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Dual Boot_2 Hard Drives_Pre-existing Data

  • Dual Boot
  • Hard Drives
Last response: in Open Source Software
March 23, 2014 4:29:28 AM

Sorry if this is double posting, but a quick search didn't show anything specific.

My problem is that I've got Windows installed on a rather small C:/ drive (SSD), and I've migrated my users folder to my second drive (HDD)(The tutorial I used). Plus other programs, games, music, etc.

So now I want to dual boot Ubuntu and W7, using my two separate drives. Some tutorials I've read say to erase the drive before partitioning. Will things be okay if I install with the data still on my second drive?

P.S. I'm definitely going to be backing up my data, so no worries there.

More about : dual boot hard drives pre existing data

March 23, 2014 5:55:29 AM

Yes, its will be OK with no problem :) 
In fact its is probably much easier/non trivial to move data/partitions to second disk in Linux!

Be sure to read Linux ssd optimization guide(s)
March 23, 2014 7:47:34 AM

So if I install 100% of Linux on my HDD, I wouldn't need to do any SSD work, correct?

And in my situation I am able to install 100% of Linux on my secondary drive, also correct?

Great link though, helpful info.
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Best solution

March 23, 2014 8:16:18 AM

Yes, you can install 100% Linux partitions to second HDD. No reason to do ssd optimizations if on HDD!

In addition:
Linux has its own bootloader, GRUB, that will be installed to second hdd. Upon installation GRUB will detect windows 7 that is on your SSD and add a option to boot to windows in the GRUB menu when booting.

For this reason you should consider setting your second drive as first boot priority in Bios so you do not need to manually select it in bios menu every time.
March 23, 2014 12:40:38 PM

Yes, I've read that in some of the tutorials, and planned on doing that.

Thank you for the help, you've answers my original question to the fullest. One last question/opinion, should I go with 13.10 or 12.04 LTS? Is there any big difference?
March 25, 2014 1:08:25 PM

13.10 is a more modern version (obviously) and is more secure, faster etc. However, 12.04 is more stable and may run better on older hardware. Also 12.04 is an LTS (long-term support), so you will get updates until 2017, but the date will be much shorter for 13.10.
If you think your hardware is capable, you may as well wait for Ubuntu 14.04 LTS, due to release on April 17th. 14.04 will continue to get updates until 2019
If your User accounts are on the HDD, you should select 'Something Else' during installation. Then resize the partition with the user accounts, with a good few GB's of growing room, then make a new (ext4) partition and select / as mount point. Ensure that 'use this partition' on the windows partition is unchecked. If you are unsure, you can probably find a guide online.