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Old 06-04-2007, 01:18 PM   #1
Miykayl
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Dual boot WinXP, FC6, but need to replace FC6 with Feisty


I have a WinXP Pro/ FC6 machine. I used GParted once upon a time to make room for FC6. This was successful. There is a third “recovery” partition that is not important to me, but I mention it in case it is important in the following scenario.

I want to replace FC6 with Ubuntu Feisty, but I am concerned that I will make the system unbootable, since the GRUB config file would have been in the nuked FC6.

Perhaps there’s no trick to it, and I simply need to proceed.

But, it would be a severe pain if I render the system unbootable and have to star from scratch, so…uh… here I am, asking for advice… 

Thank you!
 
Old 06-04-2007, 01:46 PM   #2
jay73
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Just install Ubuntu over your FC - it will overwrite your GRUB with its own.
 
Old 06-04-2007, 01:48 PM   #3
Miykayl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jay73
Just install Ubuntu over your FC - it will overwrite your GRUB with its own.
Sweet. I will try that and report back here.

Oddly, I searched and never found the statement that you just made. I just needed someone with experience to say it.

Thank you.
 
Old 06-04-2007, 04:02 PM   #4
Miykayl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jay73
Just install Ubuntu over your FC - it will overwrite your GRUB with its own.
It looks like I will have to nuke the FC6 partitions before I can install Ubuntu.

The Partition Manager for Ubuntu gives me the option to pick the whole drive (smoking the WinXP and FC6 partitions) or “Manual”.

Manual mode can see the two linux partitions fro FC6 , but only recognizes the small ext3 partition. It shows the larger partition as “uknown”. (It is shown as an extended partition).

I did not get through this successfully.

If I used GParted to free up those partitions and run the Ubuntu Feisty installation again, I assume that Ubuntu will still detect my WinXP installation and add the Ubuntu entry in to GRUB.

Will GRUB or the Ubuntu installation get “upset” because one of the entries in GRUB is not valid? (The old FC6 installation will still be declared in GRUB, but FC6 will no longer be present).

OR? Will GRUB or Ubuntu be “upset” because GRUB is installed without a GRUB config file? (Because the GRUB config file –was- on the FC6 installation, which has been vaporized.)

The idea is to know what will happen –before- making changes. Heh. ;-)
 
Old 06-04-2007, 04:27 PM   #5
brianL
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If GRUB is installed in your MBR and you have your XP Pro install CD, you can use the Recovery Console. Type:
fixmbr
at the prompt. Boot into XP, open Control Panel -> Administrative Tools -> Computer Management -> Disk Management, and then delete your FC6 partititions.
Ubuntu puts GRUB in the MBR so everything should be OK.
 
Old 06-04-2007, 04:35 PM   #6
jay73
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Whow, too many questions at 11PM, getting all confused.

OK, the reason your installer doesn't recognize the FC 6 partition is more than likely that FC was installed in an LVM - in which case there are only two partitions: a small one for /boot and a larger one that has all the rest. Many installers can't make sense of LVM so they report it as unkown.

To play it safe, you can use Gparted and delete both Fedora partitions. This would create the GRUB issue that you are trying to get around but that's OK since you're not going to boot into XP anyway until you are done installing Ubuntu; once Ubuntu is up, you have a fully functional, fresh GRUB. And yes, it will discover and add XP. While you're using Gparted, you can also create new partitions in the freed-up space: one for swap (twice the size of your RAM), one for / (at least 6GB, more if you want both KDE and Gnome) and one for /home (the remaining space). If unsure, you can always make partitions for swap and / only (then home ends up under /) but this is not the safest option if you ever need to upgrade or reinstall. If you place /home on its own partition, you can reformat and reinstall only / - in the other case, you have to format everything, including your personal data (ouch!). Of course, you can also hold off and do the partitioning while installing.

Last edited by jay73; 06-04-2007 at 04:37 PM.
 
Old 06-04-2007, 05:00 PM   #7
syg00
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The partitioners in GUI based installers have a poor history. And that includes the new Gentoo installer.
Ubuntus have been from "very bad" to "just average" with Feisty.

