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Graham Petrie
27-06-2002, 04:32 PM
Introduction

There are many reasons why you may want to run more than one copy of windows on your PC. You may want to keep your old OS whilst you try out a new one (like Windows XP), or you may have compatibility issues with old software on your new OS, and wish to retain an old one to run this software on. Also, you may want to test programs you have written on different versions of windows before you release it. I will assume that you have your own reasons, and now wish to perform the task of turning your PC into a multi-boot system. This HOW-TO will deal with the multi-booting of two or more Windows Operating Systems. Multi-booting with Linux will be covered in another article.

This article will cover multi-booting any of the following Operating Systems:

MS-DOS
Windows 95/98/ME/2000/NT/XP

What You Need

The first step is to acquire the installation disks (and boot disks for MS-DOS or Windows 95/98) of the Operating Systems you wish to install on your PC.

You will also need some software for partitioning your hard-drive. You could use the DOS function 'fdisk' or you could obtain a boot disk for a program such as Partition Magic. If you already have a Windows Operating System installed on your system, you could use a program such as Partition Magic to partition your drive from a Windows interface.

Backing UP

Now you have what you need to get started, there is some preparation you must do before you start partitioning your drive. If you are starting with a blank hard-drive, you can miss this step.

It is possible to create a multi-boot system whilst retaining an existing Operating System, but as I believe that a multi-boot system should be built on a clean slate, I will not be covering this possibility. You can read between the lines if you like, and with a little luck, you may get away with it, but I do not recommend it.

So, the first step in preparing your hard-drive is to back-up any important information currently on the drive to another drive, or to a removable media such as floppy disk or CD-R. More detailed information on backing-up can be found in another article. I will just assume you have some-how managed to get it done. Donít forget any updated drivers or Windows updates. You may also wish to find updated drivers for all your hardware for each of the Operating Systems you wish to install whilst you still have a working system, to make things easier later on. Back these up with you other critical files.

Now you have all your data safely backed up, it is time to partition and format your hard-drive in preparation of the impending install.

Preparing Your Hard-drive

Before you rush in and slice up your hard-drive, there are several things to consider.

How big is the drive? Is it big enough for all the Operating Systems you wish to install, and your data? You will find it difficult to dual-boot Windows XP and Windows 98, and store all your files on a 4GB hard-drive.

How many Operating Systems do you want to boot? This will determine the minimum number of partitions you need.

What file system do you want to use for each Operating System (OS)? There are several to choose from, which are discussed in a different article (I will go over the basics here).

You should draw a diagram to help you figure out how many partitions you need, and how much space to allocate each of them.

As an example throughout this article I will use a 20GB hard-drive and install three Operating Systems on it (MS-DOS, Windows 98 and Windows XP).

For this set-up we require a minimum of three partitions (one for each OS). I am going to use four (the extra one will be for files only). For detailed information about partitioning, see a separate article Ė I will go over the basics here. I am creating a separate partition for data so that I can easily reformat on of my OS partitions at a later date without losing my critical data. The following table shows the layout of my partitioned drive:

Partition 1: MS-DOS File System: FAT Partition Type: Primary Partition Size (GB): 2
Partition 2: Windows 98 File System: FAT32 Partition Type: Primary Partition Size (GB): 3
Partition 1: Windows XP File System: NTFS Partition Type: Primary Partition Size (GB): 5
Partition 1: None (Data) File System: FAT32 Partition Type: Logical Partition Size (GB): 10

I have given each OS a decent sized partition to allow for flexibility with programs, and to ensure there will always be plenty of space. You could get away with partitions up to half as big before you ran into major difficulties.

If you wish to boot MS-DOS with Windows NT, the DOS partition must be smaller than 2GB to allow part of the NT partition to be within the first 2GB of the disk. This is due to boot limitations of Windows NT, and doesnít apply to the other OSís. Note: A bootable Windows NT partition must also be smaller than 7.8GB.

There are three possible types of partition: Primary, Logical and Extended. An OS MUST be installed on a primary partition. Windows Master Boot Records (MBR) only support up to four primary partitions on any physical drive, so you are effectively limited to four OSís on any one hard-drive.

Data may be placed in a logical partition. Logical partitions are located within an extended partition. In this case, there are three primary partitions, and one extended partition. There is one logical partition within the extended partition which takes up all of the available space in the extended partition.

