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Old 10-19-2012, 01:02 AM   #1
golightly
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Installing Mint13 to usb hdd


AS I'm still experiencing problems installing Mint 13, I decided to physically disconnect all my hard drives leaving one usb hdd (sdb) to install to. Installation went fine but it still won't boot, just displays error:file not found. grub rescue.
So where will the bootloader be if there wasn't another hdd plugged in?
Clearly I'm missing something basic. I've looked at bootinfoscript and I don't understand the instructions, its all Greek to me.
I would be most grateful for any help
 
Old 10-20-2012, 10:54 AM   #2
exsencon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by golightly View Post
AS I'm still experiencing problems installing Mint 13, I decided to physically disconnect all my hard drives leaving one usb hdd (sdb) to install to. Installation went fine but it still won't boot, just displays error:file not found. grub rescue.
So where will the bootloader be if there wasn't another hdd plugged in?
Clearly I'm missing something basic. I've looked at bootinfoscript and I don't understand the instructions, its all Greek to me.
I would be most grateful for any help
I have Mint11 installed on a external USB (Iomega) HDD,no problems there.
Need to know a few things: How many HDD do you have (internal,external)
How many OSs do you have and what is your primary bootloader(grub,grub2,lilo,other)meaning the one that"s in the MBR.
 
Old 10-21-2012, 02:31 AM   #3
golightly
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Okay, internal drives:
sda 160 GB Windows XP
sdb 41GB
sdc STM 500GB with Mint 11 fully operational plus Mandriva which doesn't work
sdd 360GB usb drive for data
sde 500GB Iomega usb containing only Mint 13
Think I'm using grub2

every time I start the Mint13 Live DVD and I check Disk Utility the sd references for each drive changes;
so the drive that was sda1 on first boot becomes sdd1 then sdc1 upon subsequent reboots as do the other drive references, really makes it difficult especially as they differ from the Mint 11 references
 
Old 10-22-2012, 10:32 AM   #4
exsencon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by golightly View Post
Okay, internal drives:
sda 160 GB Windows XP
sdb 41GB
sdc STM 500GB with Mint 11 fully operational plus Mandriva which doesn't work
sdd 360GB usb drive for data
sde 500GB Iomega usb containing only Mint 13
Think I'm using grub2

every time I start the Mint13 Live DVD and I check Disk Utility the sd references for each drive changes;
so the drive that was sda1 on first boot becomes sdd1 then sdc1 upon subsequent reboots as do the other drive references, really makes it difficult especially as they differ from the Mint 11 references
Allright, I assume you have two working OSs being WinXP and Mint 11. We forget about the not working Mandriva for the moment.
When you startup, I assume you have the choice of starting in winXP or Mint 11 right?
You say you think you are using Grub2, you are not sure? Mint 11 uses GRub2. Is that the one you put in the Master Boot Record(MBR)? Or are you still using WinXP bootloader?
I would advice to wipe out your new Mint 13 and reinstall it with your live DVD only using your internal HDD and the one external HDD you want it to go into. During install you'll come to the bootloader item (you know). It is very important that you put the bootloader IN ITS OWN ROOT PARTITION. That's the only way it will work.
Now I know some Linuxes don't easily install in an external disk, but up to Mint 11 I never had any problem with it.
Do you have Gparted or PartedMagic? It may be useful to see exactly what your partitions look like.
Also, in your Mint 11 (still assuming it's your main OS) look at your grub.cfg file and in etc/grub.d/ and see if there is any trace of your Mint 13.
FYI here is my installation:
Internal HDD 320GB with WinXP
Internal HDD 250GB with Ubuntu, Solaris11,Centos,Mandriva,Kubuntu,Debian6,Sabayon7,Fedora FC16,Slackware 13,Opensuse 11.
External HDD 320GB (Iomega) PCBSD, Mepis11,PCLinusOS,Kanotix, LinuxMint 11.
Just to show you it can be done. Do I use all those OSs? No,I don't. I use a few and the rest is just for fun and I assure you I am not a computer nerd!
Finally, useful information about how to use Grub2:
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1195275
and
http://members.iinet.net/~herman546/p20.html
Let me know how you're doing.
 
