Need advice - dual boot Julia and LMDE

Questions about Grub, the liveCD and the installer
Forum rules
Before you post please read this

Need advice - dual boot Julia and LMDE

Postby germanix on Sat Mar 05, 2011 2:08 pm

I currently run Mint 10 on my work laptop as sole OS. It is very important to me to have a stable OS and Julia runs very stable on my system and worked out of the box. I am however considering the idea of changing to LMDE but only if I see benefits in it for me by doing this. I do not care for a rolling distribution if that is going to mean more breakages. I am taking a much more conservative approach. Even in Julia I only install the level 1 and 2 updates and only those level 3 updates where I am pretty sure it will not break my system (mostly I am not sure so I just leave it) Should I install LMDE I would change the depositories to squeeze and not testing. My first experience with LMDE has not been positive. I bit the bullet and installed LMDE as sole OS. I could not update without breaking my system and the wifi did not work. I re-installed Julia.
I am now considering installing LMDE as a dual boot option with Julia to further test and try it and hopefully learn in the process.
My main question is, during the installation process of LMDE, one of the screens ask if Grub should be installed. Obviously as I already have Julia installed and running I also have Grub installed so I would think NO. Is this correct or does LMDE use a different version of Grub and this needs to be installed as well, and if so could this cause a conflict?
Am I correct in my assumption that when I change the repositories to "squeeze" the system should run more stable?
Are there anything else I should consider for this dual boot installation? (I plan to put LMDE on 1 small partition 10GB? to start with)
If LMDE breaks my system again, will I still be able to boot to Julia?
All your tips, help and advice will be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
a man without religion is like a fish without a bicycle.
Image
User avatar
germanix
Level 3
Level 3
 
Posts: 152
Joined: Thu Jul 24, 2008 2:53 pm
Location: Germany

Linux Mint is funded by ads and donations.
 

Re: Need advice - dual boot Julia and LMDE

Postby viking777 on Sat Mar 05, 2011 2:25 pm

Am I correct in my assumption that when I change the repositories to "squeeze" the system should run more stable?


NO!! If you want stability run debian stable or crunchbang which is based on stable. Mixing repos will make things less stable not more.

I am now considering installing LMDE as a dual boot option with Julia


If you have a dual boot and Julia is stable for you then does it matter if LMDE isn't? (even though it is).

one of the screens ask if Grub should be installed. Obviously as I already have Julia installed and running I also have Grub installed so I would think NO


There is no reason not to allow LMDE to install grub, they are the same version. But if you say no you will not be able to boot LMDE until you run update-grub in Julia to allow it to detect LMDE.

If LMDE breaks my system again, will I still be able to boot to Julia?


Yes.

Even in Julia I only install the level 1 and 2 updates and only those level 3 updates where I am pretty sure it will not break my system


If you do that with LMDE and it breaks - you will have broken it, not anybody else, just you.
Fujitsu Lifebook AH532. Intel i5 processor, 6Gb ram, Intel HD3000 graphics, Intel Audio/wifi. Realtek RTL8111/8168B Ethernet.Lubuntu 13.10,Ubuntu12.10 (Unity), Mint16 (Cinnamon), Manjaro (Xfce).
Image
User avatar
viking777
Level 14
Level 14
 
Posts: 5153
Joined: Mon Dec 01, 2008 11:21 am

Re: Need advice - dual boot Julia and LMDE

Postby germanix on Sat Mar 05, 2011 2:31 pm

Thank you for your answer. Would you please be so kind and explain what you mean when you said:

"If you do that with LMDE and it breaks - you will have broken it, not anybody else, just you"

Also I am sure that I understand this:

"NO!! If you want stability run debian stable or crunchbang which is based on stable. Mixing repos will make things less stable not more"
I thought that squeeze and stable was the same thing?
a man without religion is like a fish without a bicycle.
Image
User avatar
germanix
Level 3
Level 3
 
Posts: 152
Joined: Thu Jul 24, 2008 2:53 pm
Location: Germany

Re: Need advice - dual boot Julia and LMDE

Postby viking777 on Sat Mar 05, 2011 2:42 pm

Sure, but the reasons are already written elsewhere on this forum. LMDE does not work properly with with mintupdate. Mintupdate was designed for Mint main and was just added to LMDE because (I guess) it is popular. But it has become obvious to many of us that it does not work well with LMDE. LMDE requires all updates to be installed via either a package manager (synaptic) a command line or mintupdate with all levels enabled restricting it makes things worse, just like changing repos. If you don't do it that way you will break it. The downside is that you have to take care with what you do. If you decide to reinstall your first port of call before any update should be this thread here:
http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=141&t=67502

Bookmark it, it is important.

