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Old 01-17-2006, 09:13 AM   #1
kazuya1977
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can't install lilo to boot sector or MBR or floppy?


Is there a gui front end like synaptic on slackware that would let one install packages like bittornado-gui, pythongtk, etc and handle some of the dependencies on slackware 10.2 or Vectorsoho 5.1rc?

I am able to install slackware 10.2 completely in full install, but I cannot boot up my install. Part of the problem is due to my inability to write lilo to the MBR or boot sector?

I have been able to write grub to MBR when doing mepis install on the same drive, but lilo would not write to MBR. I am using Vector, because lilo at least writes to boot sector there. This is not the case with my slackware 10.2.

Any help would be appreciated... I really want to get slackware 10.2 on my system.. lilo is my biggest handicap.. My drive is partitioned,
hdb1 swap and hdb2 root. Should I be reconfiguring my system such that the drive is hda instead of hdb? Is this my problem... Other mepis utilizing grub go fine, while not lilo?

Or could I setup the grub file on MBR such that slackware is booted..?
 
Old 01-17-2006, 09:34 AM   #2
mdarby
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What happened when you tried to install LILO to your MBR? Any error messages?
 
Old 01-17-2006, 10:12 AM   #3
kazuya1977
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yes. it gives an error message and says sorry unable to write to MBR.
 
Old 01-17-2006, 10:22 AM   #4
dipenchaudhary
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how many disk drives u have ? why hdb ? i mean yehh hdb can be there .. but wot do u mean by configuring it as hda ..
if ur distribution has been installed correctly .. then maybe there is only little more to do
add a entry for this distribution in grub.conf
open grub.conf in any text editor
and enter these lines

title <name u wanna setup>
root(<physical address of ur boot partition for new distro where u have kernel image>)

kernel /vmlinuz-2.6.9-1.667 ro root=LABEL=/ rhgb quiet
# here vmlinuz-2.6.9-1.667 is the zipped image of kernel in boot partition #of new distro
initrd /initrd-2.6.9-1.667.img
# this is for ram disk image used to mount root ... there must be a .img #file in ur boot partition

post back ... if any problem
 
Old 01-17-2006, 10:25 AM   #5
kazuya1977
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thanks. I'll give this a go and write back when I get home. what is your OS of choice and why? Do you think slackware would grant me all the apps I would normally get from debian or mepis?
 
Old 01-18-2006, 03:37 AM   #6
yoron
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hdb1 swap ok hdb2 root also ok.
Have you checked that you are allowed to write to your MBR.
In your Bios_settings that is ?
 
Old 01-18-2006, 08:47 AM   #7
kazuya1977
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how do I do this. I know this is a stupid question. I have a soyo motherboard; non-os2.,, setup security instead of system.., etc? What should I look for kind and wise one?
 
Old 01-19-2006, 06:40 AM   #8
godkiller
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is hdb slave? if yes.. that may be a problem.. try set it as master and try again.
 
Old 01-19-2006, 07:57 AM   #9
kazuya1977
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Thanks guys, and godkiller, you were right. setting the drive as a master, solved the problem. I may have to take vector out now and give slackware 10.2 a spin. I have been waiting to install this for about 2 months now, but this MBR issue kept stopping me...

Thanks a bndle guys. Problem solved...

Making hda master and not slave solved the problem. hdb means slave.. It took some changing. The seagate drive manual was wrong about the positioning of those .. I forget.. lol.

Problem solved. I would never repeat this problem.
 
Old 02-10-2006, 07:21 AM   #10
Randux
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Question Mine also doesn't work

slackware 10.2
toshiba satellite

I'm also having a similar problem- I just ran through the installation process and as far as I can tell, everything got built except that the MBR didn't get updated.

I let it sit for 10-15 minutes and I finally pressed ENTER and it finished the rest of the installation. But when I rebooted it went directly into XP.

From Slax I can see that the lilo.conf is what I expected. It seems that many people's MBRs aren't getting updated. I'm not sure I understand what to do to fix this. I'm trying to set MBR of /dev/hda.

Thanks,
Rand
 
Old 02-10-2006, 09:48 AM   #11
onebuck
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Randux
slackware 10.2
toshiba satellite

I'm also having a similar problem- I just ran through the installation process and as far as I can tell, everything got built except that the MBR didn't get updated.

I let it sit for 10-15 minutes and I finally pressed ENTER and it finished the rest of the installation. But when I rebooted it went directly into XP.

From Slax I can see that the lilo.conf is what I expected. It seems that many people's MBRs aren't getting updated. I'm not sure I understand what to do to fix this. I'm trying to set MBR of /dev/hda.

Thanks,
Rand
Hi,

During the installation what option was chosen, MBR or superblock? Was the device that you selected active/enable to boot?