The file system of each partition must be considered. MS-DOS and Windows 3.1/95 must be installed on a FAT partition. Windows 98/ME cannot ďseeĒ NTFS, and Windows NT/2000/XP can ďseeĒ all Microsoft file systems (FAT, FAT32, and NTFS). Note: Newer versions of Windows 95 can also read FAT32 partitions.

Thus, I have installed DOS on a FAT partition, Windows 98 on a FAT32 partition, XP on an NTFS partition, and made the data partition a FAT32 partition so that it can be read by both Windows 98 and XP.

There are two options available when partitioning your drive. The first is to use a DOS boot floppy to run fdisk and set-up all the partitions at once. This has limitations as DOS may not recognise all of your hard-drive if it is a larger one, and DOS cannot format partitions as NTFS or FAT32. The better option is to install the first OS, and partition the drive after each install in preparation for the next one. For this you will need a program like partition magic. You can of course create the partitions in DOS, and format them at the installation stage for each OS. This would be my preferred method if I did not have access to Partition Magic.

The order of the partitions should be the same as the order of installation of the OSís for ease. The order of installation of the OSís is very important if you want a workable PC. If you install DOS after you have installed XP, DOS will overwrite XPís boot info, and your PC wonít know XP is there.

The order for install Operating Systems is as follows (cross out those OSís you donít wish to install, and you will be left with the order to install your specific set of OSís):

MS-DOS
Windows 3.1
Windows NT
Windows 95
Windows 98
Windows ME
Windows 2000
Windows XP

The general rule is that the newer the OS, the later it is in the install list.

Now you have a clean, partitioned and formatted hard-drive, it is time to begin installation of your OSís. The first OS should be installed onto C:\.

Installing MS-DOS (NB: If you donít want DOS, but are installing Windows 3.1/95/98, you still need to do this step.)

You can now install MS-DOS. Insert the first MS-DOS set-up disk, and reboot the machine. Follow the instructions and install DOS onto C:\. (You will be prompted for the other DOS set-up disks. At the end, remove the last disk and reboot the machine. You will boot into DOS, and see a C:\> prompt on the screen.

Instructions for other OSís follow.

Installing Windows NT/ME/2000/XP

Insert the Windows set-up disk and reboot your machine. Follow the on-screen instructions.

During the installation process, you will be asked to select the partition to install to. Select the partition you are installing Windows to. You can also format the partition at this stage if you have not yet done so.

Once installation has finished, reboot, and you will boot into Windows graphical interface. From there you can set-up Windows as you wish, or reboot to DOS. You may want to spend some time installing drivers for Windows and getting everything working before you move onto the next OS.

Installing Windows 95/98/ME

Boot into NT if running NT, or DOS if not. If you do not want a separate DOS partition, that is fine, as Windows 98 is installed on top of DOS anyway. In fact, if you want to have DOS, and also want any of Windows 3.1/95/98/ME, then you do not need a separate partition as all these OSís are built on DOS, and you can boot to DOS using a shutdown command, or boot disk.

Once in NT or DOS, navigate to the CD directory and run setup.exe (If in DOS, copy the entire contents of the CD to a new directory called C:\setup first, and run setup.exe from C:\setup).

You can then follow the on screen instructions, and finally reboot. You can now install a video driver if necessary, and boot to Windows. From there you can set-up Windows as you wish, or reboot to DOS. You may want to spend some time installing drivers for Windows and getting everything working before you move onto the next OS.

Configuring Boot Options

Depending on which OSís you have installed you will see a different boot loader interface on boot-up. If you only have older OSís like DOS, or Windows 3.1/95/98/NT you may have to hold F8 or a similar button at start-up to get to the boot options, or you may need a boot floppy. If you have installed a newer OS like XP, the boot options menu appears automatically on start-up. Either way, the boot options are defined in boot.ini which can be found in C:\ or on your boot floppy. This file contains text which tells your PC what to do on start-up. Here is a copy of the boot.ini file for the example system used in this article:


timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(3)\WINDOW SXP
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\DOS="Microsoft DOS 6.2"
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS98="Microsoft Windows 98"
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(3)\WINDOWSXP="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /fastdetect

[b]DEFINITIONS:

timeout = the number of seconds the boot-menu is displayed before the default option is loaded.
default = the default OS which is loaded if no choices are made before the menu times out.
[operating systems] = This is a list of all the operating systems available on the boot-menu. The words in the speech marks ďĒ are what is displayed in the boot-menu for each OS.