And good luck.

Oh and learn how to use Clonezilla as well then you need fear nothing.

I thought that squeeze and stable was the same thing?


Not following you there, squeeze and stable are the same thing yes. LMDE is based on debian testing which is neither squeeze nor stable it is wheezy!
Fujitsu Lifebook AH532. Intel i5 processor, 6Gb ram, Intel HD3000 graphics, Intel Audio/wifi. Realtek RTL8111/8168B Ethernet.Lubuntu 13.10,Ubuntu12.10 (Unity), Mint16 (Cinnamon), Manjaro (Xfce).
Image
User avatar
viking777
Level 14
Level 14
 
Posts: 5153
Joined: Mon Dec 01, 2008 11:21 am

(Solved) Need advice - dual boot Julia and LMDE

Postby germanix on Sat Mar 05, 2011 2:57 pm

Well thank you very much for clearing all that up. After hearing your advice and reading the link you provided, I have come to the conclusion that LMDE is not stable at all. For meeting my needs this is probably not the best way to go. Guess I will just stick to what I have. Why change a running system and especially one that is as great as Mint 10.
Thank you once again for taking the trouble to educate me in these matters.
I wish you a nice day.
a man without religion is like a fish without a bicycle.
Image
User avatar
germanix
Level 3
Level 3
 
Posts: 152
Joined: Thu Jul 24, 2008 2:53 pm
Location: Germany

Re: Need advice - dual boot Julia and LMDE

Postby viking777 on Sun Mar 06, 2011 5:57 am

My pleasure germanix, although certainly not my intention (to scare you away from LMDE). Obviously you must do what you think is best for you, but to my mind, as long as you have one OS on your computer that you consider stable and a disk image of that stable system it doesn't really matter how unstable the rest of the machine is.

Still Mint 10 is a great distro, no doubt about that, and if you feel happier with that alone then that is your decision. But just let me pose one question. Suppose Mint 10 is not as stable as you believe and you are unfortunate enough to break it? What do you do? Until you can fix it you can do nothing. If on the other hand you are dual booting with something else when you are unfortunate enough to break Mint 10, then all you do is reboot into the second (or even third distro, it depends how far you want to take it) and carry on as if nothing has happened, that way there is no pressure on you to fix Mint 10 'today' it can wait until you have time to do it carefully.

This is why dual/multi boot is such a good idea.

And btw there is no such thing as a completely stable operating system. The biggest problem I have ever had with any computer at any time involved Windows XP and Service Pack 2.
Fujitsu Lifebook AH532. Intel i5 processor, 6Gb ram, Intel HD3000 graphics, Intel Audio/wifi. Realtek RTL8111/8168B Ethernet.Lubuntu 13.10,Ubuntu12.10 (Unity), Mint16 (Cinnamon), Manjaro (Xfce).
Image
User avatar
viking777
Level 14
Level 14
 
Posts: 5153
Joined: Mon Dec 01, 2008 11:21 am

Re: Need advice - dual boot Julia and LMDE

Postby germanix on Sun Mar 06, 2011 4:19 pm

Hi viking777, thank you for your reply. What you are saying does make a lot of sense to me. I would very much like to give LMDE a try. For some reason however I can get it to install on my machine but when I then do the initial update after the install the system just hangs halfway through the update and I am then stuck. When that happens, nothing moves anymore, the system is frozen and because I do not know better I then switch the laptop off and then it would not boot up again after that, and when I then tried to re-install from the life disk it also would not boot. This all happened when I was trying to install it as sole OS. I hope that when I install LMDE as a dual boot and the same problem with the installation occur that I would at least be able to reboot using Julia. If this is the case I would like to try it again. However I still do not know which package in the update is breaking my system.
Also I read in these forums that the Mint update manager does not work well with LMDE and that one should use the terminal for the update. Could you tell me the correct command for the terminal. Much appreciated.
Think I found the answer to my last question: This it?
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade && sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
a man without religion is like a fish without a bicycle.
Image
User avatar
germanix
Level 3
Level 3
 
