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Thread: Windows and Knoppix together on same HD

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2005

    Windows and Knoppix together on same HD

    I am new to this. I have Windows XP professional OS.

    I would like to try Linux to get the flavor of this system.

    How do I go about getting started? I want Windows to be my primary OS.

    Thank you for your help.


  2. #2
    Member registered user
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    It's possible to dual-boot if you partition correctly, Heres what I did.

    First I made the following partitions (On a 40GB HD)

    First 15 Gigs - Windows XP Pro

    Next 1500MB - Linux Swap

    Last 23GB - ex2 linux filesystem.

    That can all be done with QTParted (Under the K Icon, System, QTParted)

    Then I installed knoppix (I'm assuming thats what your going to try) and put Lilo (Bootloader) on the MBR when prompted to do so. Lilio will automaticaly give you a choice between XP and Knoppix at boot, It's great beacuse it auto-detects everything.

    BTW - A good rule to go by for your swap partition (which is required) is to make it 2x the size of your ram. 256 MB ram, 500MB swap, 512MB ram, 1GB swap.


  3. #3
    Senior Member registered user
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Wisconsin, USA
    Do you have the iso downloaded and burned to cd? Anyhow, yes they both can exist on the same hd. When and if you do decide to install then you need to have a linux partition and a swap partition available, aside from your usual XP partition. These are not hard to create and there are many posts to help you.
    If you install make sure you install the bootloader to the mbr, this will insure that you can dual boot your system. The knoppix installer automatically detects the XP install and adds it as a choice to lilo (LInux LOader).

  4. #4
    Senior Member registered user
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Midlands, UK
    If you have an active Windows partition you want to keep that fills the whole drive (i.e. one full size partition) you will need some tool to resize that partition to make space for the Knoppix install. Back up all of your critical work on the windows partition, including emails and passwords, it's very easy to get confused when re-partitioning your drive, especially when you are actually changing the size of an existing partition "non-destructively". If you are installing both Windows and Knoppix from scratch, then this does not apply.

    Not sure which tool I used to resize my Windows partition..... Stu.....

  5. #5
    Senior Member registered user
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Wisconsin, USA
    cfdisk and qtparted both can do this nondestructivly. That is resize an existing partition. But you still should back up any important data/info.

  6. #6
    Junior Member registered user
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    I'm running a windows 2000 system, and recently learned that Knoppix doesn't like Fat32 or NTFS partitions at all, and I don't like the idea of messing with my Windows disk after I trashed it once and luckily reinstalled it from a Norton Ghost image. After some experimentation, I think I have found a solution, but I need some feedback about 1t.

    1. Knoppix 3.7 has two "cheatcodes" TOHD & FROMHD which allow you to move an image of the knoppix cd into a Windows Folder ( not a persistent home directory, or a linux partition). I Ran Knoppix TOHD=/dev/hdx# ( I see /dev/hda1, but be careful here, not all computers have to OS on the first drive partition, some vendors use it for a recovery partition) to create that folder on my windows system, and windows sees it as just another folder. I can delete it if I want and have no problem there.

    2. To Use this feature, I put the Knoppix CD into the CD drive, at the boot prompt type "knoppix fromhd=/dev/hda1" and the kernel starts up. About 10 seconds into the boot, right after inspecting for USB devices, I see a notce in Green that the kernel is "Accessing Knoppix Cdrom at /dev/hda1", and the boot sequence switches to the hard drive. I can take aout the CDrom and use the cd drive for whatever I want. From what I can tell, Knoppix is using the first hard drive(windows 2000), as a read only CDrom , so the chances of trashing that are remote.

    3. To explore linux, I have hooked up an old 4.3 gig drive in a USB enclosue which Knoppix sees as /dev/sda1. I used the QTParted program to format 2GB as and active ext2 parition, and 1gb as a Linux Swap file /dev/sda2. I then used the Knoppix Configure program to create a "Persistent home directory" on the entire sda1 parition (no encryption) , then right clicked on the drive image on the desktop and changed the permissions to read/write.

    4. Now I put in the knoppix cd , wait for the boot prompt, type "knoppix fromhd=/dev/hda1 home=/dev/sda1" and when knoppix accesses /dev/hda1 as a cdrom, I get a 1 gb swap file and a 2gig storage drive on the USB drive.

    5. To test this out , I cranked up the Konqueror browser, used Google to find the Firefox Web Browser, downloaded it from Mozilla as a tarball to the Home foleder, extracted it to a folder I made called downloads, installed it, and added it to the KDE desktop next to the konqueror icon. After rebooting, Firefox is still there, as are my bookmarks and my printer config. HOORAH !

    6. If I want to use MIcrosoft Office XP, or my Outlook Contacts, I just pull the Knoppix CD out of the CD drive, restart the system, and I come right back up Windows 2000.

    I've read that cfdisk & QTparted can resize a Fat32 or NTFS partition and let me create both the Linux Active and the Linux Swap file partitions on the one drive, but I hesitiate to do this, and since I had the USB drive enclosure already for making Norton Ghost images of my Windows system, putting the old drive in was for me a better option. I got the idea after reading the Document "Knowing Knoppix" by Phil Jones, available free for downloading, just scan for "knowing Knoppix" on Google. Phil wrote it for 3.3, but it's still great stuff . I guess the documentation always lags behind the development !

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