XP reinstall on a dual boot system

Hello, I hope i am in the right forum. Currently i own a system with a SuSE 12.1 and Windows XP32
I would like to replace XP32 with XP64. Would this amount to deleting all the partitions and reinstalling everything? I am keeping the partition sizes the same except for the fact that the new OS is a Windows XP Professional 64bit.

Can anyone help?


After an installation of Windows XP, you would most likely have to reinstall the grub boot loader at minimum. When you start the Windows XP install, if it will not start, you would most likely have to remove some or all of openSUSE as well. As long as you can keep your separate /home area and reuse it later and not format it when you reinstall openSUSE, you will not lose your personnel settings. I must ask why do you want to install WinXP64? I doubt you will gain anything by doing that. Further, it is common knowledge that you should install Windows first and openSUSE last. Doing anything else requires knowing just what Windows and openSUSE require in the way of disk partitions. I took the approach a long time ago to just have two hard drives, one for Windows and one for openSUSE. And, you can install openSUSE on an external hard drive, boot loader and all, keeping your internal hard drive just like Windows likes it, all alone in the world. I might also say that while not using 64 bit Windows, I have had great success using 32 bit Windows in VirtualBox using openSUSE as the host. I have 32 bit images made up for Windows XP, Vista and 7 and they work great for anything you can’t get to work in openSUSE. This even includes iTunes when you need it for a Apple device or two. So, consider your options and let us know why you think Windows XP 64 bit is a good thing to load when you already have Windows 32 bit up and running. It sounds like a complete waste of time and something a person into pain and suffering would want to do.

Thank You,

My current XP32 installation addresses only 3GB out of the 4GB ram. I recently acquired XP64 and made sure it addresses all of the 4GB. I run two imaging applications concurrently that are memory intensive and one of them even uses the native good old parallel port. I do not know the complications involved in setting up PCMCIA parallel port and USB serial ports under VirtualBox. I would imagine there are additional layers before the communications take place.

I figured it is not a bad idea to replace the XP32 with XP64 and use my applications like before. Storing my /home is never a problem for me. My SuSE is a 64bit version that works well with all of the ram.


Again, I must say that if you can get your applications to run in your present setup, I would leave well enough alone. As far as I can tell, unless you had MORE than 4 GB of RAM installed, your usable RAM would be no different. That is because of memory mapped devices at the top of the 4 GB limit for 32 bit devices. Your computer BIOS would have to offer to remap any covered up RAM memory or the memory mapped devices like video cards would need to be remapped. I have 16 GB of memory installed on my PC, but only 15.7 GB shows up for me as present. Now there is no doubt that if you have 64 bit rated hardware (make sure to check first) and could add more base memory, say up to 8 GB, you then would see more memory in Windows. But wait, if the application you are running is only 32 bit, it may be stuck back down in the low end. I really really think until such time as you can spring for a full 64 bit system and applications, I would not challenge fate on a working system. You could have to reload everything in the end and find no difference or worse. I am for 64 bit and run openSUSE in 64 bit with as much memory as I can afford (though the 16 GB of memory I have right now was only $100 US). I still use a Windows XP 32 bit 2 GB memory Laptop for work and I do lots of things on this laptop day in and day out. And practically everything I do with it works like a champ, though slowly sometimes. Further at home I have reloaded my whole PC before, just to load 64 bit and to not really find it working better. Now, as time has gone forward, 64 bit is much better today and I certainly use 64 bit for everything I can, but the old reliable and working Windows XP 32 bit days has not escaped my attention when compared to other present situations. I can say that on a few occasions, nothing anyone else would have said would have stopped me from doing software upgrades. But after doing the deed, I have realized that the only thing that was better was my understanding of how I had made a very bad decision. If your system is working, even slowly, the fix may not be in your budget right now and worth the wait unit some future date.

Here is one link on the subject about memory: Clearing up the 32/64-bit memory limit confusion | ZDNet

Thank You,

You are not changing the partitioning.

If it were me, I would backup “/home” for safety. I would also backup the MBR, with

dd if=/dev/sda of=mbr count=1

and I would copy that “mbr” file to a USB device for safe keeping.

After the XP reinstall, I would expect that changing which partition is active, or restoring the MBR would be sufficient to have everything working again. However, if that failed, I could reinstall and use the safety backup of “/home” to recover personal stuff.

All my applications are 32 bit at the moment, although few of them have 64 bit installers. My desktop PC is equipped with dual AMD Athlon 64 with a 256mb PCI-E graphics card. On this system running XP64, i have noticed a significant increase in response times for applications (i don’t know why). I have a portable that is currently dual booting 12.1 and XP32. My interest in replacing the 32bit with the XP64 is purely based on my experiences with the desktop (my portable is also dual core 64 bit ready)

Thank you. This morning i found another article

SDB:Repair MBR after Windows install - openSUSE