Dual-booting Manjaro with Windows 7

Hi, I'm not sure about a thing, I want to dual boot Manjaro with Win 7. I want to make sure one last time. Does the "install" alongside option format the partition that it's shrinking? I really don't want to lose my files :pensive:

No, it won't format your Windows partition, but you may have to shrink it first if there's not enough free space for Manjaro on the drive.


Thank you Aragon! I will install it right now then! I will post to this thread once the installation is finished.

Shrink the Windows partition using the Disk Management of Windows 7 (as admin):

This is the safest procedure.


Thank you!

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Ah damn, I'm still scared of something bad happening, not today I guess :pensive:

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Really, there's nothing to be afraid of. Just go with the following order of things... :arrow_down:

  1. Boot up Microsoft Windows in "Safe Mode" and defragment your Windows partition. Then, run CHKDSK.EXE or whatever the Windows utility is called for checking the integrity of the filesystem.

  2. Boot up from the Manjaro install medium, and in the partitioning utility, tell it to not format the Windows partition, and to install Manjaro alongside of Windows.

  3. Things to check beforehand...:
    -- Secure Boot must be disabled in the UEFI firmware
    -- Windows Fast Boot must be disabled as well
    -- If your system boots up in legacy BIOS mode but you have a GUID partition table, then you must create an unformatted partition of type bios and about 5 MiB in size, and set the boot flag on that partition. This is not needed if your system boots up in UEFI mode, or if you boot up in legacy BIOS mode with a traditional MS-DOS MBR-style partition table.

Manjaro will detect your Windows partition, and will normally add it to /etc/fstab, so that its contents will be available from within your Manjaro installation. You may need to tweak these settings a bit later for the best results if you're also going to be writing to your Windows partition from within GNU/Linux, but for read-only access, it should work out-of-the-box without any modifications.

Trust me, you're not the only person in the world who's got Microsoft Windows installed alongside their Manjaro system. Well, I myself do not, but there are thousands of people on this forum who do. :slight_smile:

All will be well. :wink:


Safest thing to do is to purchase another SSD and install Manjaro on it. That way you never have to worry about your M$ drive. That's assuming you have the option of using another drive, of course.

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I would like to suggest the following way:

First, you create a disk image of your hard drive (HDD/SSD) where Microsoft Windows is installed on.

Plug an external hard drive to your computer that has a higher capacity than your current hard drive.

This can be done by Linux Mint:
You take the Live-DVD of Linux Mint and, after booting it, you start the program "Disks".
In the program "Disks", you can select the hard drive where Microsoft Windows is installed on (on the left).

Please select in the menu list (at the top) the option "Create Disk Image".
The location path for the image file should be on your external hard drive.

After completing this procedure (it can take 1-2 hours, depending on the performance of your computer as well as on the capacity of your hard drive), you can set the permission rights of your newly created image file:

Please go into the directory of the folder (on your external hard drive) where the image file has been saved. Press the right mouse button and select "Terminal".
Then execute the following commands in your terminal:

sudo su
chmod 777 *.img
chmod 777 'file name of your image file'.img

This hold for the fact that your external hard drive is not formatted with NTFS but with a Linux format like EXT4.
If it is NTFS-formatted, then there is no need for setting the permission rights. However, safe is safe.

Now you can unplug the external hard drive und shut down your PC.

After the whole procedure, you can install Manjaro alongside Microsoft Windows.

If the installation procedure fails (it probably will not), you can recover your Microsoft Windows system.

You can take a new or empty hard drive (HDD/SSD) and copy the content of the image file (on your external hard drive) to your new hard drive.
Start Linux Mint, select "Disks" and click on your new hard drive on the left. Select the menu option (at the top) "Restore from Disk Image". Then choose the hard drive (the new/empty one) you want to copy the content of your image file. After completing it, you have recovered your Microsoft Windows system.

This is the safest way to install Manjaro without having any fears of crashing MS into small pieces and delete the whole content that has been saved over the last years.

Of course, you can do a test before installing Manjaro:
Your current hard drive -> image file on your external hard drive -> new hard drive (restored with the help of the image file).
You can boot with the third hard drive and you can see that you created a copy of your current hard drive.

Again, we have three hard drives:

  1. current hard drive (Microsoft Windows is installed)
  2. external hard drive (image file has to be created on it)
  3. new hard drive (the content of the image file has to be copied on it)

Boot with 3) and you see, you have a copy of 1).

I think this should take all of your fears of losing your Microsoft Windows system.

And, by the way, you created a backup that is important in these days.

Thank you very much for reading this post!
Yours sincerely,

I have never experienced this in my dual-boot installations Windows-Manjaro. The Windows partition is accessible and can be mounted through the file manager at /run/media/$USER/UUID and never auto-mounted at boot via /etc/fstab.


Okay, but then it's not automatically mounted at boot time ─ it is mounted via your file manager and udisks. If you want it mounted at boot time, then you have to add it to /etc/fstab.

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Right! Manjaro will not automatically add the Windows partition to fstab during the installation. If one wants to mount it at boot, then it has to be added to fstab post-install.


Well, okay then. I was under the impression that it did, because from what I've read, that's what most other distributions do. But I don't have or use Microsoft Windows ─ yeah, I guess I'm weird :stuck_out_tongue: ─ so I wouldn't know. :wink:


Thank you guys so much! I guess I might do it today, or just actually get a new small ssd disk and use it uwu

Guys! I did it! I'm now on the xcfe manjaro linux!

During the installation process I used the "replace partition" option since the install alongside one wasn't available because I was on a new clean disk. However there's a thing worrying me, Calamares didn't create a swap partition ;^; should I do it now?



What are you willing to do now?
Go back to your old drive and install Manjaro alongside Windows?

Well, it would be better to copy the content of the old disk (with Windows) to a new disk (with the help of the instructions given by me some posts earlier) at first.
Then you can do your experiments on your new copied hard drive with the installation of Manjaro.

Safe is safe!
And you can get familiar with installing a Linux system next to your Windows system.

However, some installation procedures can be a trap if you do not have alert eyes. For instance, the Knoppix installation procedure can lead to a total loss of all data if you click on the wrong button. The GUI there is not the same as in Manjaro. The GUI of Manjaro is much better.

In general, better is to have 2 hard drives that are working alongside each other with an OS on each one.

Actually, on a new disk, an option with "replace partition" should not appear there.
It is also a little bit confusing and worrying.

However, you did it and I wish all the best to you!
Have fun with your new Manjaro system!


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Thank you for all the advice! I'm not planning on installing Manjaro again, especially on the old disk. I'm just glad I got the new disk and managed to make Manjaro work without hardbricking the whole pc xD I also managed to create a swapfile uwu

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