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Old 01-22-2011, 09:47 PM   #1
oldsoldier
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XP failed to boot after adding Red Hat Enterprise Linux


I have a Dell Precision 330 with (the latest) A09 BIOS and 1 TB SATA hard drive. There is a SATA-IDE converter between the SATA HD and the ATA133 cable. The OS was Window XP Professional SP3.

When adding RH Enterprise Linux 6 onto the computer, I created two additional partitions, one 400 GB for Linux's storage and a 10 GB swap space. I chose Window XP as the default OS.

After the installation, when the system started up, I can hit a key to have two optional OS: Window XP and Linux. If I chose Linux, the system would boot up. If I chose Window XP, the boot failed with a message that \windows\system32\config\system was missing or currupted. I read some articles that the problem can be fixed in window's recovery console with fixboot. After entering the fixboot command and restarting the computer, Window XP still failed to boot with an error message that another file was missing.

I thought I might have made some mistakes in the installation procedure and it would be cleaner to reinstall both OS. So I tried to install Window XP Professional again. Unfortunately, after booting from Window XP CD and formating the MBR and copying the window XP files, the computer can not restart with the installed XP. Instead, the computer boot from Window XP's CD repeatedly. If I removce Window XP's CD, the computer simply can not boot at all.

I began to wonder whether RH's Enterprise Linux made some change on the MBR of the HD that Window XP can not format.

Please advise where I did wrong and how to fix. Thanks.

- Old Soldier
 
Old 01-22-2011, 11:13 PM   #2
jmc1987
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If you reinstalled windows it would have written over the MBR again. If it is a ide hd make sure it you either have the harddrive on cable select with the master side of the cable plugged in or make sure it is on master jumper. Windows has to be on the first partition or you will have to edit grub to hide stuff from windows to boot. Also try disconnecting 1 hd and see if it will boot vice versa
 
Old 01-22-2011, 11:28 PM   #3
oldsoldier
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There is only one HD and it is connected to the master end of the cable. The computer can not re-start even after I re-install Window XP with the format option.
 
Old 01-23-2011, 12:30 AM   #4
jmc1987
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This is a strange one. It just doesn't make no sense to me. I would say check your bios and make sure your harddrive is enabled to boot but if you can boot linux or you see it trying to boot windows and get an error then it sounds like it is bootable within your hardrive. Have you overclocked anything or modified anything in your bios. You may want to go in there and reset it to factory defaults. now your sata to ide cable could also be the issue. But if it boots linux then it prolly not. Check your windows cd and make sure you don't have a damaged CD.
 
Old 01-23-2011, 02:13 AM   #5
mlangdn
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Boot with a live cd of some linux if you have one.

Perhaps the partitions created have an error. I let Suse create an extended partition for me once and it overlapped into the Vista partition. Thankfully, I did not formar that area and simply re-created the proper partition(s).

Post the output of:

Code:
# fdisk -l /dev/sda
Make sure the /dev/xxx is correct for your system.

Last edited by mlangdn; 01-23-2011 at 02:17 AM.
 
Old 01-23-2011, 02:47 AM   #6
John VV
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Quote:

I began to wonder whether RH's Enterprise Linux made some change on the MBR of the HD that Window XP can not format.
by default it dose .
UNLESS you installed grub in the FIRST linux partition .
the installer gives you the option to install default ( puts grub on the mbr) or a custom place ( the First linux partition ) and leaves the mbr alone.


normaly rhel,cent,fedora,suse are VERY good at setting up grub for windows OS .However there are some partition schemes that might cause problems .

run the"fdisk -l " command from RHEL6 ,you will need to be root for that
Code:
su -
fdisk -l
AND read the grub.conf
/boot/grub/grub.conf ( it might also be called "menu.lis")

there is a group of lines in it that will look like this
Code:
title Windows xp 
    rootnoverify (hd0,0)
    chainloader +1
the "(hd0,0)" is the partition
hd0 = first drive
,0 = first partition

that is where the windows "C:\\" drive is and fdisk will call it /dev/sda1 and there will be a "*" next to it in fdisk
the * means that it is a bootable flag and the partition is bootable

sda1 = hd0,0
sda2 = hd0,1
second drive
sdb1 = hd1,0
sdb2 = hd1,1

point the line in the grub.conf to point to the windows C drive

the other is it YOU changed the drive order in the BIOS
then a remapping is needed
 
Old 01-23-2011, 07:35 AM   #7
ashish_neekhra
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Hope this will fix your problem.
 
