Mandrake Dual boot

Posted on 2004-09-24
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-12-15
I wanted to ask if anyone knows how I would set up Mandrake 10.0 if I have 2 hdds where one drive has windows XP on it and the other one is about the have mandrake 10.0 on it. First, is Mandrake easy to install with the automatic installer?? and second,  I want ot have dual boot on it and wonder if the DrakX installer will find the second hdd so that I can configure a boot loader( is there one on the mandrake distro?) easy. Also, which hdd should be the master and which should be the slave?

Question by:sacul
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Author Comment

ID: 12152466
yes...I am aware that I asked something similar about Suse. The problem was that I could not even get Suse to load of that DVD so I never got to try it. Now I like to try Mandrake with a fresh download. What I wanted to know was if the drakX would recognize the other hdd...and which hdd should be the master/slave..and if it was easy to setup.


LVL 10

Accepted Solution

Luxana earned 200 total points
ID: 12152730
Zac ,

it does not matter which primary master or secondary master ( hda , hdb ) or even hdc and hdd. But I prefer windows on primary master. During mandrake installation you need instal grub ar lilo on masterboot record on disk where you linux will be ( not on windows harddisk !!! )and after instalatton install GAG .

Assisted Solution

okidachi earned 600 total points
ID: 12655446
Hello sacul,

The scene is like this, each HDD has its own MBR (master boot record) which is a piece of code to transfer the control from the bootstrap process to the OS boot loader when you turn on your computer. Therefore on the drive you have WinXP, WinXP has its own code for MBR, on the drive you have Linux Mandrake, the code in the MBR belongs to the bootloader Grub or Lilo.

When you turn on your computer, everything is ready the BIOS will read from the CMOS to get the primary drive on your machine and load the MBR from that drive, means if you have the WinXP drive as a primary drive, the computer will start from the MBR of the WinXP drive and start the WinXP, so therefore for the MBR in WinXP drive can recognize the Linux OS on the other drive, it's quite risky to do that. So I suggest an opposite solution. You set your Linux drive as primary drive and the boot loader of GRUB or LILO can recognize the WinXP on the other drive.

So now, you can change again your Linux drive as a primary drive and start to install Mandrake on it. Don't worry it doesn't affect the other drive. After that, you must install the boot loader on MBR of your Linux drive. Everything is done, when you start your machine, Linux OS will be called first from the GRUB boot loader, but you have to do something a little bit more to dual boot WinXP.

When you already start your Linux OS Mandrake, open the file 'menu.lst' or 'grub.conf' in the /boot/grub folder. This is the configuration file for the GRUB boot loader or if you have LILO it also just changes the name.

In the file, you will see the structure of the entry Linux, so you can add a new entry for WinXP like this in GRUB,

title Windows XP
  map (hd0) (hd1)
  map (hd1) (hd0)
  rootnoverify (hd1, 0)
  chainloader +1

Commonly the entry for Windows OS is already there but it's wrong, so you can just edit it again like above. The 'map' command is to exchange the WinXP drive to be the primary drive since WinXP only boot when it is a primary drive, so we does so for WinXP think that it is on primary drive. The 'rootnoverify' is to load the root drive but not mount the partition of WinXP since GRUB cannot mount that NTFS partitions. Furthermore, because GRUB cannot load the WinXP OS but it can change the loader or simply transfer the control to the WinXP OS so that is why we have 2 commands later 'makeactive' and 'chainloader +1' ... Finally the 'boot' command just boot your machine to specific OS. After that restart your machine, you will see 2 entries in the menu for selecting the OS you would like to boot ... Enjoy it :)

Good luck,

Author Comment

ID: 13205493
Thank you,

I am truly sorry that I never closed the question. I thought I did..

Thanks again,

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