Originally Posted by Redeemed
Because of this I'm going to keep Win8 installed in a VM. Will have to learn the intricacies of this new OS so I may better serve any clients that are using it.
I went for a real install this time around, it's easier than you think to install it on your main PC *cleanly* without reformatting anything, and without even the need for a second drive. Uninstalling and reverting back to just windows 7 is even easier. Again I need to emphasize that this can be done VERY cleanly.
Go into disk management and shrink your windows partition (no reboot or anything - it can be done live.) Download a copy of easybcd and make a backup of your BCD.
Reboot and install windows 8 to the free space you just created. When its completely finished installing, reboot to windows 7, run easybcd and restore your BCD backup. Add a new entry in your BCD for that other partition with windows 8.
That's it, you'll have a dual boot, and no reformatting necessary.
To remove windows 8, simply boot to windows 7, go into disk manager and delete the windows 8 partition, expand your windows 7 partition back to fill the disk, and then restore the BCD from the backup you made. No reboot or anything necessary.
I've already done all of this a few times, both install and uninstall, and it works fine. Easybcd is pretty intuitive so it's a no brainer.