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#1 2020-09-12 18:12:15

Registered: 2020-09-12
Posts: 4

Partitioning for a dual boot with seperate SSDs


My goal is to have Windows 10 and Arch installed on my system. The system currently has two SSDs installed. On SSDA, Windows 10 is already installed with three partitions (Recovery Partition, EFI System Partition (ESP), and C:). I would like to install Arch on SSDB which is currently just unallocated space. I have heard that if Windows already has created an ESP then you do not need to create one but is this true if the operating systems reside on separate SSDs like in my situation? I have also heard that to be safe, I could just remove SSDA, install Arch normally on SSDB then reinstall SSDA and make sure GRUB sees Windows. How should I go about this?

Thanks for your time!


#2 2020-09-12 21:53:06

Forum Moderator
Registered: 2012-10-16
Posts: 11,800

Re: Partitioning for a dual boot with seperate SSDs

Reuse the ESP Windows created... (there's no guarantee that your UEFI supports multiple ESP partitions (even though it should)) whether your Arch's root partition resides somewhere else is irrelevant, you will just pass the correct root partition to the initramfs anyway. What you will have to decide here is whether you want to use EFISTUB or so to boot the kernel image directly from the ESP, or opt for GRUB or refind to boot the kernel image directly from the linux partition. Depends a bit on what you want to do here, the default ESP size created by windows is usually on the smaller side and only sufficient for one or two kernels.

As for unplugging the windows drive that isn't necessary, this entirely depends on how comfortable you are on not making typos during partitioning and installing, if you know which of the drives is which and are consequent enough to do the proper operations on the correct device this isn't really necessary.


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