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Window 98/ME on a computer with winxp/2000 already installed
on a NTFS partition!
Believe it or not Dual Booting your computer
seems to be very popular, this dual booting Windows page
is one of the top five hit pages here at WebTechGeek.com.
I put this Windows dual boot page together
over 2 years ago when Windows98/ME was HOT before Windows
XP, and I never thought so many people would be interested
in dual booting their PCs, I was wrong.
Some users have no problem dual booting
Windows and others have noting but trouble. If you want
to have fun using your PC surf the Web or play games dual
booting Windows is a learning experience.
Most of the information on the page is for
dual booting Windows 98/ME/2000 and should work on Windows
XP OS as well. But, you can get more information on dual
booting Windows XP
Dual Booting Software:
Using the right dual booting software can save you a lot
of time and headaches. I have a list of some of the very
best software to help you on your dual booting quest here.
How many OS can your PC run?:
Believe it or not Richard Robbins has more than 30 operating
systems on his multi boot PC. Richard said it was vary
hard to get all the OS to work together but he managed
to install and boot 30 OS on his PC by using XOSL as a
boot loader and Partition Magic, is a must-have utility
for partitioning. You can find links for all of this programs
and more here.
Before you start Dual Booting Tips:
First: Make yourself some boot disks/Startup disks (start>
settings> Control Panel> Add/Remove Programs>
Startup disk) and test them. Back-up your data, if need
software get it now, and not after you have trouble.
A. The KEY is Research. Do the research before you start.
Plan everything. Decide which systems you want installed
B. Start over if it doesn't workout, don't be afraid
to start over completely. You may have to start over again
a number of times to get you dual booting system just
right. And yes it may take you weeks to get your multi
boot system just right.
C. To install more hard drives for your system. You might
need to get a PCI IDE card to expand your IDE ports.
D. Partition wisely. Map out your partition plans and
go over their advantages and disadvantages.
E. Remember to Always back-up, always back up your precious
data. I can't tell you how many MP3s have been killed
by not backing up you data..more
Windows NT4~Windows 2000/XP: WinNT
~ Win2000/XP has it's own multi-boot capability, The Win
NT Boot Loader. On a computer that will have both Win
NT or Win 2000 and Windows 9X installed. You want the
windows NT Boot Loader to be in charge.
The Windows NT Boot Loader will be in the
boot tracks of the boot device, your bootable hard disk.
When you boot your computer, the Windows NT Boot Loader
will appear first and let you chooses between NT and Win98.
You can install Windows NT on a Windows 98 computer. The
Lo.sys will be moved out of the boot tracks by Windows
NT setup, just as though it were the DOS version of Io.sys.
The Windows NT boot loader will be placed there instead.
Dual Boot Windows 98 and Windows
NT4: By Raymond, WebTechGeek.com - A dual boot windows
OS, A tech-geek dream machine.! It is much easier to set
up a system to be dual-boot if Windows 95/98 is installed
first. If you are interested in setting up your computers
to be able to boot in either Windows 98 and Windows NT.
Here's the how to do it, and what not to do.
The information below is for adding Windows
NT to a system that already has Windows 95/98. Keep in
mind: NT cannot be installed on any drives that are formatted
as (FAT32), currently nor can it view any data on the
drives. Windows 95/98 cannot view any data on drives formatted
at NTFS So, if you want to run dual-boot and have either
operating system see all the drives on the system, you
must keep them formatted as (FAT16).
The steps for setting up dual-boot: Install
Windows 95 or Windows 98. If you already have Windows
9x installed, don't bother reinstalling unless you need
to reformat your drives too FAT16. Put in the Windows
NT CD your CD drive. It should auto-run and bring up a
window with a button to "Install Windows NT".
If not, go into the /i386 folder and run
winnt.exe. NT will start to install, copying tons of files
to the disk, then will require a reboot. In the second
phase of the installation, NT will display your drives
and partitions. It will ask which partition you want NT
installed upon. Select any of the partitions that are
FAT (you can even select the one that Windows 9x is on).
When prompted whether you want that partition
reformatted, be sure to select that you want to keep the
existing file system intact! NT will install to /winnt,
not to /windows, so it won't overlay Windows 9x. Installation
will continue, with numerous reboots. NT will automatically
set up a dual-boot menu.
