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Components for Building Computers From Scratch/Installing Dual Operating Systems in Smartphones and Tablets Devices.


QUESTION: Dear Bobbert

Is it possible to install multiple Operating Systems in a single Smartphone, Tablet Device ?.

i.e. Dual Booting a Smartphone or Tablet device with multiple mobile operating systems.

For examples :

1. Windows mobile 7 Os and Android 4.4 Os.
2. Android 4.4 Os and iphone os 7.
3. iphone os 7 and Windows mobile 7 Os.

Awaiting your reply,

Thanks & Regards,
Prashant S Akerkar

ANSWER: Generally no. Embedded operating systems are often "keyed" to certain hardware (especially in the case of Apple iOS), which will inhibit your ability to do this with commercially available devices. Dual-booting is, however, generally possible with more conventional computer hardware and a variety of operating systems (often it is seen on systems that run multiple versions of Windows in a development or testing environment, or hobby machines that run Windows and a POSIX operating system).


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------


Thank you.

Is it possible to have multiple BOOT ROM chips installed on the Mobile Devices viz Smartphones and Tablets ?.

Example : ROM 1 has Bios program option, ROM 2 has Windows 7 Os installed, ROM 3 has Android Os Installed on the Smartphone/Tablet Device.

The user gets a option to select BIOS program FROM ROM 1 chip
i.e. By pressing specific function key or any other key on the smartphone or tablet device which can access BIOS program.

If user selects Boot from ROM 2, Windows 7 Os will boot from ROM 2.
If user selects Boot from ROM 3, Android Os will boot from ROM 3.

There could be three combinations for these.

1. Theoretical correct, Practically easy.
2. Theoretical incorrect, hence Practically not possible.
3. Theoretical correct, Practically difficult but not impossible.

Similar to multiple Hard disk drives, Multiple LAN Cards, Multiple RAM Chips etc installation in a single computer, I feel it is possible to install multiple ROM chips in the Smartphone Device.

i.e. I Feel Theoretically yes.

Now remains the question of implementation, so it could be probably
option 3.

Awaiting your reply,

Thanks & Regards,
Prashant S Akerkar

3 is roughly a good answer. In principle this would work (you wouldn't actually want to boot separate BIOS, just storage for the operating-systems - the base hardware only needs one BIOS), but again you're dealing with proprietary hardware and may not be able to even remove/exchange the ROM or storage devices easily (they may be hard-mounted), and you're also likely dealing with software that will restrict its hardware support to specific devices (this is all external to legitimate hardware requirements, and has to do with legal things). What you've described, however, is also done relatively commonly on desktop machines with removable hard-drives - for example one disk has a complete Windows environment, and another has a complete BSD environment, and instead of dealing with a bootloader, the user just changes disks before booting the machine up. This allows for complete use of the hard-disk for the operating system chosen, but at the expense of files not being "shared" between operating environments (however if you stored commonly used files on an additional, non-booting, hard-disk that problem would be eliminated).


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I have nearly two decades of experience in IT, computer repair, and related fields and will attempt to provide the most solid, brand-agnostic advice when it comes time to purchase a new computer, or upgrade an existing machine. I can answer anything from the seemingly basic to the downright complicated - and will do my best to provide this information in a clear and concise manner.


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