Dual boot & 2 drives with frugal - grub and WinXP

Forum: DSL Tips and Tricks
Topic: Dual boot & 2 drives with frugal - grub and WinXP
started by: larkl

Posted by larkl on Sep. 21 2005,22:37
I was so impressed with DSL frugal that I decided to run it on my 'good' PC (2.5 gHz Dell with 256M RAM).  I wanted to dual boot with WinXP and I had a bit of trouble getting to both drives, so I thought I'd post my notes.   I'm sure there are other ways to do it, but this worked for me.  Installing frugal to the slave drive failed as the Windows MBR is still in control of the boot on the master drive.  

1.  Need running install of XP on existing drive.  This seems to be really important as Windows will write over the MBR on the master (first) drive.  I'm not sure that you can install windows to the slave drive and keep the windows bootloader off the MBR on the master.  

2.  Move this drive and make it the slave.  Install the second drive as the master.  This will be the DSL drive and will have grub bootloader.  It really surprised me that this works, but it did.  

3.  Boot on CD/floppy and prepare and format the partitions as described elsewhere.  Of course, don't touch the second hdb drives or partitions.

4.  Reboot and do a frugal - grub installation.  Remember that you're putting all of this on partitions on the first (hda) drive.  

5.  Reboot and open a terminal window.  Now we'll mount hda1 and edit the menu.lst for grub:

      >sudo su
      >mount /mnt/hda1
      >nano /mnt/hda1/boot/grub/menu.lst

      Comment out and revise the DSL sections as desired.  

      Uncomment the windows section and revise as follows:

         title = Windows
         map (hd0) (hd1)  
         map (hd1) (hd0)
         rootnoverify (hd1,0)

NOTE - the map command will not work without the space between the two sets of paragraphs.  
We're mapping the drives to 'fool' windows so I guess it thinks it's on the boot drive.  Beats me, it works.  

6.  Reboot and hopefully it works.

Posted by Aussie on Sep. 22 2005,03:01
I was having an awful time playing with HDD's, partitions and MBR's when I decided to start playing with Linux distros a couple of months ago.

What I did in the end is buy a HDD caddy ($25) and fit it to my PC. I bought a few secondhand 20GB drives and some spare caddy trays ($15 each).

The caddy is permanently wired as the primary master. I don't even bother using the primary slave connection.

Now my PC "becomes" whatever caddy tray I slide in - Windows, DSL, Fedora or whatever  :)

There is also the added advantage that I can lock my HDD's away so the kids and thieves can't get at them!


Posted by larkl on Sep. 22 2005,11:30
Great idea!  Got to try it.
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