You can modify this file to set whichever options you wish.

In Windows XP, there is an easier way to alter the options.

Right-click My Computer, or press Windows+Pause/Break.

Click on the ĎAdvancedí tab in the system properties window. Click ĎStart-up and Recoveryí. A new window opens with controls for all the options listed above.

And there you have it! A perfect multi-boot system!

You should now use a product like PowerQuestís Drive Image, or Nortonís Ghost to image your new installation so you can restore it easily if things ever go wrong. Imaging is covered in more depth in another FAQ.

I have a feeling I have missed one or two finer points regarding some of the OS's I am less familiar with eg 95/NT/3.1. I also feel a couple of areas are a little "messy". Comments and criticisms welcome. (I'm serious, I gave Joe a hard time on his, now's the time to do the same to me). :D

G P

Callum Hey
27-06-2002, 04:34 PM
I'm tempted to "Quote Original" but I shan't :D

This one is a definite useful for future reference :)
<copies and pastes>

Thanks Graham - v.useful

Callum

Graham Petrie
27-06-2002, 04:37 PM
Ooops, forgot.

Links

PowerQuest (http://www.powerquest.com)
PC911 - HOW-TO Multiboot article (http://www.pcnineoneone.com/howto/multiboot1.html) (Contains some more detailed instructions on OS installation, and how to add or remove OS's after you have alreday set-up a Multi-boot OS).
Other PC911 HOW-TO's (http://www.pcnineoneone.com/howto.html)

G P

Chilling_Silence
27-06-2002, 04:52 PM
Hey, that's nice, now I want a multi-boot system, but what about 98 and linux?? That'd be where I'd go!!!
Jo

Graham Petrie
27-06-2002, 05:11 PM
I've built one of those too, and can give tips and point out pitfalls for newbies, but my knowledge isn't as good as other contributors, and I was knd of hoping one of them would take on the Linux/Windows dual-boot as a separate FAQ.

G P

Tristan Speak
27-06-2002, 05:12 PM
Wow! :O

Good work Graham, that is really comprehensive.

Graham Petrie
27-06-2002, 05:25 PM
Ooops! Typo! I had converted a table in Word to text for the post box, and I forgot to rename the partition labels. Thus, they are Partition 1, Partition 2, Partition 1, Partition 1 when they should be Partition 1, Partition 2, Partition 3, Partition 4.

G P

Graham L
27-06-2002, 05:54 PM
Linux/MS.

I suppose I could be persuaded ... (mine [i] would [/b] start with "RTFM", but I've done a few, and I know what Ms to advise peoplel to R). ;-)

Graham Petrie
27-06-2002, 06:01 PM
I didn't want to say your name Graham, but I was kind of hinting to you.
;)

G P

Merlin
27-06-2002, 08:29 PM
Not bad. . however, pray tell how to create multiple primary partitions using MS FDISK . . . and after you have tried with MS FDISK.


Besides MS FDISK what other DOS based "freebies" are available to partition a hard disk?


Is it possible to create more than 4 primary partitions? And are there any special types of primary partitions?


Also, what are the advantages and disavantages of setting a primary partition active?


Are there any other alternative methods for installing multiple operating systems?


Are there any alternatives to modifying the boot.ini file to easily access operating systems installed on multiple primary partitions?


How can other operating systems be accessed if NT/2k/XP are not used?

Callum Hey
27-06-2002, 08:37 PM
ROFL
HAHAHAHAHA

Oh dear, hehe
Whilst reading the original FAQ post I was wondering how long/if Merlin would find SOMETHING to comment on, since partitioning seems to be his little "pet" subject...

Well Merlin, now that you've shown how much you know by asking questions you obviously know the answer to...can you give me a hyperlink to your latest thesis and help source on disk partitioning, since I don't see you making the effort to write something like this :D

Callum

Graham Petrie
27-06-2002, 08:46 PM
1. Sorry, the bit about setting up all the partitions first using fdisk was originally written for partition magic using a pmagic bootdisk. I modified it for fdisk without reading it through afterwards - will make the changes. Thanks.

