Dual-boot Windows 2000 and Fedora Core 4 Machine

I’ve got a new pet project that I’ve been meaning to try since moving out here. It was to use my second desktop machine (which was sitting in my closet) as a Win2K and Linux computer to allow me to play with another pet project that I will be starting up soon. I was greatly surprised when I found out how easy it was to actually accomplish this task in the when I was all finished setting it up.

Here is what I did to get it working:

  • 1) Use two hard drives (two partitions on one drive should work as well I believe)
  • 2) Install Windows 2000 (or any other Windows OS) onto the primary drive or partition first. Once installed, as you should do with any Windows OS, get all of the updates and install spyware and anti-virus software ASAP.
  • 3) Restart the machine with Red Hat Fedora Core 4 Linux installation CD or DVD in the computer and boot off of disk.
  • 4) Go through all of the installation options and make sure that you select hdb1 (the secondary drive or partition) as the destination drive for the Linux OS.
  • 5) When prompted about how you want to boot up into Linux and which boot loader and image you want to use as primary, make sure that hda1 is seen as “Other” (which, at this point, you can rename to whatever the OS you have on that drive) and that hdb1 is seen as the Linux kernel drive. You will want to have GRUB install itself onto the primary drive (hda1) to become the boot loader that allows you to pick which OS you want to run. If you don’t feel comfortable overwriting the primary boot record of windows, you can follow the directions found HERE to use windows as the boot loader to pick which OS to run.
  • 6) Setup all of the install options based on the type of install that you want (I usually do a custom install and make sure all of the server tools and software development tools are added, along with using KDE as the GUI.
  • 7) For the best security, run Up2Date to make sure that all of your software is as current as the most stable releases and also make sure that the firewall is turned on and setup correctly.

It’s not too hard and doesn’t take that long to fully install everything. Using a DVD will save you from having to change disks every 10 minutes or so. I’m planning on taking pictures of this later. Now, all that is left for me to do is configure the web server and mysql server settings and I’m off running on my project!



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