This step by step tutorial will guide you to dual boot your computer using Windows Vista and Windows 7.
This is a helpful guide if you don’t want to upgrade your Windows Vista to Windows 7, or if you want to keep your current Windows Vista while exploring the new Operating System (OS). This will also ensure that you don’t delete any files in Vista until you are sure Windows 7 is fully working. Though, I can say that Windows 7 RC is stable- there’s no reason for you to wait for the Final Release of Windows 7 next month. The Windows 7 scheduled to be on the market by Oct. 22 is just the same with the Windows 7 RTM build or RC I am currently using right now – which is FREE! If you are going to try Windows 7, I encourage you to do it right now.
To start with, I am assuming that you have a big enough disk space so you can create a new disk partition to install Windows 7. A 160GB Hard Drive space to partition is enough, anyway. So here we go…
To create a New Disk Partition to Dual Boot Windows 7:
• Open Control Panel, then click the Classic View in the left pane.
• On the right pane, Open Administrative Tools and then open Computer Management.
• On the left pane, you can see Storage, and click on Disk Management.
Note: For you to install Windows 7, you need to shrink one of your existing disk partitions to make available space for Windows 7. I recommend allotting 40GB of disk space for Windows 7.
To do that:
• Right-click on your biggest partition or any logical drive and then click on Shrink Volume. A Querying Shrink Space will pop-up, and just wait to finish the query.
• In the Shrink window, enter the amount you want to shrink from the partition you selected on the right portion of Enter the amount of space to shrink in MB. Note that 1GB is equal to 1000MB. If you want to create 40GB, enter 40,000.
• After you’ve done this, “Unallocated” space will appear in Computer Management. Right-click on this space and select “New Simple Volume”. (This will create your new partition)
• If prompted with the New Simple Volume Wizard window, just enter the maximum disk space in the Simple Volume Size in MB and click Next.
• You will be asked to Assign Drive Letter or Path of the new partition, just set your preferred drive letter. (Make sure not to conflict it with the existing drive letters.) Then click Next.
• The next screen of the New Simple Volume Wizard is Format Partition. Select NTFS for File System, Default for Allocation Unit Size, and type Windows 7 for Volume Label- then click Next.
The wizard will then start partitioning the hard-drive. Once done, you should have to see the new drive labeled as Windows 7.
• To install Windows 7 to the new partition you recently created, just boot your PC with the Windows 7 installation disk, and install it to the new partition labeled as Windows 7. You might need to configure your BIOS setting to boot the computer from your Windows 7 installation CD-ROM. (If you don’t know how to set the BIOS to boot from CD-ROM, just leave a comment on this post)
• Once finished installing, the computer will auto-restart. When it boot-up back, you will be asked on the boot-up screen to select which OS to start. Just use the arrow key (up and down) to select Windows 7.
Congratulations, and you are now ready to explore Windows 7!