dual boot Suse 10.3 with Windows XP

Hello everybody,

This is my first time writing on this forum and I will be very grateful for some help. I’ve previously made a dual boot of Suse 10 with Windows XP without much trouble on my laptop, but now seem to be unable to make a dual boot on another computer, using Suse 10.3 this time.

I’m trying to make the dual boot in the same way as I did before. I first installed Suse. The first time I tried I made one partition for Suse, one for Windows and another one (on a seperate harddrive) for data. But this went wrong when I tried to install Windows. Next time I made only a partition for Suse and made the other when installing Windows. Unfortunately I’m now unable to boot to Suse. Although the rest of the installation seems to have gone right.

I have the following questions:
In which order is it best to install Suse and Windows?
Which partitions should I make and when should I make them?
How can I make sure I get a nice menu at start up that asks me if I want to use Suse of Windows?

thanks in advance for any help you can give me,


Always install Windows XP first; it insists on being on the first part of the disk whereas openSUSE is agnostic about this.

As long as you have at least 15G spare on the disk, you simply defragment Windows, back up Windows and then leave the installation to openSUSE. Getting into expert/custom partitioning means you have to do everything yourself as openSUSE assumes you know exactly what you want; leaving openSUSE to do it means it get’s done perfectly satisfactorily anyway.

10.3 will give you a separate /home partition using Ext3. There should be no problems at all (and you won’t need the Windows backup).

However, if you are choosing 10.3 because you want KDE3, I recommend Carlos Goncalvez KDE3 11.1 iso at openSUSE News » Unofficial KDE 3.5 Live CD for openSUSE 11.1

Windows first
Partitions depend on your drive capacity, at least one for Windows, one for Linux, one swap.

You may find comprehensive informations concerning your question here: GRUB Boot Multiboot openSUSE Windows (2000, XP, Vista) using the Grub bootloader.

thanks for your help.

I kept Windows the way it was and just installed Suse again and it solved most of my problems. I just used the partitioning the way Suse said I should this time (which I couldn’t do before because I had to keep some room for windows) and Suse also made the menu I wanted.

In the end I had only some windows problems left, but I eventually solved those with some help. Maybe next time I format my computer I won’t bother with windows anymore.