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-   -   Why Did Zenwalk Install Over My Vista And Kill My Computer? (http://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/linux-newbie-8/why-did-zenwalk-install-over-my-vista-and-kill-my-computer-632213/)

wildwestcoaster 04-01-2008 11:31 AM

Why Did Zenwalk Install Over My Vista And Kill My Computer?
 
hey Linux bodies

I valiantly decided to try and escape the clutches of Gates & co the other day.
Put a copy of zenwalk on a stick, transfered to disc DVD and set about doing a dual-boot
type installation. Admittedly, I think I touched my track pad at a crucial moment,
but the end result has been that linux partitioned itself a space and formatted it
directly on top of Windows Vista Home premium. Windows came with my laptop, so I have
no restore disc for it. Not only that, but one of the files was corrupted in zenwalk,
so I now have NO operating system at all. So here I am sitting in my local library trying
to download zenwalk lite onto a stick, and begging someone to tell me how I can get my Windows
back, along with all the programs it has taken me six months to collect and explore and
organise to my satisfaction. I really think it strange that such a sophisticated bunch of
excellent programs cant work out that for most people, with 150 gig of free space on their
hard drive, a linux system could better find an emplt space to install itself when doing
auto-partition, rather than on top of $300 worth of Microsoft OS!! C'mon. A feud is a feud,
but that's rediculous.

Can anyone tell me how to get my $2000 machine running again? Preferrably without having to
spring for a new version of windows vista? I am not the enemy here!!

I regret that my first post should be so negative, as I wouldn't be trying to switch to Linux
if I didn't share some of your outlook, But this is too stupid and too expensive a way for
me to waste my life savings!!!!

HELP!!! aka zog49@hotmail.co.uk

TigerOC 04-01-2008 11:39 AM

Are you absolutely certain that you have formatted the ntfs partition? You would be warned numerous times about what you were about to do; i.e. destroy a partition that contained an os. If you ignored the warnings and went ahead with the partitioning then........

Any install would have required free space to to create a new partition. Did you check that you had free space before you started?

If you went ahead and partitioned over the MS os and installed the new os then it's gone forever.

You need to get a boot disk like Knoppix and do an examination of the contents of the drive and report back.

H_TeXMeX_H 04-01-2008 11:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by wildwestcoaster (Post 3107300)
but the end result has been that linux partitioned itself a space and formatted it
directly on top of Windows Vista Home premium. Windows came with my laptop, so I have
no restore disc for it.
...
I really think it strange that such a sophisticated bunch of
excellent programs cant work out that for most people, with 150 gig of free space on their
hard drive, a linux system could better find an emplt space to install itself when doing
auto-partition, rather than on top of $300 worth of Microsoft OS!!

What you're saying is not quite possible, unless you had no clue what you were doing. I've installed Zenwalk before and it installs just like Slackware. You first must use a partitioning program like fdisk or cfdisk to make a new partition, then select the new partition, and have it install in there. If you happen to screw up, indeed you could have done what you said happened. But, it is YOUR fault. Not to sound mean, tho. I'm just saying, don't blame Linux or the programmers who made the partitioning program ... they are not at fault. Also, I don't know what you mean by 'auto-partition', I don't remember there being such a thing in Zenwalk, and I see in the Zenwalk manual that there is no such thing, there's only cfdisk.

If your laptop is a Dell (I'm sure other companies do this too), if you call them, they'll help you get Window$ back on there.

jkirchner 04-01-2008 12:49 PM

Did you select the option to take over the whole disk? If so, you probably did overwrite your windows partition.

Vista does not play nice with the bootloaders though. Does the computer boot at all? Just into Zenwalk?

As a side note, did you know Zenwalk has a live cd version that you could try without an install? Many distros have that; it is a good way to see if you like it before you go any further.

