how to dual-boot CentOS 6.4 and Windows 8 on a laptop with two hard drives?

I bought a new laptop PC (HP Envy dv7). Inside there are two slots for holding two separate hard drives. The computer comes with a Windows 8 OS installed in Drive_0, and I have put in a second drive Drive_1, which has CentOS 6.4 installed into it (this drive was removed from another notebook PC, which has been proven to be working and bootable).

When I bootup the HP ENVY dv7 laptop, it always boots into Windows 8. However, I could NOT see Drive_1 from Windows Explorer. However, Drive_1 could be seen from the utility: Disk_Management
which could be entered by pressing the keys MS+x simultaneously.

My question is: "What I need to do to make my HP ENVY dv7 laptop a dual-boot machine, which allows me to make a choice on which OS it is supposed to boot up?"

Any comment or answer would be deeply appreciated.
7 answers Last reply
More about dual boot centos windows laptop hard drives
  1. anonymous1 said:
    OK lets start by getting a CentOS install disk then removing the windows 8 HDD. now boot up the laptop from the CentOS disk and reinstall it. after you are able to boot up centos from the HDD re install the Win 8 HDD and use your BIOS to select the OS you want to use.
  2. Thank you anonymous. I need some more explanations from your answer. Please allow me to repeat the situation:

    I have CentOS 6.4 installed in Drive_1, and I have Drive_1 sitting in a drive_bay side-by-side with Drive_0, which comes with the the HP laptop PC ENVY dv7, and has Windows 8 installed in it.

    I am a bit confused by your post with my current settings. Are you suggesting that I unplug Drive_0 that has Windows 8 installed in it, and see if the laptop could boot up using Drive_1, which has CentOS installed in it? I did that experiment, and it failed to boot up to CentOS 6.4. My guess is: the HP EVNY dv7 automatically defaults to Drive_0 when it comes to booting up the machine.

    If Drive_0 and Drive_1 were to be swapped by having them plugged into each others' connector, then, it should NOT work either, since the HP BIOS still remembers Drive_0 contains Windows 8, and boot parameters MAY be passed to Windows 8's kernel prior to booting it up.

    Could you please exemplify the procedures that I ought to follow, such that I could choose which OS (Windows 8 or CentOS 6.4) the laptop is supposed to boot up to, right after it has been powered up?
    Please be as detailed as you can by laying out the steps that I ought to follow.

    Thank you again for your suggestions and inputs.
  3. anonymous1 said:
    All OS's should be installed in the computer that it will run in. As your centos was installed in a different computer and then the hard drive was moved you should do a fresh install. I only do OS installs with just one drive in the computer as you may get boot up info put on a different drive. I don't know the BIOS of your laptop but am guessing that you can select the boot order like most computers. ( I default to my Win 7 install as I use that the most and use my BIOS to select others if needed)

    OK lets start by getting a CentOS install disk.
    Then removing the windows 8 HDD.
    now boot up the laptop from the CentOS disk and install it.
    when the install is complete reattach the win 8 hard drive.
    now enter your BIOS and set you boot order.
    (Test both centOS and 8)
    you are good to go.
  4. Thank you for your answers. However, I still have some doubts on how to choose which OS (Windows 8 or CentOS 6.4) after I finish with the installation, following the instructions you provided.

    The following information is a DIRECT QUOTE from "System Configuration" under the BIOS, which comes with my HP ENVY dv7. I just do NOT see how I could prioritize the boot order between my two hard drives, namely: Disk_0 (Windows 8) and Disk_1 (CentOS 6.4)

    InsydeH20 Setup Untility
    System Configuration
    Boot Options
    Post Hotkey Delay (sec) <0>

    CD-Rom Boot <Enabled>
    Internal Network Adapter Boot <Disabled>
    Network Boot Protocol <IPv4+IPv6 (UEFI)>
    Legacy Support <Disable>
    Secure Boot <Enabled>
    Platform Key Enrolled
    Pending Action None
    Clear All Secure Boot Keys
    Load HP Factory Default Keys

    UEFI Boot Order
    OS boot Manager
    Internal CD/DVD ROM Drive
    USB Diskette on Key/USB Hard Disk
    USB CD/DVD ROM Drive
    ! Network Adaptor

    Legacy Boot Order
    OS boot Manager
    Internal CD/DVD ROM Drive
    USB Diskette on Key/USB Hard Disk
    USB CD/DVD ROM Drive
    ! Network Adaptor

    Item Specific Help

    When Legacy Support is enabled, BIOS will load Compatibility Support Module (CSM) to support Legacy OS such as Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP and DOS. When Legacy Support is disabled, BIOS will boot in UEFI Mode without CSM to support newer OS such as Windows 8.

    Any comment would be deeply appreciated.

  5. You can't.
    Here's why:

    Begining with Windows 8, a new system of secure boot was developed.
    CentOS did not pay the licencing fee to be able to use secure boot. Thus you cannot boot CentOS with the Secure Boot = enabled and UEFI boot type in your BIOS. That being said, you can turn off Secure Boot in BIOS, and change Boot type to CMS from UEFI in your bios...then you should be able to boot *any* O/S except a secure boot one, such as Windows you see why you can't have your cake and eat it too, If you turn off secure boot, you'll boot CENTOS but NOT Windows 8

    If you want to consider an alternative, consider dual boot RedHat or Ubuntu (both paid Microsoft Secure Boot licencing fees and are SecureBoot they would both be able to dual boot with Windows 8,
    Alternatively turn off Secureboot/UEFI and use CentOS with Windows 7 or earlier.

    With your current setup (CentOS + Windows 8) you will have to manually turn off/on Secure Boot and UEFI in your Bios everytime you want to switch between CentOS and Windows 8.
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