Re: FreeBSD Coexisting with Windows
From: Bill Laird (vk2bla_at_northnet.com.au)
Date: Wed, 08 Jun 2005 05:46:51 +1000
John Hokanson Jr. wrote:
> Newbie question here. I have a Windows XP machine that has two NTFS
> partitions on it already, and I'm thinking of installing FreeBSD on this
> machine for dual boot to play around with. However, after talking with a
> friend who offered to burn a copy of his FreeBSD discs, he suggested
> that I don't install it on a box that already has Windows but rather a
> separate machine. Apparently, he is of the mindset that installing
> FreeBSD on a Windows box could end up destroying the Windows partitions
> (ie. FreeBSD will try to mount the Windows partitions after installation
> and destroy them).
> Is this true, or is dual booting safe?
> - John
Confusing dual boot and mount?
Well this system currently has 4 x 40Gb partitions:
1 - Windows xp-64 bit beta - NTFS
2 - windows xp - FAT32
3 - slackware Linux (Extended partition 39 Gb reiser FS + 1Gb Swap)
4 - freebsd 5.3 (or 5.1 or 5.3 64bit)
(Prior to playing with windows x-64 beta, partition 1 was windows xp and
partition 2 was just a FAT32 Data drive)
The FreeBSD bootloader WILL automatically list Windows xp (calls it DOS)
and works perfectly.
I usually install linux last and use lilo to boot the above systems.
(Grub or FreeBSD loader will also boot them all!)
Both xp and xp-64 partitions are mounted under FreeBSD and slackware.
I only write to the FAT32 partition - Indeed it's where I keep source
files etc for ALL above operating systems - simplifies backup to CD-RW
(from windows or FreeBSD)
** FreeBSD won't mount your NTFS partitions unless you tell it to!! Even
then unlikely to harm them unless you write files to the NTFS partition.
So mount NTFS as read only.
Just load FreeBSD and install the bootloader on the MBR and all should
work without a hitch.
n.b. Before loading ANY other O/S on a system commonsense demands that
you backup anything you want to keep from windows beforehand! - mistakes
-- de Bill VK2BLA AMD64 Slackware Linux 10