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-   -   Dual Boot Slackware and SUSE - Grub or Lilo? (http://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/slackware-14/dual-boot-slackware-and-suse-grub-or-lilo-486847/)

nix2ways 09-25-2006 01:17 PM

Dual Boot Slackware and SUSE - Grub or Lilo?
 
After 18 months of using SUSE I now want to install Slackware on a seperate hard drive. I really want to improve and increase my Linux knowledge and Slackware seems to be a good choice to enable me to do that.
My current set up is SUSE on hdb and I'm planning on installing Slackware onto what was my Windows hard drive - hda1 . Grub is installed on the SUSE root partition - hdb2.
Can I install Slackware, not install Lilo and will Grub then boot the Slackware install?
Or do I install Lilo and remove Grub and let Lilo handle the dual boot?
Any advice or guidance will be gratefully appreciated.
My fstab looks like this I don't know what /dev/hdf1 is, unless it's a small unallocated partition that I can delete(?)
/dev/hdb1 swap swap defaults 0 0
/dev/hdb2 / reiserfs acl,user_xattr 1 1
/dev/hdb3 /home reiserfs acl,user_xattr 1 2
/dev/hdf1 /windows/E ntfs ro,users,gid=users,umask=0002,nls=utf8 0 0
proc /proc proc defaults 0 0
sysfs /sys sysfs noauto 0 0
debugfs /sys/kernel/debug debugfs noauto 0 0
usbfs /proc/bus/usb usbfs noauto 0 0
devpts /dev/pts devpts mode=0620,gid=5 0 0
/dev/fd0 /media/floppy auto noauto,user,sync 0 0
/dev/hde1 /Images reiserfs user,acl 1 2
/dev/hda1 /Backup reiserfs defaults 1 2
/dev/hdf5 /GenImages reiserfs defaults 1 2
/dev/sda4 /zip vfat noauto,user,sync 0 0
/dev/sda /zip vfat noauto,user,sync 0 0

onebuck 09-25-2006 01:41 PM

Hi,

The default is lilo for Slackware. You could use lilo and include a stanza for SUSE boot. I know that grub is used by some slackware users, not me. I prefer to keep it simple and traditional.

When you install slackware, during the lilo option you will be asked to mount any other OS. You should know the parameters for additional OSs' that you wish to add to the lilo.conf be another linux, windows or whatever OS.

You could search LQ since this has been covered many times.
Check my sig for some good online reference.

BTW, Welcome to Slackware!

stabu 09-25-2006 01:56 PM

Grub allows you to change as little possible because you can go to your SuSE boot dir, edit grub/menu.lst and enter in the appropirate data for your new distro (copy the lines refering to your grub, paste and modify numbers to reflect your slack distro). And then do nothing more. Your grub read from this selfsame file and reflects changes immediately.

Lilo hardcodes all this stuff onto the Master Boot Record (MBR) so any changes to your boot structure require rewriting to the MBR. I gather (i.e. not sure) it's a binary write and it needs some assembly abilities (i.e. nasm). That said, it's closer to the bone, i.e. probably more reliable long term. Grub is easier short term.

hussar 09-25-2006 02:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by stabu
Lilo hardcodes all this stuff onto the Master Boot Record (MBR) so any changes to your boot structure require rewriting to the MBR. I gather (i.e. not sure) it's a binary write and it needs some assembly abilities (i.e. nasm). That said, it's closer to the bone, i.e. probably more reliable long term. Grub is easier short term.

Maybe I just read it wrong, but it seems like you are saying that using lilo requires some understanding of assembly (nasm) in order to make it work. It doesn't. Just take a look at `man lilo.conf`.

But, it sounds to me like what he wants to do is to set up his current boot loader to dual boot SuSE and Slack. I don't have any experience with grub, so I can't help there. Sorry.

b0uncer 09-25-2006 02:16 PM

It doesn't matter which one is used. They're just configured in a bit different fashion. For me, confguring LILO has always been somekind of magic; it's a bit easier (the syntax I mean), but you can do mistakes, and overall it seems a bit oldish to me; should I say, difficult to alter, even. Grub, on the other hand, is very nice to edit (add OSes etc.), but in order to do that, you've got to learn how it speaks about your drives. It's a bit different fashion than that of LILO's (hd(0,1) - does that make sense to you? if yes, go for grub), but once learned, surely easier in my opinion.

Besides, what I've tried both of them, new and older, Grub has worked better. For me. But after all it's just which one you want; if you're familiar with one, don't switch just for the name.

Woodsman 09-25-2006 03:09 PM

Use whichever boot loader you prefer. ;)

I am happy and content with grub. The only time I used lilo was way back in my first few days of exploring GNU/Linux. After I discovered grub, and the manner in which grub allows me to intermix OSs without difficulty, I never looked back. Regarding maintenance, I found grub easier, but that is my opinion only. Unlike lilo, grub does not require "recompacting" any binaries with each menu modification. Just update the menu.lst text file and I'm done. I also like grub because I can use longer human readable menu titles. I believe lilo is limited to 12 or 24 characters or something like that.

Perhaps the following might help:

Installing GRUB
GRUB and Error 17

Quote:

Lilo hard codes all this stuff onto the Master Boot Record (MBR) so any changes to your boot structure require rewriting to the MBR.
I don't think that statement is technically correct. ;) The MBR is a mere 512 byte sector and serves only to point to a location on the hard disk. That location contains the boot program that the OS needs to bootstrap itself. For Windows, the MBR points to the first sector and block containing either io.sys or ntldr. With grub, the MBR points to the sector and block containing the stage1 boot loader. I am unfamiliar with lilo, but with lilo the MBR can only point to the location of the sector and block containing the lilo boot program. My guess is that with lilo, the reason for the updating process or recompacting is that lilo does not separate the menu from the boot loading programs and compacts all of that information into one binary. After recompacting lilo, lilo updates the MBR only to ensure that the MBR points to the correct location for the new lilo binary file. Just a guess, but I think I'm close to the basic idea. Grub does not require this.

stabu 09-25-2006 03:53 PM

Quote:

don't think that statement is technically correct.
Yes, I admit I glossed over the exact details there. Your explanation also seems plausible, though harder to grasp.

It's so easy to add new distros and kernels to your grub so that it starts getting too complicated. Right now my laptop grub gives me a choice of 9 OSs/configurations to choose from. Of course I can't remember what half of them are for :-D

Quote:

it needs some assembly abilities (i.e. nasm)
Gosh, you yourself don't need ASM abilities to use LILO, but it does. LILO is also very straightforward.

Both are good stuff, simple as that.

nix2ways 09-26-2006 03:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by gwsandvik
Hi,

The default is lilo for Slackware. You could use lilo and include a stanza for SUSE boot. I know that grub is used by some slackware users, not me. I prefer to keep it simple and traditional.

When you install slackware, during the lilo option you will be asked to mount any other OS. You should know the parameters for additional OSs' that you wish to add to the lilo.conf be another linux, windows or whatever OS.

You could search LQ since this has been covered many times.
Check my sig for some good online reference.

BTW, Welcome to Slackware!

Thanks very much, Gary. I'll do it that way and use lilo. Thanks for the links etc. I'll read them all. I'm really looking forward to getting the install done and start using Slackware and moving my, as yet minimal, Linux knowledge to a higher level.
Thanks everyone who answered.


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