Zenwalk does have an option now that will allow you to overwirte everything (I think the selection is labeled "Auto Install") and then it proceeds to automatically partition your disk and do a full install. No cfdisk no fdisk required. You are prompted before doing this though.

wildwestcoaster 04-01-2008 01:11 PM

I'm sure that's what I did, but it was inadvetant, and I can't help the feeling that it was too damn easy to do in an area where info is scarce and the motivation to try out something non-vista is so great. I would have thought there must be a way to partition a big disc in such a way that the existing OS is protected? I'm no programmer, but if I was doing the code writing I'd make sure I wasn't creating new business for the "Great Satan" of Redmond!

Is there any way to recover my missing windows, or do I have to buy a new copy and start again from scratch?

My other concern is that the advice, for a newbie like myself, reads like a spilt tin of alphabetti spaghetti, and is less than useless

However, as the song says, "I'm still willin". Us Scots don't give up easily.

Thanks again buddy

zog49@hotmail.co.uk
PS have you checked out the BBC H2G2.com site? I'm known as quarkafleeg there, and its one of the most eccentric places online I ever found!

jay73 04-01-2008 01:12 PM

In order to get a new copy of Vista, you'll have to take the laptop back to where you bought it. OEM resellers are also responsible for offering support. And if they really made you pay $300 for a copy of Vista Premium, they should have given you a cd. It is only OEM versions that come without install cd and those cost only $100...

I fully understand your frustration but you should have taken a back-up first. I don't know any distro that will overwrite another partition without being told to do so but accidents will happen. As you say, you probably hit your track pad at a bad moment. Surely you didn't expect that the installer would ignore it? An installer that does not respond to your choices - even if they are unintentional - that would be a poor installer.

wildwestcoaster 04-01-2008 01:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TigerOC (Post 3107305)
Are you absolutely certain that you have formatted the ntfs partition? You would be warned numerous times about what you were about to do; i.e. destroy a partition that contained an os. If you ignored the warnings and went ahead with the partitioning then........

Any install would have required free space to to create a new partition. Did you check that you had free space before you started?

If you went ahead and partitioned over the MS os and installed the new os then it's gone forever.

You need to get a boot disk like Knoppix and do an examination of the contents of the drive and report back.

No noticeable warnings at all pal. If I'd been told I was going to destroy my OS i would have stopped there. I had 147 Gig of free space, so why the hell did it partition the minority sized bit of the 250 gig to install itself. Thats what is boggling my brain more than anything!

Im now going to try zenwalk lite, but I'll beg librarian to let me download knoppix before i get thrown out!

Thanks for the tip!

jkirchner 04-01-2008 01:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by wildwestcoaster (Post 3107423)
No noticeable warnings at all pal. If I'd been told I was going to destroy my OS i would have stopped there. I had 147 Gig of free space, so why the hell did it partition the minority sized bit of the 250 gig to install itself. Thats what is boggling my brain more than anything!

The autoinstall does prompt again and it does say everything will be erased from the selected disk. Maybe you hit the touchpad at the worng time?

Quote:

Im now going to try zenwalk lite, but I'll beg librarian to let me download knoppix before i get thrown out!

Thanks for the tip!
Zenwalk really is a great distro. I just got a laptop from Dell Outlet and wiped Vista right off of it.

wificraig 04-01-2008 09:40 PM

Rescue CD
 
System Rescue CD is a smaller download:
http://downloads.sourceforge.net/sys...-x86-1.0.1.iso
Go into G-Parted (DON'T FORMAT ANYTHING!)
You can check to see if your NTFS partition is still there.
If it is still there, you may still have problems if you did not perform a disk fragmentation of Windows before trying to install Zenwalk.Also, Windows keeps a separate partition at the end of your hard drive that stores the backup files for Restore. You would still need a Windows boot disk though to access that partition. Not sure if you can copy a boot disk from another computer though.
Good luck from a fellow Scotsman.

wildwestcoaster 04-03-2008 08:53 AM

Viasta-less one!
 
Thanks for all the useful suggestions, friends. I'm now back in library downloading Knoppix and ubuntu after reading an encouraging article in Micromart. Thinking back, there was a choice of three options just before things went tits-up, but I didn't understand any of them. I fancy that's where my slip of the thumb happened and set off the train of events which led me here!

All the advice much appreciated tho, and I'll keep you posted!

