Page 3 of 5 FirstFirst 12345 LastLast
Results 31 to 45 of 63
  1. #31
    Joined
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    14

    Re: Latest Linux adventure!

    Just one thing, which has happened to me twice (on an Athlon XP and 64), is that I needed to manually set the LBA mode for the harddisk in the BIOS to get it to boot.

    The first time this happened it took me forever and of course I tried reinstalling grub etc, following all the guides etc etc. Until I realized that just switching it to LBA in the BIOS did the trick and everything booted up as it should.

    I am not really sure why this is necessary, but yesterday after I installed Windows 64-bit in addition to my dual boot WIN2k and Fedora, nothing booted anymore, all I got was a black screen. Setting the LBA mode resolved it..

    Anyone know why this is actually?

    And in reply to the viability of Linux, it is merely the problem of combining the two OSs usually. It actually is a lot worse when you install Windows on an existing Linux box. No questions asked by Windows when it promptly overwrites your mbr.

    I just installed Fedora the other day, the 64 bit version. Everthing worked right the first time. Network, sound, windows partions mounted. This certainly was a lot different a few years ago, so if you talk about new user friendliness, I think Linux has come quite a way.
    Last edited by ihiktacos; 10-26-2004 at 08:17 PM.

  2. #32
    Joined
    Jul 2001
    Location
    UK
    Age
    51
    Posts
    20,229

    Re: Latest Linux adventure!

    Quote Originally Posted by ihiktacos
    Anyone know why this is actually?
    Yes, it's a known issue affecting all 2.6.x kernel based distro's. Read the Caution: Fedora Core 2 sticky thread at the top of the forum for more info

    Ned
    Last edited by Ned Slider; 10-27-2004 at 01:15 AM.

  3. #33
    Joined
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Newcastle upon Tyne, UK
    Age
    70
    Posts
    585

    Re: Latest Linux adventure!

    Talonracer,

    Sorry I have lost contact with this thread but am surprised by your problem.

    My Suse's Grub is booting a DOS, Win98, Win2k, WinXP plus 20 Linux systems with many of them have 2.6 kernels. So it can be done and there is light in the tunnel for you.

    The quickest way to Kick start your lost Windows is to put a bootable DOS floppy with fdisk.exe in it. Boot it up and type fdisk /mbr. I got my XP back every time with it.

    The quickest way to get your lost Suse back is to boot the dead PC with a Live CD, say a Mepis or Knoppix, drop into terminal mode (command prompt), switch to root user (type "su" for Knoppix) to obtain administrator privileage, mount your Suse partition, change root (using chroot command) so that you are inside Suse and then install its bootloader back onto the MBR (grub-install /dev/hda). Your Sue should boot everything including the Windows even if you have changed it.

    For some reason Suse does not store Grub's "stage1" and "stage2" files in the default partition and your first trial of (grub-install /dev/hda) should not work. You can overcome this by issuing the find command, as you should be in Suse terminal mode by now, like find / -name stage1. Having identified the loacation then you can copy them to the default directory needed by Grub. Try the grub-install /dev/hda again.

    If you do not want or know how to copy the files between directories yet, as I am one too, just type startx to fire up Suse's desktop and do it with copy and drag.

    The above Live CD method may be a bit complicated but it is a standard method enabling you to get inside any lost Linux, I repeat any Linux.

    You can, if you chooseto, always go back to the Suse installation CD and retore its bootloader

    When the PC is reboot you should get back everything.
    Last edited by saikee; 10-27-2004 at 05:24 AM.

  4. #34
    Joined
    Dec 2001
    Posts
    90

    Re: Latest Linux adventure!

    Saikee I think you misunderstood. I took Ned's advice and didn't load the linux bootloader on my Windows partition, I installed it to my root partition (in my case hde6) and configured the windows bootloader to accept dual booting. Everything worked fine EXCEPT Linux still greets me with a black screen and the word "grub". I can boot into XP fine and I can even use Linux but I have to go the back door way of using the 3 Suse boot floppies plus the modules 4 floppy. So Windows works fine and when I finally can get into linux it works fine. Hey at least i'm getting somewhere huh?? Will keep plugging away............I'm back in XP now I needed some stuff Linux won't run. I think I'm gonna just install another HD. Its the easiest solution.

