preparing a windows machine for dual booting

Christopher Moore chris.w1gm at
Wed Oct 26 19:48:03 EDT 2011

You'll probably have ample room on the drive to allocate a swap and 
linux partitions.  Windows 7 comes with a tool to resize partitions. 
You can get the free NVDA screen reader which works quite well with 
windows these days.

Once you've resized your windows partition, you should be able to boot 
the talking Arch which can be copied to a USB stick if your laptop 
doesn't have a CD drive.  You'll also need to think about how to dual 
boot the system once linux is installed.  Some folks put the grub boot 
loader in the MBR.  Another approach which would preserve your MBR is to 
put grub on the linux partition and add an entry to the windows boot 
menu for your linux.  This latter approach is what I will be doing with 
my HP laptop.

So, there are several options, and don't rush into anything without 
thinking it through.  Also, be sure to make backup DVDs of your laptop 
so that you don't inadvertently blow away your windows installation 
without a backup plan in place.


On 10/24/2011 4:14 PM, Chuck Hallenbeck wrote:
> Hi Greg,
> Many thanks for that outline, I'm sure it will do the trick here.
> You are right about my Windows aversion, in fact it's a GUI aversion,
> but I need to keep my options open this time for a number of reasons.
> 1. I may be about to receive a gift of a Thinkpad laptop of an as
> yet unknown model, and the initial investment in the Windows software
> is unavoidable.  To blow it away without considering its possible uses
> seems unnecessarily hardnowed, assuming the hardware has sufficient disk
> space to support both OS's.
>   2. Also, I've been using Verizon DSL for some months now, and my
>   available browsers allow me to do most, but not all, of the things I
>   would like to do with their internet gateway (modem+router).  Verizon no
>   longer comes with a CD, one needs to download the modem administrative
>   software from Verizon, and Verizon is as hardnose about Windows as I
>   am about Linux. One of us needs to blink.
>   3. Third, I recently acquired a wireless printer/scanner/fax unit with
> uncertain support in Linux for the scanner section, and Windows supports
> the entire unit just fine.
>   4. Finally, it is possible that I might have to time-share access to the
> Thinkpad with my wife, who is a very occasional user with only minimal
> Windows skills and a bad attitude toward computers.  There will be no
> new learning going on in our house!
> Otherwise, you are absolutely correct, I would blow the sucker away
> without a second thought.
> Thanks for that rundown, it's just what I needed.
> --
> Chuck in Hudson.
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