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So, my computer currently has

1) Dell's RECOVERY partition;
2) A Windows installation;
3) A logical partition with
3a) My Ubuntu partition, and
3b) 8 GB of swap.

I would like to take some space away from Ubuntu and add a new Arch Linux installation in the space it leaves. Furthermore, I would like to continue using GRUB2, which Ubuntu installed and I currently use, and I would like that to recognize Arch as well. The problem there is, Arch's installer wants to install regular GRUB (which I can presumably skip, but I'm not sure what'll happen).

I've never installed a third OS before, and I don't really know the safe procedure for it. What would be a good way of doing this?

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Having never done it, I can't give any war stories or anything, but here are I couple ideas:

  1. You can freely skip Arch's request to install GRUB - you already have a boot-loader.

  2. You presumably know how to configure GRUB2 for another Linux OS, so I'll leave that up to you. There are good references on the 'net if you don't.

  3. If you're going to have multiple Linux systems, you may consider moving your /home under Ubuntu to it's own partition, so you can work on your stuff when using either system. Just make sure to stick the info in both systems' /etc/fstab first.

  4. If you're going to be changing your OS frequently, consider putting Ubuntu's /boot in it's own partition as well, so if you want to trash Ubuntu one day, you don't experience boot-loader hell.

  5. I don't have a Windows install on my Dell anymore, so I trashed my RECOVERY partition. If your Windows install matters, you might want to keep it.

  6. If this is for experimental purposes, try it in a VM first. Your working machine is nothing worth trashing just to see how you like another distribution.

  7. GOTO 6

share|improve this answer
I have played with Arch in a VM before, thankfully--that's why I'm willing to go this far in my playing with it. :) Also, do you know of any resources for moving /boot to a separate partition? Will this do it? – Michael Louis Thaler Jul 30 '11 at 16:55
@Michael Looks good to me. – new123456 Jul 30 '11 at 19:29

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