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Now, this is kind of complicated to explain.

Both work just fine. Dual booting is done as intended, they both boot normally.

But, if I boot into Ubuntu and use it for any significant period of time, my next reboot into Windows will hard-reboot about 10 seconds after the OS "Welcome" screen appears. After this, I can boot into Windows normally and use it as long as I want, as long as I don't boot back into Ubuntu again, or this will occur again.

This only happens with Ubuntu based distros, like Linux Mint or Xubuntu. I tried with Debian, and it doesn't happen. It doesn't happen with <11.04, either.

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Have you tried running Startup Repair for Windows 7? I have had problems with Windows not booting after installing Ubuntu. Startup Repair fixed those problems. – Trevor Oct 14 '11 at 18:30
It boots. Startup repair doesn't work. I've even >completely< wiped the hard drive and started over with both OSes, as well as changing the order in which they were installed. Tried another HDD, too. – phuxed Oct 14 '11 at 22:06

This most likely is caused by the different versions of firmware Ubuntu and Windows are using for some devices.

Some devices (touchpads, tv-tuners, wifi adapters etc.) require certain firmware to be uploaded into them before they can be used. This is usually done by the device driver. The firmware is stored in the device's own memory and can survive a "warm" reboot. On boot, the driver checks if the firmware is already present and does not re-upload it - so, if you reboot into Windows after Ubuntu, and vice-versa, the system may mistakingly attempt to use a wrong firmware version, which causes all sorts of problems.

I mean, a hard-reboot is maybe a bit too extereme, Windows should've handled this more gracefully :)

There are 2 solutions I know about:

  • a cold restart (maybe even waiting for a few minutes after shutting the system down, disconnect the battery if it's a laptop)

  • do not boot into Windows. Who needs it anyway?

I use the second option.

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