Win 7 and W98SE. However, I don't want to do this as I've looked on forums and it could get complicated with the bootloader (errors etc.)

    Another option is to get a USB flash drive and make it bootable (how?) and install Win 7 & W98SE. Again I don't know too much about this.

    The third and probably best option is to use a USB HDD drive.

    I would like to know if I can install an external HDD, boot straight from it, completely avoid my dual boot HDD and install Win7 and 98SE on the external drive, while keeping my normal HDD on the laptop. It's imperative that I can do this as I don't want to mess up my existing system.

    Thanks for any advice on the best way of doing this... (By the way my HDD is an IDE on a 2005 Toshiba laptop)
    Just install them on the partitions and load up a Linux system rescue cd, then use the grub shell to reinstall itself to the MBR, and add the appropriate entries for the new OSes.

    You can pretty much copy the 'Windows Vista' portion of your /boot/grub/menu.lst for each windows entry, and modify them accordingly.

    Fixing grub is straight forward

    Assuming /boot (or /) is installed to /dev/sda1, then in grub shell you would simple execute the following commands:
    Code:
    root (hd0,0)
    setup (hd0)
    quit
    Job done.

    See 'info grub' for more details on grub usage.
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    Re: Not sure what to do with dual boot & external drive

    Just want to make sure I understand this correctly -

    If I create a new partition for Windows 7 through gparted on an existing XP/Ubuntu dual boot, GRUB would malfunction and be replaced by Windows bootloader?

    Where is the GRUB part on the Ubuntu cd rom and how would I
    use the GRUB shell to reinstall itself to the MBR
    ?

    Additionally what's the difference between using Windows bootloader and GRUB?

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