I have an existing dual-boot machine (A) with Windows 10 on the active drive and Linux (Mint) on another. Now I want to move the Linux drive to another existing Windows 10 machine (B) and configure it to dual-boot, but continue to use Windows on box A. How do I a) remove the Linux option from GRUB on (A) so that it will boot normally to Windows after removing the Linux drive (I'm giving the computer to someone else). b) install and configure GRUB on the new Windows machine (B) with only Windows installed?

closed as too broad by RalfFriedl, jasonwryan, JigglyNaga, GAD3R, Stephen Harris Dec 23 '18 at 20:54

Please edit the question to limit it to a specific problem with enough detail to identify an adequate answer. Avoid asking multiple distinct questions at once. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • Interoperability questions between Linux and other systems are NOT offtopic! – peterh Dec 23 '18 at 14:39
  • To get a usable answer you'd need to tell us more details - e.g. where is GRUB installed? Is it the drive with Linux or the one with Windows? – peterph Dec 23 '18 at 16:20

Grub is not MS-Windows standard bootloader. It was installed as part of the Linux. Hence It is better to see your dual boot as the main OS is Linux and its bootloader - Grub can start also other OSes it detected and included into its startup menu. If you get your disk with Linux away of the box, the grub will not find its main modules, and start will fail.

If installing dual boot, you always have to install MS-Windows first, say on the first sATA disk (/dev/sda) then Linux on the second (/dev/sdb) but the best practice is to write the sector zero part of the grub bootloader into the same HDD as the Linux was installed on (/dev/sdb) and then set the boot order in the BIOS (uEFI) so the first HD should be the second sATA. In this case, you can take the Linux disk safelly out and put it in some other machine (suppose you installed modules for all hardware), while the original box can be put into the functional state again by changing the boot order in BIOS back to the first sATA (where left the origianl Windows bootloader untouched).

In the new box, where you put your Linux HD, try to connect this disk again as the second sATA and set it in BIOS. During the Linux first run on the new box reconfigure the Grub.

Based on my opinion, the best solution is to install the linux only on the hardware, and the MS-Windows in the virtual machine such as KVM-Qemu or VirtuaBox.

  • This is all very interesting but I don't see that it actually answers what was asked. – roaima Dec 22 '18 at 22:40
  • You don't always need to install Windows first. You can, in fact, install grub after you install Linux and then Windows. It is harder, but it can be done. – Michael Prokopec Dec 23 '18 at 3:14
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    Yes, thank you for the detailed reply, but I know all that and it doesn't answer what was asked. I'm going to start experimenting and hopefully come up with the best answer without totally hosing something, and I'll post it. Or worst case, I'll post what not to do ;-) – Roger Penn Dec 23 '18 at 8:15

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