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Dual Boot Install: WinXP Pro & Win7

by lemaech56 / January 11, 2010 10:11 PM PST

I built a Core2 Duo system that currently runs WinXP Pro SP3 and would like to upgrade to Win7 Ultimate. Win7 Upgrade Advisor says that I'm good to go. Fortunately, I've always used the Full Retail or Upgrade versions of Windows so I've dodged the OEM usage issues.

My preference is an install that supports dual boot. Given my Unix background, I would like to use a separate hard drive (HD) for installing Win7, but information on Microsoft's KB isn't clear on this option. The focus is on creating a separate partition on the HD that contains WinXP. Can I do this? In the current configuration, the "C" drive is a separate HD from the HDs used for personal data. Thanks for your support.

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Just one issue I see.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 11, 2010 11:04 PM PST

Where is the unclaimed, unused space to install the OS to? We can't use the current C for this install and the data drive may be off limits since we can't risk its loss (unless you have a few backup copies.)

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Re: Dual Boot Install: WinXP Pro & Win7
by lemaech56 / February 21, 2010 12:09 PM PST
In reply to: Just one issue I see.

Bob wrote:
Where is the unclaimed, unused space to install the OS to? We can't use the current C for this install and the data drive may be off limits since we can't risk its loss (unless you have a few backup copies.

Due to a manic work schedule all of my home computer projects were put on hold until now. Regarding unclaimed space and current C drive, my plan is to use a separate 640 GB hard drive for the Win 7 Pro install for multi-boot. Once I'm satisfied that the Win 7 Pro install is fully functional, I plan to format the original WinXP C drive and use it as a data drive.

Am I on the right track? Thanks for you advice.

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I'm going with no.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / February 21, 2010 10:22 PM PST

The one thing that kills those that want to do this is if you install a dual boot the supported method of installing oldest windows to newest works fine. But let's say we have XP installed, we install 7 on the next drive, please do not partition or format the empty drive space in advance but let the Windows installer do that!!!

Let's say XP is installed and we have the blank, non-partitioned space for 7. We install 7 there and we have our dual boot.

Here's a problem for most. There is no supported method to remove XP and get Windows 7 working again.

Go figure.

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Dual Boot
by kedscnet / January 12, 2010 1:27 AM PST

With Vista, it was easy to set up a dual boot on separate drives, even using a Vista upgrade disk. Possibly this will work with Win 7. The dual boot with a retail Win 7 should be no problem. Do a web search for dual booting XP/Win 7.

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by TaraS_WinTeam / January 12, 2010 3:03 AM PST
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