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Old 09-11-2004, 02:45 PM   #1
Sovetskeey
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Distribution: Fedora Core 6
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Question FC2 dual-boot fix problems


Seeing as how it's nearly impossible to get an intelligent response on any channel in the freenode network, I figured I'd ask some of the people on these boards...

I've used the commands listed in this article (http://www.redhat.com/archives/fedor.../msg00908.html) and I've got the following output in my terminal window:

[root@localhost steven]# sfdisk -d /dev/hda
# partition table of /dev/hda
unit: sectors

/dev/hda1 : start= 63, size= 204561, Id=83, bootable
/dev/hda2 : start= 204624, size= 77991984, Id=83
/dev/hda3 : start= 78196608, size= 2096640, Id=82
/dev/hda4 : start= 0, size= 0, Id= 0
[root@localhost steven]# sfdisk --no-reread -H255 /dev/hda
Warning: HDIO_GETGEO says that there are 16 heads

Disk /dev/hda: 79656 cylinders, 255 heads, 63 sectors/track
Old situation:
Warning: The partition table looks like it was made
for C/H/S=*/16/63 (instead of 79656/255/63).
For this listing I'll assume that geometry.
Units = cylinders of 516096 bytes, blocks of 1024 bytes, counting from 0

Device Boot Start End #cyls #blocks Id System
/dev/hda1 * 0+ 202 203- 102280+ 83 Linux
/dev/hda2 203 77575 77373 38995992 83 Linux
/dev/hda3 77576 79655 2080 1048320 82 Linux swap
/dev/hda4 0 - 0 0 0 Empty
Input in the following format; absent fields get a default value.
<start> <size> <type [E,S,L,X,hex]> <bootable [-,*]> <c,h,s> <c,h,s>
Usually you only need to specify <start> and <size> (and perhaps <type>).

/dev/hda1 :

What do I type here? I apologize if it seems a stupid question but I'm not particularily familiar with Linux or hard drive operations...

Last edited by Sovetskeey; 09-11-2004 at 03:39 PM.
 
Old 09-11-2004, 03:56 PM   #2
MartinN
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Hi Steven (is that your real name?)

I assume that you are sure that this really is the problem. I haven't seen this myself, my install of Fedora Core 2 went just fine (thank heaven for that!). Could you tell us what led you up to this point? Have you just installed FC2 on a machine that formerly ran only Windows?

It seems however that you have misinterpreted the command to type. The article states that you should enter this command:
Code:
sfdisk -d /dev/hda | sfdisk --no-reread -H255 /dev/hda
Have you done that? Sorry, but I don't know how much of this is obvious to you. The pipe character ( | ) takes output from the first command:
sfdisk -d /dev/hda
and feeds that to the second command
sfdisk --no-reread -H255 /dev/hda

Did this help you? If not, come back here and we'll try to work out a solution.

Good luck!
Martin
 
Old 09-11-2004, 04:25 PM   #3
Sovetskeey
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I'll try using the pipe in the command and I'll let you know what happens.

Okay, I tried it and here's what it says:

[root@localhost steven]# sfdisk -d /dev/hda | sfdisk --no-reread -H255 /dev/hda
Warning: HDIO_GETGEO says that there are 16 heads

Disk /dev/hda: 79656 cylinders, 255 heads, 63 sectors/track
Old situation:
Warning: The partition table looks like it was made
for C/H/S=*/16/63 (instead of 79656/255/63).
For this listing I'll assume that geometry.
Units = cylinders of 516096 bytes, blocks of 1024 bytes, counting from 0

Device Boot Start End #cyls #blocks Id System
/dev/hda1 * 0+ 202 203- 102280+ 83 Linux
/dev/hda2 203 77575 77373 38995992 83 Linux
/dev/hda3 77576 79655 2080 1048320 82 Linux swap
/dev/hda4 0 - 0 0 0 Empty
New situation:
Units = sectors of 512 bytes, counting from 0

Device Boot Start End #sectors Id System
/dev/hda1 * 63 204623 204561 83 Linux
/dev/hda2 204624 78196607 77991984 83 Linux
/dev/hda3 78196608 80293247 2096640 82 Linux swap
/dev/hda4 0 - 0 0 Empty
Warning: partition 1 does not end at a cylinder boundary

sfdisk: I don't like these partitions - nothing changed.
(If you really want this, use the --force option.)
[root@localhost steven]#

Is it safe to use the --force option in this case?

(And yes, my name is Steven )

Last edited by Sovetskeey; 09-11-2004 at 04:28 PM.
 
Old 09-12-2004, 01:30 AM   #4
Sovetskeey
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Where oh where did MartinN go!?
 
Old 09-12-2004, 02:02 AM   #5
MartinN
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I'm here

Unfortunately I have no idea. I wouldn't try --force other than as a last resort. Tried to read a little on the subject but I don't have any solution.

Can you tell us how you got to this state? Is this right after an install of FC2 on an existing Windows machine. Give us as much detail as you can, please.

