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Mandrake doesn't boot up anymore!

Posted on 2004-12-01
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Last Modified: 2013-12-06
I have a problem... I have two partitions on my hard drive, one for windows and one for mandrake. Well... one morning i woke up trying to boot windows but i got an error that was something about a boot sector i believe. I ran a chkdsk /f or something like that and got windows to work. But when i select linux (mandrake) from mandrake's bootloader when the computer starts... mandrake doesn't boot. I'm assuming for the same problem that windows didn't boot. What can i do to fix this?
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Question by:coolcatisphat
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Expert Comment

by:willy134
ID: 12726848
you need to reinstall lilo.
Get a linux bootdisk from almost anywhere on the web.  I actually use the gentoo setup cd because it boot just to a shell.  Once the shell is up create a directory (usually in ramdisc space) and then mount your hard drive to that directory
mkdir mdk
mount /dev/hda1 mda

Then mount the proc file system (so it can tell what proccesses are running (I don't know if it is necessary)
mount -t proc none /mdk/proc
then chroot (this will change your drive to look like it starts at /mdk/ instead of /
chroot /mdk /bin/bash

Now run lilo (you may have to source some bash profile to pick up your path)

/sbin/lilo


That should re setup lilo

First make sure the /etc/lilo.conf file is correct or you may ruin your windows startup again.  Also while you are here make a bootdisk
mkbootdisk

that way you will not need to chroot and stuff next time....

Good luck
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by:coolcatisphat
ID: 12732293
I'm such a newb at all of that haha. I SOMEHOW using norton partition magic was able to make 2 partitions on my hdd. Then i just instlaled mandrake on the second partition. I have/had no idea i even installed this lilo.
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by:willy134
ID: 12732360
lilo is default on mandrake
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Author Comment

by:coolcatisphat
ID: 12742540
Hmm I'll give it a shot, I'm so busy with other stuff but if it works I'll get the points to ya man.
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Expert Comment

by:willy134
ID: 12755412
no hurry here....  Just make a boot disc for next time! ;)   It will save you time.
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by:coolcatisphat
ID: 12780539
Question, couldn't I just reinstall mandrake on that partition?
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Expert Comment

by:willy134
ID: 12785041
Sure that would work just the same
at the end of the install mandrake runs lilo and sets up your boot stuff.  (mandrake is one of the few distributions that still use lilo.  Most are actually using grub.  They are standard linux boot loaders.  They both allow you to load either windows or linux (if it is on your drive))


Sometimes that part of your hard drive gets hosed and you cannot load anything.  A lot of people use their windows install disc ot fix the loader and it totally hides the linux.  It is still there on the hard drive but cannot start until something points to it.

However since you still have the startup menu (is that from norton???) your partition table may be messed up and it may be easiest to reinstall linux.

Anyhow, if you don't care about what is on the linux side, and you have the time.  Reinstalling is probably the easiest thing to do.
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by:coolcatisphat
ID: 12797551
Thanks guys, another question, let's say i wanted to try grub. What's the easiest distribution of linux to use that uses grub? And if i delete my mandrake partition... wouldn't that also delete the bootloader? The only thing that would be left on the hdd would be windows but I'm not sure if it would automatically boot to windows then. Would it?
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by:willy134
ID: 12805705
fedora uses grub

if you delete the partition it would not delete the boot loader

windows xp has a fixmbr command in the recovery console (i would assume w2k) has the same.  That would remove the bootloader.
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Accepted Solution

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s_ganesh earned 500 total points
ID: 12921235
reinstalling grub using the first  bootable cd of  u r distribution will solve the problem. what happened is that  after installing grub or lilo  and when u boot to windows operating system  and if u are having any antivirus will splash warning that u r MBR has changed and even though the change is made intentionally u have undone the change by issuing the command
fdisk /mbr which will rewrite the linux bootloader using the windows boot loader and hence u r not able to boot in to linux. the solution is simple. Boot off from u  linux distribution CD  and in the first prompt screen instead of hitting enter  type linux rescue and then hit enter after some informative screen u will get  a prompt. In the prompt give these command
/sbin/grub-install /dev/hda
exit
this will reinstall grub. reboot and enjoy
hope this helps
 
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