Old 01-23-2011, 04:36 PM   #8
oldsoldier
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I boot the computer with RHEL6's boot CD and entered the rescue mode. Below is the output of "fdisk -l":

Disk /dev/sda: 1000.2 GB, 1000204886016 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 121601 cylinders
unit = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disk identifier: 0x69205244

This doesn't look like a partition table
Probably you selected the wrong device.

Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
/dev/sda1 ? 13578 119522 850995205 72 Unknown
Partition 1 does not end on cylinder boundary.
/dev/sda2 ? 45382 79243 271987362 74 Unknown
Partition 2 does not end on cylinder boundary.
/dev/sda3 ? 10499 10499 0 65 Novell Netware 386
Partition 3 does not end on cylinder boundary.
/dev/sda4 ? 167628 167631 25817+ 0 Empty
Partition 4 does not end on cylinder boundary.

Patition table entries are not in disk order

When I entered "ls /", below is the output:
bin dev etc firmware init lib lib_old mnt modules oldtmp proc root sbin selinux sys tmp usr usr_old var

Since there is no /boot, I was not able to read the grub.conf as John.VV suggested. As of now, I have tried to re-install Window XP Profession with the format option but it failed. When I powered on the computer, there was no boot option. The computer kept going back to reload the BIOS. Please advise what I can do to install Window XP and/or RHEL6. Thanks.
 
Old 01-23-2011, 05:54 PM   #9
mlangdn
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You will need to delete all the partitions and start over. This can be done with either the XP or RHEL disk. Make only a single partition for the XP install, and leave the rest un-partitioned. Then, after the XP install, if you want to install RHEL, tell it to use the un-partitioned space.
 
Old 01-23-2011, 07:06 PM   #10
John VV
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oops i miss read
you HAD Linux working
then used the xp install cd to "fix" things

as you found out the xp cd is a P.O.S.
and fubar'ed the system

the xp cd can not and never did have the ability to read NON Microsoft partition formats ( ntfs fat32 )

the xp cd is 100% useless until you "blank " the hard drive .Remove all partitions on it
i would use SystemRescueCD http://www.sysresccd.org/Main_Page
on a different computer DL it and burn to cd
reformat the drive to ntfs
then use the xp cd and reinstall xp
update to sp3-- service pack 2 is no longer supported -- install servicepack 3
 
Old 01-30-2011, 02:56 AM   #11
oldsoldier
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The PATA-SATA converter made by HDE does not work

I think the problem was the PATA-SATA converter made by HDE for two reasons: (1) I replace the SATA HD with a new one (same model) and the problem repeat again. (2) I took the converter and the SATA HD off and put the old PATA HD back and I was able to load both Window XP and Ubuntu without any problem.

I should mentioned that, initially, I planed to use the SATA HD and the converter together as a slave for data. However, when I added the SATA HD with the converter at the slave end, the system (Precision 330 with A09 BIOS) only recognized the SATA HD (with the converter) and could not recognize the old PATA HD, which was connected at the master end. The cable was an ATA133. I took the old master drive off and use the SATA HD with e the converter as the master. I was able to load Window XP SP3 and Ubuntu 10.10 but the Window failed to reboot with inconsistent error messages "c:/windows/system32/system is missing or currupted", "c:/windows/system32/ntoskrnl is missing or corrupted" or "c:/windows/system32/config/system is missing or corrupted". I tried "chkdsk c: /l" under the recovery console and the report said multiple errors were corrected but the computer still failed to reboot.

The most frustrating part of this problem was that I bought the converter and HD because someone wrote an review in amazon.com that the very same converter and a Seagate 1.5TB SATA HD worked well on his old Dell computer.

Thanks for all of your helps.
 
Old 01-30-2011, 03:32 AM   #12
John VV
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Red Hat
red hat dose not support the VERY new hardware
They never did and never will
RHEL is a STABLE server OS ,that "can" be ran on the desktop ( some hardware )

STABLE ( for one -- NO crashes --) with the trade off of older software

put the new hardware back in and see if fedora 14 installs

but if the rest of the hardware is too old ???


--- question ---
ubuntu installs and runs so
but xp sp3 will not

where did you but ubuntu's bootloader ? on top of xp's
if chainloading from ubuntu's menu.lis what partition is windows ? ( hda1 ) ?

that missing error is common if chainloading ans grub is looking in the wrong place
 
  


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