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Old 08-10-2008, 01:11 PM   #16
yancek
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I assume this is a typo: It get the menu i press <Enter> then i can select XP using arrow keys.

You should get a menu, use the arrow keys to select, then hit enter?

The menu.lst you posted shows hiddenmenu which should mean you boot default without seeing a menu? Your post of menu.lst shows default 1 and your menu.lst shows 1 as xp, Grub counts from 0 and your 0 entry (first one) is Fedora? Not really sure how this is working.
 
Old 08-10-2008, 03:49 PM   #17
fedora9victim
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yancek View Post
I assume this is a typo: It get the menu i press <Enter> then i can select XP using arrow keys.

You should get a menu, use the arrow keys to select, then hit enter?

The menu.lst you posted shows hiddenmenu which should mean you boot default without seeing a menu? Your post of menu.lst shows default 1 and your menu.lst shows 1 as xp, Grub counts from 0 and your 0 entry (first one) is Fedora? Not really sure how this is working.
Hi there,

These are very easily changed including the default boot partition.

Possibly the order gets changed between my posts as i dont sit about waiting for replies. My situation is urgent. With respect to the menu i did say i get a 5 sec countdown, i only get the menu if i press <Enter> although it could be any key....which sounds "hidden" to me. As it stands i dont believe menu lists are the problem.

The fact that i can go to the command line using 'c', and type my own commands would suggest the menu list is irrelevant..... if the partition is there i should be able to boot it from the command line. I cant.....although i receive no errors.

And yet all the partitions are accounted for when looking at them via FDISK. I can access the NTFS partitions from within Fedora as they get mounted via media/. This suggests the partitions are in good order.... at least as far as the partition acting as a container and having a filesystem tables, etc is concerned.

It also suggests the partition tables are still in good order, at least as far as addressing is concerned, because if addressing was bust then i wouldn't be able to access them.

As i understand it the MBR is comprised of a couple of sections, one for the boot loader code and another for partition tables. It seems the latter is in good order as per my reasoning above. The fact that i can get a boot menu/command line also suggests the first section of the MBR has been properly filled with GRUB code. So I dont see anything wrong with that section in terms of structure.

So then i thought that the problem lay with the PBS of the NTFS partition. But I downloaded a tool called TestDisk. According to TestDisk all the partitions are there and accounted for. It reported no problems. It also has a function to test PBS. It said the actual PBS of the NTFS partition matched its backup. I read online that Windows actually backs up the first sectors of the partition at the last sectors of the partition. So i assume this is what TestDisk was checking. This says to me that the PBS of the NTFS partition hasn't been altered by the FC9 install. Which would make sense - FC9 should be nowhere near the PBS of the NTFS partition.

There is a discrepancy between my PBS hex dump and that of a website i posted earlier - that said they should always be the same for XP installs. But then I looked on Wikipedia and the hex dump there was different again in certain addresses. So now I'm thinking that's probably just service pack differences etc and very unlikely to be the problem.

At this stage Im thinking the structure of my disk and partition is still perfectly valid and that the problem lies with some kind of activation parameter. I think FC9 has turned "something" off. I now understand what a previous poster was trying to do when he suggested inputting the hide - unhide commands. But no sequence of doing this seems to work from the command line. So now I'm totally stuck.

In my limited capacity to diagnose the problem it seems Ive tried all there is to try... and this whole situation now officially sucks.

Last edited by fedora9victim; 08-10-2008 at 04:02 PM.
 
Old 08-10-2008, 05:25 PM   #18
jomen
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Wouldn't it be worth a try to attempt to address this from the windows side?
I mean the rescue mode the original install CD provides.
Or some kind of universal rescue CD for windows.
If you search the many similar threads ("my windows does not boot anymore"...or so) there are almost always some such rescue-cd's mentioned (along with links where to get them).
I haven't tried these - did not have to because I don't have a windows partition - but I once used the XP-CD to boot into windows and fix the MBR so windows would boot.
After that you will need to reinstall grub or modify the XP-Bootloader in order to be able to access linux again. The fedora CD will help with that.
But your short term goal is to get to windows (?) so you need not worry about the last part now.
 
Old 08-10-2008, 05:37 PM   #19
yancek
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Yes, you're right, you do have a hiddenmenu which can be changed with a hash mark (#) in front of that line in menu.lst. Since you have default as 1, I assume your Fedora doesn't boot unless you run the commands manually? When you are at the menu, Grub is looking for the kernel (vmlinuz file) and initrd files and when selecting xp it looks for their equivalents on the windows partitions (ntldr, etc.). Perplexing problem since you have these files in your partition for windows.

Sorry, don't have any suggestions.
 
Old 08-10-2008, 05:48 PM   #20
fedora9victim
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Quote:
Wouldn't it be worth a try to attempt to address this from the windows side?
Hi there,

As ive said "I cant". The recovery option using the WInXP CD says "Checking System Configuration....." and then goes off into the same black hole as the failing boot. Dont even get to the standard blue screen/white writing that is common to the Windows install. I was going to use it to do a fixmbr and a fixboot.... but i cant even get that far. As it turns out I don't think either are the solution.

I did create a dos boot disk. And then used FDISK /mbr. The command itself worked but changed nothing. After i rebooted, the system just stepped from the VIAO splash screen to the no error - blank screen - while the hd activity indicator went off.

That also scrubs out the GRUB from the MBR so i had to reinstall FC9.

If only i could get a boot log or some kind of error then Id have something to work with... but every utility and method i try essentially just says "everythings cool".

Thanks

Last edited by fedora9victim; 08-10-2008 at 05:56 PM.
 
Old 08-10-2008, 08:10 PM   #21
syg00
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That boot sector looks like a (valid) Windoze one all right. Incorrect installations of a different boot-loader (Linux or otherwise) replaces the boot sector - it doesn't "corrupt" just a portion of it. As for your comment re the data looking different - don't read things too literally. All my systems have different data to what he offers. That site has good info in it, but like all of us, he's working without the code, so it's a matter of "best effort".
The fact that the fdisk /mbr (which is equivalent to fixmbr) doesn't correct the problem is a worry. That says to me there is a structural problem in the NTFS filesystem. If it were me, I'd pull the disk out and stick it in another (working) Windoze machine and chkdsk it.
 
Old 08-10-2008, 09:03 PM   #22
fedora9victim
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Well out of shear desparation I've managed to resolve the problem. Given that nothing else seemed to work and because i figured after all my back and forth theorizing that FC9 had deactivated "something", i decided to use a dos boot disk and step into fdisk.

I simply deleted every partition other than my primary NTFS partition with WinXP on it. I figured if there was nothing left but WinXP it simply must boot... and it did.

Im now back in the wonderful world of Windows. Woooo hooo.

Thanks for everyones help, thoughts and corrections.

Im done. Enjoy ur Linux.... feel free to let us know when its finally ready for general release.... otheriwse I'll check back in in 5 years time

Good bye.
 
Old 08-11-2008, 05:21 AM   #23
Randux
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