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Not sure what happenede here but don't panic you don't have to re-install Windows (assuming when you installed SUSE you didn't partition the WHOLE disk wiping windows off it.
Load the Windows install CD and boot from it.
After it intializes use the Recovery Console.
You should get a C:\Windows prompt when the console is enabled. If Windows is on another disk you'll see D:\Windows or whatever.
Now type FIXMBR and follow the instructions.
Now we haven't finshed yet as this will just ensure you can boot Windows only just like you did before installing SUSE.
Boot your SUSE install disk and at installation type choose OTHER.
Then select REPAIR system and follow the instructions.
What you need is the bit which re-installs GRUB but just follow through the on screen instructions.
Reboot - you should find your Windows and Linux boot options back again.
I'd recommend this rather than trying to fix GRUB manually especially if you are dual booting with Windows XP.
Thanks a lot! But I don't have a windows install cd. I just got eight recovery discs.If I use them it formats the entire hard disk and installs windows with some additional software. Is there any solution?
I have found the problem. Suse has thought that my D drive(my windows was earlier installed in C:, the second primary partition of my hard drive)contained the windows OS. D: was my first primary partition. Suse has fixed the GRUB to boot from my first parition (D). Thats why my windows didn't boot! I did "FIXMBR" procedure with my friend's windows CD and it didn't work. So I used the repair option in it. Now after booting I find that I have a all the Windows folders(WINDOWS,Program Files..etc.,) in my first primary partition itself. So I have two copies of windows now. But my MBR is set to boot from the first partition which I had been using to store data earlier. I found all this after trying the repair option.
This is my hard disk partition details according to Norton Partition Magic:
Partition type status pri/log
Local Disk (C:) fat32 none Primary
HP_PAVILION(D:) ntfs Active Primary
/(*:) Linux ext3 none Primary
(*) extended none Primary
SWAPSPACE2(*:) Linux Swap none Logical
How can I set my MBR to boot from the ntfs partition(my earlier windows).Currently I am working in the one installed in the fat32 partition. Many programs are not working.
Is there any way to get my system back to the original state? Can I delete the folders that were created in the fat32 partition by just deleting it and telling MBR to boot from my ntfs partition?
Last edited by Carunkumar; 02-10-2007 at 05:24 AM.
Looks like you've got yourself into a little mess here.
Am I right in thinking that 'D' NTFS is where your original Windows is.
If so do the following.
1) Optain the LiveCD of GPARTED - an EXCELLENT FREE tool. Just Google for it.
2) Boot it up
3) Delete All Partitions except 'D'. Ensure 'D' is set to ACTIVE and is a Primary partition
4) resize 'D' to fill the whole disk (not 100% necessary but it makes life simpler --you can always re-partition it again afterwards)
WARNING DO NOT RE-FORMAT D AFTER RE-SIZING
5) exit GPARTED
6) FIX MBR
7) Boot Windows.
Note Windows doesn't like 2 Primary partitions on the same Disk. Linux doesn't care but Windows gets its knickers in a twist in this case (or at least it certainly used to).
I'd still try and get hold of a Windows 2000 or XP CD for fixing the MBR.
I'm suprised the version off the Win 98 dos disk actually worked as the MBR and boot sector (trk 0) is different for W2K and WinXP than W98/W95.
Yeah the Current D: is where my original windows is.
I forgot to give the details of my MBR. Thought this will be helpful for me to give details more precisely. I used MBRWiz to view it.
pos MBRndx Type/Name Size Active Hide Start Sector Sectors
___ ______ _________ ____ _______ ____ _____________ ________
0 0 0C-FAT32X 11G NO NO 63 22201767
1 1 07-NTFS YES YES NO 22201830 35214480
2 2 83-LINUX 9.2G NO NO 57416310 18876375
3 3 0F-EXTEND 909M NO NO 76292685 1863540
It seems that my ntfs partition is set to active. But then I am confused why my FAT parition gets booted! Can't a logical partition be active?
And am I right in thinking that if I do the procedure you instructed me I wouldn't lose the softwares which were installed in the ntfs drive? Can I do the same things using Norton Partition Magic? I asked this because I already have norton parition magic.
Last edited by Carunkumar; 02-10-2007 at 06:16 AM.
XP likes to be on the first partition. If it isn't, then the bootloader has to fool it. With a lot of XP OEM installs the first partition is a set of recovery files, which can get your system back to the original state. It also has the XP bootloader info. If this gets trashed then you will get a least a broken bootloader, and at worst a broken FAT.
This post has help on fixing GRUB, and at the bottom of it are links to the GRUB wiki & Howto.
If your Partition Magic is new, then it may have better NTFS support than GParted. I've used GParted 3.3.0 to resize NTFS partitions and it worked OK.
I suspect you don't need to resize or reformat anything. This is very like the problem I had with my dual boot laptop when the XP partition wouldn't boot. The recovery disk did what I thought was a reinstall using the files on recovery partition, but in fact it installed a new version of XP on the recovery partition and blew all the files away!
My Suse is on hda4, so that has the boot flag set, and GRUB is installed on the boot partition of hda.
If you can restore the MBR and get Windows booting OK, then you just need to re-install GRUB and all should be well. Famous last words!
I think I was wrong in thinking that my system is being booted from FAT32 since I find nothing in the directory Windows in fat32 drive except for a few small files. Sorry, I made a big mess. My windows is booting but the I think the sofwares aren't working because repairing the os deleted the registry entries and everything. But I don't understand why certain softwares still work
when I googled up I found in one page that the active partition, that is the bootable one if i am right, is required only for windows boot loader. For Grub, is boot flag necessary? Or setting boot flag for grub just means we are telling grub that there is a bootable os in it? Am I right in thinking that boot flag makes the partition active and there can be only one active partition if we are using windows boot loader?
I'll report back once I get back my system to good condition
I took back up and reinstalled windows and used gparted to move my ntfs partition and I failed twice. Then I installed windows using hp recovery discs. The first fat partition is for recovery files and second ntfs partition was active and contained the windows. I installed ubuntu in the first primary partition formatting it as two logical drives(one for root and other for swap) and set the boot flag. Now I lost my windows again . Where would have been my windows boot loader earlier? In the partition which is set as active or the beginning of the hard drive itself? And am I right in thinking that the grub will be in the /boot directory under '/'??
i have a question relevant to this thread; i currently have suse 10.2 installed, i also had winxp installed alongside and everything boots ok. however my xp installation has been taken hostage by a virus (suprise? haha...) and i was going to format that hardrive (i am using different drives for each OS) out and install vista, but i want to keep my suse isntallation. can i just install vista and then load my suse install cd and reinstall grub without having to do anything manually in terminal? i'd like to do this the easiest way of course. thanks for any help anyone can provide
here's a short layout of how my hard drives are mounted, each one is not just a seperate partition but a seperate drive entirely
/dev/hda1 winxp c drive
/dev/hdb1 winxp d drive
/dev/hdd1 winxp e drive
/dev/sda2 suse /
/dev/sda3 suse /home
/dev/sdb1 external storage drive (currently ntfs)
Last edited by sickley; 10-06-2007 at 03:15 PM.
Reason: providing extra information
It should be just as easy as reinstalling Windows, and then using your SuSE CD or DVD to use the recovery tools to reinstall grub after you have installed Windows. I've just done something similar where I had to reinstall the bootloader using the recovery tools on my openSuSE DVD, and it worked well for me.