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Old 08-27-2006, 01:07 PM   #1
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Registered: Aug 2006
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GRUB Errors after uninstalling Linux.

Okay, I have been using Linux for a full 2 weeks, and I happen to like the system. However, I need to switch back to XP (don't ask). However, I never learned how to uninstall it, so I just decided to delete the partitions.

Now, whenever I load the system, I get GRUB error 22. I don't have the original XP CD (the closest thing is a Toshiba app/driver recovery CD that reverts your system to just-installed), so I can't run fixmbr. I tried re-installing a minimalist Linux, but for some reason the NTFS partition bloated up to twice its size, making an installation hard (plus it won't let me resize what's left, something about a Windows Journal [not the tablet app] error). I do have 3 Linux Live Cds (Mandriva, Kubuntu, and MEPIS), and the GParted Live CD. Is there any way to remove GRUB with one of the Live CDs terminals? Or am I just going to have to wipe the disk and restart?

NOTE: Any help on uninstalling Linux (just so I know now) would be appreciated, but not necessary.
Old 08-27-2006, 01:21 PM   #2
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Registered: Aug 2003
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To get it back to "normal" you need either the XP installation cd, or you need to have the recover utility installed on-disk (press F8 at boot to see menu) - then you can run fixmbr as you know already. As a sidenote: on a dual-boot WinXP/Linux system you can use Windows' bootloader to load Linux too, grub or lilo is not necessarily needed.

And removing Linux:
- remove the partitions, then re-use the space for the other OS
- reinstall Windows' (or some 3rd-party) bootloader or just use Grub

If you plan to use Grub with Windows after removing Linux, it's possible as far as I know, you just need to install it to the MBR. The reason why your grub fails after removing the partitions is probably because some of the grub's files were installed on one of the Linux partitions you removed.

You can install grub even without Linux actually on board, but you need to have a live-cd with grub-install and the necessary files on it. There are advices on the net on how grub is reinstalled from the command line; there's no problem, for example, if you create a small /boot partition that's only used to get Grub working and start your XP (hey, you get a password-protection in the same package!)

I still suggest reinstalling the Windows XP's original bootloader, if you are not planning to add any other operating systems.

If you don't have the XP cd and you don't have the recover console installed on your harddisk (that may or may not be), you can still get the tool: from the net you can download image files for XP's boot floppies (4 floppies, if I'm right), create them and boot from them.

So, here's my list of what you can do, in the order I'd suggest:

- get the recovery console working, reinstall Windows' bootloader (fixmbr)
- reinstall grub OR download a 3rd-party bootloader from the net and install it
- do a clean install or use Windows boot floppies for the rest of your life

Last edited by b0uncer; 08-27-2006 at 01:23 PM.


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