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Old 09-10-2006, 02:16 PM   #1
jlaurits
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GRUB on floppy, not mbd


I'm very new to Linux. When I installed the previous version of
Ubunto (5.x), it gave me the option of installing GRUB on a
floppy, which I did. This allowed me to have a dual boot on the
HD: Windows 98 or DR-DOS. (Yes, DOS really is important to me --
I'm a writer, with thousands of files in WordPerfect 5.1 for DOS.)

However, when I installed the latest version, Dapper Drake, GRUB
was automatically installed on the mbd. My question: How do I
copy GRUB from the mbd to make a bootable floppy? Or,
alternatively, is there a way to re-install Dapper Drake so that
GRUB will be on a floppy?


John Lauritsen
 
Old 09-10-2006, 02:32 PM   #2
bernied
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Grub is controlled by the file called /boot/grub/menu.lst
If you have a look at this file on both your new Dapper install and on the old bootable floppy you can see how the file relates to the boot options you get. So if you want your grub floppy to have the same options as the hard-disk version, just copy this (menu.lst) file from the hard disk to the floppy.

Do you have all your boot options in your new install? Do you need to re-instate your original mbr?
 
Old 09-10-2006, 02:49 PM   #3
syg00
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It's reasonably easy to make a grub floppy, but why not use grub to triple boot all your systems ???. Both Win98and DR-DOS should be chainloadable.
Makes more sense to me, and "future proofs" your setup.

I'm suprised the Dapper installer didn't give you the option to also boot (at least) one of those systems.
 
Old 09-10-2006, 08:09 PM   #4
jlaurits
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Getting GRUB on floppy

Thanks. I really am quite new to Linux, although not to computers. I found the /boot/grub/menu.lst file and copied it to a floppy, but the floppy was not bootable. I had hoped there was a command of some kind that would copy GRUB from mbd to a floppy that would be bootable.

Dapper Drake installed GRUB automatically on the mbd without asking me where I wanted it. It set up a dual boot: Ubuntu and Windows98. However, I now have no access to a pure (non-Windows) DOS. If I re-install DR-DOS, it will set up a dual boot (DR-DOS & Windows), but will obliterate access to Linux. Of course that would be fine, if I had a floppy to boot into Linux.



Quote:
Originally Posted by bernied
Grub is controlled by the file called /boot/grub/menu.lst
If you have a look at this file on both your new Dapper install and on the old bootable floppy you can see how the file relates to the boot options you get. So if you want your grub floppy to have the same options as the hard-disk version, just copy this (menu.lst) file from the hard disk to the floppy.

Do you have all your boot options in your new install? Do you need to re-instate your original mbr?
 
Old 09-10-2006, 08:19 PM   #5
jlaurits
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Thanks. I would like very much to have a triple boot (Linux, Windows98SE, and DR-DOS), but I have no idea how to do this. I am just getting started in Linux, and need to be up and running before I can really explore it. I have writing work to do, and for this I need access to a good (non-Windows) DOS.

The Dapper installer gave me no options, but it did install a dual boot, which is Ubuntu and Windows 98. I can re-install DR-DOS and get a dual boot with DR-DOS and Windows, but then Ubuntu will be inaccessible. I may have to go back to the previous version -- 5.x, whatever it was called.

If it is easy to make a grub floppy, please tell me how to do it. I'd be most grateful.

JL


Quote:
Originally Posted by syg00
It's reasonably easy to make a grub floppy, but why not use grub to triple boot all your systems ???. Both Win98and DR-DOS should be chainloadable.
Makes more sense to me, and "future proofs" your setup.

I'm suprised the Dapper installer didn't give you the option to also boot (at least) one of those systems.
 
Old 09-11-2006, 10:38 AM   #6
bernied
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Right, so you want a triple boot with ubuntu, windows 98 and DR-DOS, and so far you have a dual boot with ubuntu and windows 98. Is that right? If yes, carry on, if no stop there and tell us which bit I got wrong.

So, what you need to do is create an entry in the /boot/grub/menu.lst file that starts DR-DOS for you. When it is finished, the new entry will look something like this:

title DR-DOS
root (hdx,y)
makeactive
chainloader +1
boot

This entry is not finished - you need to replace x,y with the location of your DR-DOS installation. This can be inferred from your hard-drive(s) partitioning scheme and your exisitng menu.lst. To view these, type (from a ubuntu command line terminal):
Code:
sudo fdisk -l
cat /boot/grub/menu.lst
(if you don't know how to get a terminal, read this - http://psychocats.net/ubuntu/terminal )
If you post the results of these two commands here, we can finish this.
If you insist on a grub boot floppy, we can do that as well, but we will need the same information to create it, and it is not really necessary for what you want.
 