Posts: 152
Joined: Thu Jul 24, 2008 2:53 pm
Location: Germany

Re: Need advice - dual boot Julia and LMDE

Postby zerozero on Sun Mar 06, 2011 5:08 pm

hi germanix
you don't need the apt-get upgrade when you are doing after an apt-get dist-upgrade - the last one includes the previous

Code: Select all
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
Image

[ bliss of ignorance ]
zerozero
Level 16
Level 16
 
Posts: 6489
Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2009 2:29 pm

Re: Need advice - dual boot Julia and LMDE

Postby viking777 on Mon Mar 07, 2011 7:37 am

then I then do the initial update after the install the system just hangs halfway through the update and I am then stuck. When that happens, nothing moves anymore, the system is frozen and because I do not know better I then switch the laptop off and then it would not boot up again after that


I understand the problem now germanix, though like yourself I would not know which update is causing this to occur.

I hope that when I install LMDE as a dual boot and the same problem with the installation occur that I would at least be able to reboot using Julia. If this is the case I would like to try it again


I would hope that too germanix, but I could not in all honesty guarantee it. Hard reboots midway through a large update (and it will be large by now believe me!) are prone to causing all sorts of difficulties, most of which would be impossible to troubleshoot . My answer to that uncertainty would be to create a Clonezilla disk image of Julia and the freshly installed LMDE before I proceeded with the update. I understand that Clonezilla is not a friendly program, but it is a life saver in situations such as this. There is a video tutorial of how to use it here, although I am sure you will find many more online if you look.

http://linuxgravity.com/creating-and-re ... -clonzilla

If the update failed and as a result Julia stopped booting you can use this image to revert to the pre update state where everything worked. Your earlier idea about not allowing lmde to install grub to the master boot record may also help in preserving the boot capability of Julia. I would be tempted to install it to the partition instead of the mbr, an option you will find in the installer if you look carefully. If you decide on this then LMDE will not boot immediately after install, you will have to run the command "sudo update-grub" from within Julia before LMDE is detected. I had better say at this stage though that I am neither a fan of, nor an expert on grub2 so I would get some more advice on that topic before you make your mind up what to do.
Fujitsu Lifebook AH532. Intel i5 processor, 6Gb ram, Intel HD3000 graphics, Intel Audio/wifi. Realtek RTL8111/8168B Ethernet.Lubuntu 13.10,Ubuntu12.10 (Unity), Mint16 (Cinnamon), Manjaro (Xfce).
Image
User avatar
viking777
Level 14
Level 14
 
Posts: 5153
Joined: Mon Dec 01, 2008 11:21 am

Re: Need advice - dual boot Julia and LMDE

Postby wayne128 on Tue Mar 08, 2011 2:01 am

If LMDE breaks my system again, will I still be able to boot to Julia?

hi germanix,
It seem your initial setup/upgrade issue with LMDE made you lose some confidence.
However, it might really help you to appreciate on the few issues on Debian based OS:
1. the good practice of using sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
2. the 'need' to control your MBR.
and thus now you are trying to figure out what is 'best for you to move ahead'.

One more appreciation is the use of command line. Often it is nicer to use graphic interface. But one strenght on using terminal command is ( really) , it is easy to communicate over internet like what we are doing now, in addition to it being straight to the point of getting some work done.

I have been multi booting many OSes, and I used grub legacy as my Master Boot Loader ( the one controlling MBR), in the event I played with a new OS on a new partition, replace OS on existing partition, OS did some update & upgrade, I always paid attention to terminal and ensure I select boot code writing to root partition. This way I kept my MBR under controlled by the Master Boot Loader.
This is what would satisfy your question of "if LMDE break, at least you still can boot to Julia".

If you are keen to explore this method, I can help you in more details.
Three important things I used:
a. Use grub legacy as my Master Boot Loader.
Some people used a dedicated partition. After some experiment for a while I ended up just use one OS that is fast and with some tools, then cater for one partition and let this OS control MBR with its default Grub legacy bootloader

Of course you can also convert Mint Julia grub2 to Grub legacy. However I tried not to do that because in the event when update/upgrade has kernel / grub change, like LMDE, it can take over and put back Grub2. So although it can be done, I avoided it for consistency on all my multi boot computers.

b. When installing any OS, I always instruct its own boot loader to install onto root partition.

