Hi everyone,

I have a "HP Pavillion" double hard disk computer. The issue is, is that this computer is the "families" computer and the rest of the family want "WindowzXP" Now this computer has enough room for both "Windowz" and "Linux" as far as I am concerned. The rest of the family are scared that I will mess every thing up. So what I am trying to achieve is to boot Pclos from the windows bootloader instead of using lilo or grub. Due to problems I had with the rest of the family when we had lilo on the old computer, this is the option I want, if I'm going to have Pclos or any linux distro on this computer.

So this is how my hard disks look:

Disk Drive: /dev/sda
Size: 250059350016 bytes, 250.0 GB
Heads: 255 Sectors per Track: 63 Cylinders: 30401

Name Flags Part Type FS Type [Label] Size (MB)
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
sda1 Boot Primary NTFS [] 242547.06
Pri/Log Free Space 8.23
sda2 Primary W95 FAT32 (LBA) 7501.46


Disk Drive: /dev/sdb
Size: 250059350016 bytes, 250.0 GB
Heads: 255 Sectors per Track: 63 Cylinders: 30401

Name Flags Part Type FS Type [Label] Size (MB)
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
sdb1 Boot Primary W95 FAT32 (LBA) 125830.34
sdb5 Logical Linux ReiserFS 12576.46
sdb6 Logical Linux swap / Solaris 2089.23
sdb7 Logical Linux ext3 5239.51
Pri/Log Free Space 104321.23


At the bottom of this post is more info of my fstab and mtab files.

I've been reading about how one can use windowz bootloader to boot up linux. From what I can tell one either uses grub or lilo. Then via lilo.conf or the grub.conf. Configure the boot up parameters. Set the boot to the root of the / partition and not the MBR where the windowz bootloader is. . I chose lilo.

Also I should add that I did the install from the liveCD and I suppose it needs to reboot to finish the install. As I have not set grub or lilo to my MBR and that I have not set up the windowz bootloader yet. I presume this install has not yet been installed properly. As the only way I can get into this is by using the liveCD. So when I go into the /mnt folder I see another copy of the / directory structure within the /dev/sdb5 partition.
So which files should I be editing? I have two lilo.conf files one in /etc/lilo.conf and the other in /mnt/sdb5/etc/lilo.conf !!!!

This is my /mnt/sdb5/etc/lilo.conf
boot=/dev/sdb5
prompt
timeout=50
default=PCLinuxOS
image=/boot/kernel.h-2.6.18.6.dev1.lgc
label=PCLinuxOS
read-only
root=/dev/sdb5

And this is my /etc/lilo.conf

# WARNING: do not forget to run lilo after modifying this file

default="linux"
boot=/dev/sdb5
map=/boot/map
install=menu
menu-scheme=wb:bw:wb:bw
compact
prompt
nowarn
timeout=100
message=/boot/message
image=/boot/vmlinuz
label="linux"
root=/dev/
initrd=/boot/initrd.img
append=" splash=silent"
vga=788
image=/boot/vmlinuz
label="linux-nonfb"
root=/dev/
initrd=/boot/initrd.img
image=/boot/vmlinuz
label="failsafe"
root=/dev/
initrd=/boot/initrd.img
append=" failsafe"
other=/dev/sda1
label="windows"
table=/dev/sda
other=/dev/sda2
label="windows1"
table=/dev/sda
other=/dev/sdb1
label="windows2"
table=/dev/sdb
map-drive=0x80
to=0x81
map-drive=0x81
to=0x80


Then one runs /sbin/lilo and I presume if all goes well a lilo.mbr will be created that I can copy via my usb and paste it into C:\ Where I then edit the boot.ini and add a line at the end which will be the Pclos alternative.

C:\grub.mbr="PCLinuxOS"

However when I run /sbin/lilo I get:

[root@office root]# /sbin/lilo
Fatal: Trying to map files from unnamed device 0x000f (NFS/RAID mirror down ?)


What does that mean? How can I set this up? I'd be really grateful for any help.

Also I noticed when I looked at the cfdisk of both hard drives there is a bootable primary in both drives. I'm aware that it gets even more complicated when one tries to have multiple distros to boot, but would it be possible to use the bootable primary drive (sdb1) where pclos is and use that to run grub or lilo and then link it to the windowz bootloader on the primary drive(sda1)?

So when one starts up the computer the windowz bootloader (sda1) appears with for example "windowsXP" and "Linux distros". It then defaults to windowz if no choice is selected, but if "Linux distros" is selected which is linked to grub or lilo on the (sdb1) drive with the choices of linux distros to boot.

