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Dual-boot Windows 7 and Kali Linux

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The next partition will be mounted at /. A new installation of Kali Linux takes up about 6.4 GB of disk space, so any amount greater than that will do. For the test installation, I gave it 60 GB, which is way too much, so you do not have to do the same. About 10-12 GB is more than enough. Continue.
Dual-boot Windows 7 and Kali Linux

Here are the details of the new partition. Scroll to “Done setting up the partition,” then click Continue.
Dual-boot Windows 7 and Kali Linux

For the home partition, I gave it a disk space of 100 GB. Continue.
Kali Linux 1.0

Here are the details of the new partition. Scroll to “Done setting up the partition,” then click Continue.
Dual-boot Windows 7 and Kali Linux

For Swap, 2 GB is good enough. Continue.
Dual-boot Windows 7 and Kali Linux

Here are the default details of the new partition. To specify that it be used as a Swap partition, double-click the “Use as” line.
Kali Linux

Then select “swap area.” Continue.
Kali Linux Windows 7 dual-boot

Scroll to “Done setting up the partition,” then click Continue.
Kali Linux dual-boot Windows 7

With all the partitions created, scroll to “Finish partitioning and write changes to disk.” Continue. Make note of the device number of the boot partition. Here, it is sda5. You’ll need it later.
Dual-boot Windows 7 and Kali Linux

Select “Yes.” Continue.
Dual-boot Windows 7 and Kali Linux

By default, the installer will want to install GRUB, the boot loader, in the Master Boot Record (MBR). However, for setting up this dual-boot system, we want GRUB in the boot partition. So, select “No.” Continue.
Dual-boot Windows 7 and Kali Linux

This is where you have to specify where GRUB should be installed. For this test system, it is /dev/sda5. Continue.
Dual-boot Windows 7 and Kali Linux

After installation, the computer will reboot into Windows 7. The next task involves add an entry for Kali Linux in Windows 7’s boot menu.

3. Add Kali Linux to Windows 7’s boot menu: The simplest graphical application for modifying the Boot Configuration Data of Window that I know, is EasyBCD. It is free for personal use. You may download it from here. Install it as you would any other Windows application. The main window is shown below. To add an entry for Kali Linux in the boot menu, click on the Add New Entry tab.
Windows 7 EasyBCD

Then click on the Linux/BSD tab. From the Type dropdown menu, select GRUB 2. Modify the name field to reflect the name of the distribution you are adding. From the Drive menu, you can either select the specific partition corresponding to the boot partition of the Kali Linux installation or let EasyBCD automatically locate and load it. Either one will work. Note that EasyBCD’s drive numbers and the device numbers of the Linux partitions do not match. For example, in this test installation, the boot partition is /dev/sda5, but the corresponding drive number in EasyBCD is Partition 3. The size of the partition helps to determine which one it is. Click the Add Entry button when wll the options have been specified.
Windows 7 EasyBCD Linux GRUB 2

From the Edit Boot Menu tab, you can see a preview of the entries that will appear in the Windows 7 boot menu. Exit EasyBCD and reboot the computer. That should do it.
Windows 7 Kali Linux EasyBCD Preview

Extra: Here are all the partitions on the HDD as seen from the Windows 7 partition manager.
Windows 7, Kali Linux Partitions

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95 Comments

  1. Sem says:

    Hi,

    I followed your instructions and the installation went great, but it doesn’t load up grub. So I tried EasyBCD and I get this: Minimal BASH-like line editing is supported
    For the first world, TAB lists possible command completions.Anywhere else TAB lists the possible completions of a device/filename]
    grub>

    Also tried changing grub timeout, but it didn’t work.

    • finid says:

      What version of Kali did you install? If the latest (recommended), use this article as a guide. Failing to set the boot EFI partition during the installation of Kali is a known cause of boot errors.

  2. anirudh says:

    Thus i need to format my drive while making partition for kali linex os?

  3. Muzammil says:

    Hello Please Fix My Problem I Am Doing All Step But When I Start Kali Linux Is Open Grub> Now i Dont know how to start kali linux Please Fix My Problum Please And Add Me On Facebook muzammilmuju@yahoo.com add me please and solve this problum please

    • finid says:

      Sorry, dude, I’m not on Facebook, so I can’t add you.

