I want to have multiple OS installations and I have been advised that chain loading using GRUB is a good way to handle this. I have looked at tutorials on the web but I still have some questions before I can start.
- Windows XP: 20 GB. For running some school stuff and a game which does not work through WINE.
- Xubuntu 9.04: 85 GB. My main OS.
- Another Linux distribution: 15 GB . For experimenting and trying Linux distributions out.
- Wipe and install various distributions quite often on the 15
- Use dd to make a copy of my Windows partition after installing it and getting things to work as I like. My experience is that Windows needs to be re-installed maybe once per year to not get bloated and slow.
I have been told:
- To use GRUB chain loading. It will make it easier when kernel upgrades are made in the Linux distributions, as they modify the GRUB boot-menu.
To my understanding I need to: (I might very well be mistaken)
- Install Windows first.
- Then install Xubuntu and let it write over the MBR with GRUB (I guess this is the default).
- Get the GRUB on the MBR start Windows XP if I want to (it's done by default), start Xubuntu using the kernel of my choice or defer execution to the boot sector of my other Linux distribution. The actual chain loading will only occur when I want to start my experimental install of Linux.
- Is step 3 above correct and a good way to handle this?
- Is it also a good way to use chain-loading for both Xubuntu and my experimental Linux installation?
- How do I get a Linux distribution to install the boot loader it comes with to the boot sector of its partition and not to the MBR?
- If I can't get it to not touch the MBR. Then I could make a backup of the MBR using dd and then write it back after installing my experimental Linux installation. But then, how would I get the boot loader (lets say GRUB) into the boot sector of the experimental Linux installation? How would it work if said Linux installation gets a new kernel update and needs to update the GRUB menu?