Once completed, upon booting the system
you'll see a menu that has three entries similar to this:
Windows NT Workstation Version 4.00 Windows NT Workstation
Version 4.00 (VGA Mode) after the computer boots a countdown
timer will start, and automatically boot into the first
option in 30 seconds unless a key is pressed.
Select the option you want and press enter.
"Microsoft Windows" will boot your previously-installed
Windows 95. "VGA Mode" for Windows NT is just like Windows
9x's "Safe Mode". To change which option is booted by
default, boot into Windows NT, right-click on My Computer
and select Properties.
One of the tabs is "Startup/Shutdown". From
that tab you can select which item is booted by default,
and how long the default countdown time is set at. Other
Notes about Dual-Booting NT needs the active partition
(the one your computer is going to start things from,
usually the C: drive) to be FAT. Thus, if you have two
partitions, a C: and D: drive, and make the C: one FAT32
and install Windows 98, then try to do dual-boot with
NT, it won't work "because NT needs to put some initial
startup files on C:, and it can't deal with FAT32".
If you have multiple hard drives, you can set up dual-boot
so that one operating system is on one drive, and the
other on the second hard drive. They are really just seen
as different partitions. By WebTechGeek.
Dual Boot Windows 2000 and Windows
9x: By Raymond, WebTechGeek.com - A tech-geek dream machine!
It's much easier to set up a system to be dual-boot if
Windows 95/98 is installed first. If you are interested
in setting up your computers to be able to boot in either
Windows 98 and Windows 2000. Here's the way to do it,
and what not to do. The information below is for adding
Windows 2000 to a system that already has Windows 95/98.
This works with the following versions of Windows 2000:
Professional Server Advanced Server Keep in mind: Windows
95/98 cannot view data on drives/partitions formatted
at NTFS - it can't even actually see these drives/partitions.
Steps for setting up dual-boot: Install
Windows 95 or Windows 98. If you already have Windows
9x installed, don't bother reinstalling unless you need
to reformat your drives because of the above warnings.
Put in the Windows 2000 CD-ROM. It should auto-run and
state that the CD contains a newer version of Windows,
and ask if you want to install it. You'll have the option
to upgrade your current version of Windows, or install
a new copy. Be sure to pick "Install a new copy" or you'll
install over your version of Windows 9x! Windows 2000
will start to install, copying tons of files to the disk,
then will require a reboot. In the second phase of the
installation, Windows 2000 will display your drives and
It will ask which partition you want Windows
2000 installed upon. Select any of the partitions (you
can even select the one that Windows 9x is on, though
that isn't recommended). Windows 2000 will install to
/winnt, not to /windows, so it won't overlay Windows 9x.
When prompted whether you want that partition reformatted,
be sure to select that you want to keep the existing file
system intact if you selected the same partition Windows
9x is on. Also, don't have Windows 2000 reformat any partition
to NTFS if you want to be able to access it from Windows
9x. Installation will continue, with numerous reboots.
Windows 2000 will automatically set up a
dual-boot menu. Once completed, upon booting the system
you'll see a menu that has entries similar to this: Microsoft
Windows 2000 Professional Microsoft Windows A countdown
timer will start, and automatically boot into the first
option in 30 seconds unless a key is pressed. Select the
option you want and press enter. "Microsoft Windows" will
boot your previously-installed Windows 95/98.
To change which option is booted by default,
boot into Windows 2000, right-click on My Computer and
select Properties. One of the tabs is "Advanced". From
that tab, click the button marked "Startup and Recovery".
From there you can select which item is booted by default,
and how long the default countdown time is set at. Other
Notes about Dual-Booting Windows 9x needs to boot from
a drive it can read; thus, you can't make your active
partition (the partition the computer tries to first boot
from, usually the C: drive) NTFS. If you have multiple
hard drives, you can set up dual-boot so that one operating
system is on one drive, and the other on the second hard
drive. They are really just seen as different partitions.
Two Windows Operating System!
We'll show you how easily you can
install, remove and run a virtual museum of Windows versions
on the same system, without resorting to extra disk partitions
or third-party software. Why bother? A multi-boot configuration
is a safe way to test drive a particular release of Windows
before you commit to it. And once you've developed confidence
in your new OS, it's easy to remove the old one, as we'll
There are other reasons to install more
than one OS on your system. For one, you may not be able
to convert full time to Windows NT because it lacks a
device driver or it won't run some application you need.
