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Old 04-08-2005, 09:50 AM   #1
dandelvec33
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Unhappy dual boot w/ XP & mandrake 10.2: won't boot either


Extreme newbie, here. This is the first I've messed w/ Linux. Excited to learn, but having a set back.

I have installed Mandrake Linux 10.2 (last version before official release and becomes 'Limited Edition 2005') on a slave hard drive, asking to place boot loader on the first sector of the disc w/ master boot record (my master hd, right?).

After I've been told that it's been a successful install, and to reboot my machine, neither operating system boots, and no option to select one. Instead, I see the message: Searching for boot record from IDE-0 (which is normal, but the rest is not). Now it shows the character 'L' followed by several lines of '01 01 01 01 01 01 01 01....'

When I run disc wizard, it shows that my data is still intact. I just can't go anywhere!

Please help.
 
Old 04-08-2005, 10:01 AM   #2
rose_bud4201
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Can you boot into linux at all? I.e. with a linux boot disk such as tomsrtbt?

Also, did you use lilo or grub as your bootloader?
 
Old 04-08-2005, 11:05 AM   #3
dandelvec33
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I'm afraid I'm not familiar with tomsrtbt. From the link, I see this is a bootable floppy... but I'm not sure exactly what I would do with it. I'm assuming I'd download this, but I see from the download section there are three different files that are suggested. Which would be helpful in my situation?

During the install, I don't recall if it was Lilo or Grub. I can find out later this evening.
 
Old 04-08-2005, 11:15 AM   #4
dandelvec33
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Someone at work suggested that I boot from a windows XP boot disk, and 'clear the master boot record'. Does this sound like a logical step to restore bootability (at least for XP)?
 
Old 04-08-2005, 11:36 AM   #5
dandelvec33
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btw, there is another thread on this topic, however, my skill set w/ linux doesn't allow me to follow as easily as I wish...

Author: z3nith
Title: mandrake boot hassles
 
Old 04-08-2005, 12:00 PM   #6
rose_bud4201
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Your friend at work has the right of it, with one small exception.
If you allow windows to restore the master boot record (MBR), it will not acknowledge your linux installation, and will "fix" the MBR such that only Windows boots. So yes, this is a viable step, but you will henceforth only be able to boot XP.

That is why I mentioned the linux boot disk. Linux bootloaders don't care - you can boot either windows or linux (or bsd, etc). Using this, you can boot into a [very small] linux distribution which contains all of the basic tools necessary for performing basic system maintainence such as a MBR repair. This way, you will be able to boot into either linux or windows, via a menu that shows up when you boot the computer.

In a nutshell, the steps would be:
Boot using the boot disk. It will tell you to login as root, and gives you the password ("xxxx").
Once you are logged in, you can create a temporary directory (which will be stored only in memory, it will not be kept past a reboot), mount your root linux partition to that directory, and open/edit your bootloader configuration file. (The config file will be different depending on whether you are using lilo or grub, which is why I asked which you had installed.) If any changes need to be made to it, such as adding a section to allow you to choose between linux and windows (if it isn't already there), you'll most likely need to use vi - most of larger text editors aren't installed on the boot disk.
Once you have made whatever corrections were necessary and saved the file, you can run /sbin/lilo or whatever the equivalent grub program is to actually write what's in the config file to your MBR.

When that's done, you can reboot and should now have a nice-looking boot menu

We'll certainly give you more detailed help along the way, this was more for reference' sake than anything else.

Last edited by rose_bud4201; 04-08-2005 at 12:07 PM.
 
Old 04-08-2005, 12:41 PM   #7
dandelvec33
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Thanks for the overview! Now, to start at square one... Can you point me to the correct boot file to download to floppy? -Thanks!

On a seperate note... would it be acceptable for me to run FDISK /MBR from a dos boot disk in order to at least restore XP, or would that complicate things further?

I appreciate your insight.
 
Old 04-08-2005, 05:52 PM   #8
dandelvec33
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UPDATE: I ran 'rescue' from the Linux Mandrake 10.2 boot disk, and restored my master boot record. I am now able to boot XP.

I still would like to figure out how to configure the boot record to allow for the proper dual boot; giving me the option to boot XP or Linux. Thanks for any help you can provide!
 
Old 04-10-2005, 11:37 AM   #9
rose_bud4201
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I'm glad that things are worked out - well done!

To answer your questions -

1) yes, running fixmbr from a DOS boot disk would restore your windows booting abilities.