2. I don't want to recommend apps I haven't used - I have given a couple of options, and people can search the web for apps which will do what they want. I will modify things to ensure that it is not ambiguous.

3. Probably - not to my knowledge (unless you have more than one physical drive), and I am not trying to write an advanced guide to setting up a multi-boot system, but rather a beginners guide which works, and covers most options. It is up to the reader to then go and learn more from other sources, or from self learning.

4. I have said that you must set the boot partition active. Any more info is likely to confuse. If someone wants to learn more about this they should read an article on partitioning. This should be done for this FAQ, and if not, I know a good one which we can link to.

5. Such as?

6. Yep - third party bootloader. Will put that in

7. See 6.

Cheers.

Wait for v0.2

G P

Graham Petrie
27-06-2002, 09:10 PM
LOL - Thanks Callum - but I refuse to bite. I have a grandfather like Merlin - even a casual comment like "Isn't the weather good today?" can illicit a 10min diatribe about the current global weather trends, and why I am wrong. I have learnt that keeping my mouth shut generally makes things easier for everyone! However, I am more than happy to have someone-else open their mouth for me. Cheers!

Merlin
27-06-2002, 10:32 PM
One speaks with authority only when one has knowledge.



What you have described does not require the creation of multiple primary partitions since you have no idea of the limitations and conflicts that exist within MS operating systems.

FAT16
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;Q118335
FAT32
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;Q154997
NTFS
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;Q100108



Research where the startup files for operating systems are located. This also answers the questions above.
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;Q114841


To test your instructions, follow them letter for letter.
Note the areas requiring attention.


Consider two dual booting senarios

First senario
Create a single primary partition and install MS DOS 6.22.
Then install Windows 95A
Start in Windows 95A
Then in DOS 6.22
Then in Windows 95A
What happens and why?


Second senario
Create a single primary partition and install MS DOS 6.22.
Then install Windows 95B or 98 or ME
What happens and why?
How can Windows be installed
Start in Windows 9x
Then in DOS 6.22
Then in Windows 9x
What happens and why?
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;Q121963



When you know why, then you can explain how.

JohnD
28-06-2002, 03:56 PM
It is stated in the FAQ that you must have a primary partition to boot your OS from - not true for Linux.

It all looks more complicated than I have experienced. What I have done is:
1. Create your partitions using PQMagic.
2. Install all MS OSs making the destination partition active before installing.
3. Install Linux last.

I have either used LILO to boot all the OSs from the mbr or installed the freeware boot manager XOSL (in which case LILO has to be in the / partition for Linux) - have had no problems with this simple technique.

John

Susan B
28-06-2002, 05:16 PM
Graham, I've had a good long read of this - in fact I've had to read it a couple of times for it to make much sense to me.

I'm a good guinea pig to try it out because I've got an old 486 that I want to dual-boot MS-DOS & Win 3.x with Win 95. I've already done it twice but certain DOS programs won't work so I'm going to have to do it again and I'll follow your instructions next time.

I feel that a few more explanations could be added here and there. For instance you say to copy the contents of the CD-ROM to the hard drive and install setup from there, but you don't actually give the commands for copying in DOS. If I'm to do that I'll have to fish out my notes to find the command. Others may not even have notes to look up :-)

Also, one of my problems with my dual-boot is that there is no sound in the Win 3.x. I think it might be because I installed Win 95 first whereas you say to install the oldest OS first. I hope that's all it is, otherwise I'm wondering if I have to install sound drivers, etc in each OS? You've not made it very clear whether this is so or not but as I said, it might be my setup.

Can't think of anything else right now but I'm keen to follow your instructions, they are quite different from the instructions that I followed.

Graham Petrie
28-06-2002, 07:13 PM
These instructions are entirely from my own experience, and due to the length of the FAQ, there is probably going to have to be a fair amount of editing. I also do not profess to know everything, and some instructions may not work for the OS's I have not had experience with.

As far as drivers go, yes, you must install drivers separately for each oS. Each uses different drivers, and each accesses them out f their own windows folder. I am extremely glad you are going to test the instructions as I do not have a spare machine to run a test on, and so, they were created from memory etc, not from an actual run through. (That is why Merlin was able to poke a few holes in it). Please post any probs you have, and I guarantee to be able to answer 99% of them, and will make changes if necessary.