In that case, keep your old copy of Windows 95 (or even
Windows 3.1x) around to support that one critical task.
A multi-boot system can also serve as a test platform
for trying out new software under different operating
Even though Microsoft makes a considerable
effort to keep its Windows offerings compatible, things
aren't perfect in this regard. We'll start at the dawn
of the Windows era, with a hard drive containing DOS 6.x
and Windows 3.1x, and add Windows 95 and Windows NT versions
3.51 and 4.0. With this configuration you can boot into
any operating system from DOS to Windows NT, and they'll
all share the same disk partition and files.
We'll also cover Windows 98 and Windows
NT 5.0. The information on these new releases is based
on limited experience with Beta 1 of Windows 98 and conversations
with Microsoft, so the final products will likely differ
slightly in this area. Where details are the same for
Windows 95 and Windows 98, we'll refer to them as Windows
9x. The basic pattern is the same for any new copy of
Windows: You install Windows and vendor-supplied drivers,
then you install (or reinstall) your applications.
Finally you adjust the numerous minor settings
to reflect your preferences, such as the keyboard repeat
rate, mouse characteristics and so on. If you'll be using
a particular Windows installation only sparingly, you
can often skip some of these steps. For instance, Windows
95 recognizes the ATI Graphics Xpression card in our test
system as being a Mach64 board and installs basic support
for it. ATI's driver disk, on the other hand, would add
property pages to Control Panel's Display applet that
provide greater control over the board, but they're not
absolutely necessary. One thing we won't discuss here
is how to create and boot from multiple disk partitions
using programs such as PowerQuest's PartitionMagic or
V Communications' System Commander.
This is a valid way to build a multi-boot
system that will give you even more power and options
than the single-partition approach, but it's also slightly
riskier; if you make a mistake, you're one or two keystrokes
away from disaster. For instance, you could mark a partition
the wrong way, or even format or nuke the wrong partition.
Many business users still run Win3.1x, and if you're one
of them, you're probably feeling more pressure than ever
to upgrade to Win9x or NT. If you're unsure which road
to take, you'll likely want to experiment with both. We'll
look at Win9x first. Installing Win95 or Win98 without
disturbing an existing Win3.1x configuration is easy.
But before you even insert the CD, create a bootable DOS
Format the diskette using the /S option,
which will create a bootable diskette; copy the DOS SYS.COM
file to it as well. You'll need this diskette later if
you want to remove Windows 9x from your system. To install
Windows 9x, run Setup, select the Custom installation
option and tell the program to install into a new directory
so you don't overwrite your current copy of Win3.1x. After
installation, your system will boot directly into Win9x,
To boot your prior DOS/Windows installation
with Win95, press F4 when the "Starting Windows 95 ..."
message appears. Win98 will likely use a different mechanism;
you'll have to press the Ctrl key before Win98 starts,
typically during your system's initial POST (power-on
self-test) process. This will make Windows display a boot
menu that includes an entry for MS-DOS. To remove Win3.1x
from this configuration, boot Win9x and delete the entire
Win3.1x directory tree. Be careful not to lose anything
valuable in this step, such as programs or drivers stored
in subdirectories under the Win3.1x Main directory. Your
root directory may also contain a hidden Win3.1x permanent
swap file named 386SPART.PAR. Delete this, too. Also,
delete COMMAND.DOS, IO.DOS and MSDOS.SYS from the root
To keep Win3.1x and remove Win9x, shut down
your system and boot from the DOS diskette you made earlier.
Then use the command SYS C: to transfer DOS 6.x from the
diskette to your hard drive. Your hard drive will be a
DOS/Win3.1x system once again. Now yo u can remove the
diskette from the A: drive and reboot, then use Win3.1x's
File Manager to delete the Win9x and Program Files directories.
You'll also want to delete the files Win9x added to your
root directory, including: BOOTLOG.PRV, BOOTLOG.TXT,COMMAND.W40,
AUTOEXEC.W40, CONFIG.W40,MSDOS.W40, MSDOS.xxx, NETLOG.TXT,
SETUPLOG.TXT, SUHDLOG.TXT and SYSTEM.1ST.
