View Full Version : Dual-Booting 2 Win9x O/S's?

04-29-2007, 05:41 PM
How can it be done? Would it work if i just make a seprate partion on my HDD or just install it in another folder? i hear that its hellish if you try to install 2 9x OS's without following a certain procedure. I believe it has something to do with the files that the OS puts on the C: drive (autoexec.bat, io.sys, ect ect ect)

04-29-2007, 05:50 PM
Doubt it would work.

Paul Komski
04-29-2007, 06:25 PM
You need two separate primary partitions.
Install one version into one partition marked as active.
Then hide that partition and mark the second primary as active.
Install second version into the second partition.
Install a boot manager such as BiNG (in my sig) or XOSL (http://www.ranish.com/part/xosl.htm) onto the hard drive or run SBM (also in my sig) from a floppy.
Configure the boot manager to give you a dual boot menu if the manager itself doesnt determine the two installed OSes.

Hiding partitions and changing the active partition can easily be done with BiNG or PTedit. The DOS version of PT edit can be run from a DOS floppy and the Win32 version from Windows; both can be downloaded from Symantec FTP (ftp://ftp.symantec.com/public/english_us_canada/tools/pq/utilities/)

You can also use BiNG or GParted Live CD (http://gparted.sourceforge.net/) to non-destructively resize an existing partition if you need to make room for a second partition. In that case backup any important data beforehand - just in case things go awry.

04-29-2007, 10:57 PM
Ok i did that, hid Drive C:(ME is installed on C:) then ran Windows Setup. It said it needed to format drive C: and i couldnt continue because it was currently not compatible with Windows. So my only option was to either 1. exit setup, or 2. format C:

ofcorse, i exited setup, and here i sit

Paul Komski
04-30-2007, 03:47 AM
Do you have two separate primary partitions and having hidden the one in current use have you made the second one the active partition.

If you are worried because it wants to format the drive letter C and you are afraid that this will overwrite your current partition then you should know that Win9X will call drive letter C whichever is the active primary partition at the time. "Hiding" the current partition just makes it appear to be a non-dos partition and it shouldnt be overwritten by the format command any more than if it were an NTFS or Linux partition. When you finally have a dual boot option - both installations will be using the drive letter C even though they are physically different partitions.

If you are really worried of course then also create a logical partition about half the size of the current working partition and make an image file of it stored on that logical partition using BiNG or other imaging program. If you are really really worried than save an image file or backup your important data onto removable media.

Paul Komski
04-30-2007, 04:11 AM
Another approach to reassure you is to simply sys the new partition, having first formatted it from the current partition and done the hiding and changing of the active partition. Then boot to it. If you get to a C: prompt and dir just shows command.com then you are green to go. Sysing only creates three files; io.sys and msdos.sys are usually hidden though.

PS In fact just using fdisk from a floppy will let you see which partition is currently designated as the C: drive.

If you want a really good resource on multibooting have a good read of Understanding MultiBooting and Booting Windows from an Extended Partition (http://www.goodells.net/multiboot/index.htm).

There is another guide Reuel's Guide to Multi-Booting (http://www.xperts.co.za/multiboot/) and you could also maybe have a look at some pertinent information on Hard-Drive DOS Partition (http://www.iol.ie/~krakowangus/dospartition.htm)