[nycbug-talk] Multi OS setups

Scott Robbins scottro
Mon Dec 27 11:04:11 EST 2004

Hash: SHA1

On Mon, Dec 27, 2004 at 10:53:55AM -0500, Marc Spitzer wrote:
> On Mon, 27 Dec 2004 10:36:31 -0500 (EST), Francisco Reyes
> <lists at natserv.com> wrote:
> > I have always wanted to try other BSDs besides FreeBSD, but lacked the
> > hardware.
> > 
> > Got myself a 3 HD machine and would like suggestions on multi OS setups.
> > In particular I think I want from the get go FreeBSD, Windows XP, Windows
> > 2000.
> beware multibooting can be a royal PITA, especialy if you keep playing with
> the installed OS's 

I have a few test boxes, and I find that as long as I remember which O/S
has the bootloader, I'm good.  :)

I use Grub on one of the Linuxes (Linii?).  I'd install the MS stuff
first, as it'll overwrite the boot loader, then put in the FreeBSD
without worrying about it booting, eg don't install a boot loader.
Then, put in a Linux and choose grub for the bootloader.  I have a grub
page that might help you there, at

What Marc says about losing data is of course a risk, but it makes life
more interesting.  Seriously, I haven't lost data to an install in
awhile, but I became more careful about it after once blithely deleting
the wrong partitions.  :)

As for which Linux--heh, there are something like 362 distros (or some
absurd figure like that.)  Go to http://www.distrowatch.com and poke
around.  Basically there are the desktop, newcomer oriented ones, such
as Mepis (which I keep somewhere as my I don't care if it's bloated as
long as it Just Works(TM) distro), the source ones, popularized by
Gentoo, the Debian based ones (usually behind in software selection, but
stable) Slackware types, etc.  Almost all of them have live CDs these
days so you can play with it before installing it.  As a BSD-er, Gentoo
will seem rather familiar in many ways (Its creator, Daniel Robbins,
worked with FreeBSD for awhile and ports inspired portage) and Slackware
is also nice.  

ArchLinux is a nice newcomer, binary package management (similar in
execution, at least, to Deb's apt-get) lean, requires a bit of knowledge
to get running, very fast.  

I could go on, but why don't you look at Distrowatch, see what interests
you and post about it, and then people can give more in-depth reviews
for you.  

- -- 

Scott Robbins

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