I want to do a backup of Ubuntu to install windows 8.1 and then later on dual boot it with Ubuntu, without losing my data.

I'm currently using Ubuntu 15.10 operating system, and I sincerely love it, but I need windows 8.1 in order to play some games. So, my first idea was backing up all of my data in a external hard drive of 1TB, install windows 8.1 and then install Ubuntu again but without losing any of my data. I've tried to backup everything in hard drive before, and i did, but, later then when i reinstalled Ubuntu i didn't know how to restore my files!

Is that possible? If so, i would be really happy if someone could help me with this.

Also, I accept any suggestions that not backing up in an external hardrive.


http://www.everydaylinuxuser.com/2015/11/how-to-install-ubuntu-linux-alongside.html https://help.ubuntu.com/community/WindowsDualBoot

you can shrink your ubuntu volume from a live usb/cd then install windows. if you do this correctly you should not lose any data.

it is easier to just copy your files to your external drive as a backup. It is also possible to completely image your hard drive and put it back(this will take alot of time) https://help.ubuntu.com/community/DriveImaging


If you will decide to apply a solution from @Frank's post (shrinking + installing Windows), good insurance is making an image of entire drive before that operation. It's hard to predict what Windows will do...

Boot frome Live CD, open gnome-disc-utility (it should be in system menu), select your drive, click on a three-lines icon on top right and use "Create image" option (of course you need enough free space on your backup media to fit entire first drive).

If something will go south, you will be able to easy restore entire drive 1:1 using "Restore image" option and maybe try again with different method/approach.


Knowing how to setup and reliably restore a backup is something every user should know. Go to the System Settings panel, to Backups (the black safe), and configure a back-up there.

Using a removable drive is very easy: plug in your drive, start Backups, choose the "Storage Location" panel in the left menu, and use the top drop-down menu to choose the correct storage device, and name your back-up in the field below.

Backing up will take some time, and when it is complete ensure that your backup is working by trying the Restore button in the "Overview" panel. Just by starting the Restore process it will need to open and verify the backup is working. Also, this is how you can access specific folders in the backup using "Restore Folder" > "Other" and choosing the files or folders you'd like to revert to.

If you keep up your good habits and are doing daily or (at least) weekly backups, you can revert to older versions of files directly in Nautilus, providing an integrated TimeMachine-like experience.

If you are successful with your Windows re-install, and then install 16.04 along-side it, you will be able to recover your data with Backups > Overview > Restore and just acknowledging the little complaints it makes if you have changed computers, username, or computer-name.

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