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Linux® For Dummies®, 8th Edition by Richard Blum, Dee-Ann LeBlanc

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Preparing to Use Linux and Microsoft Windows Together

If you’re planning to run Linux and Microsoft Windows on the same machine, the odds are that you already have Windows installed and have been using it for some time. Because I hate to hear screams of anguish all the way up here in western Canada, take a moment to assess what you have and what you need to do.

On the off-chance that you actually don’t have Windows installed yet and still want that dual-boot capability, you should install Windows before you install Linux. Otherwise, during installation, Windows overwrites the part of your hard drive that Linux uses to store its boot menu. (This factor can create a mess later when you want to boot back into Linux!) Those who need to install Windows should skip down to the section “Working with Disk Partitions” to find out how to set up your Windows installation so it causes the least fuss when it’s time to add Linux. Then after you have Windows installed, return here.

The majority of you, however, want to dual-boot because you’ve got one machine and it’s already running a Windows installation that you really don’t want to redo. If you intend to put Linux on a brand-new hard drive that has nothing on it already (or that you are 100 percent confident that you can erase), skip down to the section “Working with Disk Partitions.” However, if you need Linux and Windows to share the same ...

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