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Just Ordered XPS m1530


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I just ordered an XPS m1530...a deal I couldn't pass up.

$2558 minus $599 instant savings minus 12% employer discount minus 10% ecoupon wound up being over $1k off...$1,536.52

Pretty much completely decked out. T9300 2.5GHz with 6Mb L2, 4Gb RAM, 320Gb HDD, amazing 1920x1200 resolution on a 15.4" screen, etc, etc.


Anyway, in anticipation I wanted to know how I need to partition the hard drive to get a tripple boot system working.

I know how to dual boot Windows XP and Linux, but this new laptop has Vista on it and I have never ran OSX.

So I'm in the dark on how to install Vista, Linux, and Leopard.


I know XP always wipes out the MBR and I need to reload grub anytime I re-install it.


Can Vista, and Leopard boot from grub? If so that would be nice since I'm somewhat familiar with it.


How about sharing a filesystem?


On my XP / Linux setup I have my shared drive as an ext3 filesystem which I can read/write to from XP using fs-driver.org. That sites also says it works with Vista which just leaves one OS. Can OSX read/write ext3?

If so, I'd probably do 20Gb for each OS and then the rest as a shared data drive which they can all access.


Anyway, I'm looking for recomendations so that when I get my computer I can at least format it the right way ahead of time even if I don't get around to installing OSX for a bit I can at least have a partition set aside for it.


Right now I'm guessing I'll spend most of my time in Linux, boot into Windows when I need to watch NetFlix online or any other stupid site that requires Microsoft, and I'll boot into OSX if I wanna edit a movie or something...who knows.


Anyway, thanks ahead of time.



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its actually quite easy to tripple boot. When it comes to most of you guys, im probably considered a noob. I didnt get much help here, probably like you wont for this sort of question


The way i did it was install vista. I then poped in a LIVE ubuntu (or whatever linux distro you use). This allowed me to partition my hard drive into about 4 partitions.

An NTFS partition already existed for vista, then i put aside 20gb ext3 for ubuntu, and 15gb for mac osx leopard. I didnt want to allocate to much to osx because i knew for a fact drivers arnt yet ready for the standard intel 3945g wcard, and it turned out i couldnt get my sound card to work after hours and hours either.


So enough with the ranting, allocate whatever you want for a linux partition, dont worry too much about the format of your osx partition because you can format it using the osx install disk, just make a partition space for it. Then you want a fat32 partition for sharing data between the multiple o/s.


So you have installed vista, then install your linux distro with grub. Grub should be your main boot loader, you can then access the grub.lst file in your ubuntu partition to change it to include a windows and mac osx boot option (plenty of guides avail for this). This will allow you to boot all 3 o/s from one boot loader. Then install mac osx with darwin boot loader on the same partition. Chances are it will override the grub loader, so you will want to re-active the grub loader (again guides are available).


Once you have all 3 installed, you should be able to select the 3 o/s. Selecting your mac osx choice will load darwin boot loader, which you will just select mac osx again and hey presto.


It sounds quite straight forward, but it took me days to tweak things and install in the right order / re-active things effected by another install so that everything works.

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Sorry to hear that I need to use FAT32.

Not that I care too much about one filesystem over the other, but I know that FAT32 doesn't like Linux file permissions or symbolic links.

Would be nice if OSX could read/write ext3.


Thanks for the info. I'm not too familiar with Dell's install DVDs. It would be nice if it can install to a partition. I have seen other OEM OS install cds and some of them repartition to 1 partition no matter what which would wipe out my other OS's

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