Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Dual Boot Installation - Windows 8 and Windows 7 or Vista

  1. #360


    Posts : 3
    Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit


    I have few questions about dual boot.

    I have installed Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit on one hard drive and I would like to install Windows 8.1 64-bit on the other hard drive.

    Would it work if I unplug installed Windows 7 hard drive then reattach empty hard drive where I will install Windows 8.

    After installing Windows 8 I reattach Windows 7 hard drive to my pc.

    Would they still work together?

    Also is it possible to remove one hard drive and attach removed hard drive to another computer without having to reinstall Windows? And the other hard drive which I didn't remove from the original pc, will it also work on it's own? For example, remove Windows 8 and put it to another computer and keep Windows 7 on the original pc. Would they still work as standalone?

    What are the downsides of dual boot (Windows 7 and Windows 8.1) ? How much will it affect my computer? Can I still see both hard drives when logged in?

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #361


    Posts : 21,816
    64-bit Windows 10


    Hello Jack, and welcome to Eight Forums.

    If you would like to be able to select which OS to run at startup, you would need to leave the Windows 7 disk connected and the disk that you are going to install Windows 8 on. Any other data disk can be disconnected if you like until after the installation has finished.

    Usually it's not possible or very problematic to boot a Windows drive on another computer that the Windows wasn't originally installed on. If you like, you could format (uninstall) a retail Windows on one PC, and clean install on another PC.

    About the only downside to dual booting is having to restart the PC to switch between the two Windows instead of being able to run them at the same time on two separate PCs. Unless you have Windows set to automatically boot to a Windows 7 or Windows 8 at startup, then you'll also have a slight delay at startup while it waits on you to select an OS to run.

    Hope this helps some,
    Shawn
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #362


    Posts : 3
    Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit


    I adding Windows 8 to try it out and see if I like it or not. So I'm going use Windows 7 most of the time.

    But what if Windows 8 doesn't work properly or installation wasn't successful. (Still talking about Dual Boot - Each Windows on its own hard drive)

    Could I just remove or clean Windows 8 hard drive and Windows 7 will work alone just fine.

    How much this dual boot connects two operation systems. Now I'm not talking about moving hard drive to another computer, I just would like to know if one Windows fails can the other work just fine alone?

    I'm asking it because I'm trying to prepare for worst scenario.

    One more question. When logged in to Windows 7, can it see and share files from it's own hard drive to Windows 8 hard drive and vice versa ?
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #363


    Posts : 21,816
    64-bit Windows 10


    Answers inline.

    Quote Originally Posted by JackW View Post
    I adding Windows 8 to try it out and see if I like it or not. So I'm going use Windows 7 most of the time.

    But what if Windows 8 doesn't work properly or installation wasn't successful. (Still talking about Dual Boot - Each Windows on its own hard drive)

    Could I just remove or clean Windows 8 hard drive and Windows 7 will work alone just fine.
    Sure, you could just remove the Windows 8 boot entry using the tutorial below, and format the Windows 8 drive. Afterwards, you'll just have Windows 7 again.

    Windows Boot Manager - Delete a Listed Operating System - Windows 7 Help Forums

    Quote Originally Posted by JackW View Post
    How much this dual boot connects two operation systems. Now I'm not talking about moving hard drive to another computer, I just would like to know if one Windows fails can the other work just fine alone?

    I'm asking it because I'm trying to prepare for worst scenario.
    Both the Windows 7 and 8 installation are completely separate, but you can still view the files on each OS's hard drive.

    If one should fail, you would still be able to select to boot to the other.

    Quote Originally Posted by JackW View Post
    One more question. When logged in to Windows 7, can it see and share files from it's own hard drive to Windows 8 hard drive and vice versa ?
    Yep, just like from any other hard drive.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec


  5. #364


    Posts : 3
    Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit


    I appreciate your help in such a short notice. Thanks Shawn.

    Now I think I'm ready to try this dual boot.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #365


    Posts : 21,816
    64-bit Windows 10


    You're most welcome.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #366


    Posts : 36
    Dual boot - Win 7 Pro 64-bit and Win 8.1 Pro 64-bit


    Brinks wrote above: "About the only downside to dual booting is having to restart the PC to switch between the two Windows instead of being able to run them at the same time on two separate PCs. Unless you have Windows set to automatically boot to a Windows 7 or Windows 8 at startup, then you'll also have a slight delay at startup while it waits on you to select an OS to run."

    True, of course. But I'm using a little thingy called iReboot on my dual-boot machine, and it works nicely to cut down the decision time on the reboot.

    Made by the same folks as EasyBCD (if I'm spelling that right).
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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Dual Boot Installation - Windows 8 and Windows 7 or Vista

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