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I have two operating systems on my laptop, Windows XP and Fedora Core1. Recently I tried to change an NTFS partition to a fat32 (using partition magic) so that I could use it to pass my windows documents to fedora. But some how managed to partition the drive fedora was on, that is to take 250 meg from this drive and change it to fat32. Now I have lost the ability to dual boot, in-fact I can no longer boot anything. The dual boot program was GRUB
Now at start up all I get is
“Grub version 0.93 “
“minimal Bash like editing is supported”
then a command line “grub>”
I have the following hard drives
*:/ Linux Ext3
*:SWAPSPACE2 Linux swap
I am fairly new to computers, but I think I have some how moved the boot program (or components of it) used at start up, to another location,. I have tried the windows boot disk (which was made with partition magic, which in fact only boots a cut down version of partition magic) and the fedora boot disk, but no joy, but just before I tried changing the file system I updated the kernel (by using live update in the fedora menu) so I guess the boot disk is “out of date”
I have used Knoppix to check file system is in tact, and every thing is there I just cant start either operating systems
if you have a rescue floppy that you made when you installed you may be able to modify grub. I would check your partitioning again in partition magic and see if the /boot and / filesystems still exist. With M$ the conversion from ntfs to fat32 is never pretty.
Ok, first of all I tried the rescue floppy but I updated fedora on line just before all this stuff went wrong. The floppy does not help, and I guess its because I should have created a new one because stuff would have been changed in the update. It looks like it boots as normal then comes up with errors, I think it was some thing like “system panic”
I have used Knoppix to go in a check that all my file systems are in tact (although I could not find the /filesystems folder I am using fedora core 1)
I have used fdisk /dev/had command and found some thing interesting. Upon running this command I got the following warning, “ the number of cylinders for this disk is 2432 there is nothing wrong with this but this is larger than 1024 and could cause problems at boot time with: software that runs at boot, or booting and partitioning software from other OS’s”
Also if i PWD in this command I see the following
Device boot start end system
/dev/hda1 * 1 1156 hpfs/ntfs
/dev/hda2 1157 1509 hpfs/ntfs
/dev/hda3 1510 2431 win95 ext’d (LBA)
/dev/hda4 2432 2432 win95 fat16
/dev/hda5 * 1510 1541 win95 fat32
/dev/hda6 1542 2367 linux
/dev/hda7 2368 2431 linux swap
I am guessing that when I made way (accidentally) for the fat32 partition, where the old boot files were located partition magic just moved them some place else but the grub program does not have this new address for these files and is still looking at start position 1510, which is now allocated for the fat32 partition, but is still labelled as a boot partition. This is all speculation as I am new to fedora/linux. My next step would be to try and remove hda5 from the boot sequence and instead move it to hda6 if that makes sense.
Any ideas how to do this, or other things to try, with knoppix I am able to go into the /boot folder, and any other linux folder and change files, if that’s any help
Also I have just noticed there are two devices with the same start place, hda3 and hda5 is this normal??
I think you may have reordered the partition numbers. Since there is now 1 extra.
For example, /dev/hda3 may now be /dev/hda4
You could try undoing the changes made.
the easyist thing to do would be to reinstall linux
A solution to the problem
Incase any one else is having the same problem as I did, here is how I finally resolved it.
Indeed to do a fresh install of Fedora was the final option for me.
But I found that when I used the original disk, it gave me the option to create a new boot disk. It scanned the hard drives and found Fedora and created a new boot disk, not only did it do this but I guess it some how fixed the MBR because I can now also boot windows.
The only thing is now instead of booting as before, that is you get the grub screen at start up, you get an error message “unable to mount partition blah blah” but if you press an arrow key you get the options of which to boot fedora or windows, only thing is the screen is filled with random characters, but I guess this is some thing to do with grub configuration, another thing altogether.