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I would be installing Win XP 32 Bit SP3 on the second partition with Win 7 on the 3rd partition.

The 1st partition is the 100MB system partition that the Win 7 installation creates.

The first issue I see right away is that the Win 7 boot entry gets overwritten by the less mature Win XP boot loader - so how do I make a system that will allow me to dual boot into both given this scenario?

Also - would the 100MB system partition that the Win 7 installation created be a problem for XP ( it might want to be on the first partition? )

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

You can install XP without making a mess of the Windows 7 bootloader if you temporarily change which partition is marked active.

Using the Windows 7 disk manager tool, create a primary partition on which to install XP. Mark this partition as active.

Install XP; you will now have an XP machine which cannot boot into Windows 7 so you have to change the active partition back to be the Windows 7 boot partition (ie back to what it was before you changed it).

Reboot into Windows 7 and add Windows XP to the bootloader: EasyBCD is a good tool for managing the Windows boot manager or you can do it manually using part 2 of the resolution here.

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I loved your "Reboot into Windows 7 and add Windows XP to the bootloader" suggestion! I can handle doing part 2 manually, but it seems like a lot of typing - would EasyBCD be failproof? ( I do not want to clean up after it if it goes wrong and then procees doing that manually - just for the thought that it could have saved me some typing ) – PoorLuzer Oct 6 '10 at 17:29
I haven't had any problems with EasyBCD - it is probably as failproof as any computer operation so it isn't completely without risk. (I deliberately kept this bit short - adding a lot of detail makes the whole thing look difficult rather than getting across the basic idea which is reasonably simple and then going into detail later.) – Neal Oct 6 '10 at 19:07
Good answer Neil - I will try this out ( I think it should go without problems ) with EasyBCD first. Will mark yours as answer once I finish. – PoorLuzer Oct 6 '10 at 20:05

the best way was install first xp then win 7. As already you have win 7, the easiest way is to install a virtualisation software like VMware Player (free) in win 7 and within that install XP. That way no damage will be done to your PC, partitions etc etc. More over you can install and try many other OSes including Linux!

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