Booting Windows Server, XP, and Linux


Hi, first of all let me say what a great forum you guys have here. Everything looks very professional. Anyway, let me get onto my problem. I have an old Dell with a Pentium 4 that I no longer use. I decided to turn it into a testing plat form for various programs. I want to install Server 2003, XP Pro, and Ubuntu Desktop on it, all of them with equal space, on my 250Gb HDD. However, I have absolutely no idea how to do a multi-boot with three OS's. I stumbled upon EasyBCD, and it seems like the answer to my problems. Could you tell me what order to install these, and how to get this to work? Thanks in advance!
Hi BN, welcome to NST.
Installing the 2 MS systems in either order, should result in the 2nd recognizing the 1st, and automatically creating a dual-boot entry in the boot.ini, since they're both members of the family which use the NTLDR boot manager/loader
If you then Install Ubuntu, you can make the choice of what to do depending on what you want to be in charge of the boot.
If you let Ubuntu install without using the "advanced" boot options, it will automatically take control of the boot and should provide you with automatic entries for the Windows systems.
If you used "advanced" and tell Ubuntu not to overwrite the MBR, then you can add an entry into the NTLDR boot.ini that will chain to the Ubuntu grub.
If you Install Linux before Windows, Windows won't be so kind, and won't recognize Linux, but you can still add a Linux entry to boot.ini.
If you want grub to control the boot, be sure to install Linux last. MS is no respecter of other people's MBRs and won't give you the option to leave it alone the way Linux does. It will just overwrite it.
Wow, thanks for the quick answers and info. I've decided to have GRUB control the boot, so I'll install it last. I'll post if anything happens. Thanks again!