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Old 12-03-2002, 08:06 AM   #1
LQ Newbie
Registered: Dec 2002
Posts: 24

Rep: Reputation: 15
Question Installation failed L 99 99 99 99 99 99...

Hello all,
Sorry if this question was previously answered, but because L 99 uses words less than 3 characters it's not searchable.

I'm REALLY new to linux, but not to computers or windows, I installed Mandrake 9.0 via 3 ISO cds, everything ran smoothly until I tried to reboot when after the DPMI refresh, I got:

L99 99 99 99 99 99 99 99 99 and it goes until about half the screen is filled, then it stops.

I haven't bought mandrake, rather this is a test drive, so I'm not receiving direct support (don't have the manual to F*ing read.) Anyone out there know how to fix this?

Because I hate my 1.44 disks, I don't have a floppy drive.

I installed pretty much every package (almost 2 gigs) because I really want to see what each one is all about (I even installed all the desktops, both KDE & Gnome.)

My system is as follows:
1x Celeron 1GHz
Shuttle Hot 649a Dual BX motherboard
1x Powerleap slotket adapter
1x 12GB WD drive
1x 8x20x Plextor CDR (Ultra Wide SCSI)
the scsi controller is a 7890 type (onboard)

Thanks for any help!!
Old 12-03-2002, 08:27 AM   #2
Registered: Sep 2002
Distribution: Slackware 8.1
Posts: 84

Rep: Reputation: 15
from the lilo manual:
L <error> ... The first stage boot loader has been loaded and started, but it can't load the second stage boot loader. The two-digit error codes indicate the type of problem. (See also section "Disk error codes".) This condition usually indicates a media failure or a geometry mismatch (e.g. bad disk parameters, see section "Disk geometry").

However neither of the above reference section include someting about error 99, so please post the contents of you're lilo.conf. And the output of fdisk -l.

You might also check if you have entered the proper disk into lilo.conf (e.g.: /dev/hda1 instead of /dev/hda) or something like this.

BTW you usually boot an installed system unsing the install CDs. Since I don't use Mandrake I cannot tell you exacltly how to do it, but there should be an option somewhere during boot of the install cds.

edit: usually as in when you can't use lilo.

Last edited by 0x0001; 12-03-2002 at 08:29 AM.
Old 12-05-2002, 10:24 PM   #3
LQ Newbie
Registered: Dec 2002
Posts: 24

Original Poster
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Question DUDE L99 on ANY DISTRO.

I tried the following:

Mandrake 8.2
Mandrake 9.0

Lycorlis Beta 62

Red Hat 7.4 beta

Gentoo 1.4.1

every single one ended in an L99 error. only mandrake 9 & RH 7 would even install. the rest just start up with the L99.

What's the fricken deal? I really want to try out some distros.
Old 12-11-2002, 10:22 AM   #4
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Registered: Dec 2002
Location: uk
Posts: 1

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yes i have the same problem and i uninstalled linux about a month ago, and lilo keeps on coming up. as i always choose to run windows 2000 anyway. But all of a sudden the morning it just came up with L 99 99 99 99... and i cant find anyway to get around it.. is there anyway in dos to delete lilo or anyway to get rid of this?? oh and i've tried formatting and that doesnt work. And also i cant edit the config file in linux coz its not installed. if you can help me with this i'd be very thankful.

Old 12-11-2002, 11:11 AM   #5
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Registered: Dec 2002
Posts: 24

Original Poster
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I found the solution to my L99 999 99

Ok, I tried out Debian, Mandrake, Red Hat, all gave me the L99 crap. The problem wound up being that:

1) Linux doesn't like a Tualatin CPU in a BX motherboard.
--so I switched back to an OLD Celeron 333a.

It's gotta be the kernel I used. I'm gonna re-try this CPU with a motherboard that Natively supports Tualatin.

Once I switched out the CPU, everything was fine.

by the way, as a long time windows user, I dunno WTF is wrong with KDE, but the default fonts suck on an i810e motherboard (integrated graphics.) If this is a problem for you, simply change the font size from 12, to 16 or 18. It makes things much easier to read (I think you can do this under View.)

I also fixed my networking problem:

I had to manually enter my DNS information, the autodetect doesn't work for me (Linksys NIC to a cable modem router.) After that, everything is great.

Now if Linux could only get some decent 802.11b support.
Old 12-11-2002, 10:36 PM   #6
Senior Member
Registered: Sep 2001
Location: Brisvegas, Antipodes
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 4,590

Rep: Reputation: 56
Default linux fonts suck because they dont include TT fonts due to lisence issues, all is not lost however, go to and follow the instructions.
Old 01-05-2003, 01:58 PM   #7
Ziad O'Hanlon
LQ Newbie
Registered: Jan 2003
Posts: 1

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Lightbulb A solution i Found

I got the same Problem (L99 99 99 99..)
But I tried to turn around...

The only solution i found is: (Thx Google)
Make a Boot Disk for Mandrake.
and clean the MBR

When i want to boot on Linux i put the Disk
When i want to boot on Windows nothing....

To clean the MBR:
Make a Windows 98 BootDisk and get Fdisk (i use Fdisk 1.0Ro2)
Then boot on Windows 98
Then put the disk that contains Fdisk.exe
And Type:


Then u wont have L99 99 99 99 Anymore...but if u dont Have a Linux Boot Disk u wont be able to go back on LINUX.

If u dont have a Linux boot disk a solution (on mandrake) is make it with theMandrake CD 1 (i'm a noob so i just use Upgrade SYstem)

Ziad O'Hanlon
Old 04-30-2004, 06:09 AM   #8
LQ Newbie
Registered: Apr 2004
Location: US
Distribution: Mandrake 10 & Morphix Genome
Posts: 1

Rep: Reputation: 0
L 99 99 99 99 problem

I recently installed mandrake on my old pII 333 which had
a secondary hard drive controller (promise66 pci) which my
main hd was on.

The install went fine, except for the loader (lilo 99) error.

When I removed the secondary controller and hooked my HD
to the motherboard (and reinstalled mandrake) everything was

I suppose it is caused by unsupported or flaky HD controller.

Older versions of linux distros (example. corel linux) don't seem
to have this problem.

Last edited by rebalX; 04-30-2004 at 06:10 AM.
Old 06-22-2004, 10:27 AM   #9
LQ Newbie
Registered: Nov 2003
Location: Bulawayo
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 5

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same problem with slackware 9.1

solved it by canging bios settings for harddrive to LBA


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