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RE: running cygwin on multiple operating systems
- From: <kevin dot lawton at bt dot com>
- To: <Bill dot Hughes at cox dot co dot uk>,<leisner at rochester dot rr dot com>,<cygwin at cygwin dot com>
- Date: Fri, 21 Nov 2003 14:30:33 -0000
- Subject: RE: running cygwin on multiple operating systems
Oh yes - there's many ways to do this, but some have distinct drawbacks.
I too used to use hard drive caddies, but found that they only support ATA-33 and become unreliable after relatively short amounts of usage - extra connectors are added into the data path. Also, in some designs, the drives can tend to run pretty warm.
Installing separately into each copy or op system only takes a little time and brings with it the big advantage of resilience. If one op system / drive / partition goes seriously tits-up you can still work off another - maybe even to recover the failing one. With a common install, you probably increase the chance of something going wrong. IMHO, after software, hard drives are probably the most unreliable part of a PC.
One other factor is that the durability of a Windoze installation seems to be inversely proportional to the amount of software installed in it. By splitting your software across several copies of Windoze, each installation appears to be more robust and possibly a little faster.
At least we all have a choice.
From: Hughes, Bill [mailto:Bill.Hughes@cox.co.uk]
Sent: 21 November 2003 14:02
To: Lawton,K,Kevin,XJH3C C
Subject: RE: running cygwin on multiple operating systems
Sent: 21 November 2003 11:40 From: firstname.lastname@example.org
> Can't quite imagine why you'd want Win2K and WinXP both installed,
> as they're essentially the same thing,
> You can have up to four primary partitions on each hard drive, but
> only one at a time can be 'active' (= bootable). Some of the more
> sophisticated boot managers allow for partition hiding/making
> active dependent on which boot option is selected. I use 'Boot
> Magic' (which comes with Powerquest's 'Partition Magic') and it
> achieves this fine.
I used this in the past, now I tend to use grub.
(Apropos of nothing I believe Symantec bought PowerQuest)
> Though it is often possible to managed to share the same
> installation of an application between different instances of
> Windoze, it tends to be unreliable and I wouldn't recommend it.
> If you treat the installation into each copy of Windoze as
> completely separate, then you'll gain some resilience: when
> one installation of Windoze eventually crumbles and dies you'll
> still have the other one to fall back on complete with its own cygwin.
> An alternative multi-boot scenario can easily be constructed by
> fitting your machine with several hard drives with one different
> op system installed on each. Switch between them at boot time
> by altering the drive boot-order in the BIOS.
It's reasonable if you install to different drives, different folders on the
same drive is a bit less stable. That is using NT loader (of which 2K & XP
are developments) of course.
There is a useful linux how-to on multi-booting, or was I haven't looked
One nuisance is installing everything twice - Office etc, you can of course
install most software to the same folder under both OS - the partition may
show as different drive letters depending upon how it's been mapped but the
physical folder can be the same. Cygwin (to bring this back on topic) is
even easier - install it once and edit the output from 'mount -m' and then
run that under the other OS.
Another solution I have used is removable drive caddies - switch of the
machine, swap hard drives and reboot. I don't know if they support EIDE, but
IDE and SCSI version are around. I used to have a pc with it's internal hard
drive on the secondary ide and a caddy on the primary, most of the time it
booted NT off the internal hdd but if this had a problem I slotted in a
small hdd into the caddy and booted a clean NT to fix the broken one.
There's more than one way to do it... :-)
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