    BTW there is no way to select "LBA" in my Asus MB's bios. There are two options under LBA, auto and disabled.
    Last edited by Talonracer; 10-27-2004 at 05:10 PM.
    Athlon 64 3200+
    Asus K8V
    512 megs DDR RAM 400mhz
    Creative LIVE! sound card
    Radeon 9200
    52x CD rom/writer
    Maddog DVD writer
    Cable modem w/Linksys wireless G

  5. #35
    Joined
    Jul 2001
    Location
    UK
    Age
    51
    Posts
    20,229

    Re: Latest Linux adventure!

    Talonracer,

    How big is your Windows system partition, and is it the first partition on the disk?

    Ned

  6. #36
    Joined
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Newcastle upon Tyne, UK
    Age
    70
    Posts
    585

    Re: Latest Linux adventure!

    Talonracer,

    I think you also misunderstood my post. While you are inside Suse you can ask Suse to do any one of the followings to suit your taste

    (1) to repair the bootloader (instruction "grub-install /dev/hdax", where x=partition number of Suse) and repeat Ned Slider method to re-edit the Windows boot.ini, as your Linux bootloader appears faulty.

    (2) to install Suse's own Grub into the MBR and let it manage both Suse and Windows for you, instruction "grub-install /dev/hda". The operation is reversible (by boot up the pc with a DOS floppy and type fdisk /mbr)
    .

    (3) to create a bootable Suse floppy, instruction "grub-install /dev/fd0". There is no need to refer back to the installation stuff. In this method with floppy-> boot Suse. No floppy ->boots Windows.

    You don't need to go through the back door at all. Your current rout is by a side door called "Windows"

  7. #37
    Joined
    Dec 2001
    Posts
    90

    Re: Latest Linux adventure!

    Thnaks guys will try that soon (into the relaxing mode with Goodfellas in the DVD for the rest of tonight). Saikee I assume your talking about commands under Linux in the terminal window?? Also Ned Windows/Linux share an 80 gig HD. The windows partition is 31 GB and Linux wanted over 40 GB. No worries since I have another 40 gig's in a Raid_0 setup for windows.

    This thread is getting long but I'm hoping there are lurkers here that are getting help from guru's like Ned and Saikee. This is what this furum is about, I'm hoping I'm not the only one getting help here. From the looks of it Kernal 2.6 has some issues with dual booting.
    Athlon 64 3200+
    Asus K8V
    512 megs DDR RAM 400mhz
    Creative LIVE! sound card
    Radeon 9200
    52x CD rom/writer
    Maddog DVD writer
    Cable modem w/Linksys wireless G

  8. #38
    Joined
    Jul 2001
    Location
    UK
    Age
    51
    Posts
    20,229

    Re: Latest Linux adventure!

    OK, I think I worked out why your GRUB won't boot/load. This is still related to the (bug) inconsistant way linux and windows address the partition table. (see sticky thread at top of forum).

    Bare with me as this is a little technical. From what I understand it has to do with the way OSes get around the 1024 cylinder (8GB) limit for older HDs and the way disk geometry CHS values are reported. DOS/Windows reads this as 2432,255,63 for example, whereas linux 2.6 kernels reports the same disk geometry as 38760,16,63 (ie Windows using 255 heads whereas linux uses 16).

    What normally happens is this: You have a Windows partition set up using the 255/63 model. You install Linux to the MBR and it changes to the 16/63 model so you're left with a system where Windows can't boot because it can't find it's bootloader in the partition table. In your case, we tried to avoid that by not installing linux to the MBR, but to it's own root partition. So what's happened is that Linux has installed it's bootloader to the linux root partition using the 16/63 model, but you're calling it from the Windows boot loader which is still using it's original 255/63 model hence in your case, Windows can't locate the linux GRUB bootloader correctly so GRUB fails.

