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  • How to Run Windows 7 and Windows 8 Simultaneously
Technology Articles > Software > System Utilities > How to Run Windows 7 and Windows 8 Simultaneously

Sometimes one Windows program just isn’t enough. Or, you may want to test out Windows 8 before you wreck your current Windows 7 setup. Either way, it is possible to run both versions of Windows at the same time. The Windows 8 Installer comes with a multi-boot option. Using this option, you can booth both versions of Windows simultaneously as long as you set up the Installer to do so. Of course, you will want to back up everything you have right now, just in case something goes awry. If a backup has been completed, you can move onto the next step. Here’s a simple way to run both Windows 7 and Windows 8 at the same time.

First, Make Some Space

You can’t run two operating systems without splitting up your space. So the first step is to create a divide. You can do this by entering the term “Disk Management” in your Start box text space. From there, you will see that most systems have two different divides (or “partitions”). Find the one that has the most space and hit the shrink button, so that you can shrink the size of the larger partition adequately. You’ll want to shrink it to above 16GB in order to install Windows 8 (32-bit). After you’ve made sure you have enough space, the next few steps are really just a matter of allowing Windows 8 Installer to take over.

Next, Run Windows 8 Installer

Using a USB key, download the Windows 7 disc burning tool. You will have to boot Windows 8 from your USB port. Because, you know, trying to boot Windows 8 while Windows 7 is running just won’t work. After you’ve inserted your USB key, all the usual steps apply. You will have to select “install” when asked if you want to install Windows 8, choose your language, read through the license, and then make sure to select a “custom” set up. Once you have the Custom screen open, you will be given the option to choose a partition. Select the space that you created earlier. Now, go ahead and hit the “Next” button. From there, Windows 8 should run smoothly through the rest of the setup process.

Finally, Use the Selected OS

Now, every time you boot your PC, you will be asked to select an OS. This is really up to you. If you want to test out Windows 8, go ahead and choose that OS. If you are tired of Windows 8 and yearn for Windows 7 days, keep using Windows 7. Booting both operating systems is a great way to use the new version of Windows 8 (you can download this from the Microsoft website), without trashing your older Windows 7 (just in case you aren’t a Windows 8 fan). I’m guessing that you will like Windows 8, but you might now. If you want your Windows 7 back, all you have to do is revert to that older version and go about your business.

Since the current version of Windows 8 is a trial version, there’s no need to commit to purchasing the new OS. When the full Windows 8 does pop up, you will be ahead of the game. As you can see, creating a dual-boot OS is really simple to do. In the end, testing out and comparing both versions of Windows will also benefit you.