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Old 08-06-2006, 04:19 AM   #1
PCalitrack
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Reinstalling Mandriva on Dual-boot system


Well, I seemed to have screwed up Mandriva while trying to figure out how to install and configure things (while installing VLC). I no longer have a command prompt, mozilla, open-office, or any software at all. So now I figure I need to reinstall Mandrake... but I have Windows also running on my system. Will reinstalling Mandrake via install CDs screw up my Windows partition?

I know this is a dumb question, but I just want to make sure. It didn't screw up my system when I installed it initially with Windows already present. My intuition tells me I can reinstall it right on the same linux partition that is already there. But will the bootloader be ok?

Lol, I'm a littled worried because I need to be able to get back into Windows. Someone alleviate my worries. Thanks.

I now know not to let urpmi go wild... freaking thing destroyed my system.
 
Old 08-06-2006, 07:43 AM   #2
aus9
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well you have not mentioned if MS is on a separate drive which affects which MBR to choose.

However, you are correct Mdk can use the same linux partitions just choose CUSTOM partitioning .....it may be the expert mode

getting back to the MBR you do not mention which bootloader you used.....you can guess that I love grub but it may be lilo or you may have other bootloaders?

if you like my tut....put grub into the first detected MBR and let it chainload to your MS bootloader is my recommendation.

report what bootloader you have if you still have concerns pls


(2) I recommend you get a live cd such as knoppix or kanotix or mepis .....they have a imaging program on it....PARTIMAGE

www.partimage.org which acts a little like norton ghost that has saved my bacon.....it is a full backup....but should be burnt to dvdr or cdr depending on your data sizes
 
Old 08-06-2006, 02:28 PM   #3
PCalitrack
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My Windows and linux are on the same hard drive. I am not sure which bootloader I use. It is one that comes up with a graphical sort of look, blue background with blue box in center with the different options for booting. Lilo, sounds familiar to me, so maybe I installed that when I first set up Mandrake. I am not really sure what MBR stands for, but I am guessing the "Master?" "Boot" "Record".

But what I am thinking (or hoping) is that when I try to reinstall Mandrake it will erase my current bootloader and put in a new one. Is that true?
 
Old 08-06-2006, 07:40 PM   #4
GlennsPref
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Wink Reinstalling

Hi, you have nothing to worry about, just start the system with the first cd,

and when it gets to the partitioning and formatiing section, just ckick "use existing Partitions"

that should leave your windows partition alone and begin the setup for mandriva on the mandriva partitions.

And Bob's your Uncle.

By the way, eventually you will be able to fix your system after something like this happends.

Cheers,
 
Old 08-07-2006, 02:21 AM   #5
PCalitrack
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Thanks for the response. It appears as if I have a separate FAT32 partition at the front of my disk (I am guessing where the MBR is held for Lilo). Then, I have my Windows NFTS partition followed by a Linux partition with empty ext3, swap, and fat32 sub-partitions. Now when I reinstall Mandrake, it will overwrite my MBR on that FAT32 drive, right? On another note, I have found Ubuntu Linux to be more compatible with my system out of the box (plus I lost my Mandrake discs), and I think it installs the grub bootloader. I guess my main question is what happens to bootloaders when you reinstall Linux? Is the MBR contained in a partition, and is it always located at the front of the disk? I am just concerned about being locked out of windows... (it has happened to me before).

Last edited by PCalitrack; 08-07-2006 at 02:23 AM.
 
Old 08-07-2006, 04:55 AM   #6
GlennsPref
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Hi, I don't know what that 1st fat partition is, it certainly is not the mbr.

mbr does not show up as a partition with most software I've used.

Possibly a leftover from a previous windows install(?).

Linux does not use fat or fat32 for it's system partitions, so it's not that.

Although sometimes partitions that have lost their "name"(mount point), (for want of a better term,)

will report as fat drives when in fact they are ext3 with data on them and just need a "mount point" re-set.

If that was my machine, it would be a tmp or the boot partition.

Swap files for linux are a separate partition, as you say.

Usually when I setup linux it auto detects and partitions that are not linux, (fat32 fat ntfs) and if they have a boot sector, linux reports them as windows drives, and lists them in /mnt.

If you're sure you only had one ntfs partition, then is would be safe to format the others as ext3 (or 1 fat32 for transfering files between windows and linux).

Good luck with ubunto, some of us are users, and some of us are tinkerers.
 
Old 08-07-2006, 05:11 AM   #7
PCalitrack
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The 1st partition according to my Windows disk manager is a EISA Configuration partition in FAT format. It has a capacity of 47MB. Anybody heard of such a partition? I am pretty sure it has something to do with Windows... so I imagine I should probably keep that partition.
 
Old 08-07-2006, 05:18 AM   #8
GlennsPref
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No! Too large for mbr.

It's a partition of it's own.

And I would not trust a windows app to tell me.

What does it show up as with the linux installer you're using?
 
Old 08-07-2006, 05:25 AM   #9
PCalitrack
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Just shows up as a FAT partition at the beginning of my hard disk.

Also, from other boards I have been searching.. it seems that this partition is used for system restorations. If I deleted it, I would have to change the boot.init file in Windows I think because the thing points to hda2 instead of hda1.

Last edited by PCalitrack; 08-07-2006 at 05:26 AM.
 
Old 08-07-2006, 05:35 AM   #10
GlennsPref
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Ahh! That'sounds like it, I'd forgotten about those,

Hardware/system vendors often did that. Like HP, Packard Bell, Acer etc.

If your still using "the proprietary installation" from them, then, you may need to keep it.

They were popular on laptops, because it was hard to get the system drivers without all the other system admin stuff.

That makes more sense to me now. See how you go.

(edit) yes you would have to change drive letters if you deleted it.

And that's what I would do, and then I'd make the windows partition larger with a partition tool, qtparted comes to mind, but there are others.

Last edited by GlennsPref; 08-07-2006 at 05:38 AM.
 
Old 08-07-2006, 05:48 AM   #11
PCalitrack
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I think I am just going to leave it for safe keeping. It is such a small partition anyways...and I don't really know enough about what I am doing yet.

Then again, hard drives only allow 4 primary partitions. And because of that partition and my windows partition, I only have 2 possible primary partitions left. I need/want atleast 3 partitions for Linux, so I am forced to make an extended partition with those 3 sub-partitions. Now, I am wondering if I can make an extended partition bootable with the use of grub or LILO...Seems, like Mandrake did it before, so it must be possible again.

I guess I should just get those iso's and try again with Mandrake instead of venturing to another distro before I have conquered the first. Just such a big pain to configure my external sound card and ATI graphics in MDK (it also thought I had 2 CPU's because of Hyperthreading)... bleh.

Thanks for the help Glenns, I really appreciate it.

EDIT: Installation a success. I switched over to Ubuntu and my Dell Inspiron 9100 runs cooler than ever before.

Last edited by PCalitrack; 08-07-2006 at 04:09 PM.
 
Old 08-07-2006, 08:38 PM   #12
GlennsPref
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Good luck, and, see you around the posts.
 
  


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