I wish to reinforce that this FAQ qill need one or two iterations before the insructions are fool-proof. Anyone else who finds problems, please post them (With solutions if possible) as I know that I have forgotten some things etc. I have thick skin, and can take a bit of a bashing as long as it is constructive. I have no time for negative criticisms that do not acheive anything, except instill a false feeling of power in the person making them.

I do not want to add a disclaimer for things going wrong as I like to stand behind what I say. So, if anyone has any problems, feel free to ask for a solution. However, don't blame me for lost data bcause you could not be bothered backing up!!

As far as Linux is concerned, yes you may be right JohnD, but I have purposely left Linux out. you may note that the FAQ is called Multi-booting Windows. Graham L MAY be doing a dual-booting Windows and Linux FAQ. Although I have done this successfully, I could not by any stretch of the imagination say I am an expert in this, so I am leaving it to the expert.

G P

markOS X
02-07-2002, 05:18 PM
Nice work, clear instructions.

However as Susan B points out, copy in dos isn't user freindly - it sounds as if you had another working pc available to help you do the copy operation (what i think, based on what i think you wrote).

Based on my experience, any type of install for someone not a kingpin in installs/multipartition-installs (like merlin perhaps :-) ) is a lot easier with a second pc to use as a reference, so it might be worth adding something like this in.

cheers,
markOS X.

Chilling_Silence
06-07-2002, 02:31 PM
You can search google.com for Ranish Partition Manager, I've used that before, but only for patitioning Fat32, it says it'll work with others mind you

Graham Petrie
31-10-2002, 12:07 PM
test

Graham Petrie
31-10-2002, 12:34 PM
As I have made some rather big changes to this FAQ, could I please have some more feedback would be appreciated. As this topic is so extensive, and I do not claim to know everything there is to know regarding this topic, please give positive feedback with solutions to any problems. If I have left something oput it may be oversight, or it may be that I just do not know the problem exists, so please when you criticise, give reaon s for your criticisms, and answers to the problems. YOu will be given full credit in the FAQ if you do.

Introduction

There are many reasons why you may want to run more than one copy of windows on your PC. You may want to keep your old OS whilst you try out a new one (like Windows XP), or you may have compatibility issues with old software on your new OS, and wish to retain an old one to run this software on. Also, you may want to test programs you have written on different versions of windows before you release it. I will assume that you have your own reasons, and now wish to perform the task of turning your PC into a multi-boot system. This FAQ will deal with the multi-booting of two or more Windows Operating Systems. Multi-booting with Linux will be covered in another FAQ.

This article will cover multi-booting any of the following Operating Systems:

MS-DOS
Windows 95/98/ME/2000/NT/XP

What You Need

The first step is to acquire the installation disks (and boot disks for MS-DOS or Windows 95/98) of the Operating Systems you wish to install on your PC.

You will also need some software for partitioning your hard-drive. You could use the DOS function 'fdisk' or you could obtain a boot disk for a program such as Partition Magic. If you already have a Windows Operating System installed on your system, you could use a program such as Partition Magic to partition your drive from a Windows interface.

Backing UP

Now you have what you need to get started, there is some preparation you must do before you start partitioning your drive. If you are starting with a blank hard-drive, you can miss this step.

It is possible to create a multi-boot system whilst retaining an existing Operating System, but as I believe that a multi-boot system should be built on a clean slate, I will not be covering this possibility. You can read between the lines if you like, and with a little luck, you may get away with it, but I do not recommend it.

So, the first step in preparing your hard-drive is to back-up any important information currently on the drive to another drive, or to a removable media such as floppy disk or CD-R. More detailed information on backing-up can be found in another article. I will just assume you have some-how managed to get it done. Donít forget any updated drivers or Windows updates. You may also wish to find updated drivers for all your hardware for each of the Operating Systems you wish to install whilst you still have a working system, to make things easier later on. Back these up with you other critical files.

Now you have all your data safely backed up, it is time to partition and format your hard-drive in preparation of the impending install.

Preparing Your Hard-drive

Before you rush in and slice up your hard-drive, there are several things to consider.

