Any way to have 2 Operating system on one hard drive?

I currently have windows vista 32 bit on my hard drive. I want to upgrade to windows 7 ultimate, but don't want to format this HD just yet.

Is there a way to load windows 7 onto this hard drive then have that portion of the HD boot up in windows 7? That way I can run windows 7 and still have my windows vista and all my files on the same hard drive.

If windows 7 works out, can I delete that windows vista portion and copy the files into the Windows 7 portion?
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  1. absolutely
    you need to install Windows 7 onto a partition on the HD. Where your splitting the harddrive in two, and creating a 'virtual' second drive to install Win 7 on.
    All you need to do is open the Disk Management tool (just type it into the start menu) and create a new partition. There are many how-tos to do this.
    In short, you need to Shrink the existing volume to a small enough size to allow free space for the new OS. Then, on the free space, format it into a new NTFS partition.
    Once done, boot from the windows CD and install away on that partition.
  2. Yip, that would do it. I currently have the Windows 7 RC and XP running on the same physical drive. Vista has a built-in partitioning tool, so free up some space, create a new partition, and install 7 there. You will then have a dual-boot option at startup.
  3. Awesome thanks guys. I'm going to try this out.
  4. Hey guys one more question. How much free space should I allocate for Windows ultimate? I have a 600 gig internal hard drive with only about 90 gigs free. I would only use this new partition for the OS while keeping all my movies, music games and stuff on the first partition.

    If I did this, would I be able to access my first partition (windows vista partion), while in Windows 7 mode? Can I get rid of windows vista all together and just use ths first partition as sort of a storage space?
  5. Microsoft says "16 GB available hard disk space (32-bit) or 20 GB (64-bit)" for windows 7.
    I'd double that if you really want to use it and install applications ect.
    I have a HD dedicated to all my media and my primary drive with the OS is currently 80 GB filled.
    So it depends on how many applications you intend to install. Things like photoshop take about 2 gb, and most consume less space.

    You can most deff. access the vista partition from Win 7. I did for about a month while i slowly transferred everything from one OS to the other.
  6. Here's a Tutorial On How To Set Up Dual Boot With Vista And Win 7, if you're unsure on how to proceed from here.
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