    Because all this only affects space above 8GB, or more precisely cylinder 1024, one simple way around it is to ensure both your windows and linux boot sectors are physically located below cylinder 1024. Obviously, in your case this is not so as your windows partition is 31GB so the linux boot sector is located beyond this. Problem is, I don't know how to fix this for you Talonracer (I'll read up some more over the next few days). The reason it all worked for me is my Windows partition is only 7GB so my linux partition (and boot loader) would start well below the 1024 cylinder limit.

    Obviously it's quite restrictive to have to have a primary windows partition smaller than 8GB in size, so I would propose the following partitioning scheme for future use to avoid the issue. On a windows machine, use something like partition magic to first free 100MB of space right at the start of the disk for a linux /boot partition. Then, when installing linux, install the boot loader to the /boot partition ensuring it's right at the start of the disk and below the 1024 cylinder limit. Windows can then follow and be any size you like followed by linux in the remaining space. Can anyone please confirm if this would indeed solve such issues???

    @saikee - Perhaps you could help here with your knowledge of exactly how GRUB works. Where does grub linux boot loader get installed, to the /boot partition or to the linux / (root) partition if they're separate partitions. We need to keep all the boot sectors (linux and windows) located below the 1024 (8GB) limit to be sure to avoid any issues. Can you offer any input on this?

    Ned
    Last edited by Ned Slider; 10-28-2004 at 12:42 AM.

  9. #39
    Joined
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Newcastle upon Tyne, UK
    Age
    70
    Posts
    585

    Re: Latest Linux adventure!

    Ned Slider,

    I started late in Linux, only 4 months ago, and have never ran into 1024 cylinder limitation (possibly incorrect now since last night). I believe both Lilo and Grub have this problem licked. Lilo actually has a command called "lba32" one can insert to cross the 1024 cyclinder barrier if one is found. However it is possible that older kernels with older GRub/Lilo may still have such problem. Suse 9.1 definitely not one of them. It my first installed Linux that went straight into a 200Gb hard drive with the 255/63 format as you described. The 255/63 cylinder/sector is a BIOS setting and so a daft Linux, possibly Fedora Core 2, may rest it to 16/63. I have a lot of faith in Suse because it is the only Linux I managed to installed at the end of a 200Gb hard disk at the 41th partition. Most Linux distros just panic when I offer them such altitude. Many can't cope with a partition number higher than 16 and 137Gb limitation with hard disks is still very common.

    As far as Grub is concerned it boots a Linux directly from the MBR. I believe GRUB boots its parent Linux by addressing the actual kernel as the root is already supplied in the first few lines of the /boot/grub/menu.lst. Grub is very good in chainloading another Linux or WIndows. All it needs is the root partition number and a bootloader inside the partition of the Linux to be chainloaded (Called the root partition by most Linux). Because in chainloading Grub actually pulls out the bootloader of another Linux. Lilo does exactly the same and the two are interchangeable in pulling out each other's bootloader.

    For chainloading basically one selects from Linux A's boot menu to select LInux B. He/she then sees the boot menu of Linux B. Then from Linux B's menu he/she can select Linux C, in addition of just settle for the parent Linux B. The first entry of either Grub or Lilo is the parent Linux and it will only boots if selected. All other chainloadable Linux only boot to their boot menu only. This can go on for ever until one choose a Linux X and boots it instead of using it as stepping stone. It is quite enjoyable to tour around each Linux's bootloader menu because this confirms their bootloaders are working.

    Frequently I have many Linux systems unbootable but their bootloaders work perfectly. It is my personally held opinion that Linux bootloaders are superb piece of computer software that are under-rated. A Linux bootloader does not have the asistance of a kernel. It has to deal BIOS directly and guess how each hard disk is named and to establish the geometry accurately for booting each system successfully. It never does damage to the operating systems and disappears from the scene quietly on completion of its task. Nobody cares about the bootloader or try to understand its working but blame it if the system fails.

