Visit Jeremy's Blog.
Go Back > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Distributions > Fedora
User Name
Fedora This forum is for the discussion of the Fedora Project.


Search this Thread
Old 06-21-2006, 10:10 PM   #1
LQ Newbie
Registered: Jun 2006
Posts: 10

Rep: Reputation: 0
Cant get dual boot working... please help

Alright, total Linux newb here but I really want to start using it. After a long day of struggling to get it working and trying three different distro's with none of the DVD's working I finally decided to try installing off my 2nd HD. So I have the FC5 ISO on device1 while XP is on device0. I was able to install it fine this way, having it allocate all empty space on device1 to the ext3 file format for FC5. So yah, it is installed and I was happy but then when I rebooted it just goes straight to XP. I searched around google and found a program called bootpart, so I ran it with the proper command lines to to create a file "bootsect.lnx" which I placed in my C:\ on the windows drive. I also changed the boot.ini in C:\ to include c:\bootsect.lnx="Linux". Rebooted, and it displayed Win XP or Linux, so I click on Linux and it goes to the next screen displaying some info about bootpart and then it just sat there. I don't remember the exact error it gave after a bit but something about placing the media in the drive.

I am ready to give up though. I tried reinstalling FC5 hoping grub or something magic would happen if I kept reinstalling, haha, but of course that didnt happen. I notice everyone talking about GRUB here on the forums to dual boot but I can not boot FC5 so there is no way for me to install anything Unix.

The partitions are pretty normal.
2 IDE Drives
0 - 200g - WinXp
1 - 150g - 10g vFat for the FC5 ISO with the rest for Linux

In partition magic it shows 1 as having:
* - unallocated - 7mb
* - extended - 10g
Local Disk F - FAT32 - 10g
Local Disk * - Linux ext3 - 102mb
Local Disk G - Type 8E - 142.5g

When installing FC5 I told it to just use all the unpartitioned space and set up default partitions and that is what it set up, the ext3 and 8E.

I am ready to start pulling the hair straight out of my scalp after rebooting my pc as many times as I have today so if anyone has any advice or could point me in the right direction that would be great.

Thanks in advance.

PS. I know FC5 is installed fulled because I went into rescue mode and was trying to figure out the commands. Granted I did not figure them out, but I typed in find at one point and it just spammed me for like 3 minutes with every file installed on the Linux drive.

Last edited by trancekid; 06-21-2006 at 10:12 PM.
Old 06-21-2006, 10:48 PM   #2
LQ Veteran
Registered: Aug 2003
Location: Australia
Distribution: Lots ...
Posts: 12,557

Rep: Reputation: 1085Reputation: 1085Reputation: 1085Reputation: 1085Reputation: 1085Reputation: 1085Reputation: 1085Reputation: 1085
Change the BIOS to boot the second drive - what happens ???.
Old 06-22-2006, 06:00 PM   #3
Registered: Apr 2003
Distribution: Fedora
Posts: 126

Rep: Reputation: 15
I had the same problem. What I did was used partition magic(dos/windows) or Qtparted(linux) to partition 102mb on the first hard drive(0) the winxp one, then linux can load grub or lilo on that partition and boot both os's.
Old 06-22-2006, 06:45 PM   #4
LQ Newbie
Registered: Jun 2006
Posts: 10

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
When I have it boot off the second drive it says there is an error loading the operating system. Could the problem have to do with the fact that I have the 2nd drive set up like this?


I have read that the boot files need to be in the first 8 gigs or so of the hard drive but it also seemed that the info was very outdated so I pretty much ignored it considering my pc is not even 2 years old yet.

Gfem: How did you go about installing Grub? I can only get into Rescue mode and I do not have a floppy drive. I have obviously cd/dvd and a USB flash drive. Could I install grub off a cd or flash drive in rescue mode? If so, how do i access the drive from rescue mode? I dont know many of the Unix commands yet, just df and ls -al really...

One other thing. I was actually trying to do something like this last night, installing a shared partition on device0 to get the bootsect file from linux then install grub with it. But once I got into rescue mode the /boot partition i made wasnt showing up then it later told me i cant have two /boot partitions. Even though I only see one.

Should I try to reinstall with a custom partition set up instead of the default? Because everyone says to make like a /boot /swap / /root partitions but the default setup only made two for me.

Thanks for any help.

