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Old 01-28-2003, 12:32 AM   #1
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Registered: Jan 2003
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dual booting Win2k & RH Linux using ntldr->GRUB has problems

I have an adaptec 2940UW, 2 wide Cheetah drives & 1 narrow (Connor) - all SCSI.
I had Win95 running on Cheetah1(ID14). I had previously attempted to install Win2k on
what I'll call Cheetah2(ID0), partition1, dual booting with RH Linux on other partitions on Cheetah2.

That was not very successful on several accounts, so I proceeded to reinstall both operating systems on a freshly repartitioned Cheetah2(ID0).

After (re)installation of Windows 2000 Professional on Cheetah2(ID0), I began looking for
the Ntldr,, Ntbootdd.sys, Boot.ini etc.
It was NOT on the Cheetah2 drive. Finally I discovered it on the Connor drive (ID2). During the Win2k boot there is an option screen of what to boot - Win2k Pro or Windows, if I
select win2k pro, everything proceeds normally & the OS boots from Cheetah2; but if I
select windows, I end up on the Connor (ID2) & windows(95) starts but cannot complete.
From there I can access Cheetah1, but not Cheetah2. The failure to boot win95 doesn't bother me - I have working Win95 on Cheetah1, which I can boot by altering the boot
drive in the 2940 BIOS.

The problem is that in trying to alter the boot.ini & boot into RH linux, I run into problems that I believe are related to Ntldr,, Ntbootdd.sys, Boot.ini etc. being on the WRONG drive.

here's my boot.ini:
[boot loader]
[operating systems]
signature(98ed98ed)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINNT="Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional" /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)="Red Hat 7.2 p2 no slash"
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)/boot="Red Hat 7.2 p2 /boot"
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\="Red Hat 7.2 p2 \ "
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\boot="Red Hat 7.2 p2\boot"
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(5)\boot="Red Hat 7.2 p5 \boot"
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(5)\="Red Hat 7.2 p5 \ "
C:\bootsect.lnx="Linux via bootsect.lnx"
C:\ = "Microsoft Windows"

In the installation of Red Hat 7.2 I told it to put the boot loader record in the 1st sector of boot partition. As you can see from above I don't fully comprehend the process & use the trial & error approach. The next to last line C:\bootsect.lnx="Linux via bootsect.lnx" when
selected for boot gives the following message: "Grub Geom Error".
All the other options either give me some windows error message about booting problem or reboots my machine.

I assume that somehow Grub looks at the Connor, instead of the Cheetah2 & decides there's a problem. (there's no \boot partition - it's all one FAT32 part.)
Is that right? How can I get it to go boot from the Cheetah2?

Some years in the past the Connor drive was my boot drive (for win95) & I think on my first
attempt at dual booting Win2k & Linux on the Cheetah2, I may have copied Ntldr,... etc to the Connor as a backup, from where it was (on the Cheetah1 drive!).

Soooo, why in the world did the installation of Win2k put it on the Connor (clearly from latest installation from the date), instead of on the Cheetah2?
how do I get it back onto the Cheetah2 & get the MBR to find it there?
Old 01-28-2003, 12:59 AM   #2
Registered: Dec 2002
Location: Plains
Distribution: Slackware 13
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How did you create "bootsect.lnx"? I boot Debian and Slackware off the "ntldr" for XP Pro but it's formatted Fat32. I haven't had any luck when the partition containing "ntldr" is NTFS.
Old 01-28-2003, 10:49 AM   #3
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I booted RH linux from floppy and entered in a console
dd if=/dev/sda3 of=/bootsect.lnx bs-512 count=1
I then mounted the Connor drive's partition (which is FAT32)
and copied the bootsect.lnx to the Connor drive.
I really suspect (hunch) that it's somehow related to the ntldr & the bootsect.lnx being on the Connor rather than Cheetah2 where the Linux /boot partition & the rest of the linux partitions are.
I could just copy all that stuff to the Cheetah2 drive, but I imagine that the MBR would not then find it there & still look on the Connor drive.
Old 01-28-2003, 05:39 PM   #4
Registered: Oct 2002
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Distribution: MDK 8.0, 9.0; RH 7.2, 8.0, 9.0, FC3, FC4, FC5
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Your Grub Geometry problem has to do with using an Adaptec SCSI adapter. The Grub manual warns of this incompatibility. Your best solution would be to change to LILO (not being a LILO fan, you have no idea how hard that was to recommend!).

WTF did you do to boot.ini? A little research would tell you that NTLDR cannot load Linux. It can only trigger a Linux boot loader (Grub or LILO). Your last line where you point it at the boot image is the only way to make NTLDR work. Delete the rest of that garbage.

Booting from SCSI drives usually reaks havoc with Linux because SCSI systems allow you to rearrange what the BIOS has set up (or to have the BIOS do something Linux isn't expecting). If you still have problems with LILO, start Linux as root and at a Shell Prompt, type:

fdisk -l

The -l is a lowercase L, not an uppercase i. Post that printout with the error codes/symptoms LILO is giving you.

Last edited by deadbug; 01-28-2003 at 05:40 PM.


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