I've been reading posts about some people installing FC4, and upon completion rebooting their machine...only to go straight into XP. This is happening to me, too, and I'd like to ask some advice about which path to try first.
First, some background.
I just installed a 200GB Seagate harddrive on the secondary of my secondary IDE. I made sure to upgrade XP to service pack 1 (i'm staying away
from SP2), and updated the BIOS, and the atapi files. The 138GB barrier shouldn't be a problem here.
Thus my IDE config looks like:
Primary: (master) = old hard drive. Where XP boots from.
Primary: (slave) = CD-ROM.
Secondary: (master) = DVDRW.
Secondary: (slave) = new hard drive. Where Linux should boot from.
I split up this new hard drive as follows:
30 GB - fat32. To be shared by both.
30 GB - fat32. Shared.
30 GB - fat32. Shared.
30 GB - fat32. Shared
100MB - boot for FC4.
80GB - just for FC4.
Thus LBA shouldn't be an issue regardless (for booting), since the FC4 boot is within the limit. So I don't think
this is the problem but I'm not ruling it out.
When I installed FC4 I told it to place the boot loader in the master MBA. That didn't work, so I re-ran the install to "change boot loader config" to the first sector of the primary boot. That hasn't worked either.
I'm pretty sure the problem is it isn't seeing the GRUB booter at all. I've tried copying the Linux boot sector into my C:\ drive (XP's space), and then modified the boot.ini appropriately. I did this by mounting one of the shared drives, running "dd if=/dev/hdd3 of=/tempMount/linux.bin bs=512 count=1", then going into Windows, moving linux.bin to C:\, and finally modifying the boot.ini. No luck. When I select the option to boot Linux (from the menu that appears thanks to the boot.ini changes), it then just gives me a blinking cursor. It's fun to watch for the first 10 minutes or so, but then I lost interest.
This should hopefully be enough background
...what should I do next? Should I reformat my new hd so that the /boot comes before those 4 shared 30GB partitions? Should I reformat my old hd by shrinking windows by about 100MB, and freeing up the first 100MB on my old hard drive, and putting the boot there? (My problem here is I'm not sure how to FREE those first 100MB. QTParted doesn't let me create free space at the beginning of the drive, only the end
Other suggestions are appreciated.