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I have downloaded windows 8 developer preview. I have mounted its ISO, but it does not ask to choose a partition to install.
There might be a way (using some command line perhaps) to install windows 8 to another drive from within XP

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1  
You might want to read this first –  Alpine Sep 16 '11 at 9:19
    
I just need a solution. A Microsoft guy should try answering. –  LifeH2O Sep 16 '11 at 11:35
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Microsoft really can't be supporting installing free developer previews on any hardware/software especially something as dated as XP. –  Nick Josevski Sep 16 '11 at 14:00
    
@NickJosevski: As expected from Microsoft –  LifeH2O Sep 16 '11 at 16:44
    
I would look into dual booting with XP, it will be the same procedure as dual booting with Windows 7, search this site for it or google how to do it. –  Moab Sep 16 '11 at 16:57

5 Answers 5

If you are talking about installing Windows 8 on a Virtual Machine over a Windows XP host, the answer is yes, you can do it using Virtual Box or VMWare.

If you are talking about installing Windows 8 upgrade from Windows XP the answer is no, you can't, actually you can only upgrade to Windows Vista from Windows XP, even on Windows 7 you can't do it.

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It's not Microsoft Virtual Box. It's Sun Virtual Box. Microsoft has Virtual PC –  Diago Sep 16 '11 at 16:51
    
Ohhh, its right, i will edit, thanks –  Diogo Sep 16 '11 at 16:51
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Actually, it's Oracle VirtualBox now. –  BBlake Sep 16 '11 at 16:55
    
MS Virtual PC does not support Windows 8 Preview as per this answer and this question –  Alpine Sep 16 '11 at 17:13
    
So the correct answear is Virtual Box(as posted originally), not Virtual PC, i will change it. –  Diogo Sep 16 '11 at 17:15

You have to boot into Windows 8 DP from startup. you cannot simply mount an ISO in an existing OS or it will overwrite the drive that the OS is installed on.

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Really bad isn't it, they had this feature when installing windows 7 on XP. Is it also impossible if I replace XP with 7 in my question? –  LifeH2O Sep 16 '11 at 16:46
up vote 2 down vote accepted

You CAN do a multiboot Install without clearing anything

  • Download the ISO file from Microsoft.
  • Mount the ISO using Daemon Tools, Clone Drive, or similar.

(This is important. Do not use the autorun installer. The autorun installer only allows you to upgrade your existing Windows installation and will not allow you to install to a separate hard drive or partition.)

  • Navigate to the virtual install disc and go to the folder called sources.
  • Run setup.exe and proceed as if installing Windows Vista or 7.

enter image description here

Links:
http://www.ghacks.net/2011/09/14/how-to-install-windows-8-from-usb-key/
http://techspyre.com/how-to-directly-install-windows-8-without-cd-dvd-or-usb/
http://www.reddit.com/r/windows/comments/kf7ax/installing_windows_8_without_bootable_media/

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Nice answer. Useful info –  Joe Taylor Mar 24 '12 at 8:36

If you mount the .iso from inside Windows XP and install, it should install Windows 8 Preview over Windows XP without giving you any option as it does with Windows 7.

It will store the old OS in a file windows.old but anyways you should backup all your data before installing as it says on the Windows Developer Preview downloads page

The Windows Developer Preview is a pre-beta version of Windows 8 for developers. These downloads include prerelease software that may change without notice. The software is provided as is, and you bear the risk of using it. It may not be stable, operate correctly or work the way the final version of the software will. It should not be used in a production environment. The features and functionality in the prerelease software may not appear in the final version. Some product features and functionality may require advanced or additional hardware, or installation of other software.

Another thing I would like to point to is that you can't uninstall or revert back to Windows XP after you install Windows 8 on it. Refer How to revert to Windows 7 after installing Windows 8?

If you wish to dual boot you may want to read this answer for Does Windows 8 Developer Preview 64bit allow multiboot when installing from a mounted ISO?

And if you want to use virtualization then you should take a look at Which virtual machine software is preferable for running Windows 8 Developer Preview?


Also See

Dual Boot Windows 8 with Windows XP using ISO
Is it possible to dual boot Windows XP and Windows 8 Developer Preview?

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Windows 8 Developer Preview Setup on Oracle VirtualBox - setup by step installation guide:

http://www.howtogeek.com/74515/how-to-test-drive-windows-8-in-virtualbox/

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