so you want to have 2 or more Operating systems on 1 PC setup here is a quick guide on how to do that
*note for this guide i will be using an application called partition magic which is not a free ware*
before i get started for those who cant get hold of PM (partition magic) you can use a windows XP disk although i think this will format the drive as it partitions it.
i will be using windows XP and Windows Vista as the examples for this guide.
step 1. install partiotion magic or boot to the windows XP CD
step 2. in partition magic click on the drive you want to create a partition on ( a partition is a segment of your hardrive which windows will see as a separate drive even though its on the same hard disk) so select the hardisk drive you want to partition and then click on create partition. if you using windows XP disk youll have to delete your current partition and create 2 new ones so all data will be lost.
step 3. Specify how big (in memory usually measured in MB's) you want the partition to be. if your just testing out vista 40GB would be plenty as vista uses around 4-6-10GB.remeber the memory used to make the partition must come from your original partition so if you only have 20GB free and you type 40GB your in trouble.
step 4. formatting or choosing what file system you want on your harddrive. chose when prompted by windows XP setup or partition magic the file system NTFS and by default the drive should say "primary" which is what you want
step 5. LABELING isnt compulsory, but i named my vista drive ...vista (original huh)
step 6. in partition magic click apply and wait a while (can take up to and over 20 mins)
step 7. once this is done DO NOT CLOSE PARTITION MAGIC quickly test all your files are ok and you have no data corruptions. if all is ok you CAN NOW CLOSE PARTITION MAGIC. reason not to close is partition magic has an undo feature which cant be used after you exit partition magic.
step 8. boot from vista DVD and enter setup
step 9. when prompted chose you partition to install vista on.
step 10. wait until vista if fully installed and now when you boot up your machine you should get a boot manager asking which operating system to boot mine will say
"an earlier version of windows"
!you can use other partitioning software other than partition magic just do a google on them and you may find a freeware one!
FREEWARE PARTITIONING TOOLS: *PM is the only tool i know that has an undo feature*
*other partition tools may require a different method to the one above, some may require the DOS environment*
<< a good app called "extended FDISK kinda speaks for itself also has a built in OS boot manager
theres many many more but you get the jist, although these tools will not go eactly along with the guide above it will prety much be the same with a few variations
if in worst case you loose data while creating a partition or the data is corrupt use this tool which has saved my *** once before it will allow you to recover lost or deleted files from your hard disk
its called restoration http://www.snapfiles.com/get/restoration.html