    Both Grub and Lilo boot a WIndow by chainloading except Window has no boot menu of its own (unless creeated in the manner described by your post, which I may have a go later on).

    I am not sure if the cylinder geometry realignment is the root cause of Taloracer's problem but your explanation is credible.

    In fact last night I suddenly discovered I got "EXACTLY" the same problem.

    In the last few days my Suse developed a booting problem. The booting stopped after an error with fsck saying something wrong about the files. I have been using Suse to boot 24 operating systems and was adding one or two Linux to it but suddenly the new installation reported "Timestamp mismatch". I then started to use Fedora C2 but the problem got worse and other known good systems also reported the same error. Later I discovered my BIOS LBA 255/63 has been altered to 16/63.

    I could not point a finger to any Linux who did it because there are 20 to 21 (18 in a 200Gb and 3 in a 80Gb ATA disk) in the box. FC2 may have been the culprit as it is well publicised by you. At the moment I manually switched the BIOS back to 255/16 format and am in the process of going through the systems to make them bootable again.

  10. #40
    Joined
    Jul 2001
    Location
    UK
    Age
    51
    Posts
    20,229

    Re: Latest Linux adventure!

    Thanks saikee,

    I'm really struggling to get my head round this - I'm trying to work out the best approach for recommending to new linux users who want to try linux as a dual boot so they don't lose their windows partition.

    About the best explanation of the problem and source of information on how to avoid it, or fix it if it does happen, that I've found so far is this document:

    http://www.redhat.com/archives/fedor.../msg00908.html

    I'm thinking the best approach to recommend is just installing linux to the MBR (as is the default anyway) but booting the installation with the CHS values manually passed to the installer as such (obviously you need to change the values for your HD):


    Code:
    linux hda=14593,255,63
    The problem is not with the boot loader used (GRUB, Lilo or Windows NT), but with the partitioning tools used during the install to create the required partitions and the way they read the disk geometry. This is directly affected by your bios settings for the HD and by what methods your bios uses and how well they've been implimented. By using the above method to perform the linux install, you're manually passing (forcing) the disk geometry to the linux installer in a manner that's consistant with the way the existing Windows partition is set up, so both Linux and Windows are singing from the same page. This solution should work for everybody regardless of their bios setting/implimentation and regardless of partition size and order on the HD.

    Also, it's almost impossible to work out which distro's are still affected and if some providers have patched their original CD images with fixed versions of the partitioning tools to prevent this.

    Ned
    Last edited by Ned Slider; 10-28-2004 at 12:58 PM.

  11. #41
    Joined
    Dec 2001
    Location
    Pyongyang, Illinois
    Posts
    1,000

    Re: Latest Linux adventure!

    Linux newbie here. I have been unsuccessful in getting Windows and Fedora to dual boot. They are on different hard drives so I've just been going into BIOS and changing boot order to switch OS but that's a little annoying. Grub gives me a "file system unreadable" message when I try to boot to Windows. Could this be because Windows is on a NTFS partition? Should I reinstall Windows on a FAT32 partition?

  12. #42
    Joined
    Jul 2001
    Location
    UK
    Age
    51
    Posts
    20,229

    Re: Latest Linux adventure!

    Quote Originally Posted by Divebrake
    Linux newbie here. I have been unsuccessful in getting Windows and Fedora to dual boot. They are on different hard drives so I've just been going into BIOS and changing boot order to switch OS but that's a little annoying. Grub gives me a "file system unreadable" message when I try to boot to Windows. Could this be because Windows is on a NTFS partition? Should I reinstall Windows on a FAT32 partition?
    No, it doesn't matter what format the windows partition uses. Here's the correct procedure for installing a dual boot Windows/linux system on two separate HDs:

    First install Windows to it's own hard disk. Then add the new hard disk for Linux making it the master and make the Windows disk the slave. Install Linux to the new hard disk and allow Linux to install it's boot loader (I recommend using GRUB over Lilo) to the MBR of the new Linux disk. Because the Linux boot loader is written to the MBR of the new (master) Linux disk, it will not interfere with the MBR of the original (slave) Windows disk. The Linux boot loader will automatically recognize the presence of the Windows installation on the second hard disk and will add a menu item for booting Windows.

