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Old 08-19-2003, 07:02 PM   #1
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Registered: Aug 2003
Location: Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, Canada.
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Unhappy What is going on? Very confused..

Ok. I have Mandrake 9.1 installed on my computer.
Here is my story...

I had win xp pro on my computer. Tried to install Mandrake 9.1. Didn't work out so well. Eventually, I used partition magic to seperate my 40 gig hd into 2 20 gig hard drives.

My plan was 20 gigs on one drive for windows XP pro. And 20 gigs on another drive for Mandrake 9.1

Things finally seemed like they were going well. I installed Mandrake successfully, and then had problems conneccting to my DSL line, but eventually fixed that.

I reboot my computer and I find that Mandrake has conveniently integrated itself into the boot menu with its own GUI that lets me choose whether I want to start with windows, or linux.
So I think to myself "Wow, Im totally confused about Linux, but this boot menu option is great!"

I pick Windows from the boot menu, and WinXP pro starts to load up, but....error. Something went wrong when I was partitioning and now Windows doesn't work. BUT, I backed up everything I wanted anyway, so I figured I would just reinstall Windows XP pro on the windows partition, and everything would be fine.

I reinstall windows without error, and Its up and running again with no problems.....Except now I don't get the convenient boot menu to choose whether I want to run XP or Linux when I turn on my computer anymore. So I have both operation systems installed, and I have no idea how to access Linux and start it up now....

Can someone tell me how I commited Virtual Suicide this time? Or at least how I can boot Linux when I want?

(Sorry for the long speech, and if this is in another thread and I missed it. Please don't freak out on me, just direct me to that thread and I'll be happy)
Old 08-19-2003, 07:07 PM   #2
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Registered: Aug 2003
Location: Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, Canada.
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Oh yeah, and just so ya know. Mandrake confused the hell outta me. I consider myself a pretty shiny Windows user, not much I can't do with windows. But Mandrake/Linux is like a whole new world for me. I ran around in circles for about 30 mins wondering why I could run an .exe file lol.

So, I am a SUPER noob, and I am suprised I could open a text editor in Mandrake, let alone configure my DSL. (Fluke im sure)

Old 08-19-2003, 07:08 PM   #3
Registered: Jul 2003
Location: Canada
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Though I do not use it, I am certain WindowsXP comes with a boot manager. Using that, you can configure it to recognize your Linux partition.

I am not sure this works with XP, but when I did a dual boot with Windows 98SE, it worked fine using GRUB (the nice graphical boot menu you mentioned).

I would recommend you search (either at LQ or Google) for information of the XP boot menu. Also, it is likely that other people in the LQ community can give you more specific information. Good luck!
Old 08-19-2003, 07:50 PM   #4
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Registered: Mar 2003
Location: Boise, ID
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At this point I assume that you now have two 20G partitions with XP on the first, and that you can repeatedly shutdown and reboot your PC and XP will successfully come up every time (with no Linux option visible yet). In other words, you are back to where you were originally, only that now you've got your drive partitioned the way you want it to be.

This is a good initial state to be in, and what you'll now need to do is to reinstall Linux. I won't pretend to claim I know exactly what might have happened during your initial attempt, but once you reinstalled Windows, ie the "digital suicide" as you call it, what I do know happened was that Windows overwrote your Master Boot Record (MBR), which destroyed the reference to your Linux installation. (This is why you always need to install Windows first if you want to dual-boot with Linux.)

Anyway, given that you've already been down the Linux path before, the second installation presumably should proceed more smoothly, and at the conclusion you should have a fine looking dual-boot PC. Good luck with it. -- J.W.
Old 08-19-2003, 07:59 PM   #5
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did you make a boot floppy when you installed mandrake? if so, boot into linux and setup LILO or Grub again (you can find instructions on how to do that in the archives or google).

if you don't have a boot disk, you still should be able to boot it some other way. a reinstall probably should be your last resort -- if you have to you have to, but search around a little first and maybe save yourself some time.
Old 08-21-2003, 03:10 AM   #6
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Registered: Aug 2003
Location: Galeton, PA
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How does one reinstall Lilo? I cannot boot using lilo as I come to a prompt showing LI and this goes no further. I am a super noobie and have no clue what I'm doing yet. I have win me on a 60 gig partitioned in windows to a 50 (hde) and 10 gig. I have mandrake 8.1 on a separate hard drive how can I get lilo to properly boot between these without using the floppy to boot to linux
Old 08-21-2003, 03:24 AM   #7
Registered: Oct 2002
Location: UK
Distribution: Slack 9.1 (2.6.5)
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what's happened is this :

you installed windows, windows used it's own boot manager.
you then installed drake, drake overwrote windows boot manager with either lilo or grub, probably lilo. It recognised your win partition and added it to lilo. You then re-installed windows, and overwrote lilo, windows boot manager is crap, and as such did not notice linux there. SO !!! what you need to do is this !! :

Install windows, then linux, then, if you get weird lilo errors :

Either :

1) boot from mandrake cd,
mount /dev/hda# /mnt
chroot /mnt

where # is the number of the partiotion your system is on

this will rebuild your lilo config.


2) use grub instead of lilo when you install linux, i've known lilo to complain about certain partition sizes, or about bein on a slave or secondary partition.

The second option is better for a noob as it will probably work first time. Lilo is however a better boot manager and in my opinion (just mine) should be used instead.

Good luck !!!!
Old 08-21-2003, 05:05 AM   #8
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Registered: Aug 2003
Location: Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, Canada.
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Ok, I reinstalled mandrake, im connected to the internet. I can choose my boot options fine. I guess now I with the

BTW, i heard about wine...a way to install windows programs or something. I did a search on the net for wine downloads, and there are many different types of wine i found. Is there a wine I can get that will work with most windows style programs, or do I have to download different versions of wine to run and install different programs and games?

This is all so confusing lol.
Also, I heard that you can manage your system resorces somewhat to the way you giving some programs running more of your system resorces than other running would I go about doing that?
Old 08-22-2003, 12:59 AM   #9
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Registered: Aug 2003
Location: Galeton, PA
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well after Numerous tries using lilo with no sucess I thought I'd try with grub. I wasn't sure of the simple text based interface - but hey guess what it works GREAT! I think the problem may actually be due to the graphical nature of lilo. My video card is an Nvidia and my mandrake linux had a hard time with it during the install. Oh well I got grub working (and was even able to edit the menu to reset the default HD) so I'm happy.

Thanks for any or all that helped.


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