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Old 04-19-2004, 02:58 AM   #1
ronin4601
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Registered: Apr 2004
Distribution: Mandrake 10 Fedora core 1
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boot loader question


i would like to try mandrake. I'm already dual booting windows xp and fedora core and would like to know which boot loader would be best to use prior to installation of mandrake. i am presently using grub. the windows application that i used to resize one of my hard disk also comes with a boot loader (acronis 8.0 ) which boot loader will give me the least amount problems (if any should be expected) triple booting lillo grub or acronis and should i expect any problems configuring triple boot. i would rather have grub updated if possible during mandrake install. I am new to linux i just installed fedora today but would like to try different distros before picking the one for me. I would really appreciate any assistance. my apologies if this has been asked before thanks in advance

Last edited by ronin4601; 04-19-2004 at 05:18 AM.
 
Old 04-19-2004, 06:24 AM   #2
Andrew Benton
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Stick with grub. lilo can't handle triple booting. Mandrake used to use lilo, I'm not sure if it still does. In Mandrake 9.1 it used to be possible to open the Mandrake control centre and change the boot loader from lilo to grub. It might be your best option to make a copy of Fedora's /boot/grub/menu.lst, install Mandrake and let it install lilo (if it doesn't give you the choice during the boot process) and then change the bootloader to grub and then edit /boot/grub/menu.lst to add an entry for Fedora. I've tried a couple of times to install Mandrake 9.1 without a boot loader and added entries to the grub/menu.lst I was using and though that worked with Slackware, Fedora and College linux, I couldn't get Mandrake to boot that way. Maybe it was me but Mandrake seems to be fussy. The way I've described above worked though. Once you've got Mandrake to boot with grub you can change grub to look for it's menu.lst on a different partition.
 
Old 04-19-2004, 10:28 AM   #3
bigjohn
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Andrew is slightly incorrect, because although it need's to have the lilo.conf edited manually it is perfectly feasible for lilo to boot mulitple distro's (I've had it set up with mandrake/debian/gentoo before now).

I'm just being a little picky though, because if you already understand how grub work's, then you're probably better off sticking with it.

Mandrake's default is lilo which is why I learned it, but yes you can still change it to grub in mandrake control centre's boot section.

If you just install the mandrake to a spare partition/resize the existing one, then mandy will overwrite the current mbr with lilo and you'd probably end up with just mandrake and windows (I seem to recall that you have to change the boot loader config when you get the mandrake install summary).

No having really used grub (well I've tried, but couldn't get my head round the naming conventions) I don't know whether it's possible to set it up so it see's all installed OS's - maybe worth checking out to see if the acronis can do that.

regards

John

p.s. for Andrew, I apologise if my post seemed critical. It wasn't meant to, but I thought it was sensible to let ronin4601 know that if he screwed up his fedora install, it's not the end of the world. Inconvenient, yes, disasterous, probably not.

regards

John
 
Old 04-19-2004, 07:41 PM   #4
ronin4601
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Registered: Apr 2004
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thanks Andrew Benton and bigjohn you have both been help full and very informative. however i didn't think anyone was going was going to post a reply and decided to give it a go on my own. BIG mistake!!! the mandrake install was a breeze (so i thought). i selected lilo to be my boot loader after goggling some info that suggested that would be the best option. I removed the install media and rebooted the computer. The computer started counted the amount of ram available and then froze. I couldn't even get into the bios menu (bios jumper also had no effect) without unplugging the drive from the mother board. I gave up and erased the entire drive. I have two hard drives fedora and win xp shared a 120 gig western digital mandrake was installed on the offending slave drive 80 gig Maxtor. the bad news is fedora and mandrake also shared the 80 gig Maxtor during fedora install i partitioned both user and var on the Maxtor. so now its back to windows for now. This is the second time this problem has came up more or less. My first choice for fedora was fedora core 2 test 2 (baaaaaaad newbie). reboot after install, same problem wiped the disk and went for core 1. i thought it was a bug. fedora core 1 went smoothly. i had also tried test 1 fedora with same results. freeze! am i over looking something?

Last edited by ronin4601; 04-19-2004 at 07:48 PM.
 
Old 04-20-2004, 07:39 AM   #5
Andrew Benton
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Oh dear. I'm sorry. It would have been possible to rescue the situation with the Mandrake CD. If you put it in and reboot, then press f1, type in rescue then press enter. When it asks you to fix the boot loader choose cancel. That should get you to a command prompt, which can be scary but it's really a very powerful tool. Type in grub and press enter, that will get you to a grub prompt. Now you need to tell grub where it's configuration files are (/boot/grub/menu.lst). In your case that would be the root of your fedora install. Grub counts from 0 so all numbers are one less than you're used to and it uses numbers not letters so, for example /dev/hda1 is (hd0,0) to grub, /dev/hda7 is (hd0,6) and /dev/hdb3 would be (hd1,2). So at the grub prompt tell it where root is
> root (hd1,3)
or whatever, you'll need to work it out yourself or post the details of where things are. Then you need to tell it to install itself on the master boot record
> setup (hd0)
and if that went well quit
> quit
and reboot (alt, ctrl+ del)
Of course all this is academic now if you've erased the drive, but maybe next time it might come in useful. As Bigjohn says above, I'm slightly incorrect. But some days I'm waaaaaay more than slightly incorrect and in those situations it's useful to know how to use a bootable CD to rescue the situation.
One other thing, in an idle moment yesterday I spun the Mandrake 9.2 CD's and did battle with the installer and now this entry in my /boot/grub/menu.lst is booting it fine.


title Mandrake 9.2
root (hd0,10)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz root=/dev/hda11 devfs=mount vga=788
 
Old 04-21-2004, 03:35 AM   #6
bigjohn
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Dunno about ronin4601, but that's gotta be one of the clearest explainations of the grub naming conventions I've seen.

I've tried to work it out/read up on it, before, but it never made any sense.

Ha! so when my mandrake 10 official turns up, I'm gonna try grub, which should also reduce some of the stress i get when I ask lilo questions at the gentoo forums as well. Bonus!

Sorry ronin4601, I obviously didn't read your post properly, because the bootable first CD that Andrew mentioned didn't even occur to me - Doh!

regards

John
 
  


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