Old 10-22-2012, 01:02 PM   #5
golightly
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Okay, all your assumptions are correct. I ran the bootinfoscript and the part relating to MBR's is below
Boot Info Script 0.61 [1 April 2012]


============================= Boot Info Summary: ===============================

=> Grub2 (v1.99) is installed in the MBR of /dev/sda and looks at sector 1 of
the same hard drive for core.img. core.img is at this location and uses an
embedded config file:

---------------------------------------------------------------------------
search.fs_uuid 79369164-c13d-415e-910e-41ae7727cb6b root
set prefix=($root)/boot/grub
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
-----.
=> Windows is installed in the MBR of /dev/sdb.
=> Grub Legacy (v0.97) is installed in the MBR of /dev/sdc and looks on the
same drive in partition #1 for /boot/grub/stage2 and /boot/grub/menu.lst.
=> Grub2 (v1.99) is installed in the MBR of /dev/sdd and looks at sector 1 of
the same hard drive for core.img. core.img is at this location and looks
for (,msdos5)/boot/grub on this drive.
=> Grub2 (v1.99) is installed in the MBR of /dev/sde and looks at sector 1 of
the same hard drive for core.img. core.img is at this location and looks
for (,msdos1)/boot/grub on this drive.
I must confess that I'm none the wiser
So, you're suggesting that I delete Mint 13 from the Iomega u Drive, no problem but I don't understand 'reinstall it with your live DVD only using your internal HDD and the one external HDD you want it to go into'.
Also when I installed Mint13 before it loaded in the MBR automatically, so I guess I'll need to perform a manual install?
The root partition would be the partition within sde, Iomega?
Checked the grub.cfg file in Mint 11 and the menu ref's to Mint 13 are there. I only have access to Gparted from the Mint13 DVD, so I'll run that later and post it.
Thanks for your help especially in writing in plain English. When I installed Mageia last week, to the Iomega drive, it went perfectly, guess I was lulled into a false sense of security, Ha!
 
Old 10-23-2012, 06:16 AM   #6
exsencon
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Allright, I am getting a clearer view now.
You say there is no ref to Mint 13 in your Mint 11 grub.cfg. That's why it will never boot when you startup. He just can't find it. Still assuming your Mint11 grub2 bootloader is in the MBR of your sda disk. When you startup what is your choice of OSs you can boot?
Accordingy, you have to wipe out your Mint 13 and having done that,reboot and see if everything is working as you expect.
If it does,reinstall Mint 13 in your external disk MANUALLY making sure it is the only external disk connected so you will only have that disk and your internal disks.
And, yes the bootloader of Mint 13 has to go in its own root partition being sde in your case. That's the most important thing.When you do it manually there will be a choice you'll have to find (sometimes it's a little bit hidden)But it has to go in the / partition of sde if that's the disk you want to install Mint 13 into.
Also Gparted or Parted Magic can be easily downloaded as an ISO file from the Distrowatch.com site and burned to DVD. Believe me, it's worth it.
Keep me posted.
 
Old 10-24-2012, 02:19 AM   #7
golightly
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Success at last! I disconnected all internal hard drives and installed Mint 13 into the iomega usb drive via manual partioning and after a clunky start(graphics board differences I think) it booted and ran just fine.
Then the usb disk I store my files on decided to quit, a mechanical switch fault,managed to get it running long enough to transfer all files to a new Seagate usb drive, phew!

What I plan to end up with is a triple boot configuration of Windows, Mint11 and Mint13. I'm not quite sure how to achieve that yet as I don't want to risk losing my Mint11 installation, Probably delete Mandriva partition and replace with Mint13. Any suggestions would be appreciated though.
 
Old 10-25-2012, 09:39 AM   #8
exsencon
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Glad to hear it worked out for you.
Now if I got it right you got Mint 13 up and running. What about your Mint 11 and WinXP?
Also, where did your Mint 13 bootloader go since you said you disconnected all your internal drives?
Did you reconnect them? Are Mint 11 and WinXP running?
In order to have a workable multiboot system you stil need a bootloader in the MBR. Do you have a boot menu at startup meaning can you choose one of your OSs?
Of course you can wipe out Mandriva if you don't want it and install Mint 13 instead. Remember, do it manually and watch out where the bootloader goes. It has to be in its own root partition.
Success!Post back if you run into any problem.
 
Old 10-27-2012, 12:02 AM   #9
golightly
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Thank you so much for your help, especially concerning the bootloader's location. Well things have moved on as I've been using the Iomega usb drive to play around with dual booting mint 11 and 13, with success until I added Mageia to the mix and really fouled things up, all sorted now though. Glad I'm retired or I couldn't have devoted the time needed to fix all this. Would you believe that after all this I prefer Mint 11 over 13 !!!
Guess I allowed myself to be seduced by the advertising and magazine reviews, I'm old enough to know better.
Thanks again for your excellent assistance.
 
Old 10-29-2012, 01:31 PM   #10
exsencon
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You're welcome. Glad it worked out for you. Just remember the bootloader location!
 
  


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