I concur with jay73 - set up the partitions first, then install fresh. FWIW I always do this for any install.
 
Old 06-04-2007, 05:02 PM   #8
Miykayl
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Magnificent answer, Jay73.

Thank you. :-)

I believe I now have the confidence to proceed.

:-)
 
Old 06-04-2007, 10:38 PM   #9
Miykayl
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Oh No! WinXP unbootable

Well, I can't boot WinXP.

The Recovery console worked fine to kill the old GRUB and make the system boot to WinXP.

I then deleted the old FC6 partitions.

WinXP still booted fine.

Then, I installed Feisty, the install went fine.

But, WinXp gives an error when I try to boot it.

There is a "restore partition" on this drive, which I loath more and more every day.

The WinXP partition WAS drive C:, while the restore partition was some other letter (form the windows perspective).

Well, the Feistyinstallation flipped them (making the restore partition active I asssume). So WinXP was now drive D and would not boot.

In DOS or Win9x, I WOULD have run FDSIK and set the active partition. I got lost. I know it's lame.

I modified my boot.ini files, I used fixmbr... no good. I tried an ERD rescue disk...

Now, where in cyberspace is a simple partion editor than can change the active parititon for NTFS?

Please help.

most sincerely,

"Lost in D-Space"

Miykayl
-Solo Dei Gloria
 
Old 06-04-2007, 10:56 PM   #10
syg00
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Nah, the active flag is irrelevant to grub - simply booting the wrong partition. From Feisty, lets see the output from these commands
Code:
fdisk -l
egrep -v "(^#|^$)" /boot/grub/menu.lst
 
Old 06-04-2007, 11:20 PM   #11
Miykayl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by syg00
Nah, the active flag is irrelevant to grub - simply booting the wrong partition. From Feisty, lets see the output from these commands
Code:
fdisk -l
egrep -v "(^#|^$)" /boot/grub/menu.lst
Thank you... I'll try that and post the results...

Uh.. I wiped out GRUB while I was trying to get XP to boot. The Feisty isntall is still there. Should I just reinstall UB? Or should I install grub, and if just grub, then how do I do that?

Being un-newbified is such a pain, but I am quite certain it is totally worth it, for Linux.
 
Old 06-04-2007, 11:22 PM   #12
Miykayl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by syg00
Nah, the active flag is irrelevant to grub - simply booting the wrong partition. From Feisty, lets see the output from these commands
Code:
fdisk -l
egrep -v "(^#|^$)" /boot/grub/menu.lst

Er... Sorry...

I think the problem i teh WinXP installation "expects" to be drive "C:" but it ends up being Drive "D:" during boot and dives.

Ubuntu isnt having any trouble. It's Windows that ahving the trouble.

<gasp>
 
Old 06-05-2007, 01:06 AM   #13
syg00
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Sorry, didn't read your earlier post closely enough.
Just restore grub - have a look here; skip to the second section "Using the Desktop/LiveCD and Overwriting the Windows bootloader". That seems to cover it.
"cut and paste" the commands - the spaces between parameters aren't obvious with that font. Get Ubuntu going again, then run those commands I gave your above.
 
Old 06-06-2007, 11:58 AM   #14
Miykayl
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I had to reinstall WinXP.

"Beware the Restore Partition" on at least Gateways.

My fatal system mistake was this:

I did not realize that the system restore partition is the "system" partition, and had the multi-boot info (boot WinXP or Restore). FC6 had no trouble with this, but Ubuntu 7.04's install did not deal with it so well. So when I copied over the boot.ini, ntldr, etc... I copied them the wrong direction and killed the correct boot files to boot the WinXP partition. I gave up trying to get the partition to boot.

So... I plasmified all partitions on the drive, so there is now but 1 partition, with WinXP. I have free space left over for Ubuntu, but Ubuntu will not have to navigate the odd restore partition stuff, and neither will I.

Forbaracudantely for me, I did back up of most all I coudl think of that was important before doing any of this.

...Bright side is: I tried many different ways to recover from the error, and learned more about GRUB and various partition stuff.

So, uh... Moral of the story is: Use extra care with restore parititons.
 
  


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