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Presently, I am using Windows 7 and Fedora 17 on my laptop. Both OSes work fine.

I am thinking of upgrading Windows 7 to Windows 8, while keeping Fedora where it is. Keeping Fedora 17 on my system is a must. Some articles I've read say it is not possible to have a dual boot setup involving Windows 8. Is that true?

Question: what known issues are there for dual-booting with Windows 8 and Linux? How can they be solved?

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2 Answers 2

up vote 3 down vote accepted

The only issue I'm aware of is the battle between the NTLoader and Grub. In order to boot something other than Windows, you must use Grub (or syslinux or lilo or some other customizeable boot loader), but the Windows boot loader doesn't play nice with any of them... and is not capable of booting into Linux.

You can install grub with full dual-booting capabilities, and it will boot into Windows8... but there is no guarantee that Windows 8 won't overwrite the MBR and break everything. There are a few reasons why win8 decides to re-write the MBR... and most aren't obvious.

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+1 - Thanks for your answer. Can you elaborate a little more? I read somewhere that windows 8 has some secure boot which blocks other OSes to boot. Is it right? –  Abid Rahman K Nov 8 '12 at 17:49
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Secure Boot is part of the UEFI specification, not an invention of MS. Is your laptop Windows 8 certified? If not, it most likely won't have Secure Boot turned on by default (might not even have UEFI support in the first place to allow for Secure Booting). Even with Windows 8 certified non-ARM devices, users can turn off Secure Boot. Also, Linux certs for running with Secure Boot enabled should be available soon. –  Karan Nov 8 '12 at 17:56
    
Windows 8 can do full-disk encryption. (so could windows 7... but it wasn't as obvious) If you fiddle with the MBR too much, or with the boot-loader... you're going to have a nicely encrypted volume that can't easily be booted into... and might become completely unrecoverable. Following the defaults for everything should work... but depending on your version of grub and linux-OS of choice... you may have to do some hand-editing on the grub.cfg to make it boot properly into windows. –  TheCompWiz Nov 8 '12 at 17:57
    
@Karan : Thank you for the info. –  Abid Rahman K Nov 8 '12 at 18:01
    
@TheCompWiz, the part where it says "is not capable of booting into Linux" is not right, it can do just fine same as Linux bootloaders do. Check my answer to this question: superuser.com/a/499652/18050 –  Xandy Nov 8 '12 at 22:00

I'm dual-booting win 8 and ubuntu OK; the main issue that I've got is with UEFI boot (see Dual boot Windows 8 and Ubuntu? ) . If you don't need UEFI, and can disable it in your BIOS, do that before install Windows 8, as it might make things a little trickier. Alternately, work out how to get Linux to boot from UEFI instead.

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+1 - Thank you for your suggestion –  Abid Rahman K Nov 9 '12 at 6:25

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