Installation Tricks and Traps

You have a Linux CD-ROM in your hands and want to install it on the computer before you. That computer, though, already runs another OS, and it is packed with valuable data. Alternatively, you want to install Linux and one or more OSs on a blank hard disk, but you don't want to have to redo your effort because one OS's installer wipes out the first OS you install. In both cases, you need to be aware of potential multiboot pitfalls and ways to avoid them. Many of these pitfalls boil down to partitioning issues. You must be able to design a partitioning scheme and perhaps modify existing partitions. The order of OS installation can also be important, because some OSs are more respectful of existing installations than others.

Note This section describes partitioning for IA-32 computers, which support the widest range of OSs. Multibooting on other platforms is usually simpler, although many of the basic issues described here still apply.

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