2) The current version of tomsrtbt appears to be 2.0.103, and the particular package that you should be downloading (which will be available from any mirror that you select) is tomsrtbt-2.0.103.tar.gz. The FAQ (also listed on each of the mirrors) gives instructions on unpacking, writing the contents to your floppy, and on basic usage of the boot disk. If you're not sure about anything, you could always print the instructions before doing anything (or have 'em handy on another computer).

3) For the other ...
I'm going to assume that you're using lilo, since I'm none too familiar with the grub config file. They're similar in setup, but the syntax bites me every time If you're using grub, well...Ask again on the forums for some grub config help, and I'm sure some gurus will come out of the woodwork

A basic dual-boot lilo.conf file might look something like this:
Code:
boot = /dev/hda
delay = 40
compact
vga = normal
root = /dev/hda1
read-only

image = /vmlinuz
        label = Linux
        root = /dev/hdb2
        vga = normal
other = /dev/hda3
        label = Windows
        table = /dev/hda
        vga = normal
The "boot" line specifies which disk the MBR for the system is on. /dev/ simply means device (all hardware devices in linux have a representative of themselves in the /dev/ directory - it gives linux something to look at. Your first (master) hard drive with be /dev/hda, your second (slave) /dev/hdb, your cdrom /dev/cdrom (probably - sometimes cd drives are odd), your mouse /dev/mouse ...etc)

So, onward. The MBR is on /dev/hda - the master hard drive. "delay" means how long the boot process should give you to make your choice of which OS to boot. It's measured in deciseconds, so 40 is 4 seconds. "root" is the partition your main bootsector is located - probably the same drive as the "boot" line. /dev/hda1 breaks down to mean it's a device, which happens to be the first hard drive on the system, and specifically the 1st partition on that drive.

The next couple of sections are what tells lilo which OSs you have where. The first entry here is what lilo will use for a default, should you fail to make an active choice within whatever time you've allowed. "image" is needed for linux - it says where your boot image will be. Label is what you want displayed in your list of choices. "root" is where the root of your filesystem is, and "vga" is any particular video options that need to be passed to the kernel.
Ditto for the "other" section - the options are basically the same, although the terminology is slightly different for non-linux OS's. Hence "other" - a non-linux OS. Windows has its own methods of booting, so all you need to do here is tell lilo is where to look to find the Windows bootloader. Lilo will find it, tell Windows that it should boot itself up now, and Windows will take over from there.

(There's a lot of information online if you look for lilo.conf help - I'm sure they'll be more thorough than I can be )

So, I'd suggest taking a look at your lilo.conf file now that everything is working. Make a backup of it, even. It sits in /etc/lilo.conf. If anything ever changes, edit that file (as root, mind - a normal user doesn't have write access to /etc/). Once edited, run (still as root) '/sbin/lilo'. That program will read through the config file and add each entry to the master boot record. It'll also let you know if anything is wrong with the config file, at least syntax-wise. It can't double-check you entirely, but it can handle the basics.

Hopefully this helps - let me know if I can clarify anything!
 
Old 04-11-2005, 12:36 AM   #10
charlescpc
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One way you can fix this to dual boot. Probably the easiest but not the shortest.

Just put the linux cd in and reinstall over the top. Where it asks you how to set up the disks, just use the existing linux disk setup.

Then when you get a chance to set up the boot loader then be sure you put it on the first hard disk. If not when you boot up you options will never be loaded.

You can write it to a floppy and then you have to use the floppy every time you start up.

But if you haven't done much setting up linux then it would take you about 20 minutes to reinstall and should set up your boot options correctly. Probably the easiest way for a newbie.....
 
Old 04-11-2005, 07:32 PM   #11
dandelvec33
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Not sure if this is relevant, but when was installing linux, it showed my hard drives as hda and hdb the first time, but after I re-formatted my hard drive and tryed it all again last week, now my hard drives show as hde and hdf through the install wizard...

Could this be creating any problems?
 
Old 04-11-2005, 11:09 PM   #12
dandelvec33
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Well, I started the process over again from square-one, and whadya know... went flawlessly. For some reason, this time around the boot record was correctly altered. I'm now presented with the proper options of OS's to boot from.

Now to explore Mandriva! Thanks for all your help, it is greatly appreciated!

-Dan
 
Old 04-12-2005, 08:40 AM   #13
rose_bud4201
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Congrats and well done!
 
  


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