This made thing consistent and when LMDE or other debian based OS ( such as Crunchbang, Aptosid, etc) go through the update/upgrade process, the terminal will show similar question on where I want to install boot loader, my selection is always root partition.

c. Learn how to repair MBR and PBR.
This is quite easy to learn for me, after many experiments with several boot loaders.
For grub legacy, to repair MBR, just need to boot computer with Live CD, get into root terminal, tyoe grub and enter to have a grub prompt >, assuming I know my partition controlling MBR is at /dev/sda5, then the commands line are
root (hd0,4)
setup (hd0)


that is it. After it ended, type quit to get out of Grub prompt> and back to terminal prompt #
If I want to repair the PBR, then
root (hd0,4)
setup (hd0,4)


that is it. then quit and get back from grub promt > to terminal prompt #
wayne128
Level 10
Level 10
 
Posts: 3325
Joined: Tue Jul 13, 2010 12:15 am

Re: Need advice - dual boot Julia and LMDE

Postby craig10x on Tue Mar 08, 2011 3:45 am

I had gotten discouraged after the vlc breakage issue, and wiped LMDE and went back to Mint Main Edition again...But after reflecting on it, i decided to try again....keep in mind, i only have LMDE on my laptop now (not even dual booting)....

When i re-installed LMDE, at this point in time there was 603 updates waiting for me, i tried doing them with Mint Update (after enabling all 5 levels which is important to do when using Mint Update, as i think you have a much GREATER chance of breakage if you leave it at the lower level)....
But ran into the problem you did, and it seemed it was just too much for it to handle and it froze 3/4 of the way through...

All was not lost, however, i used the command in the terminal that zerozero mentioned above and all 603 updates were installed smooth as can be...It did ask me about 3 times if i wanted to go with a replacement for something and i just said yes each time)...everything works great!

What i do is normally, i use the mint update for daily updates, but if i was away for a few weeks and had tons of updates, i would use the terminal...
But for day to day smaller amounts, i find Mint Update (enabled to level 5) works fine...If it showed an error or told me to "fix broken packages" then i would do it in terminal instead and find out what the conflict seems to be (that would have helped me avoid the VLC mishap)...

So i think the way i am doing, is not a bad way to go...germanix...and if you are dual booting with Mint 10 main, you should be fine...
I decided to plunge in 100% with LMDE :lol:

By the way, zerozero, i never did the updates using Package Manager...how do you go about that???
craig10x
Level 7
Level 7
 
Posts: 1502
Joined: Fri Jul 03, 2009 12:44 pm

Re: Need advice - dual boot Julia and LMDE

Postby zerozero on Tue Mar 08, 2011 7:24 am

hehe craig10x, no problem, let's see how we can use package manager aka synaptic to update our system:

- on the upper left side you see a reload button, it's the first you hit: it will refresh your pkg information, searching for new, updated and removed pkgs ( a window will pop-up querying the repos)
- on the lower left side we have 5 options (sections, status, origin, custom filters and search results) for now leave it in status, and you'll notice your pkgs are organized in all, installed...
- after querying the repo, if you have pkgs to upgrade, a new category will appear -installed(upgradable); now if you click there you can have a look at what is going to happen,
- but synaptic is even smarter, click the mark all upgrades button and a new window will pop-up telling exactly what synaptic is going to do: if a new pkg is to installed to satisfy others dependencies, if one is to be removed,
- on that window click mark (or cancel if you are not happy with the info) and in the main window click apply;
a new window shows up with your last chance to review the upgrade, in here you can again check what and if any pkg is to be removed, which ones are to be upgraded and if any is to newly installed, you have some extra info more: the size of the download, how much space is going to be used in your drive or freed;
- happy until here? click apply and you are upgrading your system.

Looks a bit confusing at first but is very simple and straightforward.
Image

[ bliss of ignorance ]
zerozero
Level 16
Level 16
 
Posts: 6489
Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2009 2:29 pm

Re: Need advice - dual boot Julia and LMDE

Postby craig10x on Tue Mar 08, 2011 11:17 am

Thank you zerozero....i will try it when i get my next batch of updates...which i am sure won't be very long to wait :wink: :mrgreen:
craig10x
Level 7
Level 7
 
Posts: 1502
Joined: Fri Jul 03, 2009 12:44 pm

Linux Mint is funded by ads and donations.
 

Return to Installation & Boot

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests