Dual OS partition question

Discussion in 'Computer Software and Operating Systems' started by rufuszombot, Jul 12, 2015.

  1. rufuszombot
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    rufuszombot Assassin

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    I set up a virtualbox today with Debian. I'm looking into coding, and I heard that was the thing to do. Is this easier than creating a separate partition and just having two OSs? And is there an easy way to do that to have the option at boot what OS I choose?
    I've never messed with anything but Windows, so i have no idea what I'm doing.
     
  2. mashers

    mashers Stubborn ape

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    Yes it's much easier. You won't get full performance from the OS, but you don't have to repartition your HDD (risky), you can have both OSs running at the same time, and it's easier to share files between them.
     
  3. rufuszombot
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    rufuszombot Assassin

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    I didn't know if there was much of a benefit. I also thought about using my second HDD I use for my media, since it doesn't have anything I can't live without. I still wouldn't want to wipe it. I suppose I'll stick with the VM for now.
    Thanks for the info.
     
  4. Originality

    Originality Chibi-neko

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    Personally I prefer having any virtual OS running from a different drive. An OS has a lot of IO activity on the drive, so having two running off the same drive will slow down the performance of both.

    As for dual booting, just keep in mind that Windows (Vista and above) partitions have to be formatted NTFS and Linux partitions usually use different file systems like ext3 or ext4. You generally can't have them both on the same partition unless you use a virtual OS installation (which creates a virtual partition and formatting using a pre-allocated space on the drive).
     
    Last edited by Originality, Jul 12, 2015
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  5. mashers

    mashers Stubborn ape

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    The other advantage of a virtual machine is that you can have more flexibility on the size of the partition. VirtualBox, for example, supports auto-expanding virtual disks. So you can configure the VM to have a 500GB volume, but it won't be created that size; it will start off tiny and grow to accommodate whatever you put in it (I.e. as you install the OS, download software, create files...) It's also much easier to add additional storage if the virtual disk gets full, or shrink it if you need to reclaim some space for the host OS.
     
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  6. rufuszombot
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    rufuszombot Assassin

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    So my best bet is just to keep the VM but set it up on my other HDD? I wish I had thought of that before hand. Oh well, at least I didn't get too far into it yet.
    Thanks for the ideas, everyone.
     
  7. mashers

    mashers Stubborn ape

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    You can just move the virtual machine files from one partition to another and then reimport it into VirtualBox. Though if you're going to dedicate a whole separate HDD just for the virtual machine then you may as well reinstall the OS and install it on a real partition on that disk as you'll get better I/O performance than using a virtual disk.