You can see this with cfdisk or fdisk with an asterisk indicating active. BTW, you can have more than one active partition.

Sometime the SPL will get scrambled or corrupted. You can fix this for XP by using the boot repair. With Linux I like to use ranish, it will allow you to test and write the SPL for the disk.

By chance did you allow/select the mount of your XP during install?

What happens when you do the following while in your distro;

lilo -v -t -b /dev/hdp# # p# should be your device

If you get no errors then;

lilo -v -b /dev/hdp# #as above.

This is explicit and will write the boot. Provide output for both above command.

I like to boot from /dev/fd0 first to make sure everything is working. I then boot from my /dev/hda1 since it is my boot. I will then use other active partitions to boot using the other= lilo option to select another install. Sure I get another boot lilo menu but this can be defeated if you want. But this gives visual feedback for the selection of choice.

In order to assist in the diagnosis of your problem, please provide any error information outputted. Your lilo.conf, fdisk -l and your dmesg after boot would help.
 
Old 02-11-2006, 10:41 AM   #12
Randux
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> During the installation what option was chosen, MBR or
> superblock?

MBR

> Was the device that you selected active/enable to boot?

Yes, I just installed everything on the device prior to doing this step.

> Sometime the SPL will get scrambled or corrupted. You can fix
> this for XP by using the boot repair.

What's an SPL and what is boot repair?

>By chance did you allow/select the mount of your XP during
> install?

I used the "expert" option and added XP first, then the new slackware distro.

> What happens when you do the following while in your distro;

> lilo -v -t -b /dev/hdp# # p# should be your device
> If you get no errors then;
> lilo -v -b /dev/hdp# #as above.

I don't know how to get the distro to come up.
I can boot XP or a live CD.

P.S. Why do you have p#? Don't I just use:

lilo -v -b /dev/hda # if I want to install in MBR???

> This is explicit and will write the boot. Provide output for
> both above command.

How? I don't know how to capture console output.

> I like to boot from /dev/fd0 first to make sure everything is
> working. I then boot from my /dev/hda1 since it is my boot. I
> will then use other active partitions to boot using the other=
> lilo option to select another install. Sure I get another boot
> lilo menu but this can be defeated if you want. But this gives
> visual feedback for the selection of choice.

I don't have a floppy- it's a laptop. And I have no DOS boot disk.

> In order to assist in the diagnosis of your problem, please
> provide any error information outputted. Your lilo.conf, fdisk
> -l and your dmesg after boot would help.[/QUOTE]

I think it's pretty clear from reading the postings here that there is a major problem with lilo and/or slackware 10.2 installation. Many people are reporting the same symptom: MBR is NOT getting updated by lilo during slackware 10.2 installation.

I didn't receive any messages.

It would help to know why lilo won't write an MBR.

I have to figure out how to get the slackware 10.2 installation setup to point to my installation so it can use the lilo.conf it created (but never installed). And then I can use the commands you gave.

Thanks,
Rand

Last edited by Randux; 02-11-2006 at 11:11 AM.
 
Old 02-11-2006, 11:44 AM   #13
Randux
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Gary, thanks for the lilo commands.

FYI, I booted a live CD (Slax) and did the mount and chroot stuff I found in another thread, to point the root at my installed (and inaccessible) slackware 10.2 distro. I ran LILOCONFIG in expert mode and got the message "Cannot Install LILO". I tried it again and got the same message. It indicated that the lilo.conf could not be found- I think there is probably an error in the slackware installation script because:

When I issued the commands you showed here, LILO did install to the MBR, and I can boot both XP and Slackware 10.2.

Thanks for the information. It's actually a 10-second job when you know how to do it. Just finding out how to do it takes 3 or 4 hours!

If I want to change the names that show up in LILO boot menu, is there an "easy" way to do it, or do I have to edit the config and install again?

Thanks to all,
Rand, who is now off to find out why he has no x-window environment setup, and how to do it...
 
Old 02-11-2006, 12:12 PM   #14
onebuck
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Randux
> During the installation what option was chosen, MBR or
> superblock?

MBR

> Was the device that you selected active/enable to boot?

Yes, I just installed everything on the device prior to doing this step.

> Sometime the SPL will get scrambled or corrupted. You can fix
> this for XP by using the boot repair.

What's an SPL and what is boot repair?

>By chance did you allow/select the mount of your XP during
> install?

I used the "expert" option and added XP first, then the new slackware distro.

> What happens when you do the following while in your distro;

> lilo -v -t -b /dev/hdp# # p# should be your device
> If you get no errors then;
> lilo -v -b /dev/hdp# #as above.

I don't know how to get the distro to come up.
I can boot XP or a live CD.

> This is explicit and will write the boot. Provide output for
> both above command.

How? I don't know how to capture console output.

