I've read most of the other replies to your original message... and wanted
to add some details. (then again... maybe you're already done :) )
imho, the most important factor on getting Linux installed on the same drive
as another OS (usually some windows) is making sure you can install LILO to
'a' primary partition.
Also... DOS, 98, and NT all want to use a small portion of the primary
partition on your first hard-drive... regardless of where you install the
'meat' of the OS'.
So... that said... you already have NT's boot loader (and maybe the bulk of
NT?) installed on the first primary partition.
If you created any other partitions on your drive... they are more than
likely logical drives in an extended partition. Remember that an extended
partition will 'use' another primary partition as a container for the
logical drives... so you would have... in Linux terms... /dev/hda2 as a
container for /dev/hda5, /dev/hda6, and so on...
You are only allowed one extended partition on your drive with most tools...
but you can create multiple primary partitions with the right set of tools.
To wrap this up... the best scenario before a Linux install is to have at
least two 'free' primary partitions and preferably... no extended partition.
You can always create fat16/32 partitions inside of the new extended
partition you create during the Linux install... if you want to give windows
If you can reduce your hard-drive to a primary partition (with NT on it) and
unused free space... you would proceed as follows:
Create /dev/hda2 for your / mount... and /dev/hda3 as an extended partition
(logical partitions /dev/hda5... /dev/hda6... etc... inside). Again... if
you need to give back some space to windows... just create a fat16/32
partition as one of the logical drives inside the extended partition).
Finally... install LILO on the boot portion of your / mount (dev/hda2).
Be careful... if you make /dev/hda2 active when you install LILO... you will
think you have lost NT's loader.. because normally you only have one active
partition on a given hard-drive... and the primary partition will be
You can add a Linux choice to NT's boot menu using 'bootpart'... found at
If you happened to 'lose' NT... and you really didn't install LILO to the
MBR, you can actually get NT back by running through the install up to the
first reboot. NT's installation would warn you that another OS currently is
using another partition to boot... and that partition will be termporarily
deactivated. It then gives you a couple of notes about reactivating that
partition using Disk Administrator, etc...
Of course this is slightly complicated if you already installed through SP
20 :) on NT... but I just wanted to add the note about regaining NT's loader
when you've only lost it due to active partition status.
>Is it necessary to install NT before linux partition-wise, as opposed to
>What I mean is if I want to dual boot linux and NT, do I need to install NT
>on the first few partitions of my hard drive and install linux on say