How to Install Windows and Linux Together on Your PC

The age-old question that one faces when purchasing a new PC is which operating system should I choose? The most popular option is the Microsoft Windows. It is so popular that over 80% of all the personal computers run on it. There is a group of individuals who want more freedom over how they use their PC. This group prefers to use Linux, an open source operating system which might not be popular on the PCs but almost all the servers run it. These two operating systems have different strengths and weaknesses. What would somebody do when they need the flexibility and performance of Linux and want to play the latest video games as well. The options are pretty simple.

Windows & Linux Install

Either get dedicated PCs which run Windows and Linux or run both of them on the same system. You might want to check the offers on electronics as well like upto 40% off on Amazon or 20% cashback on Paytm because good hardware is necessary for proper functioning on the software components.

You might have guessed it right. This article will focus on running both the Windows and Linux on the same system. Before we start running the two operating systems together we need to meet some prerequisites, viz, A Bootable disk. If it isn’t present then you will need a pen drive/ DVD to create a bootable disk and a PC to download the operating systems. You can use Power ISO to help in creating the bootable disk.

CREATING A BOOTABLE PEN DRIVE IN POWER ISO

Once you have downloaded the operating system. Open up PowerISO as an administrator. Click on tools and then select “Create Bootable USB drive”.

Bootable Pen Drive

Now select the Source Image File location (the place where you have downloaded the operating system ISO file). Select the pen drive you want to turn into a bootable then select “USB-HDD” as write method. Press “start”. It will take some time to create the bootable. Once it is done you are ready to install the operating system on your PC.

  1. INSTALLING WINDOWS ON YOUR PC

1.Creating a bootable disk for Windows if you don’t have a physical copy

First of all, you will need a copy of Windows. You can download it from the official website and get a full or trial license. You will download the Windows Media Creation tool. The “MediaCreationTool” will let you get a legitimate copy of Windows for trial. Once you have downloaded the tool. Open it and then select the “Create installation media” and press next. In the next section please select the Language, Edition, and Architecture you want and press next. Next, you will be prompted to Select media you want to use for the installation purpose. Select the “USB flash drive” option if you have a flash drive on hand. It will automatically create a bootable pen drive for you. If you want to burn your own DVD or Create a bootable pen drive. You can use PowerISO or Daemon Tools for that. Select the “ISO file.”

The installer will either download the ISO file or create a bootable pen drive as per your choice. Follow the method mentioned under “CREATING A BOOTABLE PEN DRIVE IN POWER ISO” to create a bootable for Windows.

Now that you have got the installation media. We can proceed and install Windows operating system on your PC.

  1. Booting Up your PC using the installation media.

First, insert the DVD/USB stick in your PC and reboot. The system will boot up and prompt you to “Press any key to boot from CD/DVD”. Please do so. If it doesn’t then follow the steps given below.

You will see a screen similar to this.

Press the appropriate key on your system to enter Boot Options.This will bring up the menu given below. Choose Boot from “CD/DVD/CD-RW Device” in case you are using a bootable disk. If you are using a pen drive then select “USB Storage Device”.

  1. Installing Windows on your Hard disk.

Now, that we have booted up using the installation media. We can begin the actual installation of our operating system.

NOTE: I would be showing the installation using a virtual machine but there is no need to worry. The installation on an actual physical system will be exactly like this.

This will be the first thing you will see after the necessary files for installing Windows are loaded from the disk. You can select the language and keyboard layout if you like. Otherwise, press Next. After this you will see a window with “Install Now”. Here you will click on the “Install now” button. It will take some time to load the remaining files and then you will the following window. After the files are loaded you will come across a new window. Here, you are required to enter the CD-Key you received with your disk. It will be printed on the case. If your purchase was digital then you might have got the CD-Key via e-mail. Once you have entered the CD-Key press next. If you don’t have the CD-Key and want to use the software as a trial or you want to enter the key later. Press the Skip button. Once you choose the option. You will be prompted with the license agreement screen. Check the “I accept the license terms” box and click on the “Next” button.

After doing so, you will come across the following window.

Select the “Custom: Install Windows only” option to install a fresh copy of Windows as per your liking. The next screen will show you the hard disk space you have got. You could create a new partition out of the unallocated space. You should create a partition for your Windows installation and at least one partition for other things. This screen shows a single disk as it is in a virtual PC. If you have multiple hard disks you will see them here. Allocate 30 GB or so for Windows at least. Leave 30 GB or so for partition as Unallocated space for Linux.  You can create new partitions out of the unallocated space using “New” option. If you had something on your hard drive previously you need to format it to install Windows on it. This can be done by using the Format option.

Once you have allocated the space for Windows, created partition for other files and left some space for Linux. Click on the “Next” button. At this point you need to sit back and relax as Windows will get installed on your hard drive. Your PC might restart a couple of times throughout this process. You don’t need to worry as it is normal.