> I like to boot from /dev/fd0 first to make sure everything is
> working. I then boot from my /dev/hda1 since it is my boot. I
> will then use other active partitions to boot using the other=
> lilo option to select another install. Sure I get another boot
> lilo menu but this can be defeated if you want. But this gives
> visual feedback for the selection of choice.

I don't have a floppy- it's a laptop. And I have no DOS boot disk.

> In order to assist in the diagnosis of your problem, please
> provide any error information outputted. Your lilo.conf, fdisk
> -l and your dmesg after boot would help.
I think it's pretty clear from reading the postings here that there is a major problem with lilo and/or slackware 10.2 installation. Many people are reporting the same symptom: MBR is NOT getting updated by lilo during slackware 10.2 installation.

I didn't receive any messages.

It would help to know why lilo won't write an MBR.

I have to figure out how to get the slackware 10.2 installation setup to point to my installation so it can use the lilo.conf it created (but never installed). And then I can use the commands you gave.

Thanks,
Rand[/QUOTE]

Hi,

First look at my sig for some good reference. Use this to help you get through some of the elementary needs. Another good reference is 'Linux in a Nutshell A Desktop quick reference' By Ellen Siever from O'Reilly.

Now to get you to boot to your distro if it is there;

Put the installation cd1 in and boot to the boot screen;

enter;

bare.i root=/dev/hda1 noinitrd ro #you can chose the kernel of choice
# I assume you used the bare.i for
#ide boot kernel & that root is
#indeed on /dev/hda1

If the system then boots, you can login then do the lilo commands as suggested.

If you still can't write the lilo? Do you have your BIOS set for virus check or inhibit/prevent/disable MBR writes?

As for spl 'simple program loader' Some people use 'Standard program loader' and ipl 'initial program loader'. I'm showing my old habits with DEC on some of my terminology.

Ranish is a great tool to have, it includes a boot manager plus a means of disc maintenance. You can get SystemRescueCD which contains a lot of other useful tools. Slax is another good maintenance cd.

As for boot repair, that is a maintenance option for windows/xp.

If your installation didn't go well;

For the setup option during Slackware install. Did you follow the screen instructions to partition the Hard drive with cfdisk or fdisk?

I like to do my own by;

fdisk /dev/hda1

then partition (my system requires a different config), do your own as dictated by your system. I would suggest at this point to put all of / on one partition (PV suggest 3GB+) allow for growth. Create a swap.

Make /dev/hda1 active then Write to disk!

Then reboot to update partition table!

After reboot of install cd then; note: the # is your system prompt and
# is used for my comments

#mke2fs -c /dev/hda1 #this should be the partition you created
#with cfdisk/fdisk If win/xp is on your first
#drive then it would be /dev/hdb1. If it is
#second drive. If the partition was created
#at the end of drive 1 then it would be the
#next partition number /dev/hda2

#mkswap -c /dev/hda2 #same goes for the swap
#swapon /dev/hda2 #turns the swap on

then;
#setup

You can select the reformat options without a hitch.

Do a full install.

It will give you an option to create a bootdisk. If you have a floppy then create one. You can use it to boot if a problem occurs.

Just let lilo do a simple install!

Select either MBR or superblock. This will be written to the active boot device.

As for output redirection from the stdout device;

#dmesg | less # | is the shift \
#will pipe the output to less to allow you to see
#kernel ring buffer (system messages)

#dmesg >mydmesg.txt #will redirect output to a file named mydmesg.txt

#cat lilo.conf >mylilo.conf # redirect lilo.conf to mylilo.conf

These can then be posted for diagnosis.

As suggested before read either the references or man pages

#man dmesg
#man less
#man lilo.conf
#man lilo
#man cat

Man is a little hard to understand for a noob but you should use it and get familiar with the commands. Heck I still have to reference for switches/parameters at times, so man is frequently used by me. The 'Linux in a NUTSHELL' is a great help for cli (command line interface) users.

HTH!
 
Old 02-11-2006, 12:30 PM   #15
onebuck
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Hi,

Sorry about the late post. I had to go feed the horses.

As for changing your lilo.conf file;

it's easy;

#cd /etc
#vi lilo.conf
Once in vi you will need to move you cursor down to the desired line you want to change.

i is the insert mode, if you press the insert key it will be in input mode also.

you should get familiar with vim by;
#man vim

make your changes to the lilo.conf file then press 'esc' then : (here you will notice the cursor moves to the bottom left location of your terminal.

You could then write the file with w #w allows you to update during edit
or your could write then quit with wq

:q! (q with a bang) will quit without changes

Another way would be to use an X environment with a good windowmanager of your choice then edit with a text editor.

Be sure to get root and write the updated lilo to the disk.

BTW, glad you got things going!

Welcome to the wonderful world of Slackware!

Last edited by onebuck; 02-11-2006 at 12:31 PM.
 
  


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