(Revised 0417/13 - Improved series of Windows 8 installation screen shots)
The goal here is to create a Windows 7 and Windows 8 Dual Boot computer while protecting your investment in Windows 7 (should any problems occur) or you simply do not to continue using Windows 8.
At the time of this publication Windows 8 retail versions are only available as an “Upgrade” product. This means you will need a previously qualify OS (XP, Vista or Windows 7) currently not in use (not activated) in order to install Windows 8. Your only other option is the OEM version of Windows 8 Pro which includes a “Personal Use License”.
Installing Windows 8 to the “Unallocated” space you created overview:
Part 1 of this article covers how to: 1) Protect your investment in Windows 7 by creating an Image Backup. 2) Create the needed space on your hard drive for installing Windows 8.
If you have not done so, read Part 1. Then after you created your backup continue on.
Next verify and if necessary change the boot order so your PC will boot from your DVD drive. Do this by making the DVD drive the first device listed in the boot order with the hard drive your second device.
Boot the computer and quickly insert the Windows 8 DVD. Once your computer boots from the Windows 8 DVD, just install Windows 8 to the “Unallocated” space on the drive.
After you have installed and booted to Windows 8 for the first time, you'll be able to edit Windows boot settings to make Windows 7 boot by default instead of Windows 8.
Important: If you decide to go back to your previous operating system, you'll need to reinstall it from the recovery or installation media that came with your PC, which is typically DVD media. If you don’t have recovery media, you might be able to create it from a recovery partition on your PC using software provided by your PC manufacturer. Check the support section of your PC manufacturer’s website for more information. After you install Windows 8, you won’t be able to use the recovery partition on your PC to go back to your previous version of Windows.
This is reason enough for creating the Image backups covered in the first part (Part 1) of this article --->
Installing Windows 8 to the “Unallocated” space you created ----->