If you manually set the Win9x swap file
size (something that's normally not recommended), the
swap file is C:/WIN386. SWP, which you can also delete.
If you let Windows manage your swap file, it was stored
in your Windows directory, and you deleted it along with
everything else in that directory. Will you be able to
install both Win95 and Win98 on the same hard drive partition
and multi-boot between them? We weren't able to test this
with Beta 1 of Win98, but Microsoft said it will work
in the shipping version. This means you'll be able to
boot directly into Win98 or press the Ctrl key to boot
into Win95, and from there use the F4 key to boot into
DOS 6.x and Win3.1x.
Windows NT : adding NT. We'll start with
NT 3.51, but you'd use the same procedure for NT 4.0.
NT differs from its siblings in a very interesting way:
It automatically displays a boot menu when you start your
system. You use this menu to select from the installed
versions of NT or your prior OS, which in our example
is Win9x. The easiest way to install NT and make sure
Win9x has an entry on the boot menu is to install NT from
a DOS box within Win9x. To open a DOS box, run the file
COMMAND.COM in your main Win9x directory. This will create
either a full-screen or windowed DOS session. At this
command line, switch to the I386 directory on the NT CD
and enter the command winnt /b /w.
Then you won't have to format three boot
and install diskettes, which the NT installation process
would otherwise force you to do. As with Win9x, you should
use the custom installation fat or NT, and you must specify
a new directory for the operating system files. You may
find NT isn't quite as friendly as Win9x when it comes
to detecting hardware. On our test system, NT froze when
we tried to detect our network adapter, and we had to
restart. Adding NT 4.0 to your burgeoning system is an
almost identical process to the NT 3.51 installation.
Boot NT 3.51 and use File Manager to run the WINNT32.EXE
program from the I386 directory on the NT 4.0 CD. Unlike
the WINNT.EXE command-line program you used to install
NT 3.51, this program is a windowed application.
It will install NT 4.0, which, once again,
has to go into a new directory. The installation program's
first screen has an Options button that displays a dialog.
This dialog lets you control whether the installation
creates a set of three boot floppies or uses a set from
a prior run of the setup program. Because this is your
first time through this program, you'll have to let it
create the three disks and then boot from them to continue
the installation. If you have only one version of NT on
your system, remove it the same way you removed Win9x:
Use the SYS command from a bootable diskette
to make your system boot to the prior OS. Using the setup
we have at this point, this requires using Explorer under
Win9x to format a diskette and transfer the system files
to this diskette. You'll also need SYS.COM from the Command
subdirectory under the main Win9x directory. This diskette
is just the DOS 7.0 version of the DOS boot diskette we
used earlier to remove Win9x. As before, boot the system
from this diskette, use the command SYS C: and restart.
It will boot Win9x, which you can then use to delete the
main NT directory.
Other files in the root you should delete
are NTDETECT.COM, NTLDR and BOOT.INI. You'll also likely
find a large file in the root named PAGEFILE. SYS, which
is the NT swap file. Delete these four files only if you've
removed the only copy of NT from your system. Removing
one of several copies of NT is even e easier. Just start
an OS other than the one you're deleting; edit the BOOT.INI
file in the root of your C: drive, deleting all lines
that refer to the version of NT you're removing; then
save the file. Then delete the directory that contains
that version of NT, and you're done.
At this point, our multi-boot configuration
truly deserves its name, but the story gets even better.
Microsoft confirms NT 5.0 will install onto the boot menu
alongside the older versions, which means you can easily
add a third copy of NT to your configuration. Microsoft
also says you'll be able to have both Win95 and Win98
in this configuration. In this scenario, you start your
system and see a menu that lists three versions of NT
(3.51, 4.0 and 5.0), plus a Microsoft Windows entry for
Win98. You can select one of the NT versions or choose
the last entry to start Win98. If you choose Win98, you
can use the Ctrl key to start Win95 instead. And you can
then use F4 to skip Win95 and start DOS or Win3.1x. This
gives you DOS, Win3 .1x, Win95, Win98 and three versions
of NT, all multi-bootable from, and sharing, the same
Multi-booting is fine, but there
must be a way to run different versions of Windows without
changing your current system configuration. There is,
but you'll have to make an investment in hardware: Outfit
your system with a swappable boot drive. One way to do
this is to replace your C: drive with a removable-media
hard drive. Another is to use off-the-shelf hard drives
and special mounting hardware to turn them into removable-media
drives. Removable-media drives are simple to install,
particularly the EIDE versions, and they work well with
DOS and Windows.