How big is the drive? Is it big enough for all the Operating Systems you wish to install, and your data? You will find it difficult to dual-boot Windows XP and Windows 98, and store all your files on a 4GB hard-drive.

How many Operating Systems do you want to boot? This will determine the minimum number of partitions you need.

What file system do you want to use for each Operating System (OS)? There are several to choose from, which are discussed in a different article (I will go over the basics here).

You should draw a diagram to help you figure out how many partitions you need, and how much space to allocate each of them.

As an example throughout this article I will use a 20GB hard-drive and install three Operating Systems on it (MS-DOS, Windows 98 and Windows XP).

For this set-up we require a minimum of three partitions (one for each OS). I am going to use four (the extra one will be for files only). For detailed information about partitioning, see a separate article Ė I will go over the basics here. I am creating a separate partition for data so that I can easily reformat on of my OS partitions at a later date without losing my critical data. The following table shows the layout of my partitioned drive:

Partition 1: MS-DOS File System: FAT Partition Type: Primary Partition Size (GB): 2
Partition 2: Windows 98 File System: FAT32 Partition Type: Primary Partition Size (GB): 3
Partition 3: Windows XP File System: NTFS Partition Type: Primary Partition Size (GB): 5
Partition 4: None (Data) File System: FAT32 Partition Type: Logical Partition Size (GB): 10

I have given each OS a decent sized partition to allow for flexibility with programs, and to ensure there will always be plenty of space. You could get away with partitions up to half as big before you ran into major difficulties.

If you wish to boot MS-DOS with Windows NT, the DOS partition must be smaller than 2GB to allow part of the NT partition to be within the first 2GB of the disk. This is due to boot limitations of Windows NT, and doesnít apply to the other OSís. Note: A bootable Windows NT partition must also be smaller than 7.8GB.

There are three possible types of partition: Primary, Logical and Extended. An OS MUST be installed on a primary partition. Windows Master Boot Records (MBR) only support up to four primary partitions on any physical drive, so you are effectively limited to four OSís on any one hard-drive.

Data may be placed in a logical partition. Logical partitions are located within an extended partition. In this case, there are three primary partitions, and one extended partition. There is one logical partition within the extended partition which takes up all of the available space in the extended partition.

The file system of each partition must be considered. MS-DOS and Windows 3.1/95 must be installed on a FAT partition. Windows 98/ME cannot ďseeĒ NTFS, and Windows NT/2000/XP can ďseeĒ all Microsoft file systems (FAT, FAT32, and NTFS). Note: Newer versions of Windows 95 can also read FAT32 partitions.

Thus, I have installed DOS on a FAT partition, Windows 98 on a FAT32 partition, XP on an NTFS partition, and made the data partition a FAT32 partition so that it can be read by both Windows 98 and XP.

For this you will need a program like partition magic or Ranish (http://www.ranish.com)(Free). There are also other free DOS-based partitioning programs available as outlined in the last section of this FAQ.

The order of the partitions should be the same as the order of installation of the OSís for ease. The order of installation of the OSís is very important if you want a workable PC. If you install DOS after you have installed XP, DOS will overwrite XPís boot info, and your PC wonít know XP is there.

The order for install Operating Systems is as follows (cross out those OSís you donít wish to install, and you will be left with the order to install your specific set of OSís):

MS-DOS
Windows 3.1
Windows NT
Windows 95
Windows 98
Windows ME
Windows 2000
Windows XP

The general rule is that the newer the OS, the later it is in the install list.

Note: Installing Operating Systems in a different order than this is covered in a section at the end of this FAQ. This is only recommended for advanced users

Now you have a clean, partitioned and formatted hard-drive, it is time to begin installation of your OSís. The first OS should be installed onto C:\.

Installing MS-DOS (NB: If you donít want DOS, but are installing Windows 3.1/95/98, you still need to do this step.)

You can now install MS-DOS. Insert the first MS-DOS set-up disk, and reboot the machine. Follow the instructions and install DOS onto C:\. (You will be prompted for the other DOS set-up disks. At the end, remove the last disk and reboot the machine. You will boot into DOS, and see a C:\> prompt on the screen.

Instructions for other OSís follow.

Installing Windows NT/ME/2000/XP

Insert the Windows set-up disk and reboot your machine. Follow the on-screen instructions.

