Planning a Triple boot and need some advice

#1
I have sucessfully dual booted 3 different systems without any real issue at all while practicing.

Win 7 & Fedora 12 - Separate drives
Vista & Fedora 12 - 1 drive Vista, 2nd drive 2 partitions, NTFS and Fedora booting from 2nd partition on 2nd drive
Win 7 & Ubuntu 9.10 - Separate drives.

Even though I got the Vista / F12 working on 1 drive I really like having the OS on separate drives so I would like to setup a triple boot with 3 separate drives.

The new system:
The system I am working on now is XP Pro that has my critical work on it but I have 2 other drives that will hold Win 7 and Ubuntu 9.10. Eventually I will get rid of XP Pro but I just cannot migrate off of it yet.

I have a lot of flexibility on the order of drives and controllers that they are on so I was considering making the XP drive which is currently the boot drive a Slave. Next install Win 7 on a primary controller as the new boot drive then installing Ubuntu on another slave drive on another controller. Sounds confusing but it looks like this:

1. Primary boot Win 7 (run EasyBCD here)
2. Slave XP (previous boot drive)
3. Ubuntu as either a slave or primary drive on another controller.

My biggest question is will XP be OK if I just put it on another controller when it was previous boot drive? Will this work or is there a better order (leave XP as boot?)

Sorry for the long post but I am sure you guys will like the challenge :??

Any advice or suggestions appreciated. Thanks!
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#2
No problem at all with installing Independent OSs on separate HDDs.
To dual-boot W7 and XP you must have W7 first in the BIOS boot sequence (it doesn't matter which channel the HDD is attached to, just the boot sequence in the BIOS boot section). W7 cannot be booted from XP.
One thing to beware of. When you install W7, disconnect all the other drives or it will quite likely play "hide the boot" with you and place its boot files on one of the other drives.
 
#3
Terry,
Thanks for the quick reply and advice! Sounds like I am on the right track. Disconnecting XP drive is a great suggestion, that one might have tripped me up.

I will write back with my experience. Hopefully I will get this done over the weekend.
 
#4
Spent most of the day finding drivers, install hardware, etc. on my older MSI PT880 system board. I got all drives recognized and all drivers happy (not an easy chore). Also Win 7 would not boot from my DVD drive so had to jump some hoops there as well.

Next steps to complete tomorrow, reconnect XP drive then install Ubuntu or Fedora on another drive.

BTW one other intesting part of this is I am using 3 drive controllers. Embedded PATA and SATA as well as a 2 channel Promise Ultra133TX so I can connect all the PATA drives I have collected that I do not want to waste.
 
#5
The project is complete with no issues! :grinning: The only thing I forgot was to get a drive letter to the Win 7 100mb partition the first try but that was quickly solved.

So my final specs are:

1. Windows 7 on embedded IDE1 controller Master, first drive.
2. Windows XP on embedded IDE1 controller Slave, second drive
3. Ubuntu 9.10 on Promise Ultra133TX addon controller channel 1, first drive.

Extra stuff:
4. 300gb NTFS storage drive on Promise Ultra133TX addon controller channel 2, first drive.
5. 1TB NTFS storage drive on embedded SATA controller drive 1.
6. DVD burner on embedded IDE2 controller Master.

System board is an older MSI PT880 with Prescott 3.2ghz cpu, 2.5gb memory

Thanks for the help B-)