Old 09-11-2006, 10:53 AM   #7
bernied
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jlaurits
If I re-install DR-DOS, it will set up a dual boot (DR-DOS & Windows), but will obliterate access to Linux. Of course that would be fine, if I had a floppy to boot into Linux.
OK, maybe now I understand where you're coming from. You wanted a ubuntu boot floppy, then you were going to reinstall DR-DOS, which would give you a dual (windows/DOS) boot from the hard-drive.

Have you still got that original boot floppy?

If yes, you can make it work for your dapper install simply by replacing the menu.lst on the floppy with the one on your hard-drive (I think - I'm wrong here if the earlier ubuntu didn't use grub, but you said it did, right?)

If you no longer have the boot floppy, you can make one with the grub-floppy command. Try this in a terminal:
Code:
sudo grub-floppy /dev/fd0
If it doesn't work, it's because I've got the /dev/fd0 bit wrong. This is because I'm at work and don't have access to my ubuntu machine.
And the reason I didn't say this before is that this won't give you access to DR-DOS.

I recommend that you don't do this, and that you get your triple boot set up by putting an entry for DR-DOS in your grub menu.lst file.
 
Old 09-13-2006, 09:51 AM   #8
jlaurits
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bernied
Right, so you want a triple boot with ubuntu, windows 98 and DR-DOS, and so far you have a dual boot with ubuntu and windows 98. Is that right? If yes, carry on, if no stop there and tell us which bit I got wrong.

So, what you need to do is create an entry in the /boot/grub/menu.lst file that starts DR-DOS for you. When it is finished, the new entry will look something like this:

title DR-DOS
root (hdx,y)
makeactive
chainloader +1
boot

This entry is not finished - you need to replace x,y with the location of your DR-DOS installation. This can be inferred from your hard-drive(s) partitioning scheme and your exisitng menu.lst. To view these, type (from a ubuntu command line terminal):
Code:
sudo fdisk -l
cat /boot/grub/menu.lst
(.
You've got it right. This is an old (P3) computer with two HDs -- a 12 GB HD with Windows and DOS and a 6 GB HD with Linux. When I gave the sudo fdisk -l command I got (leaving out the #comments and info that seems to be irrelevant):

DISK /dev/hda: 13.0GB

device boot start end Id System
/dev/hda1 * 6 FAT16
hda2 f W95 Ext'd LBA
5 6 FAT16
6 b W95 FAT32
7 b W95 FAT32

DISK /dev/hdb: 6448 MB

device boot start end Id System
/dev/hdb1 5 System
5 83 Extended
6 83 Linux
7 * 83 Linux
8 82 Linux Swap/Solaris

device boot start end Id System
/dev/sda4 * 6 FAT16


When I gave the cat /boot/grub/menu.lst command I got:

title Ubuntu, memtest86+
root (hdb1,6)
kernel /boot/memtest
boot

### END DEBIAN AUTOMAGIC KERNELS LIST

title Other operating system
root

title Windows 95/98/Me
root (hd0,0)

save default
make active
chainloader +1
 
Old 09-13-2006, 09:56 AM   #9
jlaurits
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bernied
OK, maybe now I understand where you're coming from. You wanted a ubuntu boot floppy, then you were going to reinstall DR-DOS, which would give you a dual (windows/DOS) boot from the hard-drive.

Have you still got that original boot floppy?

If yes, you can make it work for your dapper install simply by replacing the menu.lst on the floppy with the one on your hard-drive (I think - I'm wrong here if the earlier ubuntu didn't use grub, but you said it did, right?)

If you no longer have the boot floppy, you can make one with the grub-floppy command. Try this in a terminal:
Code:
sudo grub-floppy /dev/fd0
If it doesn't work, it's because I've got the /dev/fd0 bit wrong. This is because I'm at work and don't have access to my ubuntu machine.
And the reason I didn't say this before is that this won't give you access to DR-DOS.

