We all have heard about dual boot! If you are one of those, who haven’t, don’t consider yourself to be doomed! It’s nothing special, just having 2 OS in one PC/Laptop and when you start your computer, it asks which one you want to boot into. As a matter of fact, you can have more than 2 OS, 3 or 4, (if you know what you are doing!). Anyway, most of us may need to use a GNU/Linux distro for various reasons along with something else, like Windows, or MAC-OS or another linux distro.
As of my case, Linux seems to be an awesome place to work, however, Windows is my favorite. People argue, but its my choice. I like Windows because, I can totally customize it, with a ton of apps, some like it coz its adaptance to play games. And things come kinda ready-made in Windows ( like we don’t have to download silly codecs to play a movie, and find out that was not the one, and download another). However, for a developer or programmer Linux is a paradise. Its not like one can’t develop/program in Windows, but Linux ix better. Most resources come referring to a Linux distro, since they mostly there are free, open sourced, and believed to be more secure than other OSs. So, without further delay, lets dual boot our PC. [* PLEASE FORGIVE ME IF I HURT YOUR FEELINGS IN THE ABOVE LINES *]
Since I don’t have an Apple device yet, can’t refer to Mac-OS right away :p . Thus I will be using Windows (Windows 10) and a GNU/Linux distro (Fedora 25).
First, download the Linux distro and have the Windows OS (or any other OS you choose) ready. Get the pendrives/CDs and make them bootable. For Windows there is the CD/DVD that you have bought, so no need to worry. Then get the Linus Distro from there website! If you are installing Fedora Workstation, you can either have the DVD or can just download the .ISO file and flash into a pen-drive, you can use the Fedora Media writer to do so, for Ubuntu, or other OS, Live USB creators can be found to do the same(e.g. Rufus)!
In case you are willing to do a full format and start over (which is a great option – an easy and a tension free choice and also the only option if you are running a Linux distro now), just back up all/any important thing you may need, like photos or documents and get started. Note: install the Windows first, then the Linux distro.
INSTALLING WINDOWS 10:
If you are thinking how to boot in a particular drive, open BIOS and select that drive. Search online about how to launch BIOS on startup, it varies from motherboard to motherboard manufacturer! ( Normally it’s either F10 or F12).
And then choose the language and … (these are pretty intuitive). Go for Custom Install. Then you proceed the steps, like entering the key, etc. And then you will find this:
(If you hard drive is already partitioned, select each and choose Delete, till you get something like that ⇑⇑⇑⇑)
Here I can suggest a few ideas while partitioning :
- Divide the whole drive into two, one for Linux and one for Windows.
- Divide the whole drive into three parts, one for Windows, one for Linux and one where your data(photos, movies, etc) will be kept. *
- Divide the drive into unequal parts, give the OS greater space which you use mostly!
*[ An important point to be made: from Linux you can access any file in the Windows drives/ other locations, but reverse is not possible, i.e. from Windows, you can’t access the Linux drives (directories). So, keep this in mind, while installation of Windows]. Also keep in mind, that the unallocated space will be the place where the Linux will be installed!
Wait for the setting to finish… And you will be greeted by Microsoft on completion of everything!
IF WINDOWS IS ALREADY INSTALLED:
If you are not willing to do a full format and already have a Windows running, all you need to do is free up a drive, and then we need to unallocate it!( a Note: you can also use Windows functions like ‘Shrink’, but last time I tried to use that I ended up with a logical partition and had to format the whole HDD. So I prefer unallocating drives). To do that open up drive manager. In there open the drive and unallocate it. NOTE: Please make a full backup of your PC, just-in-case things go south!
Right Click on the drive you want to use for Linux distro, and Select Delete Volume. And that’s that!
FINALLY, INSTALLING FEDORA (OR OTHER LINUX DISTRO):
Now its time to install the Linux distro. I’m here installing Fedora, however installing any other distro should be analogous!
Insert the drive(flash drive or the CD/DVD drive) and boot into it. While installing, choose your hard drive. The OS will automatically be installed in that unallocated space, infact you will see the free space in your hard drive equal to that of the unallocated space, created earlier. Then follow the steps indicated, add the root user a/c and the administrator user a/c.
If you are installing Fedora, following images should be what you will see:
While the Installation is in progress, create your user account. make sure to make it admin if you are the only one using your PC. You may give a group or may just skip it. I’m sorry that I forgot to take a picture of that screen. But don’t worry. Thinks are pretty intuitive, and can be changed later if you mess up anything!
After a successful installation, take out the pendrives or CD/DVDs and reboot your PC. When the PC reboots, you will be asked where to boot into. Most likely the last will be Windows, and the first one ( the default one) will be the Linux distro. I called it default one because if you don’t select any option with in 5s or so, the PC will boot into the Linux distro. See the Fedora in the top is the default one. The are 3 Fedora options, because, 1st one is the updated version. 2nd one is the one I had originally installed. And 3rd one is the one which is needed when it fails to boot into Fedora! Its a fail-safe, something like Windows recovery option!
Okay, here’s a NOTE: If you are installing this in a laptop, you may have to change the default boot-drive in the “Boot” section of your BIOS menu. You should change your boot-drive from Windows to Fedora( that is, if you are installing Fedora). For Ubuntu, I think you don’t need to do anything( or at-least, I didn’t had to do)!
And yay! we did it!
And yes, sorry for the low quality images! 😦