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This is my 5th time installing linux to play around with it. Inevitably I get frustrated with one thing or another, but usually not as early as this time. (Last times were the "easy" ones though, mandrake and redhat, and corel once also).
Anyway, this time I'm using debian, and I'm having trouble. I have downloaded all 7 "woody" cds through jigdo, and partitioned the drive to have an ext2 and swap filesystem along with the ntfs one. I was able to finally get it to recognize the ext2 filesystem whenever I temporarily hid the ntfs partition, of course that made it where I couldn't boot to windows, but I thought lilo would work and I could unhide the partition then and everything would be good, but nope. Lilo isn't loading. I'm getting "LI LI" on startup (on seperate lines) but nothing is happening. I cant' get a menu or a reaction of any kind past this point. I went ahead and unhid the partition by moving that hd onto this system, hoping lilo would just do something to no avail. No go..
Treat me like a moron if you like (possibly just being overdefensive, I've seen a few overzealous linux folk in the past and personally while I've always wanted to run it it's just a pain manytimes. And this is coming from someone who runs a lot of junk, I use apache, mysql, etc... just with linux everything is more difficult).
Anyway, please help in anyway possible and my thanks to all who do, regardless of any sarcastic remarks about being a noob I may get or whatever.
this is a really easy lilo problem just kidding, it's not easy to understand when seeing this for the first time. problem is lilo is installed at the wrong place. try starting with a rescue / boot cd. now create a mount point (mkdir hd) and mount the hard disk (mount /dev/hdxx hd/). now chroot to the hd (chroot hd /bin/bash). now you are working on your installed linux. open up /etc/lilo.conf in an editor and search for a line wich says: boot=<bla>. change this to boot=/dev/hdx (or any other hd which is booted by the bios). run /sbin/lilo to update the configuration. reboot your system.
this should help you out, if not, post again
-= iluvatar =-
note: change the /dev/hdxx to whatever is for your system
another note: the /dev/hdx in the boot=/dev/hdx does not have a partition number, only a physical drive letter (hda / hdb or what else)!
Yes, that makes sense.. I'm going to try to use the disk to do that as it has a console that I guess will allow me to do what reply #1 is talking about.. I'll post in a sec if that doesnt' do the job. (and yeah I put in the MBR like a moron.. it says "do this if you don't know what you are doing.." they really need to change that)
I type mkdir hd and that works fine (creating a directory hd)
I type mount /dev/hda3 hd/ and it says "Device or resource busy" and anything else I try doesn't do any better.
(not sure why it's hda3 btw, I think hda1 was the ntfs partition, and I think the swap file comes after but ehh?
BTW, device was already mounted as root filesystem by rescue disk, it's part of the installation procedure.. but anyway, I just unmounted it and then did exactly as you said, but when I get to the chroot hd /bin/bash step it says "no such file or directory"
ok, now this is just me trying junk, I can't chroot to /bin/bash but I did cd to it.. and.. I can't cd from there to /etc/ (which I guess isn't really a directory.. still an odd concept there).. and how I"m supposed to use utilities from here I don't know.. keep in mind I'm pretty new.. before I was sticking to primarily the gui junk (kde and gnome).. so as far as console commands goes consider me an average dos user with no true skills beyond typing exactly what is said (sorry about that, I truly am)
So more specifically, what do I "launch" to edit /etc/lilo.conf
WIth more experimentation I tried to launch emacs, which it says is not there but there is something called nano-tiny I'm trying to use. I'm trying to get file /etc/lilo.conf but it's not.. coming up.. says file not found...
Your not trying to chroot to /bin/bash your trying to chroot your harddrive. Make a directory mount the partition to it then chroot to that mount point:
mount /dev/hda3 /mnt/myharddrive
Debian is weird, much weirder than redhat/mandrake which were pretty easy and not any more difficult than windows to install (except I think I was using grub instead for boot management, which is easier than lilo.. or maybe i just got it right and was lucky, who knows).
Anyway.. I did some more with it, and reinstalled the base system, etc. and chrooted the /target (the default mount thing it uses.. not sure what you call this stuff.. it's not really what it is just where it's mounted.. odd)..
Anyway, it came up with sh this time, and now I have no idea how to launch a text editor or anything, but, I can now cd to my hearts delight, and I was able to get in the /etc/ dir and look around but there is no lilo.conf in there.. so I"m just more confused now (sorry for the pain here guys)
Ok, a few things to keep in mind, 1) I can't get this to boot anything including linux.. so what it is is whatever is installed off the cd that is useable from the recovery console sort of thing.
It is, however, on the hard drive. But, for some reason /etc/ does not contain lilo.conf.. and the funny thing is if I type lilo by itself, it actually says "cannot find /etc/lilo.conf" and it does that regardless of what dir i'm in, so I guess it knows what I'm looking for.
The thing is, once I actually get chrooted I can't figure out how to run any text editors either, the utilities in the bin folder now don't seem to give me anything like the crappy nano-tiny I was using earlier.. which seems like it's ok, but nothing nice.
And, even if I could do that wouldn't matter much because lilo.conf is apparently nowhere to be found.
And I can't think of how it couldn't be anywhere.. I did put it on the mbr though as well as putting it on the root of /dev/hda3 (after the fact of course)..
so.. could there be somewhere else it's putting it? Is it possible that it just isn't putting lilo.conf there and that's the problem? again, I'm actually using the installation cd for this with it's console, and I've put lilo in various places and it just doesn't do anything ever.
Anyway, I'm kinda frustrated but at the same time I won't be happy until windows is running again so will probably be up until whenever it's back and running again..