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I want to understand the concept of this: I installed windows on the HD. I want to install FC3, I partitioned the hard disk , the (/boot) is hda2, and ...
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  1. #1
    Linux Newbie
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    Installed GRUB on MBR or First Sector of boot partition


    I want to understand the concept of this:

    I installed windows on the HD.

    I want to install FC3, I partitioned the hard disk , the (/boot) is hda2, and the roo (/) hda4,and the rest.

    If I want to install bootloader (GRUB) , I will get two options

    1- First sector of the drive (MBR).
    2- Fisr Sector of the boot partition.

    I did two tests:

    1- Fisr sector of the drive (MBR) :
    There was no problem (I could boot windows and linux FC3 on some PC and Mandrake on the other)

    2- First sector of root partition
    There was problem, althought I tried to activate /boot (in my case hda2 not root) by using system commander utility ,it did not work, then I tried to activate root (/) (in my case hda4, not /boot) by using system commander utility, it did not work either

    With the second option I have read (I have not tried it yet) , that I have to modify the bootloader for windows NT (I read many article on net) to point to the bootloader (LILO, GRUB) for linux (i.e to point to the "/boot" directory , which is in my case "hd0,1").

    Then why should I activate (make it active) the partition that contains the "/boot" directory, if I am going to modify the NT bootloader ?

    My understanding (Correct me if I am wrong), I have to modify the bootloader for NT; to point to the bootloader for linux (LILO, GRUB), and I should make the NT bootloader active (not Linux bootloader)

  2. #2
    Linux Guru budman7's Avatar
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    There is a way to have NTLDR boot linux.
    If you do a search of this site fo "Grub and NTLDR" you should get the links you need for doing what you need.
    How to know if you are a geek.
    when you respond to "get a life!" with "what's the URL?"
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  3. #3
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    There is a way to have NTLDR boot linux.
    If you do a search of this site fo "Grub and NTLDR" you should get the links you need for doing what you need.
    You are right, I knew that, but I want to understand the concept of :

    Then why should I activate (make it active) the partition that contains the "/boot" directory, if I am going to modify the NT bootloader ?

  4. #4
    Linux Guru budman7's Avatar
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    Once you make the NTLDR partition active. The /boot partition will not be able to boot on its own.And it won't be active anymore.
    NTLDR will then be booting the /boot.
    How to know if you are a geek.
    when you respond to "get a life!" with "what's the URL?"
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  5. #5
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    Thanks for that.

    If I am going to install the bootloader (LILO, or GRUB) on the "First secotr of the the drive (MBR)" (Fisrt option), then I have to (must), activate (make it avtice) the partition than contains the MBR , as well the bootloader (LILO or GRUB).


    If I am going to install the bootloader (LILO, or GRUB), on the "First sector of the boot partition" (Second option), then I have to (must) activate (make it active) the partiton that contains the MBR (not /boot, or root).

    As you see in both cases (option 1 and option 2), I have to activate the partition where MBR resides,,,,,Am I right ?.


    Now in which case, I have to activate the partition that (/boot or root) resides, not the MBR ?


    if I want to use the GRUB or LILO as a primary bootloader (takes control over form NTLoader or any third party loader ),and I installed on of them in a partition where /boot directory resides (my case was hda2), I have to activate hda2 partition ?

  6. #6
    Linux Guru budman7's Avatar
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    The only one that will be active is the MBR.
    And depending on the distro you install, this maybe done for you.

    Make Active and bootable are the same.
    If the MBR is active, the bootloader on the MBR will boot any other OS that it is programmed to boot.

    If you install Fedora or SUSE they will by default install GRUB to the MBR, making it active/bootable.

    If you install Slackware, you will run a program called "cfdisk" for partitioning, and during that you will make a partition bootable.
    How to know if you are a geek.
    when you respond to "get a life!" with "what's the URL?"
    - Birger

    New users read The FAQ

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