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I have a laptop running Windows. Is it possible to configure it so that I can tri-boot with

  1. Windows
  2. Ubuntu 8.04
  3. Ubuntu 9.10

What should I do to achieve that (I have download the 2 ISO files for different versions of Ubuntu)?

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

So you have Windows installed already. You will need to partition you disk into 3 different partitions. You can do this using the partition manager in the Ubuntu setup. I would recommend installing Ubuntu 8.04 first, during the setup create 2 new partitions. Install 8.04 onto one of the partitions, then run the 9.10 setup to install onto the other one. The Ubuntu installer will take care of adding the necessary entries in the boot menu.

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What about a Home-Partitions? In theory you could also share one, but I'm not sure about incompatibilities. – Bobby Mar 30 '10 at 6:30
I would suggest having separate home partitions. The 8.04 install will have older versions of software which may get confused(AKA crash) by the newer configuration files. – heavyd Mar 30 '10 at 11:45
You may also need a swap partition which you should be able to share across the Ubuntu installs. – Chris Nava Mar 30 '10 at 17:48
Thanks. So I should have 5 partitions? 1 swap, 1 8.04 home, 1 9.10 home, 1 8.04 install 1. 9.10 install – michael Mar 31 '10 at 6:48
You could probably do it with just 3 (swap, 8,04 & 9.10), but 5 works great too. – heavyd Mar 31 '10 at 10:52

Let me add some info for an special case:

If you want to install an older Ubuntu version after having installed a newer one, you should prefer to keep the already installed grub. In this case, install the old Ubuntu version but unselect the "install boot loader" option. After installation finishes, just start your previous (newer) ubuntu and type:

$ sudo update-grub

It will automatically add a new entry in your grub to boot the just installed OS.

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