I’ve been looking into dual booting on my old MSI Gs70 gaming laptop when Pop!_OS 21.10 officially releases. I’ve technically been dual booting through a kind of hacky way since it had an HDD where I was would mess around in MX_Linux, but I’m interested in dual booting through the main drive (Well raid array. Old msi laptops are weird) just to say I could do it and have it work. My plan is to eventually delete the windows partition as windows 8.1 will no longer receive extended support in about a years time, plus the laptop doesn’t have tmp 2.0 chip so windows 11 is out of the question.
The only problem is that the EFI partition for my laptop is only about 300MB while pop OS recommends 500MB or so. Microsoft’s Reserved Partition (MSR). From what I’ve gathered is my options are to either:
- Create a second EFI partition only for Pop!_OS. Not the cleanest method but has worked when installing other distros to the HDD in the past.
- Reinstall windows on the machine and clean install the disk and create an EFI partition from scratch with the size I need. Probably the easiest method noob wise.
- Change the partition sizes and a move them through Gparted. Try my best to take it slow and carefully and insure the windows partition boots so I can also extend the EFI partition. If it doesn’t I may need to delete and recreate the MSR through the command line, and possibly use a system image to fix that install. The hardest method, and can easily be messed up.
- Stop being a wimp and just try to go full linux on the laptop early and just ensure all my data is properly backed up and off those drives before I do it. I’m really only doing this if I can get this to work at all/the way I want it to. I’d have to do it sooner or later anyways.
I’m willing to do any of these but option 1 I’ve read mixed advice on. I’ve read everything from “it should be fine” to “not best practice” to “You’ll run into issues since it’s out of spec/past the MSR.”
So in short I’m asking: How bad would it really be to have multiple efi partitions on the same disk/logical volume? Would I be better off with one of the other methods?
I mean I know dual booting is kind of messy regardless (with windows + Linux at least), but I figure is worth a try. For the experience, and better understanding of partitions and what not.