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How to Dual Boot Windows 8 (very Easy)

September 16, 2011 3 Comments

 I attempted to run Windows 8 on an old Dell laptop running Vista. That was no fun as the DVD tray was shot and I had no other alternatives at the time. Thanks to this very easy rundown by mobility digest on how to get Windows 8 to dualboot, I will be trying this all again tonight on my Dell Duo (should be more fun as well since it is touch screen and converts into a tablet).

Step 1: Acquire Installation Media

Step 2: Backup your files

Step 3: Making Room for Windows 8

You will need to repartition your hard drive to give Windows 8 room to install; alternatively you could use another hard drive, but that’s not nearly as fun. From Windows 7 you can use Disk Management to shrink the C drive (Right click on “Computer” > Select “Manage” > Select “Disk Management”). For Vista and XP user, you will need to get 3rd party software(like Acronis), to do it. If you have Linux this can be done from whatever partitioning software that was included with the distro you selected.

Step 4: Installing

Restart the computer and insert the installation media you created in Step 0. When prompted, hit a key to boot from CD (make sure your bootloader is set to boot from CD before the hard drive or this will not work). Click all of the accept/install/continue buttons and check all the appropriate boxes. DO NOT click “UPGRADE” when prompted. You will choose to the clean install. Select the unallocated partition you made in Step 2. Double check that this is the correct partition by checking the partition size and free space(the numbers should match). Highlight the correct partition and continue on. Now grab something to drink while Windows 8 does the rest of the work.

Step 5: Bootloader Setup

After the installer finishes, it will restart and take you to the bootloader. Windows 8 should’ve automatically detected your previous OS and added it as a tile below “developer preview”. Below that should be an option to configure additional option, click on that. You will now be able to select your default OS, as well as the auto-select duration for the bootloader. Windows 8 integrates the bootloader with the OS(this is pure speculation from the behavior I’ve experienced) so if you choose your old OS from this screen, the system will restart and you will be taken to the original bootloader instead of the flashy windows 8 bootloader.

That’s it! You should be good to go

For anymore details – you should visit  mobility digest


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  • Anonymous

    I’m fine with all this, except it won’t let me install onto a partition driving me crazy, really want to try out Windows 8.

    • http://wp7connect.com Hyde13

      Dell Duo giving me trouble booting from USB    * sigh*  -  fixed your issue?

      • Anonymous

        Sadly not yet, resorting to creating a virtual harddrive.  Don’t want to overwrite windows 7 this close to uni start.  And its on a laptop so can’t add a spare hdd 

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