I have a system in which I have installed Windows 7 first. I then installed Ubuntu 12.04 (Precise Pangolin) to the system. Now, the boot manager is GRUB and everything works fine as Ubuntu detected that Windows 7 has been installed already.

Now, I would like to install Windows 8 too. I plan to install using a bootable USB stick (it doesn't matter which medium I prefer though, does it?). I have done some research and all the materials I can get state that I cannot practically install Windows 8 after Ubuntu and get all the three OSes to run. Is that really true? If not, how can I do it?

I want all the three operating systems to work perfectly.

  • can you proceed what you found on research as you stated that "windows8 can't installing Ubuntu? Aug 17 '12 at 4:27
  • This can get very complicated if your motherboard supports UEFI and you want your computer to boot as fast as possible...
    – billc.cn
    Oct 14 '12 at 21:46

You can have 4 primary partitions on your hard drive before you need to create logical partitions, which extends it out almost limitlessly to the extent of your hard drive's capability.

As for the question, any time you install any version of Windows, it will break Ubuntu's boot loader GRUB. You can install Windows 8 on a partition that has been resized through GParted (boot from Ubuntu live CD or live USB) but will then need to repair your GRUB.

This process can be a pain and requires some knowledge of Partition locations, Mount Points, and Terminal commands.

For your ease, I will include the command here to be entered into Terminal. Replace XXX with the location of your partition. This can be found out from Gparted (typically /dev/sda1 or something along those lines).

sudo grub-install /dev/XXX

This will install GRUB from the standard repositories Ubuntu provides in their distribution. The command above will install GRUB to your partition and attach itself to the mount point for booting.

Keep in mind that doing this will bring you back to a GRUB boot loader. If you are trying to use another boot loader, be specific with the setup you are wanting to use in order of first to last OS (e.g. as a recommended setup: Windows 8/Windows 7/Ubuntu).

  • "extends it out almost limitlessly" What is the limit? 25? Mar 2 '17 at 11:08

(I don't know if Windows 8 has the same installation behaviour as Windows 7, but it should be almost the same.)

You can install it in a separate partition, but it will allways remove GRUB no matter what you do. You just need to repair and reinstall GRUB from a live CD after Windows installation.

BTW, there is a limit in the maximum number of primary partitions. If I'm not wrong the maximum is three primary partitions and the rest must be extended.


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