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Old 12-27-2005, 09:27 AM   #1
Registered: Aug 2003
Distribution: Ubuntu 6.10 Edgy
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Best way to handle the bootloader?

I have ben fooling around with Linux for a year or so and it seems like that I get it all set up right, then something goes wrong in Windows that prompts me to reinstall, then I have to reinstall or try to recover the linux bootloader.

So, I was going through my disks yesterday, and noticed hat I have BootMagic 8. THis made me think that maybe I would be better off to use it instead of GRUB or LILO, since you can configure it from Windows.

So my questions are:

Has anyone done this?

What are the pros & cons?

Does anyone know how I can set up BootMagic to boot into Linux since Windows overwrote my MBR last night which had GRUB on it? I got it to point to the linux partition, but nothing happens since Linux used to control the MBR and now it doesn't!
Old 12-27-2005, 09:33 AM   #2
Registered: Jun 2001
Location: UK
Distribution: Gentoo, RHEL, Fedora, Centos
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i wouldn't bother using a third party installer when grub is just fine. all you would need to do is keep a boot disk handy to get into linux when windows blasts your MBR. then just run "grub-install /dev/hda" and you'll reload the MBR just how it was... doddle.
Old 12-27-2005, 09:41 AM   #3
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I would suggest XOSL. I've used it before. It's a good, easy-to-use graphical bootloader.
Old 12-27-2005, 10:10 AM   #4
Registered: Dec 2004
Location: Vietnam (Việt Nam)
Distribution: Gentoo (desktop), Arch linux (laptop)
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I suggest GRUB
Boot magic don't support linux well.
It just foolly load the linux kernel without parameter, therefore you can not boot into linux.
Moreover, It give you a so ugly 16bit colour screen, with a dead mouse on it.

And here is the worst thing.
It suggest you hiding all partition but one have windows on it.
So that had led me to a problem.
I installed it on a partition differ from the window partition.
When I reboot, that partition was hiden.
And I had no means to unhide it.
So, I reinstall GRUB to boot into linux but it was still no luck with the hiden partition, they can be accessed only from linux.
Then I borrow a partition magic boot disc and managed to unhide those partition.
But that is not all.
Since MBR had been overwriten, I cannot remove boot Magic (it said it wasn't installed, damn it).

So I suggest you leave boot magic unless you love trouble
Old 12-27-2005, 10:41 AM   #5
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The mother of all boot loaders is Grub. This based my trials with Lilo, Windows' NTLDR, BSD and Solaris boot loaders.

It boots 100+ systems in my box.

It is the only boot loader that you can use it manually to boot every system in a PC.

In majority of cases you can boot every system with the same 3 lines of commands (extra lines are needed if you have multple installations of Dos, Windows and BSD as these systems were not designed to coexist together).

You can install Grub in a floppy, CD, MBR, any partition with a system or unattached to a system. I can boot every one of my 100+ systems with just a Grub floppy! The published menu is just the collection of commands I would use on each one.

If you are interested in finding a boot loader that is easiest to learn, most powerful to use, most flexible in apllication and actually has the ability to teach you how to boot (by its ability to boot a system manually one step at a time) Grub is the man!

Took me a while to write the above link but please do let me know if you find something better.

Last edited by saikee; 12-27-2005 at 10:46 AM.
Old 12-27-2005, 05:44 PM   #6
Registered: May 2005
Posts: 516

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I keep GAG installed to the MBR and then install the respective linux bootloaders to their root partitions. Works like a charm.

If I need to reinstall windows I just let GAG rewrite the mbr.

I can reinstall distros to my heart's content without touching the mbr or reconfiguring GAG.

I run xp and five distros on one hard drive.


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