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Installing Multiple Os On Your Pc How to do that

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Hi everyone,


Ok before I start, I want to let you guys know the meanings of some of the terminologies I will be using in here. Boot loader is a small program which the operating system places on the selected partition (in most cases, the MBR <Master Boot Record>). it is a small program that loads the operating system into the computer’s memory when the system is booted and also starts the operating system.


So, before you can think of configuring your PC to have multiple boot, you should also know how to play around with 'em boot loaders too. And you should also make sure that you,ve got enough Hard disc space to accomodate the number of operating systems you would be installing. Linux generally takes less than 4GB of space while you will be requiring up to 15GB for a windows vista installtion.


My own PC has seven operating systems: Windows XP Professional, Ubuntu Linux Desktop, Ubuntu Server, Kubuntu Linux Desktop, Mandrake Linux 10.1 Official release, PCLinuxOS and Windows Vista (listed according to the installation partition. You might say that I am one mad person to t hionk of something like that but, I have my reasons which has to get acquinted with ost of the OSes as one of its major reasons. You never can tell what will happen in the nearby future.


I am going to use my computer as an example.


First of all, I installed Windows XP Professional w/SP2 which I have been runnning for quite some time now. It suddenly occured to me that I can have multiple boot sectors in my HDD which would enable to me have more than one operating sytem in my computer. I started by installing Ubuntu Linux. During the installation of Ubuntu, it wil automatically install its boot loader for you. It doesnt give you any option of configuring the boot loader anyhow you want it. That I would say is quite good though 'cos configuring boot loaders are meant for advanced PC users and you could very easily stop your computer from booting at all if you mess it up.


Secondly followed Ubuntu Server and Kubuntu Desktop. Each of these installations places its own boot loader in the MBR (that is the best place for you to place the boot loader if you want it to detect all the OSes installed in the PC or some wont be detected). I am not going to say much here 'cos these particular LInux OSes (Like Windows) simply places their boot loaders in there without asking you any questions.


Mandrake linux, for instance doesnt do same. It will ask you, for example, where you want the boot loader to be placed if it detects previous OS boot loaders in there. That might leave you wonderng what next to do. Well, dont you worry the puzzle isnt hard too solve. Ensure that you always place the booot loader in the MBR (that is, the first partition of your HD). The boot loader redirects the computer to boot from the particular partition where each particular OS is installed. mandrake Linux also gives you the option of removing some of the boot parameters or even to add more if need be.


the remaining OSes along the line also places their boot loader without questioning you.


Well, as you guys can see, installing multiple operating systems on your computer is not such a tedious act only that you will have to be very careful about boot loaders or your computer might not boot at all.


I once encountered a problem though. The first Vista download I tried to install was corrupt and while I was trying to install it, it complained of a corrupt cabinet file. Ok, I decided to quit the installation not knowing that vista has messed up Win XP's boot manager. When I rebooted and tried to boot up XP, it started complaining of compressed boot manager, press CTRL + ALT + DELETE to rebbot. That was quite alarming cos I was never planning for a reformat since I have many important files in the XP partition. firstly, I tried to rewrite another boot sector fo XP but it wouldnt allow me. So, what I did next was to repai the OS. That solved my problem and my XP is still up and running without any problems.


If you got any problem at all about installing multiple operating systems on your computer, do not hesitate to send me a PM. I would give you every detailed information you need concerning your request/problem.


Have a nice day guys.

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