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Old 02-15-2008, 03:47 AM   #1
nonoitall
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Booting Vista Recovery CD from GRUB


If you don't like preambles, skip this first paragraph. A few weeks ago I got a new laptop. Like most laptops, all it came with was a utility to burn your own recovery DVDs. (Why manufacturers can't dish out the extra 50 cents and actually give us recovery DVDs with a computer is beyond me, but that's beside the point.) Anyway, it ended up using up two DVDs and all of the manufacturer bloatware gets installed along with the OS when the discs are used, which takes ages to install, and then even longer for me to uninstall afterwards. What's more, the recovery discs can't do things like partition the hard drive, or even install/configure Vista's bootloader if the OS is installed to a different partition than it was previously. So, I'm hoping I can whip up something that will fit on one DVD, be stripped of the bloatware and have utilities that are actually required for installing an OS.

So I have:
  • A compressed image of my OS partition (shiny clean and stripped of bloatware) that's a hair under 4GB
  • A Vista Recovery CD (for setting up Vista's bootloader after I copy the image to the hard drive) which runs 120MB
  • Parted Magic (for restoring the image to the hard drive and since its an awesome Swiss Army knife of useful stuff) that weighs in at 43MB

Basically, I want to put these three things onto one bootable DVD and have that be my slimmer and trimmer recovery disc. I've been reading about setting up GRUB to boot from a CD/DVD and am pretty sure I can manage that. I'm guessing it shouldn't be too hard to make GRUB boot Parted Magic, so the Vista Recovery CD is my only concern. Will it be possible to have GRUB boot into the VRCD? I can post a list of the CD's files if it would be pertinent.
 
Old 02-16-2008, 01:06 PM   #2
jailbait
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I suggest that if you want to boot a CD or DVD that you use Isolinux as your bootloader.

http://syslinux.zytor.com/iso.php

--------------------
Steve Stites
 
Old 02-17-2008, 03:41 PM   #3
nonoitall
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Before you replied I had given GRUB4DOS a shot and actually got the Vista Recovery portion of the CD to boot on my first attempt. For some reason I've had a heck of a time getting it to work with Parted Magic though. It acts like it's booting right and then there's an interrupt or something (I forget the exact error, but can check it again and post if it's relavent) and all I get is a terminal (no X) and access to none of the utilities that I need (ntfsclone, ntfsresize, gzip, bzip2, etc).

I'm not familiar with ISOLINUX, but I looked through the documentation a bit. How would one go about booting the Vista CD's bootmgr in an ISOLINUX configuration file? Alternatively, does anyone know how to boot Parted Magic properly using GRUB?
 
Old 02-17-2008, 07:29 PM   #4
bigrigdriver
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I don't know if this will work but you won't know unless you try.

Assume your cd drive is hdc. Add a stanza like this to your /boot/grub/menu.lst and give it a try.

title Parted Magic
root (hd2) # or possible root (hd2,0)
chainloader +1
 
Old 02-17-2008, 07:45 PM   #5
nonoitall
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Shouldn't that just make my CD boot again? As it stands now I've got the copied the files from the Vista Recovery CD and Partition Magic to my ISO's root directory. I also have GRUB4DOS's grldr in there along with its menu.lst file. I can just chainload the Vista CD with the following menu item:
Code:
title Windows Vista Repair Disc
root (cd)
chainloader (cd)/bootmgr
And that works perfectly. But so far I can't get Partition Magic to successfully boot - at least not the way that it does from a real PM live CD.
 
  


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