I recommend that you don't do this, and that you get your triple boot set up by putting an entry for DR-DOS in your grub menu.lst file.
OK, I'll try for the triple book first.
The sudo grub-floppy /dev/fd0 did work: I got a bootable floppy on it, but just the GRUB> prompt. I don't know how to put the menu.lst on the GRUB floppy.

Thanks for your help.
 
Old 09-15-2006, 06:32 PM   #10
bernied
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Sorry I've been away for work for a few days.

You are nearly there.

Strangely your Windows/DOS disk has 3 partitions that might be DR-DOS (hda5, hda6 and hda7 from your fdisk output), so we'll try each of them to see if they'll boot. This is easiest to do from the grub prompt so write down everything after this sentence, then reboot with the grub floppy in the drive.

Type this in at the grub> prompt (check where spaces are and are not):
Code:
root (hd0,4)
makeactive
chainloader +1
boot
Don't be concerned if this results in the computer freezing, just switch off and restart, still with the grub floppy in.
If it doesn't work, repeat but replace (hd0,4) with (hd0,5), then finally (hd0,6). These are the grub notations for the three possible partitions on that first hard-drive. Keep a note of the one that worked (4, 5 or 6).

You can stop writing now. Come back to this thread with your ubuntu install and we'll fix it so it's a triple boot system (unless it doesn't work, in which case we'll try again).

If this works, then those are the commands you need in the menu.lst file, except in the file you need a title as well. So, in a terminal:
Code:
sudo nano /boot/grub/menu.lst
This will open the file for editing.
Then go to the bottom of the file, after the Windows entry, and add this text, but replace x with the number that got you to DR-DOS:
Code:
title DR-DOS
root (hd0,x)
makeactive
chainloader +1
boot
Then Ctrl-o to save, and Ctrl-x to exit.
Then reboot and see if it works.

And please let me know if it does.

Good luck
Bernie
 
Old 09-17-2006, 04:33 PM   #11
jlaurits
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bernied
Sorry I've been away for work for a few days.

You are nearly there.

Strangely your Windows/DOS disk has 3 partitions that might be DR-DOS (hda5, hda6 and hda7 from your fdisk output), so we'll try each of them to see if they'll boot. This is easiest to do from the grub prompt so write down everything after this sentence, then reboot with the grub floppy in the drive.

Type this in at the grub> prompt (check where spaces are and are not):
Code:
root (hd0,4)
makeactive
chainloader +1
boot
Don't be concerned if this results in the computer freezing, just switch off and restart, still with the grub floppy in.
If it doesn't work, repeat but replace (hd0,4) with (hd0,5), then finally (hd0,6). These are the grub notations for the three possible partitions on that first hard-drive. Keep a note of the one that worked (4, 5 or 6).

You can stop writing now. Come back to this thread with your ubuntu install and we'll fix it so it's a triple boot system (unless it doesn't work, in which case we'll try again).

If this works, then those are the commands you need in the menu.lst file, except in the file you need a title as well. So, in a terminal:
Code:
sudo nano /boot/grub/menu.lst
This will open the file for editing.
Then go to the bottom of the file, after the Windows entry, and add this text, but replace x with the number that got you to DR-DOS:
Code:
title DR-DOS
root (hd0,x)
makeactive
chainloader +1
boot
Then Ctrl-o to save, and Ctrl-x to exit.
Then reboot and see if it works.

And please let me know if it does.

Good luck
Bernie
I'm afraid none of them worked. When I gave the "makeactive" command, I got either an "error 27" message (hd0,4) or an "error 12" message (hd0,5 and hd0,6).

I suspect that it may not be possible to make a triple boot that includes both Windows and DR-DOS. Windows doesn't seem to coexist peacefully with an independent form of DOS. Quite a few years ago there was a small war between Microsoft and Caldera over DR-DOS. A Caldera salesman I spoke to said that with the Caldera dual boot, Windows wouldn't even know that DR-DOS was there. So, it may be that DR-DOS has somehow hidden or camouflaged itself. However, I really don't understand these things.

For now, it would be fine to simply put on a floppy the menu.lst that is now on the mbd. If I can do all the things in Linux, that I now do in Windows, then some time in the future I might eliminate Windows and go for a computer that dual boots between Linux and DR-DOS. This may sound eccentric, but for a writer it really isn't. The computer columnist, Edward Mendelson, has a web site devoted to WordPerfect 5.1 and 6.2 for DOS, which he considers the greatest word processors of all time. I agree, and could add reasons of my own. Thanks again.
 
  


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