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  1. #1
    Linux User martinfromdublin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Dublin, Rep. of Ireland

    Adding more distros to Mandriva bootloader

    I have 2 hard drives running Linux OS's on this particular machine (it used to be a server), plus 2 on side-raid for data storage only. The first drive has a FAT 32 partition with no OS, only backup files, then the same drive has Ubuntu 10.04, OpenSuse 11.2 and the swap apace. The second drive has LinuxMint 9 & Mandriva 2010 on it, no swap space and that second entire drive is divided evenly between those 2 distros.

    What I want to do is have Mandriva's bootloader boot everything, now I know both Mandriva & Opensuse use an earlier version of GRUB and not the current version 2 but this should work as the original first drive was an old 8 gig I had and I had Ubuntu 10.04 installed on that as a test, when Mandriva was re-installed on the 2nd drive it picked up and booted Ubuntu. Now this may have to do with the fact that back then Ubuntu had an 8 gig drive all to itself but is now and a larger, partitioned drive (8 gigs was too small, I was running out of space & when Mandriva was clean re-installed on the 2nd drive it only picked up Opensuse)

    I've tried using the GUi in the Mandriva Control Center using instructions I found online but all I get when I try to boot Mint or Ubuntu is either an error 15 for missing files or a string of errors which go past too fast for me to read but end with a line saying 'waiting for device sdb2 to appear' (sdb2 is where Mandriva is).

    Can anyone help as this has to be possible and I'd like to get it sorted once and for all. I can boot into Ubuntu or Mint using a SuperGRUB floppy I have, if need be. Can it be done from a terminal window?
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  2. #2
    I use PCLinuxOS which is based on Mandriva and also uses grub 1 for lack of a better term. The Ubuntu family uses grub 2 which you can't always boot from grub 1.

    Try installing Ubuntu with the option of not installing the boot loader. I was able to chainload Mint but not the standard Lucid Lynx. I'm not sure why since Mint is an Ubuntu. I never tried installing Lynx without a bootloader. Lynx crashed four times on me so out it went and Mint is very nice but gets blown away by OpenSUSE.

    Best of luck.

  3. #3
    Let the grub2 from the ubuntu distro, and modify the /boot/grub/grub.cfg by adding entries for each of your other distros.
    FYI, grub is just a bootloader it won't break your distro if it is changed.
    Just be sure to add the correct kernel line for each distro and its init ramfs file line.
    EDIT : by the way, for your configuration, you need to have a separate boot partition and have all the kernels and init ramfs files in it.

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  5. #4
    SuperMod (Back again) devils casper's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Chandigarh, India
    You can create a boot block ( title, root, kernel and initrd ) for Ubuntu and add that in Mandriva's /boot/grub/grub.conf or (menu.lst) file.
    Do not edit grub.cfg file, if there is any. grub.cfg is generated by scripts and contents are re-generated on every upgrade of boot files.

    Boot up Mandriva, mount / partition of Ubuntu and check its /boot folder. Note down latest kernel name ( vmlinuz file ) and initrd filename. Add a boot block in Mandriva's grub.conf file.

    title Ubuntu 
    root (hdX,Y)
    kernel /boot/vmlinuz_filename  ro root=/dev/sdxy quiet splash
    initrd  /boot/initrd_filename
    It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.
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