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  1. #1
    Linux Engineer Freston's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    The Netherlands

    Dual booting 2 distro's, lilo problem


    I'm dual booting Vector and Arch, or at least, so I try.

    The thing is, I found that Arch uses a different naming scheme for my hard drive partitions than Vector.
    Vector sees them as /dev/hda1 to /dev/hda4
    Arch sees them as /dev/sda1 to /dev/sda4

    Now I've not installed a boot loader on my Arch install, 'cuz I want to use the lilo from my Vector install. I've done this before on several occasions, and it works. I just need to copy the /boot/vmlinuz of the 'other' install to the Vector partition, renaming it so as not to overwrite Vector. And then point lilo towards it, and defining which partition needs to be root.

    But when I boot Arch, it seems it looks for /dev/hda2 (the Arch partition) and doesn't find it. Sure! I know Arch sees this partition as /dev/sda2.

    But when I adjust likewise in /etc/lilo.conf and run lilo to activate the new settings it refuses to accept /dev/sda2 as root for the 'other OS' section of the config file. That is because when run from Vector, it knows that partition as /dev/hda1

    You understand this problem? I hope I'm clear as it can seem confusing

    Now I see a couple of possible options, but alas none are to my liking.
    1) I can fake it. Vector sees my external HD (not plugged in by default) as /dev/sda1. So I can use that to trick lilo to think it's actually pointing towards a proper file system. But I'll probably need to install or copy some type of OS to that disk then. Besides, it should be /dev/sda2, so I'll have to really move around a lot of things to get it to work.
    Oh, and then the file system on my external HD is native to a non-*nix OS.

    2) I can install grub, as this doesn't do checks. It's easier than #1, but I really don't want to change horses. There's nothing wrong with grub, but I like lilo.

    3) I can experiment with the -P flag, but I'm sooner than anything braking my system this way.

    4) Add a --doitanyway option to the lilo source, reconfigure, recompile and reinstall. But I'll have to become quite proficient in programming first and, while desirable, I'm lacking time for that course of action.


    Does anyone know a fix for this? I may be overlooking something obvious. I may also be incorrect in my interpretation of the error.
    But there seems to me not to be an easy way to turn off the checks from lilo, only the -P ignore flag comes close... at least, that is how my blunt understanding takes it :-S But I'm unsure enough not to have tried it.
    Can't tell an OS by it's GUI

  2. #2
    Can you put in symlinks (or hard ones) from hdaX to sdaX on Arch and sdaX to hdaX on Vector?

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