Planning to Dual-Boot Manjaro on a separate drive

Hello, this is my first post here and mainly my first interaction with the Linux community as a whole.

I’ve always wanted to get into using Linux as my Daily-driver operating system, and have been using some “trainer” laptops with different distros to see what I like about each one as I pick up the learning curve and learn how to Troubleshoot things myself. I’ve found Manjaro to be my favorite distro due to it bundling pretty much everything I need to start with, and have decided to make it my main choice.

I’ve had Windows 11 installed on one of the two M.2 NVMe solid-state drives on my motherboard for about a year and have started to consider if I should setup a dual-boot configuration with Manjaro living on my secondary SSD, and Windows 11 on my primary SSD.

Before I pull this off however, I wanted to ask.
Would this conflict with anything, such as Windows potentially messing with the secondary Manjaro drive or if I would need to configure Windows in such a way to allow me to always boot into grub to then choose what I want to boot?
Or should it be as easy as just installing Manjaro on the secondary drive and then making sure my BIOS has it first in the Boot Order?

I do have Secure Boot, Fast Startup, and any other things that would conflict in a regular setup disabled to make sure my system is prepared. Windows is already installed as EFI, as well as planning to make sure Manjaro is also installed as EFI.

I also thank anyone for coming across this and helping me out, any advice or things I should look out for as a newbie is very highly appreciated

It seems you have all ready to install :slight_smile:

It shouldn’t conflict

No need to do that. When you install Manjaro, the installer should take care of everything: install grub and prepare the system to dual boot.

As said above, the installer will take care of everything, so you shouldn’t even change or check the boot order.

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i’m not aware of windows letting you decide what to boot with, but if you are meaning to use EFI bootloader select menu you are OK.

if you decide to let the system default to grub and then give you a choice of selecting which OS to use, then be prepared for guaranteed action when windows does one of its super updates which will with certainty mess grub, and install its own OS-bootloader ontop of grub, which BTW could be fixed easily if you have manjaro live media with chroot.

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If you do a completely seperate install on the second SSD, including it’s own ESP (EFI system partition), you should have no problem.
Occasionally Micro$@$ updates could change your default boot option to boot into it self by default, but that would still not affect your Linux install.
You could use your UEFI Boot menu (F8 on most machines while powering on your machine) to choose to boot your Linux and revert the default back to the Linux bootloader…

That only happens when you use one single ESP, shared among OS’s…

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Will I have to do anything with partitioning manually when installing or can I just straight-up automatically do everything through the installer?
Manjaro is going onto just a blank NVMe SSD, so I am assuming it’s safe to use most of the default settings when it comes to installing it there.

Yes, but to be 100% sure it doesn’t inerfere with your other OS/SSD you should just remove that SSD beforehand.
That way the installer won’t be mistakingly use the ESP on the first SSD either…