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Grub2/Win on new motherboard

Posted on 2011-03-07
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
Hi,

I have a hard drive with grub2 and w2k on primary partition.

This hard drive boots into grub2 menu and then I can select W2k. This works without any problems on my normal PC. However, if I take a copy of the hard drive using (using Clonezilla) and put it into another PC that has a different motherboard, grub2 shows the menu Ok but when I select W2k, it just sits there with a blinking cursor.

Being a different motherboard, I was expecting W2k to start loading and then perhaps complain about different hardware/drivers etc. However, it doesn't even seem to get that far into the W2k boot process. All that is visible is a black screen with blinking cursor (underscore).

If I put the same (cloned) hard drive back into the original PC, it works fine.

I'm stumped and not even sure where the problems lies - grub2, clonezilla or w2k - any help would be great appreciated.

Thanks
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Question by:Petroclus
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Expert Comment

by:farzanj
ID: 35061153
Is Linux working fine on the new hardware?

Typically hardware drivers are customized for your specific hardware.

Since the clone is working fine on the new hardware, I am pretty sure, it is not Grub or Clonezilla.
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Author Comment

by:Petroclus
ID: 35067216
farzanj - I do have another partition that holds SystemRescueCD (linux) which grub2 boots into and which runs with no problems. So grub2/clonezilla certainly works for those.

With regard to the windows partition, even with a different motherboard/hardware, I was expecting some sort of message from windows as it started to boot - For instance, the ntldr progress bar is virtually hardware independent, I think. To prove this, if I prepare a windows only hard drive (without grub2) and put the hard drive into a PC with a different motherboard/hardware, it will show some visible progress and then ask for drivers (or bsod). I was expecting the same thing on the grub2/windows drive.

I had thought is was something to do with the grub2 hard drive/partition referencing as it can use UUID's to address things. However, I'm using numbered drives/partitions like so...

set root=(hd0,2)
chainloader +1

If I change the partition reference from 2 to some other non-bootable partition, grub2 returns straight away, so I think grub2 is working - I can only assume grub2 is handing the boot process over to windows and then showing a blinking cursor, but the windows boot loader isn't doing anything.

I have tried running a windows repair on the windows partition, with no difference.

I've also tried the 'bootinfo.sh' linux script which reports no errors.

The final resort may be to install windows from scratch, but this can take some hours and I'd need to do this every time I changed my master windows image.

I agree with farzanj that the problem is probably in the windows boot loader but I can't see how to resolve it.
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Expert Comment

by:JRoyse
ID: 35083004
TRY:
set root=(hd0,2)
chainloader +1
boot

Open in new window


Also- are you sure when you place the HD in the new motherboard it is indeed the first hard disk?
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Author Comment

by:Petroclus
ID: 35083685
JRoyse - I tried your suggestion but there was no difference. Thanks anyway.

I'm sure the HD is the first hard disk because my menu also allows me to boot into SystemRescueCD partition which resides on the same disk.

I've also eliminated Clonezilla because I tried my 'master' hard drive (rather than a clone) in the PC with the new motherboard and that won't boot into Windows either. Then I put it back into the original PC and it worked fine again.

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Expert Comment

by:JRoyse
ID: 35083873
Are these SATA drives?  In the bios there are different emulation like AHCI or not.
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Author Comment

by:Petroclus
ID: 35084184
I'm using PATA drives - I'll see if I can get a SATA drive to see if there's any difference.
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Author Comment

by:Petroclus
ID: 35084305
I've noticed that while the system is stuck on the cursor blinking stage, trying to boot windows, something is responding to me pressing Caps Lock - the state of the caps LED on the keyboard changes.

I'm beginning to think it's stuck in 'grub' for reason - perhaps there's a bug in grub2 that won't boot windows if the motherboard changes. Makes no sense though.
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Expert Comment

by:JRoyse
ID: 35088242
I've cloned disks wih "dd_rescue" and "dd" from the PartedMagic Linux Live CD with success.  I wonder if Clonzilla built a new partition table?

You can do a "fdisk -l /dev/hda" to spit out the partition list.  I wonder if the cloned drive has the Windows partition flagged as bootable.
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Author Comment

by:Petroclus
ID: 35092090
If I do fdisk -l, it reports what looks like a correct partition table, and the windows partition is flagged as bootable with an asterisk.
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Expert Comment

by:JRoyse
ID: 35111534
soooo....  is this new motherboard a different processor type?  
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Author Comment

by:Petroclus
ID: 35136877
Hiya - both motherboards use an AMD processor, but they're not exactly the same.
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Expert Comment

by:JRoyse
ID: 35147774
You are using IDE/PATA drives?  What about swapping "cable select" or "master" on the drive settings and on the ide ribbon cable, (first or second connector)
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Accepted Solution

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Petroclus earned 0 total points
ID: 35179443
I tried JRoyse's suggestions with no luck.

I decided to give up on the problem and go with a work-around.

What I ended up doing was to create a hard drive that was a pure windows 2000 boot-able hard drive. This booted fine on the new motherboard and I installed the drivers for the motherboard. I then used Norton Ghost to create an image of the w2k boot-able partition, which I then 'restored' into my grub2/win2k hard drive. This booted up fine on the new hardware.

I'm of the opinion that either clonezilla or partimage has a subtle problem to do with different hardware. I've posted the problem to a clonezilla group with no response.

Unfortunately, I will have to keep a 'master' disk that does not use grub2/clonezilla and each time I change the master disk I will have to use norton ghost to inject the new partition into the grub2 version of the disk. Shame really, as I was hoping to drop norton ghost in favour of linux tools.

Thanks to everyone who tried to help.
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by:Petroclus
ID: 35221089
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