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I have a dual-boot system, Linux Mint and Windows 7. I'd like to continue dual-booting, but preferentially run Linux - however, I still must have Outlook as a mail client. Rather than reinstall Windows after making a VM in VirtualBox, I'd like to use the existing Windows partition as my machine. What I've read is a couple of years old and mentions plenty of problems, meaning re-registering Windows at every boot, conflicting hardware profiles, and a few others. Anyone have experience with this?

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I tried to do the same thing with a Macbook via VMware Fusion and experienced the same issues you read about. Windows pitches a fit at every boot about the hardware being so different. I don't recommend it. I would recommend either finding an Outlook replacement, or just never booting to Windows and only running it from that partition through VirtualBox.

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