Last edited by trancekid; 06-22-2006 at 06:51 PM.
Old 06-22-2006, 07:35 PM   #5
LQ Veteran
Registered: Aug 2003
Location: Australia
Distribution: Lots ...
Posts: 12,557

Rep: Reputation: 1085Reputation: 1085Reputation: 1085Reputation: 1085Reputation: 1085Reputation: 1085Reputation: 1085Reputation: 1085
Originally Posted by trancekid
When I have it boot off the second drive it says there is an error loading the operating system.
That's o.k - means you didn't install grub to the MBR of the second disk, which is what I wanted to check.

When you reboot, *immediately* after the BIOS messages, hit the <ESC> key.
See if you get a grub menu - if so, select Fedora and see what happens.
Old 06-22-2006, 07:59 PM   #6
Registered: Nov 2003
Location: Downey Ca
Distribution: Fedora 11
Posts: 222

Rep: Reputation: 30
Try This

Fedora Core 4 Install

This by all means may not work for everybody.

I run an Intel D865perl motherboard with 2.6 gig Intel processor with 1 gig of ram. Two 250 gig
hard drives. The first hard drive is for Windows XP. Second hard drive is for Fedora and data

Drive 2 the first 40 gig is Fedora and the second 210 gig is for files backups and Norton ghost 2003
images. Which I never doing anything without a current image file it will save your butt.

Install Fedora Core 4 on the second hard drive and use the automatic partitioning tool but don't
put grub on your Master MBR put it on the first sector on your second drive. When you get to the
Boot Loader Configuration screen make sure you check the Configure advanced boot loader
options. The next screen will give the option where to put Grub Boot Loader. It should say like
hda or hdb. Hda is usually your XP Drive. From their finish loading. Put it on hdb.

Now duel booting using XP boot manager (My Preference. I don't like third party boot managers.)

Use your rescue CD to boot to Fedora.
Hit enter at the boot prompt.
Hit enter for English
Hit enter for us
Setup network select no
At the rescue screen select continue
At the next rescue screen hit enter
Now you have a prompt sh-3.00#
At the prompt type in chroot /mnt/sysimage
If hdb2 is Not your boot partition, change it as appropriate. Type: df then determine which hda#
Run the command dd if=/dev/hdb2 of=boot.lnx bs=512 count=1
You should see
1+0 records in
1+0 records out
Type ls and you should see a file named boot.lnx
Put a blank floppy disk in your a: drive
Type mcopy boot.lnx a:
It should have copied the file to your a: drive

Now reboot to Windows

Copy boot.lnx to your root directory
Right click on your boot.ini file select properties and uncheck read only click ok
Double click your boot.ini file and add one line at the end it should read
C:\boot.lnx="Fedora Core 3". Then save it. When you reboot your XP boot
manager will come up and you can chose Fedora it jumps to the Grub Boot manager on your
second drive.

My file looks like this

[boot loader]
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(0)(1)\windows="Microsoft Windows XP Pro SP2"
/fastdetect /NoExecute=OptIn
c:\boot.lnx="RedHat Fedora Core 3 Project"

You call it anything you want
Old 06-22-2006, 08:06 PM   #7
LQ Newbie
Registered: Jun 2006
Posts: 10

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
I will give this a shot when I go home, but I do not have a floppy drive. Can I use a USB flash drive or will it not detect a flash drive in Rescue Mode?
Old 06-23-2006, 12:57 PM   #8
LQ Newbie
Registered: Jun 2006
Posts: 10

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
I tried the esc thing and got nothing. But while installing FC5 there is never an option for the boot loader. When I go to update/edit the install with the CD I can add Grub but then when it goes to install it, I get the no kernels installed or some message like that. I will try to find grub and install it through rescue.
Old 06-25-2006, 11:10 AM   #9
short circut
Registered: Jun 2006
Distribution: Fedora Core, and Gentoo eventually, but i hate (XKEU)buntu
Posts: 48

Rep: Reputation: 15
wow this actually worked. i cant beileve it.


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Dual boot option not working Perquisitor Linux - General 1 04-13-2006 04:51 PM
Dual Boot option is not working. lowrida Linux - Newbie 24 08-02-2005 05:58 PM
Dual-Boot Working-ish noromamai Slackware 4 09-11-2004 11:37 AM
How I got XP and Linux working (dual boot) wellmt Member Success Stories 3 06-23-2004 02:33 AM
grub/dual boot not working? pcdebb Fedora 6 12-03-2003 12:17 PM

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:37 PM.

Main Menu
Write for LQ is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions @linuxquestions
Facebook: linuxquestions Google+: linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration