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Old 01-28-2006, 05:01 AM   #1
Zmyrgel
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Adding a second linux. [Guidance needed]


Okay,

I have installed succesfully SuSE 10.0 and Windows XP on my computer. Now I have extra 20Gb on the HD where the SuSE is installed and I thought to install Debian there to test that distro. I presume this is possible but I´m not sure how this is done. I have 2 hard disks, a 400Gb and 40Gb disks. The 40Gb is master and has Grub and SuSE istalled on it. The bigger has all "important stuff" and the Windows XP.

So I need a quick list of things to do to get this thing working.

1. Boot from debian CD
2. Make correct partitions (= unused 20gb -> ext3)
3. Problem: Do I need boot partition or swap and how to make them to work?
4. Install Debian
5. Add Debian's start command to Grub.

And what about the partitions. I have now the 40Gb disk partitioned as follows.
/boot 70mb
swap 512mb
/ 20Gb

Should I add another /boot, swap and root partitions or can I use existing boot and swap partitions?
This is what I think at the moment. I´m trying to move away from the windows as much as possible but as I am a gamer it´s kinda hard but I´m getting there

Last edited by Zmyrgel; 01-28-2006 at 06:45 AM.
 
Old 01-28-2006, 07:11 AM   #2
saikee
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I do one partition per Linux.

My signature should have everything you need up to over 100 systems.

You should do it "the lazy way" too as it is the easiest in the world.

Last edited by saikee; 01-28-2006 at 07:13 AM.
 
Old 01-28-2006, 08:55 AM   #3
pixellany
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You are 99% there---since you have dual-boot working.

Install debian with NO boot loader
Edit the existing /boot/grub/menu.lst (part of the SUSE installation) to add an entry for debian. If you look at the format of the entry for SUSE, it's pretty easy to see what the equivalent entry will be for Debian.
"Grub-speak" takes getting used to, and you may also want to get the grub manual (from the grub website)
 
Old 01-28-2006, 08:58 AM   #4
Nylex
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You can use your existing swap partition for Debian. Not sure about the boot partition, as I only ever have a root partition for Linux (well and swap of course) and no separate ones for boot, or anything else.
 
Old 01-28-2006, 09:04 AM   #5
pixellany
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No--you cannot share the /boot partition
 
Old 01-28-2006, 09:07 AM   #6
saikee
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I have one swap and it is automatically picked up for use by all the Linux.

The /boot is an old tradition to keep the kernel and the boot loader at the bottom end of the hard disk to avoid difficulties of addressing a large hard disk. Modern Linux don't have this problem any more but documentation has been written for it so users just follow.

If you have a Linux under the 137Gb barrier there is very little it cannot boot.
 
Old 01-28-2006, 09:14 AM   #7
pixellany
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saikee
If you have a Linux under the 137Gb barrier there is very little it cannot boot.
Straying off-topic, he asked: What is the 137GB barrier?
 
Old 01-28-2006, 09:20 AM   #8
saikee
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I have one swap and it is automatically picked up for use by all the Linux.

The /boot is an old tradition to keep the kernel and the boot loader at the bottom end of the hard disk to avoid difficulties of addressing a large hard disk. Modern Linux don't have this problem any more but documentation has been written for it so users just follow.

If you have a Linux under the 137Gb barrier there is very little it cannot boot.
---------------------------------------

The /boot can be shared because it is the home for the kernels and initrds (ram disk files) but it can get confused very quickly if you have 3 or more Linux there. That is why it pays to use a single partition for each Linux as each will have its /boot inside and can be access by adding the partition reference in front like
the kernel
Code:
/boot/vmlinuz-2.6.14-1.1696_FC5
of Fedora C5 in hda6 can be accessed by
Code:
(hd0,5)/boot/vmlinuz-2.6.14-1.1696_FC5
Therefore the need to put the kernel in a devoted partition gains very little nowadays.

In Linux we can use Kernel from Linux A to boot Linux B so technically there is no problem to put all the kernels together. The problem is tell which one belongs to which Linux, as many of them, like the Slackware and Slax families, use the same name like "vmlinuz" and have no initrd.
--------------------------------------------------------------
Just like XP needs service packs to read a hard disk larger than 137Gb many Distros are still unable to address beyond this boundary in the hard disk.

In the past there had been various methods to address beyond the 1024 cylinders too and a devoted /boot is always the first partition to be created and so it stragetically position to be well within the 1024 cylinders limit.

There is no harm in creating a /boot partition it just buggers everything up when a user starts to add more distros to the box. Imagine 100 /boot partitions for 100 Linux?

Last edited by saikee; 01-28-2006 at 09:30 AM.
 
Old 01-28-2006, 11:24 AM   #9
Zmyrgel
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So I should copy the existing /boot to the current root and then delete the /boot partition? And then put the Grub to MBR so it would continue to work? And in the same manner keep all the distros to be installed in single partition?

What kind of command should I use? I doubt basic cp will do the work without options.

And another problem arose. I booted from CD and noticed that the Debian installer doesn´t have support for Bluetooth keyboard and mouse (logitech mx5000). Any way to go around this besides connecting a PS/2 keyboard for the installation. Also, does debian have a support for the bluetooth devices?

Last edited by Zmyrgel; 01-28-2006 at 11:30 AM.
 
Old 01-28-2006, 11:36 AM   #10
saikee
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I have booted Linux A with kernel from Linux B and can confirm that you don't need a fixed partition to store /boot. In fact by having one partition reference you don't have to bother where the kernel is located as it is always in /boot inside the root partition of the Linux.

Put Grub into the MBR is the easiest. If you have an issue of it you can put Grub in a floppy, CD or in a data-only primary partition.

I can't tell what Debian has got but most definitely it isn't as modern as others when dectecting hardware. If you want trouble free operation in Linux stick with proven hardware used by everybody.
 
Old 01-28-2006, 11:48 AM   #11
Zmyrgel
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Okay, I think I make a another try with Gentoo... Your bound to learn the basics when installing it. Also it detects my keyboard ok... Last installation ended by wrong root password. Sometimes my keyboard places for example two xx when I only press it once. It´s not so funny when this happens in root password changing

Could you give a proper command to copy the boot partition to root/boot/
Is something like this "cp (hd0,0)/boot/* (hd0,1)/boot/ // probably won´t work with those partition definitions which are used in Grub.
 
Old 01-28-2006, 06:08 PM   #12
saikee
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You have to do it in Linux, boot up a Live CD and mount your Gentoo root partition on it. Assuming the root partition ("/") of Gentoo is hda3 and /boot is in hda2 you make two directorties in a booted up Linux's /mnt
Code:
mkdir /mnt/hda2
mkdir /mnt/hda3 
mount /dev/hda2 /mnt/hda2
mount /dev/hda3 /mnt/hda3
mkdir /mnt/hda3/boot
cd /mnt/hda2/boot
tar cf - . | (cd /mnt/hda3/boot; tar xf -)
 
Old 01-29-2006, 06:11 AM   #13
Zmyrgel
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Okay, I have a problem how to start my newly installed Ubuntu. I installed it in a single partition on my 40Gb system...
Code:
Levy /dev/hdc: 41.1 Gt, 41110142976 tavua
255 päätä, 63 sektoria/ura, 4998 sylinteriä
Yksiköt = 16065 * 512 = 8225280 -tavuiset sylinterit
    Laite Käynn     Alku          Loppu    Lohkot   Id  Järjestelmä
/dev/hdc1               1         131     1052226   82  Linux swap / Solaris
/dev/hdc2   *         132        2090    15735667+  83  Linux
/dev/hdc3            2091        2686     4787370   83  Linux
Second partition has my SuSE on it and the last one has my ubuntu but I can't start it from bootloader.

Code:
###Don't change this comment - YaST2 identifier: Original name: windows###
title Ubuntu
    root (hd0,1)
    chainloader +1
Problem now is that after I choose ubuntu from the grub then it just starts GNU/Grub shell instead of ubuntu and I don't know how to continue. I installed the ubuntus bootloader to (hd0,1) which I think, was the correct place to put it. Any idea how to continue from here.

Last edited by Zmyrgel; 01-29-2006 at 06:13 AM.
 
Old 01-29-2006, 06:38 AM   #14
saikee
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You made a mess for yourself.

Grub counts from 0 so (hd0,1)=the 2nd partition of the 1st disk.

If your Ubuntu is in the hdc3 and there is another disk, say hda, in front the the correct reference for Unbuntu of hdc3 should be (hd1,2)

How to put right the boot loader is described in my "Just booting tips" Task A7 which you can do it in Gnu/Grub shell.

I suggest to print out "Just Booting tips"

Follow Task A1 to confirm your disk order and partition reference in Grub

Follow Task A3 to find out which two partitions have Grub, as Suse should have it too.

Follow Task A6 to boot Ubuntu

Follow Task A7 to restore Unbuntu boot loader

If Unbuntu doesn't boot follow Task E1

If Task E1 still fails then follow Task G1 to boot it step by step

Let me know your progress. My prediction Task A6 should get you home.
 
Old 01-29-2006, 07:03 AM   #15
Zmyrgel
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saikee
You made a mess for yourself.

Grub counts from 0 so (hd0,1)=the 2nd partition of the 1st disk.
But Grub doesn´t count swap partition so this should be correct as my 40gb drive is master and my SATA drive acts as slave /dev/sda or I have messed things up really nice for a change.

First partition is swap, second suse and the last is ubuntu.

Quote:
If your Ubuntu is in the hdc3 and there is another disk, say hda, in front the the correct reference for Unbuntu of hdc3 should be (hd1,2)

How to put right the boot loader is described in my "Just booting tips" Task A7 which you can do it in Gnu/Grub shell.

I suggest to print out "Just Booting tips"



Let me know your progress. My prediction Task A6 should get you home.

I´ll check those and try to get to some sort of a solution. Windows and SuSE boot up still normally.
 
  


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