Thanks:rolleyes:

tredegar 04-03-2008 09:07 AM

Good luck with your linux install. At lease you need not worry about deleting windows ;)
You might want to go back and edit your email address out of your previous posts, unless you want the spam-bots to read and harvest it :(

wildwestcoaster 04-24-2008 06:39 AM

return to topic
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by wildwestcoaster (Post 3107300)
hey Linux bodies

I valiantly decided to try and escape the clutches of Gates & co the other day.
Put a copy of zenwalk on a stick, transfered to disc DVD and set about doing a dual-boot
type installation. Admittedly, I think I touched my track pad at a crucial moment,
but the end result has been that linux partitioned itself a space and formatted it
directly on top of Windows Vista Home premium. Windows came with my laptop, so I have
no restore disc for it. Not only that, but one of the files was corrupted in zenwalk,
so I now have NO operating system at all. So here I am sitting in my local library trying
to download zenwalk lite onto a stick, and begging someone to tell me how I can get my Windows
back, along with all the programs it has taken me six months to collect and explore and
organise to my satisfaction. I really think it strange that such a sophisticated bunch of
excellent programs cant work out that for most people, with 150 gig of free space on their
hard drive, a linux system could better find an emplt space to install itself when doing
auto-partition, rather than on top of $300 worth of Microsoft OS!! C'mon. A feud is a feud,
but that's rediculous.

Can anyone tell me how to get my $2000 machine running again? Preferrably without having to
spring for a new version of windows vista? I am not the enemy here!!

I regret that my first post should be so negative, as I wouldn't be trying to switch to Linux
if I didn't share some of your outlook, But this is too stupid and too expensive a way for
me to waste my life savings!!!!

HELP!!! aka zog49@hotmail.co.uk

On further expensive investigation it seems windows has been given a password by me during the installation process. However, they cannot help me further, as it lives in BIOS and they have no influence over it!

Which leaves the begging question, "What do I do now?" Is there a hacker-type prog which will scroll through the possibilities until it hits gold? Or do I just use itnto prop up a wobbly table leg?

This cannot be the best sollution to getting a look at an operating stystem, or inded, of rescuing an accidentally fornicated machine!

Please help folks. Is it something I said?!!!

Love and icecubes

wildwestcoaster

wildwestcoaster 04-24-2008 06:45 AM

new windows
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by jay73 (Post 3107420)
In order to get a new copy of Vista, you'll have to take the laptop back to where you bought it. OEM resellers are also responsible for offering support. And if they really made you pay $300 for a copy of Vista Premium, they should have given you a cd. It is only OEM versions that come without install cd and those cost only $100...

I fully understand your frustration but you should have taken a back-up first. I don't know any distro that will overwrite another partition without being told to do so but accidents will happen. As you say, you probably hit your track pad at a bad moment. Surely you didn't expect that the installer would ignore it? An installer that does not respond to your choices - even if they are unintentional - that would be a poor installer.

They say they would supply me with a new version of windows, but a bpart of BIOS needs a password available only from me! Go figure!

Thanks for taking an interest, and do you know a way to wangle this problem?

wildwestcoaster 04-24-2008 06:50 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jkirchner (Post 3107388)
Did you select the option to take over the whole disk? If so, you probably did overwrite your windows partition.

Vista does not play nice with the bootloaders though. Does the computer boot at all? Just into Zenwalk?

As a side note, did you know Zenwalk has a live cd version that you could try without an install? Many distros have that; it is a good way to see if you like it before you go any further.

Zenwalk does have an option now that will allow you to overwirte everything (I think the selection is labeled "Auto Install") and then it proceeds to automatically partition your disk and do a full install. No cfdisk no fdisk required. You are prompted before doing this though.

Why makwe it so damn easy to wreck a perfecctly good laptop so easily, especially for someone who is so obviously inexperienced?

Give me strength!

Power to you m8

H_TeXMeX_H 04-24-2008 07:06 AM

Well, if you're the one who but the password for the BIOS, then you should know it. If you don't know it, you can probably re-flash the BIOS as long as you have a disk that can do that. For example, I got such a disk with my motherboard. I suppose they didn't give you such a disk ?


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