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Old 02-10-2008, 12:26 AM   #1
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Registered: Oct 2001
Distribution: mandrake
Posts: 6

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Lightbulb I need more details on how grub4dos and Ubuntu get along...

This is an old project I'm finally trying out after waiting for the right linux distro to install (Ubuntu 7.10). I'm using a Pentium II laptop (circa 1999) with 128 MB of RAM,. The laptop, Sharp Actius A200, has a BIOS that offers no option to boot from a USB source or CD drive (just HD or floppy ). I tried wubi-cdboot for the first time. I ran wubi-cdboot.exe from Windows 98. I plugged into the USB port, then tried booting from a standard CD-RW drive using a USB2-to-IDE adapter just to see what would happen. It detected the drive and actually booted! Although is was slow some kernel options helped. My question is why did it work??? I think its grub4dos may be the key. Here's what the default menu.lst file contains:

find --set-root --ignore-floppies /ubuntu/install/boot/vmlinuz
kernel /ubuntu/install/boot/vmlinuz boot=casper find_preseed=/ubuntu/install/preseed.cfg quiet splash ro --
# other options not important here
initrd /ubuntu/install/boot/initrd.gz

The heart of my question is similar to the chicken or the egg dilemma. Which kernel has control? The grub4dos vmlinuz file that kick starts the process? Or the Ubuntu vmlinuz file detected 1.5 minutes later on the CD? Does the grub4Dos vmlinuz file contain usbcore modules? This project is important to me. Now that I discovered this works I can use a CD to install Linux on PCs that don't boot from the CD drive. FYI: the usb-to-IDE adapter is a no-name, plug-n-play compliant and made in China.

Last edited by realproto; 02-21-2008 at 09:11 AM. Reason: get someone who knows about the grub4dos vmlinuz file to talk
Old 02-13-2008, 06:45 PM   #2
LQ Newbie
Registered: Oct 2001
Distribution: mandrake
Posts: 6

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Wink booting from CD for an old PC...

I knew this would be a common problem now that this class of PCs are easing into retirement. That is, PCs with CDROM drives that are not listed in the Boot Order menu of BIOS (manuf. between 1996-2001). Those PCs need to boot to floppy and load the drivers for the CD drive and get it working. Hungry for a solution I clicked on the "Boot" tag and looked for something related to my problem. Now the young kids today have a new problem, they want to boot to a USB drive instead of the CDROM. I will look through theses posts since its related to my objective.

Last edited by realproto; 02-13-2008 at 06:46 PM. Reason: spelling


boot, cd, grub, kernel, ubuntu, usb

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