Dual-booting LMDE with... LMDE

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Dual-booting LMDE with... LMDE

Postby corinoco » Mon Nov 29, 2010 9:49 am

PRECIS: Is there a HOWTO for dual-booting LMDE or Debian in general? ie. I want two installs on one HDD, preferably sharing /swap and /home.

Is this possible, particularly sharing /home with two installs?

I am looking a two seperate installs of LMDE, one using just the default repos, the other using Sid/Experimental.


I've been enjoying LMDE immensely, installing and trying stuff like crazy... and I've managed to break it already. :D

That happened through trying to get the dual gfx cards on my laptop working. It's an Asus N10 with a dual Intel G600 / Nvidia 9300MGS. Rather neat, the Intel card gives it a 6-hour battery life, the Nvidia card plays most modern games reasonably well.

It is tricky to set up with linux though - a switch on the side changes cards, which become active on the next reboot.

As I have discovered, LMDE does not like this. Ubuntu could handle it with the jockey app; once both gfx drivers had installed once it would auto-switch in a polite fashion. LMDE is not polite; stubbornly leaving me with a black screen at login if the wrong gfx system is selected at boot.

I was trying a few tips from this site : http://n10.wikia.com/wiki/Linux_HOWTO#Graphics_Drivers

in particular the section on graphics and a boot script to change things, and I screwed something up somewhere. I am still working, but gfx are in fallback modes, and Open GL is broken. I couldn't see any major reason why the script wouldn't work, or would break things, but I am just starting out at this kind of customization. It was written for a slightly older Debian system I think, LMDE is different enough to cause distress when the script goes wrong.

Anyway, I have decided to ditch my Windows XP install, and give the whole HDD to Linux.

I am thinking of two separate installs of LMDE, sharing /swap & /home

I would like to have one install of LMDE to muck around with sid/experimental repos, and one install set to default repos as a fallback for when I inevitably break things.

I know I should learn to fix it properly myself, but having a fallback install seems the way to go.

Is this far too much faffing around? Is it worth just keeping /home seperate and reinstalling from a live cd if/when I bugger things up?

Did I just answer my own question? :lol: Install LMDE, keep /home a seperate partition, keep a good track of what I have installed and what modifications worked, and rebuild from a live cd when things go bonkers due to my over-tweaking?

It does have a certain logic to it... and if anyone is interested I'll also post how I got everything on this laptop working; the dual gfx, fingerprint reader (for not having to always type my passwords) webcam, and all the software I want - NWN, Diablo, oh, and some useful stuff like Autocad for work!

My adventures will continue... :mrgreen:
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Re: Dual-booting LMDE with... LMDE

Postby lauren » Mon Nov 29, 2010 9:59 am

1. If you have enough space on your hard disk, I would not delete Windows - maybe you need it later on.
2. You can use one "/home" and one "swap" with several Linux distributions.
3. Dual boot with 2 equal distributions? I have multi boot with Mint 10 Gnome and Mint 9 KDE.
Notebook: BIOS Linux multiboot
Netbook: EFI Linux multiboot

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Re: Dual-booting LMDE with... LMDE

Postby sumski » Wed Dec 01, 2010 2:43 am

i'm currently having triple boot on my HD; Sid, Squeeze and LMDE , they all share swap partition , and the home partition , but not the same user

if you want a debian/lmde dual boot then you need : at lest two / partitions , a home partition , and i would recommend one swap partition
on the first install format the / ,/home and swap partitions and install LMDE, on the second install format just the second / partition and choose /home partition AS your /home partition WITHOUT formatting (on the second install i wouldn't make the same user as in the first - you would then have to install/use the same applications, appearance, etc. on both installs - but thats up to you - i did manage to do that with ubuntu/fedora , and it wasn't nice :D ) ; after booting into second install just add swap to fstab

i guess it would be confusing to use two same LMDE installs , which is which :?:
Acer Extensa 5630G - Core2Duo T5800 2GHz , 4 GB ram, Ati Mobility 3650.
OpenSUSE 12.1 KDE 4.7.3
Debian Sid KDE 4.7.1/2

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