Is 2 Windows installations on 1 partition a bad idea?

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dividertabs

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Jan 25, 2004
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I tried to fix a bunch of wierd stuff with my laptop's Windows XP by doing a repair installation from the CD. Now the laptop won't boot into Windows at all.

First, is it okay to make a new installation of windows on the same partition as the old one? I don't have room to make a new partition.

Second, if I can't get Windows to work, is there a way to recover my files? The laptop has no floppy drive but I do have a home network.
 
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If you've done a repair install and then can't reboot to Windows, you do indeed have a problem, insofar as recovery of personal files. If you can't recover your personal stuff, you should format your drive (eliminating the partition) & do a clean install of Windows. All this can be done with your OS disc. I wouldn't advise creating a partition. This business is complicated enought without partitions. I never understood the partitioning business. I just don't get it. I've never had a partition. And I don't want any.
 

JohnWill

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It's a very bad idea to install two installations on the same partition, since Program Files and Documents and Settings will be shared.

I suggest you take the drive out, use a 2.5" to 3.5" adapter to attach it to a desktop temporarly, and copy the files you want off. Then do a clean install of Windows.
 

JohnWill

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pjblevin said:
I wouldn't advise creating a partition. This business is complicated enought without partitions. I never understood the partitioning business. I just don't get it. I've never had a partition. And I don't want any.
Just because you don't believe in partitioning, and don't use it, that doesn't make it a bad idea. In point of fact, many users find them indispensable.

I have my Windows and applications on the boot partition, my data on the second partition, a large partition for archives of seldom used files, and a work partition for temporary files. It works out very well, and I can backup the boot partition with an image utility taking a lot less space than backing everything on a 200gig drive. I backup the data every day, and the archives much less often, since they don't change that often.

IMO, this is a much more workable solution that one amorphous blob of everything that exists on your computer in one partition.
 
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johnwill: I don't have "one amorphous blob" (but I've gotta say, I love your words). I've got 2 hard-drives on my main PC, one for my OS, and the other for my personal stuff. In addition, for backup of my personal stuff, I've got a NAS unit. I really don't have a problem with partitions, it's just that it seems complicated to me, and I've never done it. Why not a 2nd hard drive? Why not NAS?

pjblevin
 

JohnWill

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I have a pair of 250gig hard disks in a RAID-0 array. I don't really want 500 gigabytes in one partition. :)

I have a separate backup drive, as well as a stack of USB/Firewire drives, not to mention backups on another networked machine.

My Windows boot partition is 20gigs, I doubt I can even buy a hard disk that small, and it would probably be too expensive to have a disk for every logical division of data that I have. :D
 
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I like the idea of extra partitions. I don't use it but like the idea. I once had 4 different partitions. 3 of em had win 98/ME/XP installed. The last one was just for practice. :eek:

If something happens to your OS its a lot easier to just be able to reinstall it, while your files and what ever else you have is saved on another partition or two don't get lost. (y)

I have a slave HD and save everything on that now using Norton Ghost. :cool:
 
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I guess we're all aiming at the same target.......to have our personel files in a separate location, so that if our OS goes down for the count, we don't lose our personal stuff. There are different pathways to achieve this, and partitioning is one of them. I suppose I didn't do it that way because it seemed more complicated to me at the time........but it's certainly a viable way to back up your stuff.
 
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The reason it seems complicated to many(myself included) is because you cannot partition a drive from within windows using fdisk. You have to got into...ughhh....Dos. And it's just not intuitive. A partition is simply slicing up your pie into pieces. I needed to create a logical partition on my old machine cause I didn't have a cd burner and I kept having to reacquire all my s**t every time I reformatted. Partition magic is the program to get if your interested in partitioning. You can issue all the commands to partition from within the program in windows and then just reboot and it'll take care of the rest in dos mode without any input needed from you. Think of it as "Partitioning for dummies". But to the point the original poster was making, you cannot install two OS's on the same partition. It's a physical impossibility. On the same drive, yes. But on a different partition within the same drive. If you install another OS on the active partition you will just install over top of your present OS. In the present environment in which we find ourselves online with the virus's and crapware being thrust at us from all directions not to have some kind of a safe oasis for your data is simply foolish. Be it another partition or another hard drive.
 
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