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I have 2 partitions currently, a C and a D drive. C is my main drive. I was wondering, would I have to format both C and D to install a dual boot system? Or would I just have to format the D drive and then would be able to put linux on that partition? Any help would be greatly appreciated

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Last Post by kccomputerdr
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You can format just one partition as far as I know, so yea, assuming your D: drive isn't the CD-ROM drive, you should be able to format it and leave C: untouched.

But I can't emphasize enough that getting a separate hard drive for your first Linux install is easier and safer than trying to format and re-partition an existing Windows partition. With how cheap hard drives are these days, it's a good inexpensive way to get Linux without having a really bad day. Of course, it's still a good idea to have full backups...just in case. ;)

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Nothing from Windows is installed on the D Drive (not any essential files for booting), it boots from C. SO would I be able to format and boot Linux from D without any problems? Im a newb when it comes to installing OSes so Im not sure how to go about this

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Most Linux installs will see your Windows drive and install either Lilo or Grub dual boot menu...

When you see how easy it is you will wonder why you waited so long.

Lots of helpful people are here to guide you...

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1. A second hard drive is definitely a good idea if this is your first time experimenting with a dual-boot system. That way it's less likely that any possible mistake you make with the Linux install wil hose your Windows partition too.

2. Regardless of how you choose to install: Back up your system first!

3. Do not reformat the existing D: partition; delete it instead, leaving the resulting space unallocated. Why? A couple of reasons:

a) Linux doesn't use the same filesystem formats as Windows does (NTFS and FAT32), so if you reformat the existing D: partition with a Winodws formatting tool, the Linux installer is just going to reformat the partition with a Linux (ext2, ext3, Reiserfs, etc.) filesystem format anyway.

b) Unlike Windows, Linux normally uses a separate partition for its Swap (virtual memory) space, as opposed to WIndows, which only uses a Swap file. In other words, the Linux installer will want to create(at least) two partitions in the space now occupied by your single D: partition. It will create one large partition for the OS and your data, and another smaller partition (about 2 times as large as the amount of your physical RAM) for the swap file. By default, some Linux distros even create a third (small) partition for your boot files.

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I have 2 partitions currently, a C and a D drive. C is my main drive. I was wondering, would I have to format both C and D to install a dual boot system? Or would I just have to format the D drive and then would be able to put linux on that partition? Any help would be greatly appreciated

Before installing Linux it is more than likely a bad move unless you have high speed internet, or have a Linux compatable modem.
Before making the Move to Linux, it is a good idea to make sure you have all the info & disks & knowledge to reinstall WINDOWS in case the linux thing goes bad. you might also burn several linux distos on disk. Here are my favorites:
Linux Mandriva 2005 LE
Suse
Linspire
Good luck, that is if you haven't already messed up.

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u can only format D: and install the linux (such as fedora )

Fedora was a step to the rear from Redhat. it has yet to impress me, but we all like different things i guess. Nobody is fully happy, that's why i have dozens of copies of varying distros of Linux, including fedora which i feel is not nearly as good as Mandriva LE 2005 or Suse 9.1.

Nothing can beat the easy networking of Mandriva, especially if you want to share an internet connection. Mandriva rules in that area.

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Fedora was a step to the rear from Redhat. it has yet to impress me, but we all like different things i guess. Nobody is fully happy, that's why i have dozens of copies of varying distros of Linux, including fedora which i feel is not nearly as good as Mandriva LE 2005 or Suse 9.1.

Nothing can beat the easy networking of Mandriva, especially if you want to share an internet connection. Mandriva rules in that area.

ok i will try for it
cant say at this time because i havent used it uptill now

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it's probably easier to just let Linux make it's own partitions & worry about deleting partitions & Re installing XP later. There are tons of Super smart dudes on here that can help in those departments later.

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