Dual boot Linux and Windows 8 on Dell Inspiron 14z
Got a Dell Inspiron 14z with a 500GB SATA hard drive and a 32GB SSD mSATA card. Laptop came with Windows pre-installed on the SATA HDD with the SSD serving as a cache using Intel's proprietory caching mechanism called Smart Response Technology (SRT). My objective was to keep Windows 8 and install Linux alongside it. Since it essentially has two hard drives, there are a couple of ways to go about dual booting. I decided to keep it simple and use each drive dedicated to each OS -- leave Windows on the big HDD (500GB SATA) and install linux on the smaller SSD (32GB mSATA card).
Disable Intel's proprietory caching in BIOS
During POST, hit F2 to enter SETUP, went to "Advanced" tab.
Under "SATA Operation", changed from "Intel(R) Smart Response Technology" to "AHCI"
Under "Intel(R) Rapid Start Technology", changed from "Enabled" to "Disabled"
Partitioning and Linux install
During Linux (Ubuntu 12.04 LTS) install, deleted the NTFS partition on /dev/sdb (32GB SSD), created a 31GB ext4 root partition (/dev/sdb1) and a 1GB swap partition (/dev/sdb2). Device for boot loader installation: /dev/sdb
Change boot drive in BIOS
After Ubuntu install finished, restarted, hit F2 to enter SETUP again, went to "Boot" tab.
Under "Boot List Option", change from "UEFI" to "Legacy"
Under "Boot Priority", put "Second HDD" above "Hard Drive".
This will cause the laptop boot into Linux by default.
To boot into Windows, just need to hit F12 during POST and choose "Windows Boot Manager" under "UEFI OPTIONS".
To recap, the first disk (HDD) is fully dedicated to Windows along with its own boot loader, while the second disk (SSD) is dedicated to Linux along with its own grub boot loader. This setup should hopefully be seemless for OS updates.