    If you want to remove Linux, simply swap the Windows disk back to being the master drive and all will be restored.

    Ned

  13. #43
    Joined
    Dec 2001
    Location
    Pyongyang, Illinois
    Posts
    1,000

    Re: Latest Linux adventure!

    Quote Originally Posted by Ned Slider
    No, it doesn't matter what format the windows partition uses. Here's the correct procedure for installing a dual boot Windows/linux system on two separate HDs:

    First install Windows to it's own hard disk. Then add the new hard disk for Linux making it the master and make the Windows disk the slave. Install Linux to the new hard disk and allow Linux to install it's boot loader (I recommend using GRUB over Lilo) to the MBR of the new Linux disk. Because the Linux boot loader is written to the MBR of the new (master) Linux disk, it will not interfere with the MBR of the original (slave) Windows disk. The Linux boot loader will automatically recognize the presence of the Windows installation on the second hard disk and will add a menu item for booting Windows.

    If you want to remove Linux, simply swap the Windows disk back to being the master drive and all will be restored.

    Ned
    That's actually exactly how I set things up but I still couldn't get GRUB to work. I put Windows on a 160 GB drive and then added another disk and made the Windows disk into the slave and put Fedora on the master. Windows shows up on the GRUB menu but I can't get a successful boot into it.

  14. #44
    Joined
    Jul 2001
    Location
    UK
    Age
    51
    Posts
    20,229

    Re: Latest Linux adventure!

    Quote Originally Posted by Divebrake
    That's actually exactly how I set things up but I still couldn't get GRUB to work. I put Windows on a 160 GB drive and then added another disk and made the Windows disk into the slave and put Fedora on the master. Windows shows up on the GRUB menu but I can't get a successful boot into it.
    NTFS is definately not the problem, but this has me confused

    Are both drives Parallel IDE, Fedora as master and windows as slave on the same IDE cable?

    How big is your windows system partition?

    Can you please post the contents your grub.lst file (it's in the /boot/grub directory).

    Ned

  15. #45
    Joined
    Dec 2001
    Location
    Pyongyang, Illinois
    Posts
    1,000

    Re: Latest Linux adventure!

    Quote Originally Posted by Ned Slider
    NTFS is definately not the problem, but this has me confused

    Are both drives Parallel IDE, Fedora as master and windows as slave on the same IDE cable?

    How big is your windows system partition?

    Can you please post the contents your grub.lst file (it's in the /boot/grub directory).

    Ned
    If you mean the grub.conf the contents are as follows:

    # grub.conf generated by anaconda
    #
    # Note that you do not have to rerun grub after making changes to this file
    # NOTICE: You do not have a /boot partition. This means that
    # all kernel and initrd paths are relative to /, eg.
    # root (hd0,0)
    # kernel /boot/vmlinuz-version ro root=/dev/hda1
    # initrd /boot/initrd-version.img
    #boot=/dev/hda
    default=0
    timeout=10
    splashimage=(hd0,0)/boot/grub/splash.xpm.gz
    title Fedora Core (2.6.5-1.358)
    root (hd0,0)
    kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.5-1.358 ro root=LABEL=/ rhgb quiet
    initrd /boot/initrd-2.6.5-1.358.img
    title Windows XP Home
    rootnoverify (hd1,0)
    chainloader +1


    Total size of the Windows partition is 24.4 GB. Both drives are IDE on the primary channel, Fedora as master and Windows as slave. I've tried a makeactive command and that doesn't work either. I have to say from what I've seen so far GRUB is a real piece of crap.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •