install win8.1 on new hdd to dual boot with xp

nemidanam

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Hi,

I have a pc with xp pro 32 bit, it has 3 physical HDD:
C: xp pro
D: and F: data
I bought a new HDD, and want to install win8.1 on it,

I'd like to have ability to access the xp to use some software that I have, and don't need to upgrade: hence I need to be able to select which OS to use at boot.

How should I go to have this setup?
A step by step would be appreciated very much.

Thank you
 

popatim

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It depends on how you want to do the dual boot.
You can either use the Microsoft Dual boot software option where you are asked which OS you want to use every time you boot
or
You can use the motherbd 'select boot drive' f-key option (which f-key it is depends on your motherbd) which means it will boot whatever is set in the bios as the default boot drive unless you press that f-key during startup and force it to boot from another drive..

For software dualboot, Install your new drive, power on and boot from your win8 install media and follow the prompts.

For the motherbd option, install the new HDD (it may need to be on sata 0 or 1 to boot with win8), disconnect the other HDD's data cable (yes all 3 of them). Power on and enter the bios and make sure your new HDD is in the default drive to boot list. Reboot to the win8 media and install away.
When youre done, power off & reconnect the other drives. Power on & enter the bios and set the HDD boot order to the way you want it. save and exit. When you want to boot the other OS, simply press the f-key to select boot drive and pick the appropiate drive. I have 3 os's on my system Like this because I hate that delay and rarely use the other OS's. LoL
 

nemidanam

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Thank you.

Let me see if I got this right:

For software dualboot I only need to connect the HDD to the free sata (3 or 4) with xp reading it as G, install win8, and when booting it'll ask me which OS I want to use.

For motherboard option I need to disconnect the drives, and install new HDD, which would be the new C, install win8, and then just connect my 3 old drives (former C, D, and F), will this cause problems with the former C drive which I assume will be renamed to D, F, or G depending on the sata connector I connect it to?
I mean will xp still work since it won't be on C but on some other drive?
 

USAFRet

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Generally, whichever OS boots sees itself as "C".

For instance, I have Win 7 & 8 dualbooting on two partitions on a laptop.
Booting into Win 8, it sees itself as the C drive. The other partition containing Win 7 is the D drive.
Booting into Win 7 (chosen from the MS selection screen), it sees itself as the C drive, and the other partition containing 8 as the D drive.
 

nemidanam

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Thank you for the clarification.

Is it a matter of personal preferences, based on the use, or one solution is better than the other, objectively, and technically speaking; motherboard vs software (OS)?
 

popatim

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I prefer the motherbd option. If one of the boot drives is removed or fails then you can still boot to the other OS. With the software boot this will not always leave with a bootable system.
For example when you installing 8 it will be writing dualboot info onto the xp drive and if that one dies or is removed, you wont be booting right away. Its fixable but will take some work to get it going.
 

tomc53

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As a comment, whether you use hardware ot software boot, the drive letters may change. In fact, if you install Windows (any version) on a system as the only drive, and then add another bootable drive, one of them may not work as you expect. It may start to boot and then complain that it can't fin the boot drive, or it may boot pratially and some apps may not behave properly.
Most of this depends on the specific hardware (disks, controllers, etc).

As with anything, back up everything before trying anything. Personally, I would go with the software solution, and back up your files regularly (a good idea anyway.)

 

nemidanam

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Thank you too tomc53.

I actually opted for the motherboard solution, and while everything seems to be working fine, files, apps (could do w/o quite few of them), and programs; the boot is not as expected, I am going to open a new thread.

Thank you all, I am going to pick popatim's first post, as is the one I followed.
 

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