2 OS's on 1 computer?

Dell Xps 420 desktop computer ( core 2 q...
December 19, 2009 at 12:26:13
Specs: Windows vista, quad core 2.4 ghz
i have windows vista 32 bit on a dell desktop with one SATA hard drive. it came with the computer.

i just bought windows 7 and a new SATA hard drive

is it possible to have 2 operating systems on 1 computer.....install windows 7 ( 64 bit)on one, keep windows vista on the other, and simply go into the BIOS setup utility, and if i want to, change the boot sequence from 1 drive, to another

and if i boot with drive 1( with windows vista), would drive 2 that contains windows 7( but i didnt boot with it at that time) be ok to be read for data, and vice versa if i boot from drive 2?

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December 19, 2009 at 13:41:02
Yes it's possible to instal 2 os i one pc u can use 2 hdd or 1hdd with partions.And yes u can read the data in another drive. I recomend to instal both os in one drive and leave another drive 4 your data.Eg first hdd(c:win vista d:win 7) second drive(e:your data).why instal win vista + win 7?

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December 19, 2009 at 14:15:04
"I recomend to instal both os in one drive and leave another drive 4 your data".
Normally I would agree but the OP is obviously not experienced in partitioning and partitioning a drive with an OS & a recovery partition already on it can be risky. Leave the current drive alone, and play with the new drive.


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December 19, 2009 at 15:56:54
There are two ways One is to use bios and the other is to use the built in boot selection tool that will appear when you install Windows 7.

I suggest you keep them on different drives but it is up to you.

Playing to the angels
Les Paul (1915-2009)

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Related Solutions

December 19, 2009 at 16:05:58
You can use a Virtual Machine if you want to have multiple operating systems installed on the same physical machine.

Parallels Desktop is really good from what I remember. I think there's also a program called VM Ware.

You can do it through the boot screen to get better performance (saves both the systems being loaded at the same time) - but a virtual machine is a lot more convenient in my opinion! Depends what the purpose is for you

The Definitive Guide to Registry Cleaners &
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December 19, 2009 at 16:24:06
I think installing each OS on a separate hard drive is a superior method.

Let me explain how I do it. Install the new drive and disconnect the old drive. Set to boot to the DVD drive and install the new OS.

Shut down and reconnect the original drive. Now you can select what to boot from at start up. The last drive booted to will be the default the next time you start the system.

Now you have two totally independent operating systems. If you do a normal dual boot the OSes are dependent on each other. Additionally, if one drive craps out you still can use the computer.

The boot method is by means of the BIOS. On my current system I get a prompt of what to boot from by hitting the appropriate key. That is no more troublesome than the Windows boot menu but ha none of the downsides.

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December 19, 2009 at 16:35:55
I put Win 7RC1 on my computer after having XP for a good while by way of reformatting, partitioning (4 partitions) and doing a fresh install to C drive. I set up D drive to be mostly for data and programs not intregul to the OS. Not long ago I got a shiny new copy of Win 7 Ultimate retail. This time I formatted only my C drive and did a fresh install. Having done dual boot just a couple times in the past I had opted to stay away from it but was curious. I read a great deal and decided to do it using my old XP OS. I figured I would load XP on my E drive (first partition on second drive) and then go get whatever software I would need to manage the 2. Turns out I did not need anything. When I boot after the bios but before the OS actually loads I am given the option of which I want to boot to. I don't know how long the default timer is and it set Win 7 as my default OS so if I do nothing it will boot to that after the timer runs out. I did absolutely no configuring. I did eventually download Easy BCD that would alow me to edit the screen where my choices appear. I could change the default OS, change the timer, rename the choices. It does a good deal more than that but that is all I use it for.

Last week I got rid of XP and loaded Mint 6 on my E drive to play with. Now I have Win 7 on C drive (first partition first drive), data movies and programs on D drive (second partition first drive) and Mint 6 on E drive (first partition second drive) and an empty at the moment F drive (second partition second drive). As of yet I really have not had to configure anything or download any boot manager or whatever.


I want to go like my grandfather did. Peacefully in his sleep. Not screaming at the top of my lungs like the passengers in his car.


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February 10, 2010 at 11:30:58
yes you can have 2 os on one computer... just install it under different hard drive..

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