Originally Posted by integrale
AHA! We're on to something
so what now? The windows partition is the hda2 partition (NTFS) but it says it doesn't end on a cylinder boundary -- should I change that? How should I resize it? Thanks so much for your help.
Edit: also, I see that the HPFS/NTFS one isn't bootable - how do I change that?
Something like this happened to me but it was caused by bad or overheated memory and Windows would start to boot then stop suddenly.
I'm sure this is too late to help the original poster, but you can try this if you are following this thread for yourself, even though it's a long time later than the original post.
It WILL remove GRUB from your master boot record (MBR) and restore what you had before (your Windows boot sector). This may or may not work, depending on whether you were able to boot to Windows AFTER you resized the partition OR if you resized it so that Windows begins on the same spot on the hard drive as it did before. IF you resized it so that Windows starts later n othe drive than it did before (you created free space ahead of it from the Windows partition), I would not recommend doing this.
Boot your Windows XP/ME/etc. rescue disk
you don't need CDROM support, so say no to that
type fdisk /mbr at the DOS prompt, and make sure that all other hard drives that you have are unplugged before doing this in case you have other bootable drives!!!.
if all goes well, if you were able to boot after you resized the partition, or if your Windows partition still STARTS in the same place, you should be able to boot to Windows again--but not to Linux!
If you still can't boot to Windows, it's corrupted enough that you may not be able to easily recover from the disaster. Unless, of course, you did the backup you were supposed to do before making changes (that almost no one ever does). You can scrub the whole thing clean and start over or restore GRUB and have a Linux only system.
IF YOU CAN BOOT TO WINDOWS--Boot to Windows and let it repair the partition by updating the records it has of where Windows is on the disk. This happened to me and once I got that taken care of, I went back and restored GRUB and had a dual-boot. This is how I fixed a similar problem when something corrupted my Windows partition.
Next, you'll need a bootable disk with Knoppix or another live Linux CD and you'll need to read about how to restore GRUB. I can't give you directions on how to do that but it amounts to booting a live CD, opening terminal, navigating to where GRUB is located, and then running a command to restore your GRUB menu.