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  1. #1

    [SOLVED] Unable to boot to Windows after Karmic install

    My desktop has two hard disks partitioned for use by Windows XP and Kubuntu. After some deliberation, I decided to install Karmic afresh from the alternate cd after formatting the existing Kubuntu 9.04 install. Install process itself went through fine. What I missed by oversight was that I had recently swapped the first and second hard disks.

    After install Grub simple displayed Error 15 before even before displaying the menu. I realized my mistake of screwing up the MBR, went back and tried to reinstall grub more than a couple of times after correctly identifying hard disks. Nothing worked, and there was a time when I could not even boot to Kubuntu.

    Now my situation is:
    1. When I try to install/reinstall Grub alone through the rescue option, the installer goes through "Install base files" which shows debootstrap failure and I can do nothing but abort installation
    2. When I resintall Kubuntu (after "/" format), the installation goes fine and I can access Kubuntu without problems
    3. I am unable to boot to XP no matter what - when I choose the XP option in Grub it simply displays "GRUB " on the screen
    4. I cannot simply run a Windows XP rescue since I dont seem to remember ever giving the Administrator password

    What I have tried:
    1. Re-writing MBR through couple of FDISK utilities in Hiren's Boot CD
    2. Re-writing MBR through ms-sys package available from the Debian Etch repositories
    3. Reinstallation of Grub and Kubuntu (as provided in the steps above)

    /dev/sda1 - Primary - NTFS - Windows XP
    /dev/sda2 - NTFS
    /dev/sda3 - NTFS

    /dev/sdb1 - NTFS
    /dev/sdb2 - NTFS
    /dev/sdb3 - SWAP
    /dev/sdb4 - EXT3

    Is my only option to reinstall Windows? Please help!

  2. #2
    Don't know how effective this was, but ultimately solved it.

    1. After correcting the primary and secondary hard-disks I installed Windows XP in another folder on C partition of primary drive. This install recognized the current installation and re-wrote the MBR.

    2. After the install, I followed Microsoft's standard way to remove the new XP installation - in my case I deleted the "c:\boot" and "c:\WinXPNew" folder.

    3. Finally I reran Grub from rescue mode in Kubuntu cd.

    4. This got everything back to normal (almost) except that the two non-primary paritions were missing on the first drive. Ran a couple of checks on these partitions and had to "unhide" those - no idea how that happened

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