Dual boot Windows 10, two drives

I have windows 10 on an SSD. (ACER laptop)
I have installed Manjaro KDE Plasma on second drive (HDD).
I was following the [root tip] Dual boot Manjaro and Windows post (or i think I have)
I made my own partitioning. HDD was single NTFS partition. Shrunk the partition, made FAT32, labeled EFI and flagged boot.
The system boots to windows.
Tried [root tip] Dual boot Manjaro and Windows from same post. no change. Boots to windows.
I tried to do this: [HowTo] Dual-boot Manjaro - Windows 10 - Step by Step - Tutorials - Manjaro Linux Forum
but I don’t understand what it should acomplish. I don’t understand which partitions I should mount. What is “root” partition? The one I installed Manjaro on?
What is $esp? EFI system partition? But I have two. One windows on SSD and the new one on HDD I made during Manjaro instalation.
I ran the live boot again and poked around with KDE partition but can’t find anything to set other than boot flag.
I don’t understand should i have one or two EFI partitions. Should the Windows one point to Linux one, or Linux one to Windows one, or should it be set in BIOS somewhere? Should Linux EFI point to Windows and Linux install partitions? It seems so vague in tutorial.

You should never apply anything - guides - tutorials - tips and tricks - without fully understanding the task at hand.

You should do yourself a favor and research before asking questions espeically for various variable definitions and acronyms used.

Many do that - with excellent results - and only then - when you have something you cannot figure out - then you ask.

It is the root of the file tree and in the context of Manjaro it is the partition used for the root file system.


You can have as many as is necessary - only one can be active - and that is the one which is selected in the firmware - and you can just use the Windows partition.

The installer simplifies that - what is important is the partition type - which must be of the EFI partition type.

That is because you don’t understand the previous and possibliy because you have been light reading and trying to apply something you don’t fully understand.

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Yes, I don’t fully understand it. I wouldn’t be asking questions if I fully understood it. It would be done and working. I should resarch yes, I have been googling for two days before posting here. I don’t know the right terms to search maybe.
It would help if you had a link for me that would explain stuff. You answered many questions other than how do I boot Manjaro.
Of course I have been light reading because it says there skip if using GPT and not MBR and if you use optane and if you use bitlocker…
I don’t think one should need to be an expert on EFI just to dual boot windows and linux which must be the most common scenario in history of dual booting different OSes.
Also, this post on dual booting I havee been following seems to be aimed at someone very familiar with Linux. And it seems to me that such a person would not be much interested in having windows at all. I bet I could write a much better one aimed at windows users, once I get it working.

So It is enough for me to have existing windows created EFI partition on SSD which is windows intalled and live linux sees it as sdb.
is it posible to add a boot record for Manjaro and have the choice show up at boot through bcdedit?
Should I install grub on that partition and what dssoes that mean? Would I lose something?

Because the tutorial that I was apparently light reading states “The strategy described here ensures no messing with the Windows EFI partition and therefore no problems with Windows removing the Manjaro boot loader.” implying that I should not mess with Windows EFI partition… and so on…

I erased the HDD partitions. It was MBR.
Tried manual partitioning, it was complaining that windows EFI partition was too small. Didn’t work, booted straight to windows.
I ran the Manjaro installer again, this time didn’t do manual but erase drive and auto install on HDD (sda). I didn’t try that before because I thought it wold go for the SSD with windows on it but I see you can choose which drive and it just doesn’t touch the other drive.
Now the computer won’t boot on it’s own at all. Opens up grub which reports some error.
BUT, i can hit F12 on power on and get to firmware boot menu and choose to boot to windows or linux and they both work. Not what I planned, but good enough for now.

See how this goes.
Boot into Manjaro. The open a terminal. Try sudo update-grub

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OK, I have a different device now. Another laptop.
Had windows 11 installed on 500gb internal ssd.
Connected 1tb ssd via usb and installed Manjaro with manual partitioning.

  • Partitions: 1-EFI fat32, 2-Manjaro ext4, 3-ntfs, 4-ntfs

Swapped 500gb and 1tb drives laptop<->usb case.
Boots Manjaro.
Clonezillad Windows partition from 500gb usb to 1tb ssd, partition 3 (partition-to-partition).

How can I make windows boot? I tried os-prober and update-grub.
I tried copying Microsoft folder from old ssd efi partition to the new ssd efi partition.
I tried booting windows 11 iso and repair boot from there. Failed.
I can select windows boot but it reports error, unknown device or something with a name something like AB12-CD34.

I’d like that previous windows installation because of a lot of software i had installed there.
Old drive is in a usb case and the partitions are still there untouched except that Windows partition was shrinked because I was trying to make a backup/restore from kde partition manager.

Edit: simple question is: is there a way to add windows efi files to efi boot partition grub is on and configure them to point to the right windows install partition? Or what am I getting wrong?

So i deleted the microsoft idrectory from efi partition that I have manually copied.
Tried installing Windows11 on the partition (repair with widnws 10 and windows 11 bootable media failed).
Windows 11 added a boot menu item and didn’t break Grub. I was able to choose from grub menu to boot into Manjaro and Windows.
I then tried Clonezilla backed up old Windows partition and restore to the partition I have succesfuly installed and booted windows from. It did not work. Windows (or efi?) report boot error, a blue screen.
Tried windows repair again and failed.

I then gave up and deleted all the windows partitions. I don’t know if the partition was corrupt (i tried and failed booting from old drive attached to usb)
or maybe one should find and edit partition uuids or something.

So dual boot Manjaro first or Windows first work fine but cloning partitions to diferent drives or sizes broke it for me. Too bad. Using Manjaro now both for work and personal on this machine and it gets the job done.