  1. Configuring Windows on your Machine

When the PC restarts it will prompt you to “press any key to boot from CD/DVD”. Please ignore it. Windows will boot from your hard disk for the first time and will take a while to do so. Please be patient while this happens. Once, the system configures the necessary devices and drives you will see the screen given below in case you didn’t enter the CD-Key. You might enter the CD-Key now or skip it again. The next window will ask you to choose if you want to customize the Windows. I would recommend you to go with the “Use Express Settings” option. Next, you will be prompted to enter the details like User Name and Password for the PC. Do so and press Next. After this Windows will finalize your settings. This will take a while so sit back and relax. Your Windows installation process is nearly done.

You will arrive at the desktop. Your Windows operating system has been installed and you are good to go. Install other things you need and you will be ready to use your PC.

  1. INSTALLING LINUX ON YOUR PC ALONGSIDE WINDOWS

Now, that you have successfully installed windows on your PC. It is time to install LINUX alongside.

First of all, you will need a Linux distro (the versions like, Ubuntu, Linuxmint, Kali, etc). You can get the different distros from the web.

For the purpose of this tutorial I will be installing Ubuntu, one of the most commonly used distros. All the other distros can be installed in a similar fashion.

1.Creating a bootable disk for Linux

Follow the method mentioned under “CREATING A BOOTABLE PEN DRIVE IN POWER ISO” to create a bootable for your distro.

2.Booting Up your PC using the installation media.

Once you have done that. Insert the pen drive into the system and boot as you have done for Windows installation.

3.Configuring & Installing Linux (Ubuntu) on your Machine (Custom).

When you will boot up you will see the following screen.

Ubuntu windows installation

The “Try Ubuntu” is used for live boot. We don’t need to worry about this. Our aim is to install Ubuntu so click on “Install Ubuntu” after selecting the desired language. When you click the “Install Ubuntu” you will see that the installer asks you to “Download updates while installing Ubuntu” and Install the third-party software for Wi-fi, flash and other media”.I would recommend you to select the “Download updates while installing Ubuntu” as well as “Install third-party software for graphics and Wi-fi hardware, Flash, MP3 and other media.” and click continue.

Ubuntu windows installation

The next window asks you for installation type. Simply select “Install Ubuntu alongside Windows 10” and select Install Now.

This is the preferred option as it does all the partitioning and other things for you automatically. If you are looking for a better control over the installation process then select “Something else”. I will be choosing the latter option. This will bring the following window. Here, the free space is the unallocated disk space you left while installing Windows operating system. Click on the + symbol and you will see the following screen.

Ubuntu windows installation

First of all, we will set the swap partition. Select the option from “Use as” drop box. This partition is generally equal to twice the size of your system RAM and click OK. The swap partition is used in case the system has used up all the RAM. Next, we allocate the remaining space to the “root” by clicking the mount point and selecting “/” and then clicking OK. Select the root partition and then click “Install Now”. You will get a dialog box asking to “write changes to the disk”. Click Continue. It will write the changes to the disk. The next window will ask you to set your time zone. Select the appropriate zone and then click the Continue button. This will be followed by the keyboard layout which you can choose as you wish and then click the Continue button. You will come across a screen after that where you will be requested to enter details like username and password. Enter the details and then click on the continue button. There is no need to select “Encrypt your home folder”. The installation will begin and it will take a while. You could take a break as the installation progresses.

When the installation finishes you will be prompted to restart the PC. Click the “Restart Now” button and wait for your PC to reboot. When the computer restarts you will see the Grub Menu. It will have the option to boot into Ubuntu, Advanced options for Ubuntu, Memory test, Memory Test serial console and Windows 10. No need to worry about anything here. Select Ubuntu if you want to boot into Ubuntu or select Windows 10 if you want to boot into the Windows 10 using the arrow keys and then press Enter. If you select Ubuntu. You will be presented with a login screen where you will be prompted to enter the password. It is the same password you entered while configuring the user name and other things. This will bring you to the desktop.

Ubuntu windows installation

In case you use the guest session. You don’t need to enter any password but any changes you will make will be undone once you log out.

4.Configuring & Installing Linux (Ubuntu) on your Machine (Automatic).

In case you chose “Install Ubuntu alongside Windows 10”. You will get the following screen. You can choose another hard drive if you have any. Otherwise, Ubuntu will automatically configure itself to be installed on the unallocated partition.

Ubuntu windows installation

Click install now, after you have allocated the size to your ubuntu partition using the slider. Like the custom installation, you will be asked to confirm “writing changes to the disk”. Press Continue and wait. You will be prompted for the time zone selection and other things as in custom version. Follow the same steps and you did in custom installation.

Finally, you will be greeted by the grub menu and you can proceed as you wish. The same applies to other versions of Linux which little changes or none at all. This is how you can dual boot your PC with Windows along with the Linux.

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