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  1. #1

    dual boot problems -- need partition help?

    let me start by saying I'm a total noob, to get that out of the way. without any further ado, let me begin. I tend to go on, so I'll try and have a summary at the end if you wanna skip the story part.


    I was (am?) interested in linux. my friend recommended SuSE, and the website advertised that their installation would put in the partitions that linux needed without erasing data. as shady as this proposition sounded, I went ahead. now, my windows will not boot.

    I had two partitions _before_ installing it: one with the windows functionality and all my installed programs, the other full of music, images, movie files, etc. I split up the latter partition to install linux. not being of a very patient bent, I shuddered in the face of the daunting task of backing up so many gigs of data. since I had much of it on cd anyway (I had reformatted a couple months earlier), I entrusted the fate of my files to the makers of SuSE.

    a mistake? time will tell.

    I'm still getting used to working in linux, and after overcoming all kinds of problems (including my keyboard somehow being recognized as a german variant and spewing all manner of nonsense when I tried to type) I kinda know my way around it. my next priority before perfecting things, though, is getting my files and my windows back.

    by the way, I know charging into this was a foolish move. spare me your admonitions. I was eager to get started.


    to recap: I had two partitions, one with windows, one with files. I installed suse linux, splitting up the file partition, and now my windows won't boot.

    mounting the windows partition is easy, and I can see that my old C: (windows + installed programs) is intact. mounting my old D: (music, imagery, etc.) is problematic. but, from what I've read, ntfs is tough, and I'm holding out hope my data is recoverable.

    my suspicion is this partition is screwed up. I know nothing of partitions, but I gather that the partition table is invalid and I must fix it.

    when I try to boot windows, it goes nowhere fast and tells me this:

    root (hd0,0)
     Filesystem type unknown, partition type 0x7
    chainloader +1
    when I used ntfsresize to figure it out, it told me /dev/hda5 doesn't have a valid ntfs. according to, this also suggests partition trouble.

    I did fdisk -l /dev/hda5, like that FAQ told me to, and got this output:

    Disk /dev/hda5: 24.1 GB, 24184774656 bytes
    16 heads, 63 sectors/track, 46861 cylinders
    Units = cylinders of 1008 * 512 = 516096 bytes
    Disk /dev/hda5 doesn't contain a valid partition table
    this language of partition tables is new and frightening to me. I implore you, oh venerable linux community, lend aid to your newest convert! help me recover my files, if possible, and get my windows up and running without the pain of tracking down my xp cd and reformatting.

    I'll burden you with one more output. I used cfdisk to analyze the partition table, and this is what I got.

    Partition Table for /dev/hda
             ---Starting---      ----Ending----    Start     Number of
     # Flags Head Sect Cyl   ID  Head Sect Cyl     Sector    Sectors
    -- ----- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- ----------- -----------
     1  0x80    1    1    0 0x07   15   63 1023          63    20482812
     2  0x00   15   63 1023 0x0F   15   63 1023    20482875    57657285
     3  0x00    0    0    0 0x00    0    0    0           0           0
     4  0x00    0    0    0 0x00    0    0    0           0           0
     5  0x00   15   63 1023 0x07   15   63 1023         693    47235888
     6  0x00   15   63 1023 0x82   15   63 1023           1     1552257
     7  0x00   15   63 1023 0x83   15   63 1023           1     8868321
    although this whole console thing is still foreign to me, I'm ready and willing to venture into it 20 more times if there's more information I should collect. I realize that I could be way off here, so any advice is appreciated. thanks to anyone who even considers helping me.

  2. #2
    Just Joined!
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    MN USA

    RE: dual boot problems -- need partition help?

    Maybe Bootsector on NTFS partition or MBR is screwed up - I had that happen to me when I screwed up my grub install. To fix this (I'm assuming Windows XP?) get to the recovery console in windows (When it asks for a password, just hit enter) prompt should look something like:
    and type:
    It should ask if you are sure. Hit yes. Then do:
    Reboot and see if you can load now

  3. #3
    what did you use to create the partitions?? i kno partition magic 8 makes all other partitions inactive when it creates a new partition n it screwed me up for a while but you jus need to activate your C: primary partition again

  4. $spacer_open
  5. #4
    Just Joined!
    Join Date
    Jul 2004

    Try the solution I used, it worked for me and another guy with the same problem, maybe it will work for you too

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