Installing Mandrake 10 broke XP Pro
I'm new to Linux but I gather problems like mine have happened quite a lot as I've trawled through the posts of various boards discussing issues like mine or similar.
I wanted to make a post that details how I rescued my XP Pro install and preservered the dual boot perfectly so everything ran as it was supposed to.
Having resized my NTFS C drive to make room for Linux in a fresh partition at the end of the drive all went well until I rebooted and Lilo would not start XP Pro. Instead I just got a blinking cursor and nothing more.
After reading a lot of posts I saw that a bunch of people had recommended changing BIOS settings so drive detection changed from AUTO to LBA, which I did but this did not seem to help, now I just got a message saying serious disk error (or something similar) and the XP booting would stop dead.
Downloaded a tool called Boot-It Next Generation from www.terabyteunlimited.com - with this I easily made a boot ISO for the broken Mandrake/XP Pro machine.
Then I booted from this on the broken machine... chose to RESIZE the broken NTFS partition - don't ask me why I picked this, it was a shot in the dark! So I did a resize and made it about 1mb smaller roughly as I remember.. very little change.
The program went ahead and peformed the resize operation. The result... XP Pro came back to life and all was cured.
Lilo boots all OSs now happily, presumably the problem I had was down to the mandrake install not cleaning up after resizing the NTFS partition.
Try this before you format your entire drive etc ! Could save you a lot of time!