During the installation process, you will be asked to select the partition to install to. Select the partition you are installing Windows to. You can also format the partition at this stage if you have not yet done so.

Once installation has finished, reboot, and you will boot into Windows graphical interface. From there you can set-up Windows as you wish, or reboot to DOS. You may want to spend some time installing drivers for Windows and getting everything working before you move onto the next OS.

Installing Windows 95/98/ME

Boot into NT if running NT, or DOS if not. If you do not want a separate DOS partition, that is fine, as Windows 98 is installed on top of DOS anyway. In fact, if you want to have DOS, and also want any of Windows 3.1/95/98/ME, then you do not need a separate partition as all these OSís are built on DOS, and you can boot to DOS using a shutdown command, or boot disk.

Once in NT or DOS, navigate to the CD directory and run setup.exe (If in DOS, copy the entire contents of the CD to a new directory called C:\setup first, and run setup.exe from C:\setup).

You can then follow the on screen instructions, and finally reboot. You can now install a video driver if necessary, and boot to Windows. From there you can set-up Windows as you wish, or reboot to DOS. You may want to spend some time installing drivers for Windows and getting everything working before you move onto the next OS.

Configuring Boot Options

Depending on which OSís you have installed you will see a different boot loader interface on boot-up. If you only have older OSís like DOS, or Windows 3.1/95/98/NT you may have to hold F8 or a similar button at start-up to get to the boot options, or you may need a boot floppy. If you have installed a newer OS like XP, the boot options menu appears automatically on start-up. Either way, the boot options are defined in boot.ini which can be found in C:\ or on your boot floppy. This file contains text which tells your PC what to do on start-up. Here is a copy of the boot.ini file for the example system used in this article:


timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(3)\WINDOW SXP< BR>[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\DOS="Microsoft DOS 6.2"
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS98="Microsoft Windows 98"
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(3)\WINDOWSXP="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /fastdetect

[b]DEFINITIONS:

timeout = the number of seconds the boot-menu is displayed before the default option is loaded.
default = the default OS which is loaded if no choices are made before the menu times out.
[operating systems] = This is a list of all the operating systems available on the boot-menu. The words in the speech marks ďĒ are what is displayed in the boot-menu for each OS.

You can modify this file to set whichever options you wish.

In Windows XP, there is an easier way to alter the options.

Right-click My Computer, or press Windows+Pause/Break.

Click on the ĎAdvancedí tab in the system properties window. Click ĎStart-up and Recoveryí. A new window opens with controls for all the options listed above.

The other option is a third-party boot-manager like XOSL (http://www.xosl.org/) which takes over when you boot and allows you to select the OS you wish to load.

And there you have it! A perfect multi-boot system!

You should now use a product like PowerQuestís Drive Image, or Nortonís Ghost to image your new installation so you can restore it easily if things ever go wrong. Imaging is covered in more depth in another FAQ.

Links:

PowerQuest (http://www.powerquest.com)
PC911 - HOW-TO Multiboot article (http://www.pcnineoneone.com/howto/multiboot1.html) (Contains some more detailed instructions on OS installation, and how to add or remove OS's after you have alreday set-up a Multi-boot OS).

MS Links to KB Articles Submitted by: Merlin

FAT16 File System (http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;Q118335)
FAT32 File System (http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;Q154997)
NTFS File System (http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;Q100108)
Requirements to Boot Previous Operating System (http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;Q114841)


Installing OSs in a Different Order Submitted by: Merlin

The information below is recommended for use by advanced users only. It details how to install the various OSs in your multiboot machine in a different order than outlined above. This part of the FAQ qas submitted by Merlin in another thread and full credit goes to him for his contribution.


