Dual boot (LILO) problems

Hi experts,

I'm dual booting XP pro and Mandrake 9.1.  I have been doing this for quite some time without a problem.

Lately, my XP install has been acting up.  When I start my system with the XP CD, and enter the recovery consol (which I've had to do more that I like to admit), the recovery consol seems to change the boot record around.

The next time I restart my computer, rather than seeing LILO, I am booted directly into XP.

The only way I've found to get LILO back, is to start up with the Mandrake CD, and chose to "repair" an installation (I don't have boot disks, maybe I shouldn't have skipped that step...).  Because there is nothing wrong with the install, it doesn't make any changes (exept to re-configure LILO).

Does anyone have a way around this?  Everything I've seen on installing and configuring LILO has been based on being able to get into linux in the first place (which I can't do without LILO).  Is there anyway to set LILO up from the windows side of the system (maybe changing boot.ini by hand)?

I've got lots of points, and a good solution would save me time, so I'm going to assign 500 to this question.


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I have windows 98, win2000 and SuSE linux installed on one hard drive. For booting I have installed boot magic(comes with partition magic) on win 98(it can be installed on win xp also). when I am booting boot magic let me choose linux or windows (where i can choose to boot into 98 or 2000). Only the windows part changes when I do windows instalation( at one point I had also win 2000 server installed and then third entry was added automatically to windows boot screen, boot magic part was unchanged).
So if you want to invest some cash (partition magic cost about $60) you will have solution.
Good Luck
I found some similar request as your in here http://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/archive/5/2003/02/4/46822, which say you can found the boot disk image in CD ROM which you can make it from the CD ROM, after you have the bootdisk, recover your lilo should do.

or you can try get a bootable CD from here www.bootdisk.com,or the knoppix, a linux on a CD http://www.distrowatch.com/table.php?distribution=knoppix, which you can bootup by using knoppix and recover you lilo by mount the /etc and make change in lilo.conf and run /sbin/lilo.
I'm assuming that you installed XP first originally!  XP will overwrite lilo when you do the recovery.  So, Download "loadlin.exe" follow the instruction on how to use it.  Use root=/dev/whatever drive and partition.  Then once you're in your linux partition run liloconfig and recreate your config file.  This should solve your problem.
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You should install LILO on the master boot record (MBR) of the disk, instead of the boot sector of the partition. When you boot into Linux, use fdisk on your disk, and I think that the partition that contains XP (/dev/hda1 ?) is bootable partition.

Use your installation disk to install LILO on the MBR of the disk.

Let's take on problem at a time....

1. boot disks
Is a good method u found there ...
You can do it with floppies too

do a mkbootdisk and you will make some boot floppies.

run it when your configuration file (lilo.conf) is ok. (install it in the mbr)

Windows XP will blow up your boot manager (read lilo) every time you will do a "fdisk /mbr" or it will think it's broken..., so the problem with it is that it is really stupid. It can't understand that the problem on the file system has nothing to do with the MBR (master boot record).
But, Microsoft works on the paradigm "If it doesn't work just reset it" and it acts accordingly.

The rewriting of the mbr will cease when u remove XP. I found that win 2k is very stable and never rewrote me the mbr.

You could use loadlin, but the sequence is anoying

"LOADLIN.EXE is a VCPI compliant program. Win95 will want to, "shutdown
into DOS mode," to run it (as it would with certain other DOS
protected-mode programs). " form

Another link that might help you:

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locke_aAuthor Commented:

Thank you all.  I was able to get my system up and running again using the XP recovery consol (oddly enough, this time it didn't kill LILO, I'm not sure why as I didn't do anything different).

I appreciate all the input I recieved from you all, and I believe it will be helpfull if I experience this problem again.

I guess I'll go ahead and close this question and assign points.


i wana dual boot linux mandrake with windows 98 any reply in this regard will be an asset for me i m newbie kindly ...............................starboy
thank u very much 4 reply it was my first post well u have directed me to good link thanks again i wana dual boot my pc i have linux mandrake version 7.1 i have installed win98 on first partition of 4.3gb hard disk there is three partitions on it
primary= 1.7Gb
secondray= all having
logiac1= 1.7Gb
logical2= all having
so 1st logical drive have ext2 file system now i wana install linux mandrake on it i booted from cd room and select hda5/ and make 80% for root and all other for swap and now i choose automatic installation but once it took whole day i m not sure either it is installing or not and i dont know even how to configure lilo for dual option kindlay refer me or just reply me if u can that how to dual boot with linux mandrake 7.1 with windows 98 i have pentium 11 350 computer and 4.3 Gb hard disk 147 mb ram and D- link 538 tx NIc and i dont know even how to configure net work card in linux i  know only in windows 98 and i know very well but in linux i dont know plzzzz dont mind and help me i'll be very very thank full to u ..........starboy
first of all, let me get this staright: do you wanna dual boot?

if so, you MUST make a FAT32 partition at the BEGINING of the harddrive(must start within the first 2GB of the drive) in order to let win98 to boot. win 98 doesn't know how to boot further than this limit (I am not sure if is a 2BG limit or some other kind of limit to be sure you should make a primary fat32 partition at the begining of the drive)

Is not normal for an instalation of linux not to show any sign of activity for a log time. I suspect that your madrake instalation cd to be broken. Is it a made-it-yourself from an iso image? if so try to burn the iso on another cd.
Usually the linux instalation does not hang like a win instalation. it just shows an error message and then (in the worst and rarest care panics "Kernel Panic...."

If you are sure that or almost sure that the cd is ok you should press ctrl+alt+f1 , ctrl+alt+f2 ....(this will take you to the first, second.... text console) and see if nothing weird shows up in one of those consoles...

I never saw a mandy instalation, but I presume that is graphical based as it derives from redhat linux and that has a graphical instalation.....

good luck and read the documentation...

thanks expert!!!
well my mandrake cd and cd rom bothe are correct and a few days ago i did with these any way thanks again i've almost done but now prblem is that i dont know how to configure NIC in mandrake i can do in windows 98 but not in mandrake plz tell me step by step that how to install or configure NIC in mandrake my NIC is D-Link 538tx 10/100 i've installation floppy with this NIC tell me how can i configure my card plzzzzzzzzzzzz..........starboy dont refer me to any documentation as i've visited many of them but unable to understand kindly tell me step by step in graphical mod or text mod plzzzzz plzzzzz plzzzzzz............starboy
I do not have the time, the expertise or the will to stay and explain to you step by step the instalation of your nic on madrake linux.

I said expertise because I never used mandrake and this distro, but as I know has a graphical tool for configuring everything.
I said the time because I really don't have it to spend reexplaining what a howto wil _SURELY_ explains a lot better.
I do not have the will to spend my time with people that want it all for free with no effort, not even the one of reading with attention a _GOOD_ howto that is not so hard to find.

What I want is to give you a good link http://www.thdp.org and let _YOU_ study the problem.

This is where _you_ crossed the line.

I wish you the best of luck.

PS: and please come here with real problems not with attitude problems.

thanks again expert
i m realy very thank full to u that u bear me and refer me to that link i'll find the salution of my problem of heap as u said well thanks again and be cool dont mind haan so nice of u. that u give intension of my post and surf few  moments from ur precious time.............regard,
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