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Old 04-24-2004, 08:54 PM   #1
SpaceGhoti
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Linux boot disk


I'm attempting to run a dual boot system with a 40GB hard drive. 8 GB is reserved for Win98, and the rest is for Mandrake 9.2. I corrupted my Windows installation by attempting to edit the autoexec.bat from Linux (teach me to do that again), so I need to reinstall it.

My problem is that I understand I need a Linux boot disk because Windows will re-write the MBR. But when I attempt to create a boot disc from the Mandrake Control Center the procedure always fails. I've attempted it on two clean disks that otherwise worked. The only hint I've gotten is that it's trying to write too much information to the disk.

Can someone give me a command prompt that will give me basic boot options on a floppy disk? I'm presently using LILO, but I'm willing to switch to GRUB if people tell me that will work better.
 
Old 04-24-2004, 09:19 PM   #2
CloudBuilder
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use dd=if/dev/hda of=/dev/fd0 bs=512 count=1

This will copy the MBR to the disk.
If you boot the disk it will start linux or win at your choice.

Only if you didn't change the partitions or the linux os. So if some winprog
did overwrite your boot.

I use it with GRUB but I think it should also work with linux.

Try it out, give the command in the console. Set your bios to flopy boot
as first boot, put the flop in and see if it works. If so you can use it.

CloudBuilder
 
Old 04-24-2004, 10:13 PM   #3
michaelk
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You can use the 1st install CD to boot to rescue mode. A menu will be displayed that you can select the option to restore the boot loader.

The manual method would still boot the rescue mode and then mount all of the partitions. Figure out where the / partition is mounted and then run the following commands.
chroot /mnt/<the_root_partition> (Replace with actual directory name)
/sbin/lilo

You can also try the command mkbootdisk to create a boot floppy.
syntax
mkbootdisk <kernel_name>

Last edited by michaelk; 04-24-2004 at 10:15 PM.
 
Old 04-25-2004, 01:04 AM   #4
SpaceGhoti
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Beauty!

Thank you both so much. I'll give that a try and report the results.

Out of curiosity, where do I find the kernel name? I know, I know. I'm so new at this it's painful.
 
Old 04-25-2004, 01:45 AM   #5
SpaceGhoti
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Quote:
Originally posted by CloudBuilder
use dd=if/dev/hda of=/dev/fd0 bs=512 count=1

This will copy the MBR to the disk.
If you boot the disk it will start linux or win at your choice.
I gave this a try, and when I booted to floppy the system said it wasn't a bootable disk. Either it doesn't work with LILO or I missed a step. I know I wrote the command as written above, and it gave me no errors. It also showed no files on the disk (I had formatted the disk before running the command).

Then I tried the mkbootdisk command with the kernel 2.4.22-10mdk and the floppy disk ran out of space. Which brings me full circle to where I started.

The bios is too old to handle a 1.7MB floppy drive; I need a linux boot disk that can fit on the standard 1.4MB.

Last edited by SpaceGhoti; 04-25-2004 at 04:31 AM.
 
Old 04-25-2004, 04:42 AM   #6
SpaceGhoti
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Registered: Apr 2002
Location: Des Moines, IA, USA
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Last update: I switched my bootloader to GRUB and then tried CloudBuilder's suggestion. It worked! I am now going to reload Windows, and then use the Linux boot disk to get back into Linux and restore the boot sector.

I'm still lost on how I'm supposed to make a viable rescue bootdisk that fits on a 1.4MB floppy, but for my immediate needs I have what I asked for. Thank you.
 
  


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