Booting to multiple primary partitions requires the creation of up to the maximum of 4 primary partitions per hard drive.
An inbuilt limitation of Windows operating systems using FAT format (namely any MS OS from DOS through to Me) is that they can only recognise one primary partition per hard drive unlike the NT based operating systems which can recognise up to 4 per drive. (Why only 4? Limitation of space used to record the partitioning information at the end of the master boot record).
A second limitation is MS FDISK which will only create one primary partition per hard drive.
To overcome these two limitations, a third party disk partitioning program is required - such as Partition Magic, though my preferences are either of the two DOS based EFDISK and AEFDISK programs.
Whatever is used, the objective is to create up to 4 primary partitions and to then "hide" all but one which is set active or bootable. By "hiding" the additional primary partitions the Windows operating system which is being installed can only "see" one primary partition - the one it is being installed into and thus no partition conflicts are created. (Leave two primary partitions "unhidden" and watch what happens when Windows - or DOS - is installed).
Once DOS or Windows is installed on the first primary partition, use the third party disk partitioning program to "hide" that partition, "unhide" another which is then set active or bootable.
If the active partition is "hidden", an error message or a flashing cursor is all that will be seen when attempting to access the bootable partition. Active partitions must be "unhidden".
Install a second Windows operating system in the second primary partition and proceed with the remaining partitions.
An example of four operating systems on the same hard drive could be
Primary partition 1 - DOS 6.22
Primary partition 2 - Windows 98
Primary partition 3 - Windows 2000 Professional
Primary partition 4 - Windows XP Professional
or
Primary partition 1 - Windows 98
Primary partition 2 - Windows 2000 Professional
Primary partition 3 - Windows XP Professional
Primary partition 4 - Linux Red Hat 8 (check the installation instructions before creating partitions for Linux OS)
The last major limitation that MS operating systems have is that the system files for the earlier FAT based operating systems (up to Windows 98) have to be within the first 2 gigabytes of the hard drive. Usually this is not a major issue since each MS operating systems were designed to exist by itself on each hard drive. However it is something to be aware of when creating multiple primary partitions.

To access each operating system use a third party boot manager. This ensures that each operating system is kept independent and inaccessible from each other.
Several boot managers exist and all have their pros and cons. Boot Magic provides a Windows like feel complete with mouse while others are reminiscent of DOS. Usually most boot managers are installed on the first primary partition and most manufacturers recommend it be formatted with FAT16 or 32 for ease of troubleshooting. Check the installation instructions for configuration

In the case of reinstalling an operating system, disable the boot manager and use the disk partitioning program to "hide" all the partitions except the problem one which is set active or bootable. Format and/or install as usual. Use the disk partitioning program to "unhide" the partition containing the boot manager (set it active and also "hide" the other partitions), restart and enable the boot manager.

Merlin



FAQ Submitted by: Graham Petrie Last Updated: 31/10/2002

mikeynoone
03-10-2003, 06:03 PM
Merlin,

I have just lept before I looked and bought a new computer with 120g hd and xp pro installed (fat32), I have my old 20g hd with 98se on it and wish to still have access/use this older disk as it has all my old /current business programs etc on it. Can you advise of a dual boot or similar senario so I can access both hd?
Any help appreciated...

Merlin
03-10-2003, 07:42 PM
Messy

Option A - messy.
Install a boot manager to access either operating system seperately.
Use Partition Magic to create a logical drive for DATA files - NOT software application files - that need to be accessed by both operating systems. Format and transfer the data files.

Option B - messy.
Install and mount each operating system using Linux.

Option C - best.
Install the application software on XP. Copy any required data files.


Before attempting any option either backup critical data or create image file of each drive.





Men are four:
He who knows not and knows not he knows not, he is a fool -- shun him;
He who knows not and knows he knows not, he is simple -- teach him;
He who knows and knows not he knows, he is asleep -- wake him;
He who knows and knows he knows, he is wise -- follow him!
- Lady Burton (wife of Sir Richard Francis Burton), given as an Arabian proverb

beama
03-10-2003, 09:49 PM
mikey, this worked for me using 98se / linux on separate disks, installed and loaded linux on second disk with primary disconnected. Once installed I connected both disk up, both masters on separate IDE channels (the linux disk became a secondary master) then used the BIOS to change the boot order of the disks.
I think if you install your 98 disk as a secondary master and make the xp disk the boot disk you may be able to achieve what you need, to access your data, as for programs you should be able to load those onto xp even if means running them in compatibility mode. Once you have your programs loaded and data copied, well the second disk could be formatted and used as a data disk but being the older of the two disks it would be more likely to fail, so a good backup scheme is always recommended.

mikeynoone
04-10-2003, 05:44 PM
thanks guys,messy i know...will try to trnasfer files over nad see what happens, thanks...M