So here I am with another Antergos tutorial. In this long tutorial, we are going to see how to dual boot Antergos Linux and Windows 8. or 10. I dual booted Antergos with Windows 10, but the procedure remains same for Windows 8 and Windows 8.1.
If you do not know already, Antergos is an Arch based Linux distribution that aims to provide Arch Linux experience to everyone, including beginners. Honestly, if you have never used desktop Linux, I would advise you to install Ubuntu or install Linux Mint. It is not that you cannot use Atergos if you have never used Linux before, it would just be a better experience if you are familiar with desktop Linux.
Before we see the procedure of installing Antergos along with Windows, let me tell you the hardware I have used in this tutorial. I am using Acer Aspire R13 laptop that comes with Windows 8.1 preinstalled with UEFI. I have upgraded it to Windows 10 and then installed Antergos on it.
The steps described here is intended for systems that come preconfigured with Windows 8/8.1/10. The reason is that the newer laptops come with UEFI boot. And the process to handle UEFI is slightly different. So, if you have the similar system, go on reading this tutorial.
- Windows with UEFI: This tutorial covers the systems that come preinstalled with Windows UEFI boot system.
- Back up your data: Most common and often ignored advice. Usually, I keep my documents backed up in Dropbox and pictures and music backed up in Copy cloud storage. It is up to you to decide how to backup your data. Just do not keep important stuff on your system’s hard disk.
- Have at least two USB drives: One of live Windows version and the other with live Antergos on it. This will ensure that in case something goes wrong, you can repair or re-install either of the two operating systems.
- Have a very good internet speed: Even if you download the ISO of full version of Antergos Linux (which is around 1.6 GB in size), you’ll still need to have a good internet speed because it requires to download the packages for the installation. The download and the installation take some time. Keep around 30-45 minutes free just for the installation.
- Patience: No, I am not kidding here. Patience is a virtue you must have for installing Antergos Linux. And the reason is Cnchi, the graphical installer in Antergos. This program is in beta and your installation may end abruptly before completion. Don’t you believe me? Look at It’s FOSS reader Wamari’s troubles with Antergos installation.
Once you have the prerequisites, let’s see how to install Antergos on top of Windows.
Dual boot Windows and Antergos Linux
Let’s go one by one over the steps to dual boot Antergos and Windows.
Step 1: Backup [optional]
Always good to have backups. If you want, you can read this article in detail on how to backup data in Windows.
Step 2: Download Antergos Linux ISO
There are two versions of Antergos Linux ISO. One is Antergos Live, around 1.7 GB in size. It comes preinstalled with a number of packages. If you could, prefer to download this one. The second version is Anergos Minimal which is around 450 MB in size and as the name suggests, it comes with minimal packages. Both versions have 32 bit and 64 bit builds. You can download Antergos from the link below:
Step 3: Create a live USB
Since the article is about dual booting with Windows, you can easily create a live USB in Windows using Rufus. I have written an article describing in detail how to create a live USB of Antergos with Rufus. Feel free to refer to it.
Also create a live USB of Windows. It is optional but if you have a spare USB key, better to have a live Windows USB ready. This gives a fall back option.
Step 4: Make free space for installing Antergos
The next thing you need to do is to free up some space where you would install Antergos. Anything above 30 GB should be good. The more, the merrier.
If you already have several partitions on your hard drive, delete one of them (prefer to delete the last one i.e if you have C, D, E and F drives, delete F), if you do not have important data on it because all the data on the aid partition will be lost.
If you have only one drive i.e. C drive, you need to shrink it to free some space.
Go to Disk Management tool. You can find disk management tool by searching for ‘disk’ in Control Panel.
In the Disk Management tool, right click on the drive which you want to partition and select shrink volume. In my case, I shrank the C drive to make some free space:
Now when you have some free space to install Antergos. Don’t rush. We still need to do a few things before dual booting Antergos with Windows.
Step 5: Disable fast startup
An advisable thing to do before installing Antergos is to disable fast boot in Windows.
To disable fast startup, go to Control Panel > Hardware and Sound > Power Options > System Setting > Choose what the power buttons do and uncheck the Turn on fast startup box.
If you have trouble check out this screenshot tutorial on turning off fast startup in Windows.
Step 6: Disable secure boot
This is a must to do thing for installing any Linux with UEFI boot system. If you won’t do this, you might end up with with no bootable device found or similar booting issue. Go to UEFI firmware settings and look for Secure Boot option under the Boot tab. Change the value to disable it.
If you do not know where to access it, refer to this tutorial to know how to disable secure boot. If you are using Acer laptops like me, read this article to see how to disable secure boot in Acer laptops.
Step 7: Change boot order to boot from USB
Since by this time you know how to access UEFI firmware settings. Just go in UEFI boot settings and under the Boot tab, change the boot order to USB or removable disk. This way when you plug in the USB, you will be booted from USB first instead of the hard disk.
Step 8: Install Antergos
We have everything set now for the installation. Insert the live USB of Antergos and reboot the system. Since you have changed the boot order to USB, you should be able to boot from Antergos live.
FYI, if you see that Antergos live session is not booting in to GUI and you only see commands running, turn it off and on again. I know it’s cliche but it actually works.
Once you are in the live session (default session is GNOME), you’ll be presented with the option to install Antergos.
You’ll be presented with a number of screens afterward. You just have to click next in most of them.
At one point, it will ask which desktop environment you want to install. There are six choices. Choose the one you prefer. I have chosen GNOME because it looks awesome when coupled with Numix theme.
Next it will give you the option to install some additional software. You can choose to install them or skip them for the moment. You choice.
When you come at the screen, here select the second option. If you choose the first option, you’ll lose Windows. In the second option, we’ll manually edit the partition and tell the system where to install Antergos.
You’ll see a partition table, something like the one below. If you have already made some free space, you should be able to see it. If you have not, just delete some partition (except C drive).
Select the free space partition and click on + New. In here, create a Root partition. Root partition is where the operating system will be installed and so will be the applications. An amount of 15-20 GB should be sufficient for it. But if you could give it more, it will be better.
The root partition will be of type ext4 and of type Primary.
Next is to create the /boot/efi partition. Actually, we don’t need to create it. Windows already have it. We can just specify the path to it. Just make sure to NOT format it.
In the screenshot of partition table, see the /dev/sda2 partition? This is where UEFI settings are and this where the system decides how to boot. The sda number could be different for you, but the label should be ESP and the type fat32. Select it and just add the mount point as /boot/efi
So, we have root, we have boot. Now make Swap partition of around the size of your system’s RAM. If you have more than 4 GB of RAM, swap memory size should be half of the size of RAM.
And in the similar fashion, create a Home directory. Home directory is where your documents, downloaded files and music will go.
That’s it. We have root, boot, swap and home. We are good to go. Hit on Install now to proceed with the installation:
Rest of the things are again a walk in the park. You’ll be asked to enter a username and password. I presume that you know what to do here.
As stated earlier, the Cnchi installer is in beta. So installation may crash abruptly. And you’ll have to start over again That’s just added pain that comes with Antergos for now.
Once everything goes fine, you’ll be asked to restart the system. Remove the USB after turning it off so that you boot from the disk. You should be seeing the grub screen with option to boot in to Windows or Antergos here.
I hope you find this tutorial helpful to dual boot Windows and Antergos Linux. Any questions or suggestions are always welcomed. If you try Antergos, do share your views.