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Old 06-09-2004, 02:04 AM   #1
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Registered: Jun 2004
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Cannot boot - just displays L followed by 7's

I have a Dell computer, and put in a new hard drive to put Mandrake Linux on. I wanted to be able to either boot Linux or Windows from the computer. But something horrible must have happened! I installed Linux on the new hard drive, but when I boot it up I just get a bunch of 7s on the screen! I have NO idea how to boot Linu or Windows? How do I get back into windows? And also, is the data on my main hard drive (the windows one) still salvagable?

Thank you so much.
Old 06-09-2004, 03:34 AM   #2
Registered: Jun 2003
Location: UK
Distribution: Fedora 8, Centos 5.1
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Do a search on the forums for fixing the mbr for windows.
Old 06-09-2004, 07:43 AM   #3
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Location: Upstate
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The data on your hard drive is still salvagable as long as you didn't reformat that hard drive by mistake when installing Mandrake.

The problem you describe has something to do with your boot loader. The master boot record (mbr) containing the windows boot loader is overwritten with the linux loader (LILO). That is what you want to happen to set up a dual boot, but something is misconfigured.

The way it works is LILO handles the booting of both Linux and Windows. My suggestion is to move your Linux drive to the IDE primary (master) position and your Windows drive to the IDE secondary (slave) position. Your BIOS should be set up to boot the IDE master drive first. Try re-installing Mandrake and selecting to install the boot loader in the master boot record. Mandrake should automatically recognize the windows installation in the slave drive and set up a dual boot. If not, you can do it manually after you install a bootable Linux.
Old 06-09-2004, 08:22 AM   #4
Registered: Mar 2004
Location: Minnesota
Distribution: Fedora Core 1, Mandrake 10
Posts: 405

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THis happened to me after my first ever install of fedora. All I had to do was begin the installation again, but only install the boot loader. I used grub. I've not worked with Mandrake, but it too may have and option during install to just reinstall the boot loader. Give this a try, it may be all you need. Oh, and yes, choose to install it in the MBR if you see the option....

Good luck!


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