GRUB can't load Windows XP... Ubuntu for AMD K8 can't boot up
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I was downloading some packages with synaptic and I rebooted to check out the error message, and as usual, there isn't any, it just show me a grub command line after choosing Windows XP option. And here is the weird thing, after pressing ctrl alt del, GRUB didn't show up, and I was brought to Windows straight.
What partition is Windows on? hd(0,2) would mean it is on the 3rd (I think - someone correct me if I am wrong) primary partiton on the first hard disk. If it is elsewhere, you need to change ' root hd(0,2) ' to another partition. Mine is on the first partition, ' root(0,0) ' I think.
The Windows is on the third harddisk (I suppose, it's a SATA drive) first partition.
I can start GRUB and Linux when I disable the SATA drive. And I can start Windows when I disable the first harddisk (the Linux drive). When I enable both of them, things get unpredictable, depending on which I boot last.
Your problem is in the menu.lst file. Grub is looking for Window$ on (hd2,0), which is the 1st partition of the 3rd hard drive, something that doesn't even exist according to what you have told us. You have to get grub pointed at windows correctly, try things and see what works. I would guess (offhandedly) that where you currently have root (hd2,0) should say:
All of the savedefault and makeactive is not usually of any value that I have found. It is important to have rootnoverify instead of root, because grub will try to find a *nix kernel unless it gets the "noverify" part of the command. If that doesn't work, just shift the numbers around, might be sda0, sda2 or something like that. Grub numbers from 0, whereas linux itself numbers from 1.
As far as I know, GRUB does not use the same nomenclature for harddrive. I have tried (sda0), (sda1), (sda,0), (sd0,0), (sd3,0) and etc, they all give the same error message "error 23: error in parsing number" as long as I don't stick with the format (hdx,x).
I have also tried (hd1,0) (a valid drive with no OS) for fun and the reponse turned out to be the same as in its default, which is (hd2,0). (btw it is what the installer generated, and not made up by me). Would it be possible if it got to do with the boot flag attribute?
I have also tried (hd4,0) and (hd5,0) and the error message says "selected disk does not exist". So I suppose GRUB does recognise the default (hd2,0) as a valid drive.
Ok guys, thanks again for giving me hope to carry on.
Not sure if it helps if I were to tell my whole story.
I used to have only one SATA drive. Windows on (hd0,0), FC4 on (hd0,7), And Ubuntu 5.04 on (hd0,9). AND GRUB did work nicely. Everything is straight forward, they are all on hd0
Since then I have added two more parallel ATA drives, thinking of moving the Linuxes there. Since then, the system can't boot any of them. Before knowing the fixmbr thingie, The ignorant me installed another copy of Windows just to get the Windows to boot up. And I tinkered with the boot.ini to set the default booting option as my older Windows and the waiting time as 0 second, so that effectively make the system boot up like there is only one OS. I know this is dum and and later I disabled the 2 IDE drives and execute the fixmbr thingie when I am a little wiser. The Windows now work perfect.
And then I proceed on installing Linux, since then, I have to enable and disable harddrives from BIOS to get the correct boot loader working. Linux installation automatically points the Windows to (hd2,0). After choosing that option there is no error message, just a GRUB command prompt. Interestingly, the response is the same when I point the link to (hd1,0) which I know it is an empty drive, so my guess is there is a chance that GRUB actually sees the Windows partition as empty.