Is this possible?

I'm sure it would have been easy to just let grub or lilo do it from the MBR and replace the windowz bootloader. But if anything goes wrong with setting up linux distros, I feel this is the best way to go without messing up the windowzxp setup on the main drive.

I've been using PClos through VMWare and Qemu and although they are good for testing linux in a windowz environment. They are slow and linux is limited in its capabilites in this environment. Time for me to assert my own needs and wants on the family computer.

I appreciate and respect my families concerns about me messing up the family computer. So It's important I get this right from the beginning.

Sorry it was so long, if you made it this far thank you for your time and patience.

Grateful for any help thanks.




This is how my /mnt/sdb5/etc/fstab file looks like
# cdrom: TSSTcorpCD/DVDW TS-H652L
/dev/hdc /mnt/cdrom auto user,exec,ro,noauto 0 0

# /dev/sda1, size=473724657, type=7: NTFS (primary)
/dev/sda1 /mnt/win_c ntfs user,exec,ro,noauto,iocharset=iso8859-1,umask=0 0 0

# /dev/sda2, size=14651280, type=12: Win98 FAT32, LBA-mapped (primary)
/dev/sda2 /mnt/win_d vfat user,exec,rw,noauto,iocharset=iso8859-1,codepage=850,umask=0 0 0

# /dev/sdb1, size=245762307, type=12: Win98 FAT32, LBA-mapped (primary)
/dev/sdb1 /mnt/win_e vfat user,exec,rw,noauto,iocharset=iso8859-1,codepage=850,umask=0 0 0

# /dev/sdb5, size=24563322, type=131: Journalised FS: ReiserFS (extended)
/dev/sdb5 / reiserfs notail 1 1

# /dev/sdb6, size=4080447, type=130: Linux swap (extended)
/dev/sdb6 swap swap defaults 0 0

# /dev/sdb7, size=10233342, type=131: Journalised FS: ext3 (extended)
/dev/sdb7 /home ext3 defaults 1 2

This is how my /etc/fstab file looks like

### Entries below this line were automatically added by hwdetect v0.6.0-20061229
# ROOT
/dev/root / rootfs defaults 0 0
# PROC
none /proc proc defaults 0 0
# PTS
none /dev/pts devpts mode=0620 0 0

# cdrom: TSSTcorpCD/DVDW TS-H652L
/dev/hdc /mnt/cdrom auto user,exec,ro,noauto 0 0

# /dev/sda1, size=473724657, type=7: NTFS (primary)
/dev/sda1 /mnt/win_c ntfs user,exec,ro,noauto,iocharset=iso8859-1,umask=0 0 0

# /dev/sda2, size=14651280, type=12: Win98 FAT32, LBA-mapped (primary)
/dev/sda2 /mnt/win_d vfat user,exec,rw,noauto,iocharset=iso8859-1,codepage=850,umask=0 0 0

# /dev/sdb1, size=245762307, type=12: Win98 FAT32, LBA-mapped (primary)
/dev/sdb1 /mnt/win_e vfat user,exec,rw,noauto,iocharset=iso8859-1,codepage=850,umask=0 0 0

# /dev/sdb5, size=24563322, type=131: Journalised FS: ReiserFS (extended)
/dev/sdb5 /mnt/sdb5 reiserfs user,exec,rw,noauto,notail,noatime 0 0

# /dev/sdb6, size=4080447, type=130: Linux swap (extended)
/dev/sdb6 swap swap defaults 0 0

# /dev/sdb7, size=10233342, type=131: Journalised FS: ext3 (extended)
/dev/sdb7 /mnt/sdb7 ext3 user,exec,rw,noauto 0 0





This is how my /mnt/sdb5/etc/mtab looks like
/dev/root / rootfs rw 0 0
none /proc proc rw 0 0
none /dev/pts devpts rw,mode=0620 0 0
none /proc/sys/fs/binfmt_misc binfmt_misc rw 0 0
/dev/sdb5 /mnt/install reiserfs rw,notail 0 0
/dev/sdb7 /mnt/install/home ext3 rw 0 0

This is how my /etc/mtab looks like

/dev/root / rootfs rw 0 0
none /proc proc rw 0 0
none /dev/pts devpts rw,mode=0620 0 0
none /proc/sys/fs/binfmt_misc binfmt_misc rw 0 0
/dev/sdb5 /mnt/sdb5 reiserfs rw 0 0
/dev/sdh1 /mnt/removable vfat rw,noexec,nosuid,nodev,noatime,flush,uid=0,utf8,sh ortname=lower 0 0