Quad Boot: Vista, XP, Linux, OSX


I will be installing Ubuntu/grub AND OSX on HDD0. I have NOT successfully installed Linux yet because I didn't know what boot loader to use. Now that I need to install OSX, I am really confused. Thankfully there is BCD. I think. :wink:

I am a Linux and OSX newbie. I had (user-error) one of the Linux boot loader eat my MS boot loader before and I am on pins and needles to the point of stagnation with the thought of another loader without a complete understanding upfront for which loader is going to manage this monster. And what order I am doing it in.

I believe I should install Linux with grub next but, maybe I should uninstall Vista first, then install Linux and then reinstall Vista to let me run BCD? But wait, I haven't got OSX in yet.

I think I "should" be able to install BCD now with only the Astra and XP (+) OS's and then install Linux and or OSX " AT WILL, enter the BCD and edit-in the Linux and OSX entries without the OS’s being installed on the primary partition.

I can't find a simple yes/no, do this or that first, second, third.

I don't want to do this http://wiki.osx86project.org/wiki/index.php/Quad_bootingbecause they are talking about THREE primary partitions and my current multi-boot only has ONE primary on my one drive (two more primaries that I don't want to use on my other two HDDs) and the rest of my partitions are extended/logical.

Aside from the Linux bootloader causing great anxiety, I am wondering why I have heard that Vista has to be installed on a primary drive when none of mine has ever been and thus, when people say that OSX has to be installed on a primary drive, are they correct?

Computer guru, I only searched for an hour here. If I missed this somewhere please point me in the right direction.

Sorry for the long post. Thanks a LOT for your time attention!

PS. I use Partition Magic 8xx to make, move, format, rename, re-leter my drives and if necessary I can uninstall Vista’s boot loader if that is the best first step. (I’ll have to relocate those ‘easy’ directions though)

PPS. I currently boot into XP primarily, although I have to go through the Vista boot loader that then takes me to the old boot.ini options.

Here is my current Multi-boot:
Primary-FAT32 HDD0- VOL1 - C: BootDrive
Logical -FAT32 HDD0- VOL2 - E: 98SE
Logical -FAT32 HDD0- VOL3 - F: 2000 Pro
Logical -FAT32 HDD0- VOL4 - G: XP Home
Logical -FAT32 HDD0- VOL5 - H: XP Pro
Logical -NTFS HDD0- VOL6 - I: Vista
Logical -FAT32 HDD0- VOL7 - J: BLANK
Logical -Ext 3 - HDD0- BLANK

Primary-FAT 32 HDD1-VOL1 - D: No OS (MS Paging files)
Logical -FAT 32 HDD1-VOL2,4,5,6 BLANK
Logical -FAT 32 HDD1-VOL3 - L - \Program Files\
Hey meanman, welcome to NeoSmart Technologies.

I'm sorry I missed your post, it was in the wrong section.... I'm moving it now.

Anyway, what you're saying is true,here's the details:
XP: Must be primary
Vista: Logical is OK
OS X: Must be primary
Linux: Logical is OK

So basically, you need to create the FIRST partition as the "ACtive Partition" and have XP on it.
Then you would create a primary partitino for OS X, and a extended partition with two logical partitions in it: one for Vista, and one fro Linux.

The active partitino should have the Vista bootloader installed (Configure Bootloader screen in EasyBCD, can be run from XP or Vista), and from there you can add boot support for the Primary Partition OS X & XP and the logical Linux partition.

Hope this helps - and again, sorry for missing this post for a while.
Sorry for posting in the wrong place. I'll try to be careful from now on. As far as you being timely with a response; I have NO problem waiting for EXPERT (*"*FREE*"*) advice. Thank you VERY much.

XP has to be installed on a primary partition? I don't have it that way now I have a (HDD0) first drive, first primary -Active- partition allocated for nothing but the MBR and the XP and Vista boot loaders. Then there are nothing but logical drives on the extended partition that contain the MS's OS'S (98se, 2000, XP Home, XP Pro, and Vista Ultimate) on those logical partitions. I hope I don't have to move XP to a primary partition. Do I?

There are two other Logical partitions on HDD0 that are ready for formating and the next two Os's. (You could refer to my first post's "HDD0" to see the current structure).

So, to clarify what I need to do, I have to place another primary partition for OSX on HDD0. Because OSX DEMANDS a primary partition. Cool. That will be done tonight.

Now for the newbie questions. ( Is this what I do? )

1) Install EasyBCD
2) install Linux (grub)
3) Install OSx

Or is there a better/preffered order to the steps? Vista and its boot loader can be removed. I am looking for the safest way of doing this because I believe that the safest way is the easiest and quickest way.

Thank you VERY much again.

PS. See? I took a long time to respond too.
Yeah, that'll work - you just have to be sure that when you install Linux, you install grub to the bootsector and not the MBR.
When you install OS X, it'll overwrite your MBR - you'll have to use the Vista DVD to get the BCD menu back.

refer to the documentation if you need more help with the Linux thing, it's all there in excruciating detail: http://neosmart.net/blog/2007/neosmart-wiki-grand-opening/
"excruciating detail" ? HA HA HA How appropriate! That is, indeed, what I think I need.

I now have "two" primary partitions on my first hard disk and EasyBCD installed.

For any other readers with (insane) multi-booting drives: Adding a primary partition to my drive caused my partition numbers to change while booting into windows. The new partition is physically located at the end of the drive however, all of my partition numbers changed by adding one.
Partiion 2 became Partition 3
Partiion 3 became Partition 4 etc etc

Now that I have installed, I understand. I thought EasyBCD was going to be my bootloader. I was wrong. EasyBCD is allowing/giving me flexibility with my Vista bootloader. Nice

Thank you Computer Guru and EasyBCD
Hello, I'm trying to install quad boot with the easyBcd on my pc. Vista Premium, XP Pro, iATKOS and ubuntu 8.04.
I managed to add the four OS, but can only run Vista, XP and the Ubuntu, OS X does not start (chain booting error).
Someone can help, thank you
We dont suppoort anything but Developers builds of OS X. iATAKOS is a pirated version of OS X and we will not support it. NeoSmart Technologies doesnt support piracy.
Please, a question.
With that instalation, when i'am lost my recovery partition to do 4boot, i can restore my Windows vista with easyBcd?
I'm need to now, please, after i do something wrong.
Thank you, i don't see any information about this.
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EasyBCD is a GUI for the Vista BCDedit utility.
It can't help you restore Vista.
The Vista recovery ISO(s) on this site contain no Installation files.
They're to help OEM users fix boot problems.
They can't be used to restore Vista either.
You'll need to contact your OEM for some recovery disks.
If you've deliberately destroyed the recovery partition they gave you, they'll expect some money for the replacement media, though not as much as having to buy a new copy of Vista.
If you have a friend with a copy of Vista, you can install that, as long as you quote the serial number on your PC not the one on the DVD.
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