      However, a little bit more info about your hardware will elp in helping you figure out what to do next. Does your computer come with UEFI firmware?

      From that GRUB error, it does look like the boot loader files where not installed properly.

      If your computer has UEFI firmware, or even if it doesn’t, see the section on boot loader installation from Figures 6 to 13 in this tutorial for a clue on what to do.

  4. MARVELOUS says:

    Please how do i install RT3070 drivers on kali linux for my wirrsless adapter?

  5. MARVELOUS says:

    AM having problem dual booting kali linux and window 7 on my pc it do say software RAID not available when it gets to partitioning disks. Pls i need your help

    • finid says:

      Well, what is your HDD configuration. How many do you have, and are they in a RAID set up?

      • MARVELOUS says:

        pls i don’t understand that HDD configuration, how do i know my HDD configuration.
        my HDD is 500gb. but it is the kali linux mini downloaded. hope you get that?

        • finid says:

          What type of PC do you have? How many hard drive does it have? How is the disk partitioned? etc. If the disk(s) is not part of a RAID setup, the installer should not be saying anything about RAID software.

          • MARVELOUS says:

            am using hp probook 4540s, i think there are four partitioned disks there, one is Local disk(c:) another one is HP_RECOVERY(D:), another one is SYSTEM(G:), another one is HP_RECOVERY(E:). (D:),(G:) and (E:) are primary partition.

          • finid says:

            Ok, those are not disks. They are partitions of a single disk. If D, G and E are all primary partitions, then C is also, which means, if the partitioning scheme is not GPT, then you can’t install anything else unless you first delete one of the partitions and create a logical partition from it.

            If you don’t mind doing without a recovery partition, the only partitions you can delete are D and E. What are their sizes?

          • MARVELOUS says:

            how do i create a partition in GPT scheme. (D:) contains 19.3GB while (E:) contains 1.98GB

          • finid says:

            You can’t change the partition scheme with another OS still running. You’ll have to wipte the disk and reinstall to make that type of change.

            You need to be absolutely sure what the partitioning scheme used is. To do that, from Linux, boot into the Kali Linux live disk, then launch a shell terminal and type, as root, fdisk -l. What is the value of Disk label type? I think you should read http://www.linuxbsdos.com/2014/11/08/a-beginners-guide-to-disks-and-disk-partitions-in-linux/ to brush up on this.

            If the partitioing scheme is not GPT, you’ll need to delete one of the recovery partitions before you can install any other OS on that disk.

          • MARVELOUS says:

            have checked it my partirion scheme is MBR not GPT, what can i do? do i have to convert it to GPT or what do i do? Thanks for your positve response

          • finid says:

            If it’s MBR and you have 4 primary partitions, you could probably convert it to GPT if your computer meets the specs. I’ve never done it, but if you google for it, you will find articles that will show you how.

            If it’s not possible, your other option is to delete one of the recovery partitions, or even both of them, then use the combined space to install Kali. If the combined space is too small, you can shrink the C drive.

          • finid says:

            It’s doubtful that you can convert a disk with an OS on it from one partitioning scheme to another.

          • MARVELOUS says:

            Please how do i install RT3070 drivers on kali linux for my wirrsless adapter?

          • MARVELOUS says:

            please how do i install pdf reader on kali linux. thanks

      • MARVELOUS says:

        i think the best thing to do is to delete the E: and D: partition

        • finid says:

          But not before checking if you can backup any data in there that you might need.

          Deleting both willl free up about 21 GB, which is more than enough to install Kali.

          • MARVELOUS says:

            mr. finid still the same thing, i even used a partitioning wizard to change it to logical partition still saying software raid not available, it is even saying logical volume manager not available (LVM). Is it because i downloaded the mini version, and is because it is debian?

          • finid says:

            Try downloading Linux Mint 17.1 and see what happens. The download link is here. The installer is a bit more user-friendly. I’ll like to see if it says anything about software RAID.

          • MARVELOUS says:

            i think this linux mint is not free i have to buy it, and there is no how i an get it because am from Nigeria. And asper the debain linux i was talking about, i think i figure out the problem, the problem is from detecting disk, you know it will first detect disk before going to partitioning, and i think when it get to detecting disk, it do say no disk detected, please select a drive needed by your disk and it will list some options which i don’t understand, then i do select continue with no disk drive and the debian tries to load it from their website, that it when it do say software RAID not available and under it it will write some notes like this,the available kernel doesn’t seem to support software RAID (MD) devices. This should be done by loading the necessary modules.
            DID YOU GET THAT?

