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Old 06-11-2004, 04:33 AM   #1
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Registered: Jun 2004
Distribution: Mandrake Linux 10.0
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GRUB Bootloader Trouble

I'm currently using Mandrake 10.0 Offical Edition and have though about booting with multiple operating systems (Win98, Mandrake 10, and Gentoo). I read something about being able to edit the GRUB menu list and add OS's to boot there. First though, you have to change GRUB to your default bootloader. I did this just to check out GRUB, and I thought it was graphical like LILO, but I found out it wasn't. Now I'm stuck, because I don't know how to boot Mandrake. Right now I'm using Knopphix STD to try and find a solution to my problem. Does anybody know what I would put for 'kernel', 'initrd', 'root', and such? I just need to know it for the default Mandrake partition. Thanks for any help.
Old 06-11-2004, 04:49 AM   #2
Andrew Benton
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Tell us which partitions Mandrake and Gentoo are on.
Old 06-11-2004, 05:05 AM   #3
Registered: Aug 2003
Location: Bulgaria
Distribution: OpenSuse 10.3, Debian 4.0r3 "Etch", FreeBSD 7.1, Ubuntu
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Your partitions must be primary NOT logical to boot from them..and the partition where is the linux installed must be can do all theese things with Partition Magic v.8.0 ~~~
Old 06-11-2004, 09:59 AM   #4
Registered: May 2003
Location: The States
Distribution: Gentoo
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So did you make a boot disk that contains grub? Or did you install grub to the MBR of the disk that bios boots from? Grub is actually very easy to use. You need to know your disk partition tables and where the OS you want to boot are installed. When you start the computer, I am assuming that you are not getting a the list that says which system you want to boot on your computer. You are getting a grub> prompt though, right? Well then define your root by entering root(hd0,0) where you can change 0 and 0 to represent different partitions on different drives. Grub counts from zero so your first hd, which is normally hda, is actually 0. Partitions are also counted from zero.

Ex: First partition second hard disk:

grub>root(hd1,0) (the second hard disk is 1 and the first partition is 0 ... now if your system is on an extended partition, those automatically count from 4, I think, regardless of how many primary partitions you have.)

Now that root is defined, enter the kernel you want to use. Usually your kernel is located in /boot/ so type in

grub>kernel /boot/vmlinuz ro root=/dev/hdb1 where vmlinuz is the kernel you want to use, ro is read only and root defines your root partition, which will match your first entry always (I think). Now Grub is COOL because it will let you see what your options are concerning kernels. That is type kernel /boot/ and then hit tab and it should give you a list of the stuff in /boot/ ! Actually hitting tab is helpful for figuring out root too. Try it and youll see.

Rocks, eh?

Finally enter


And you are up and running. Then make sure to edit the grub menu which will probably be in /boot/grub/ or not...depends on your system I guess.

My system:

The file is called menu.lst

color green/black light-green/black

title Linux
root (hd2,5)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.3 ro root=/dev/hdf6

title Windows 2000
rootnoverify (hd0,0)
chainloader +1

Note: You can use the Windows entries above to boot windows if you want too. Just enter grub>boot after entering the three commands above (separately!)

Finally, if you dont understand the naming system for your hd's, you should just try different root entries at first until you find the correct one for grub to work. It shouldnt do anything harmful (just a guess though!)
Old 06-13-2004, 01:34 AM   #5
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Registered: Jun 2004
Distribution: Mandrake Linux 10.0
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Thanks so much Kroenecker, your post was extremely informative on GRUB. I got frustrated with not being able to figure out GRUB, so I just popped in the Mandrake Install disk and deleted the Mandrake partitions and re-installed Mandrake. Thanks again for the help.


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