I'm looking to run a linux ISO from within windows 7, say Tiny Core Linux.

I have tried StartLinux, and extracted its contents in a folder with the ISO file. It started fine but, after a while, I recieved a blue screen and the computer rebooted. Linux also didn't see the Hard drive, but that was alright (for my limited needs).

I have also tried mounting the ISO using Ultraiso, and used StartLinuxCD but the boot never continued in the first place.

I also booted Tinycore normally with a USB stick, but it didn't start the GUI, but that's another matter.

I have tried downloading Cygwin, but I never understood how it works :S

Is their any other way I can run Linux from within windows for a beginner like myself, without problems?

I'm looking to do very simple tasks in Linux; like opening the BASH, or getting familiar with the tools, while reading the documentation from Windows or the internet.

  • Re: Cygwin, one of the very first things on the page is, "Cygwin is not a way to run native Linux apps on Windows." It is a native Windows system for running software that was designed to run on Linux, but which is recompiled to run on Windows. That is, someone needs to rebuild the software under Cygwin. You can't use it to run existing Linux binaries. Mar 28, 2014 at 9:55

3 Answers 3


You can install Linux in a virtual machine, check Virtualbox.

  • Or run the Linux ISO mentioned by Ray. This way, not even you have to bother with install. Just be very careful to choose a 32 bit system (unless you are sure to have a windows7 installed with the proper VT-X mode activated on BIOS).
    – Ouki
    Mar 28, 2014 at 8:26
  • But Qemu is also a virtual machine method. How can I prevent it from causing the "Blue screen" ?
    – Ray
    Mar 28, 2014 at 9:52
  • @ray: while qemu and VirtualBox do the same sort of thing, they're completely different products. Just because one of them bugs out on your system doesn't mean the other will.
    – Mat
    Mar 28, 2014 at 11:36

Try MobaliveCD 2.1.

MobaLiveCD is a free (GPL) portable application that will run your Linux LiveCD on Windows thanks to the excellent emulator called "Qemu". MobaLiveCD allows you to test your Live CD with a single click: after downloading the ISO image file of your favorite Live CD, you just have to start it in MobaLiveCD and there you are, without the need to burn a CD-ROM or to reboot your computer.


Use Rufus or some ISO burner to place the contents into a USB or CD. Change the boot order to boot from the CD or USB and, there. You have your Linux installed in your computer.

However, if you do not want to affect your current files (may it be Windows, Mac or another Linux OS) I recommend running a virtual machine like VMWare or VirtualBox - something like that - and you'll be fine. I recommend reading the tutorials before installing your Linux.

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