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  1. #1

    Too many GRUBs spoil the Bootloader...


    This is my first post to Linux Forums, so please treat me kindly.

    I'm fairly new to Linux, although I've had a few pops at it over the years.

    Recently though, I decided to install Debian, dual-boot with Win 8.1 on my laptop. It's going great, all fine and I love Debian.

    However, seeing how well it went, I decided to have a go at also putting CentOS on here. Bar a few hiccups, it also went well, but I soon decided CentOS was a bit too involved for me for the moment, so I'd rather keep the HD space for Windows and Debian, so I deleted the partition that CentOS was on.

    Well, this opened a can of worms. Deleting this partition meant that GRUB found no operating systems. I tried Windows Recovery USB but that was about as much use as an anorak in a hurricane. So, despairing, I installed a second copy of Debian onto this blank partition, which solved the problem. GRUB now shows up both versions of Debian and Windows 8 (although it calls it Vista for some reason).

    This being all good, I thought I could now delete this partition again and GRUB would be safely repaired, but it just put me back to the post-CentOS position again. I've now put Debian(2) back again so I can at least get on the PC.

    A little Googling seems to suggest that I have two copies of GRUB now, one on the original Debian install and one on the new but undesired partition.

    I would like to cause the computer to look at the other, original version of GRUB when it boots, so that I can remove the newer version, and its partition, and go back to my nice, simple dual-boot system. Is there any way to do this?

    I have thought about deleting the original Debian partition and simply going with the new one, but I've done a ton of installing, apt-get etc and a load of Java coding on the old partition, so would rather not bin it unless I have to.

    Many thanks for reading my lengthy and probably understanding-free first post. Thanks for any help in advance, it will be most heartily appreciated.


  2. #2
    Yep. CentOS install. You told grub to install to MBR. Delete Centos. Lost grub folder that Grub in MBR was looking for in CentOS, that you deleted.

    You can reinstall grub using a live cd. Maybe in your case. A SuperGrub disk is what is called for.
    One can rreinstall grub via live cd session.

    But since no Debian details on how you installed Debian.

    Super Grub2 Disk

    It is not that too many grubs spoil the bootloader. You are just not multi-boot savvy yet and know how a grub install works on a multi=boot setup and
    so took the default route instead of grub to root (/) on the second linux install and run

    sudo update-grub
    on Debain grub installed to the MBR.

    Clear as Mud, Huh?

    Edit: Don't feel too bad. I still have in my possesion a supergrub floppy bootable disk (1.98 version) because I have stood in your shoes.
    I refuse to let fear and fear of others rule my life. It puts my humanity at risk.
    Accepting Death is the only way to stay alive.

  3. #3
    Well, you're right about me not being savvy!

    When I ran update-grub on the original Debian install, everything would show up in the terminal, but when I run it in the new install, windows is absent. Windows still shows up in the boot menu though. It was this that was making me think I had two Grubs! Thanks for the pointer to Super Grub2, I'll give it a whirl in the morning.

    Sometimes I wish I was just happy with Windows....

  4. $spacer_open
  5. #4
    Linux Guru
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    badger chap, boot into the installation you want to keep and issue
    sudo grub-install /dev/sda
    # and
    sudo update-grub
    after that you can reformat the partition with the unwanted installation.

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