          • finid says:

            Mint is free. the installer will make it easier to see the partition layout on the disk. Download the Cinnamon desktop from any link at http://blog.linuxmint.com/?p=2714

          • finid says:

            ninja! una don pafuka everything. But no wahala, Mint na free. Just download am and install.

          • MARVELOUS says:

            victory at last master finid i downloaded kali linux full version worth of 3GB and i successfully install it on my pc and also dual boot it with window 7.Thank you so much. But there is a problem. I can’t login to the main kali after booting. How do i login?. Thanks in advance

          • finid says:

            You should have specified a password for the root account during installation. Clicking on the login screen will bring up the password field. Enter the password you specified during installation.

            See also Create a standard user account on Kali Linux. You may view other Kali-specific article at linuxbsdos.com/category/kali.

          • MARVELOUS says:

            Thnaks Mr finid it works, av created a standard user on my kali linux, thank you so much you’ve been a good master. I would like you to follow me up so as to know the proper usage. Thanks

        • MARVELOUS says:

          Please how do i install RT3070 driver on kali linux for my wireless adapter ?

  6. Frank says:

    Thanks, worked perfectly.

  7. siddarth says:

    hi, i have win 8.1 in my c drive , and i have 2 other partitions, i have installed kali in a 30gb(sda #7) partition , but at the last step of installation while we have to install grub , it says “no other operating system detected” so its not detecting windows , now i chose option “no” and gave /dev/sda7 . now i restarted and went into windows and with easybcd i added kali option in boot menu , but when i click on that option it doesnt boot into kali it says some files missing

    • finid says:

      I’m guessing that since you’re installing Windows 8.1, that the hardware has UEFI firmware. If true, this is not the right guide to use.

      Does you computer use UEFI firmware?

      • siddarth says:

        yes the bios mode is uefi , what is the correct way to do it?

        • finid says:

          Log into Windows and delete the partitions that were created when you attempt to install Kali. Then make sure that you have a single partition with enough space for Kali, so when you start the installation process, point the installer to that free space. I haven’t tried this with Kali, so I’m not sure, but it might be necessary to partition the space manually.

          Kali will install GRUB to the /boot/efi partition, so you will not need to use EasyBCD.

          I’ll try and write a detailed tutorial on this this week.

          by the way, what PC model are you using?

          • siddarth says:

            acer travelmate p643-m

          • siddarth says:

            u mean install kali on the same partition as windows?

          • finid says:

            No, install Kali on a separate partition. That will likely be space that you used in the previous attempt. I just wanted to make sure that that space will be in one partition, since from the previous installation attempt, the Kali installer had partitioned that space into at least 2 partitions

            If you’ve not done this before, you might want to hold on while I put together a detailed tutorial on how to do it.

            When you log into Windows, how many partitions do you see from the partition manager. If you can take a screenshot and post it at the forum. That will help me in getting the tutorial right.

          • siddarth says:

            where should i upload screenshot? btw i can see 5 partitions ,
            300 mb healthy(recovery partition),
            c drive has windows
            new volume d has other files
            and there is a 29.30 gb partition in which i hav installed kali its healthy(EFI partition),
            and 100mb healthy(EFI system partition)

          • finid says:

            No need to upload the screenshot.

            Ok, is D a partition that you made yourself, right?

            If you installed Kali, there should be more than 1 Linux partition for it, though Windows will only see then as “healthy primary partitions”. IF you want to retry the installation, delete the Kali partition, so it is blank. Then retyr the installation. The Kali installer will install GRUB in the EFI system partition. If it does not offer automatic disk partitioning and you have to create the partitions manually, do not create a boot partition. Only create a partition for root and Swap. Optionally, you may create one for /home.

          • siddarth says:

            what about the 100mb (efi syatem partition) is it related to kali , should i delete that too before re-installiing?

          • finid says:

            No, don’t touch that. That was created by Windows, but Kali will install GRUB there.

          • finid says:

            I have a solution, which I’ll publish in a detailed tutorial before noon today.

          • siddarth says:

            ok give me the link

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