Regards
Martin
 
Old 09-12-2004, 02:35 AM   #6
Sovetskeey
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It's a clean install (after about half a dozen reformats) with no Windows at all, just Fedora Core 2 is installed on this computer. I used the following tools to try and fix the problem previously:
FDISK /MBR
FIXBOOT
FIXMBR
CHKDSK

I tried looking in my BIOS and I was able to enable some selections for the geometry. When I tried setting the heads to 255 (like this SFDISK fix is supposed to do), my BIOS thinks my drive is like 600GB. Needless to say, I hit Discard and Exit.
 
Old 09-12-2004, 02:44 AM   #7
MartinN
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OK. Then we can forget about the link and solution above. That is only valid if Windows refuses to start after a dual-boot install of FC2.

How big is your HDD? If it's bigger than 127GB, then you might have to update your BIOS.

This sounds like some setting in BIOS. I've had some problems like these, but that was on ancient hardware (when 6GB was a big disk ).

Edit: Another question. What is the problem? What happens when you boot the system?

Martin

Last edited by MartinN; 09-12-2004 at 02:51 AM.
 
Old 09-12-2004, 03:00 AM   #8
Sovetskeey
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My drive is a 40GB drive.

When I try to install Windows, it reformats fine, everything copies to the hard drive fine but when it reboots and you don't boot from the CD to continue the install, it tells me "Error Loading Operating System".

I'm confident the problem has something to do with Fedora Core 2 because I didn't have any problems until I tried to install it.
 
Old 09-12-2004, 03:22 AM   #9
MartinN
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So, you can't install Windows either? Then there are two possible problems.

1) You have been fiddling with your BIOS settings. Try autodetect the HDD in BIOS. It may be under "Standard CMOS Features", but that depends on the BIOS and motherboard. If you know for sure what disk geometry you have (Cylinders, Heads, Sectors) you could also try to enter that manually in the BIOS settings. This information is probably written on a label on the HDD.

2) Your HDD has passed away. This hard disk is no more. It has ceased to be. It's expired and gone to meet its maker. This is a late hard disk. It's a stiff. Bereft of life, it rests in peace. Or it's just pining for the fjords ...

There is no chance that the install of Fedora caused the problem though. If you format the disk with the Windows installer, then there is no trace of Fedora left, so that can't be the problem.

Also, if you find the stuff about the fjords confusing, then you should watch more reruns of Monty Pythons Flying Circus. (It's a reference to the dead parrot sketch.)

Good luck!
Martin
 
Old 09-12-2004, 03:42 AM   #10
Sovetskeey
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No, I havn't fiddled with the BIOS settings, nothing to do with the hard drive at least. I even tried auto-detecting. Just like the article where the SFDISK fix comes from says, there's something either Fedora Core 2 or Linux Kernel 2.6.x does to the hard drive geometry that Windows doesn't like.
 
Old 09-12-2004, 06:52 AM   #11
rm6990
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Martin, you are incorrect, there have been many cases of Fedora Core 2 altering something on a PC which then causes Windows not to boot, even after a reinstallation. (I can't recall exactly what causes this). Do a search of this forums and see what you can find. I believe the title of the thread was Fedora ruined my pc.
 
Old 09-12-2004, 07:30 AM   #12
MartinN
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I stand corrected. http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...hreadid=217489 That thread mentioned using a utility like this:
http://killdisk.com/downloadfree.htm
to low-level format the hard disk.

This sounds like a little drastic solution though. I'll have to look into this problem some more. It's interesting to know why and how this happens. I feel that I don't know enough about the hard disk low-level stuff to comment on this now.

Martin
 
Old 09-12-2004, 04:29 PM   #13
Sovetskeey
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After reading (most of) that thread, I've decided I'm going to try a reset tool (my drive is a Maxtor drive and apparently they have one). I'll let you guys know if it worked or not.

Edit: Unfortunately, I have no idea which tool to download...
Here's Maxtor's software download section: http://www.maxtor.com/portal/site/Ma...re%20Downloads
I dug out the box for my drive and it's got Cicero's name on it but a big sticker that says Maxtor 40 GB on it. I bought it from Future Shop I think... It shows up as a Maxtor drive in the hardware configuration menus.

Edit: Found it, it was called PowerMax (and I guess MaxBlast is pretty much the same thing...). I should probably ask your guys' opinions on the tool before I use it...

Last edited by Sovetskeey; 09-12-2004 at 04:50 PM.
 
Old 09-12-2004, 04:41 PM   #14
MartinN
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I'd go with the MaxBlast 3 utility for ATA hard disks. It can supposedly format a HDD.

Good luck!
Martin
 
Old 09-12-2004, 07:46 PM   #15
Sovetskeey
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I made the disk (MaxBlast) on a Windows machine and dropped it into mine. It started fine and it gave me a prompt: "Run MaxBlast from the Floppy or CD [F or C]?" or something to that effect. I hit F and I let it sit for over 2 hours. The red light on my tower that shows when it's reading from the hard drive stayed on but it never did anything the whole time.

Last edited by Sovetskeey; 09-12-2004 at 07:49 PM.
 
  


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