But if you plan to experiment with several
Windows versions for only a short time, they can be pricey
in the long run. And some setup programs don't work properly
with removable-media drives, because they mistake them
for diskette drives and refuse to install on them no matter
how much free space they have. Two products with this
problem are Microsoft's Office 95 and Office 97. Microsoft
hasn't yet provided a workable solution, so before you
use a removable-media drive as your boot drive, make sure
it's supported by all critical software. You can avoid
these problems by mounting standard hard drives in removable
These trays come in two pieces: a bay that
mounts inside the computer instead of a standard 5.25-inch
half-height drive, and a drawer for the hard drive that
plugs into the bay. Because the disk is just a standard
C: drive, there are no software problems. And if you decide
to stop using the drives this way, you can remove them
from the trays and permanently mount them in a system,
thereby preserving most of your investment. Either of
these techniques provides you with the ultimate form of
insurance against errors, because your old Windows configuration,
applications and data aren't even in the system.
These steps will help
you preserve your data when configuring for Dual Booting.
A. Have a game plan. Don't touch your system
until you've done your homework and detailed your system
strategy. Decide which operating systems you'll run, both
now and in the near future, which applications and hardware
devices you'll use from each environment, and which document
files you'll need to share. This will tell you how many
disk partitions of which sizes and file systems you'll
need (see sidebar "File Styles"), as well as which device
drivers are necessary for each environment.
B. Make sure you can get there from here.
Verify that you have all necessary device drivers before
you install a new operating system, and that they're really
usable. This can be a problem with Windows NT, because
of its smaller set of available drivers. Check the Windows
NT Hardware Compatibility List (available at Microsoft's
FTP site, ftp.microsoft.com, in the directory \BUSSYS\WINNT\WINNT-DOCS\HCL),
as well as the device manufacturers' online information,
to ensure your hardware is supported.
C. Back up everything you care about. Back
up all critical data before you perform any major surgery
on your computer. This includes installing or removing
an operating system, and changing or formatting disk partitions.
And make sure you can restore your backed-up files from
all relevant operating systems; there are few things worse
than finding you have to rebuild a working system just
to read your backup media.
D. Boot disk and reference book handy, if
you don't have a boot disk make one. In case of emergency,
you can boot the system and gain access to the system.
At the very least, you'll want copies of all relevant
device drivers and tools on the disk, plus ATTRIB.EXE,
FORMAT.COM, FDISK.EXE, CHKDSK.EXE or SCANDISK.EXE, whatever
DRVSPACE or DSKSPACE compression files your system needs,
and a basic text editor.
E. Reinstall applications from within each
version of Windows. Don't try to save minutes by reusing
the application installation from multiple versions of
Windows. In most cases it simply won't work, especially
if you try to share 32-bit programs between Win9x and
NT. Nearly all current applications burrow very deeply
into your system; they replace or add DLLs, create and
change Registry entries and INI files, and some even create
new subdirectories in your main Windows directory. By
reinstalling from each Windows version, you force the
setup program to make these changes within each version.
Make sure that you reinstall into the same directory each
time, so you'll have only one copy of each application
on the system, and that you use the same options.
F. Keep good notes. When upgrade, the last
thing you want to do is slow down and take notes. Yet
it can save considerable time and frustration if things
go wrong and you have to repeat some step or seek technical
help. You don't have to write War and Peace; just jot
down enough information to retrace your steps, including
all options you select and which prompts the system displays.
Once everything's running perfectly, summarize your notes.
G. When all else fails ... try, try again.
Weird application and Windows problems often disappear
if you shut down and restart the program or reboot Windows.
And if that doesn't help, you can sometimes "magically"
fix the problem by reinstalling the application or Windows.
to - Troubleshot your Computer here!
to - Format your Hard Drive!
to - partition a Hard Drive!
to - chan-up your Hard Drive!