Problems with dual XP/Mint dual boot

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Problems with dual XP/Mint dual boot

Postby pointfive on Fri Mar 08, 2013 2:46 am

Hi all. I've been hitting my head on this for the past 2 days before posting, so I'm hoping you can help me out. I'm attempting to dual boot Mint 14.1 with an existing (relatively new) installation of XP. I'm getting stuck after the reboot during the installation of Mint.

My partitions are:

/dev/sdc1 (Windows XP - boots fine; the drive is acutally "J:" and not "C:", however.)
/dev/sdc2 (extended)
- /dev/sdc5 (ext4 - this is where I installed Mint)
- /dev/sdc6 (linux-swap)

I've tried a few things, including:

1) Updating the boot.ini in Windows after the running the below, per this thread: viewtopic.php?p=653348#p653348
Code: Select all
sudo dd if=/dev/sdc5 bs=512 count=1 > mintMBR.bin

Then I copy the file to the root of J: and append this to boot.ini:
Code: Select all
J:\mintMBR.bin="Mint"

When I do this, choosing "Mint" at the bootloader just re-displays the boot options. Mint doesn't load.

2) Using Gparted (via a live session) to set the flag on /dev/sdc5 to "boot". This gives a message to insert valid media; doesn't recognize that the drive is bootable.

3) As a long shot, used Gparted to set the flag on /dev/sdc2 to "boot". This just results in a blinking cursor that stays on the screen forever.

4) Complete reinstall of Mint to the same partition. I get stuck in the same place.

I'm pretty much a newbie, though I've used Ubuntu for awhile and struggled through stuff like this. Was hoping this would be more seamless, but at any rate... I've exhausted what I can figure out on my own and would appreciate any guidance you can give. I hope I'm missing something basic. (Maybe the partition isn't mounted properly? I don't know.) Thanks in advance!
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Re: Problems with dual XP/Mint dual boot

Postby jungle_boy on Sat Mar 09, 2013 5:20 pm

sdc?

sdc is the third HD, where are sda and sdb?

Open a terminal and:

Code: Select all
sudo fdisk -l


Post here the output.

If you run a LiveDVD I think that the command is:

Code: Select all
fdisk -l


Or run GParted and take a picture and post here.
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Re: Problems with dual XP/Mint dual boot

Postby pointfive on Mon Mar 11, 2013 11:21 am

Thanks for the response.

sda is a drive (with just XP installed) that I suspect will die soon, which is why I bought the drive that now is sdc. sdb is a drive I use for data only.

The end goal is to get rid of sda and boot solely from sdc. When I set the BIOS boot priority to sdc, it boots to XP fine, but not Mint. I'm at work now, but when I get home I'll follow your steps and post the results. Thanks again.
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Re: Problems with dual XP/Mint dual boot

Postby pointfive on Mon Mar 11, 2013 9:08 pm

Here are the results. I'm setting the boot priority to the sdc drive when attempting to boot into Mint. Right now it seems to be using the Windows bootloader, not grub. I appreciate any help.

Code: Select all
Disk /dev/sda: 1000.2 GB, 1000204886016 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 121601 cylinders, total 1953525168 sectors
Units = sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disk identifier: 0x8b358b35

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sda1   *          63  1953503999   976751968+   7  HPFS/NTFS/exFAT

Disk /dev/sdb: 320.1 GB, 320072933376 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 38913 cylinders, total 625142448 sectors
Units = sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disk identifier: 0x8b758b75

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sdb1              63   625121279   312560608+   7  HPFS/NTFS/exFAT

Disk /dev/sdc: 250.1 GB, 250059350016 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 30401 cylinders, total 488397168 sectors
Units = sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 4096 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 4096 bytes / 4096 bytes
Disk identifier: 0x3e963e95

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sdc1   *          63   249354208   124677073    7  HPFS/NTFS/exFAT
Partition 1 does not start on physical sector boundary.
/dev/sdc2       249354238   488396799   119521281    5  Extended
Partition 2 does not start on physical sector boundary.
/dev/sdc5       249354240   484218879   117432320   83  Linux
/dev/sdc6       484220928   488396799     2087936   82  Linux swap / Solaris
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Re: Problems with dual XP/Mint dual boot

Postby jungle_boy on Tue Mar 12, 2013 9:18 am

I never saw a PC with 2 bootloaders (sda1 and sdc1)

Try to reinstall Mint and put GRUB on MBR of sda1 while it does not die...
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Re: Problems with dual XP/Mint dual boot

Postby pointfive on Tue Mar 12, 2013 10:04 am

I don't want to touch sda.

Is there a way to put grub on sdc? ...any way to explicitly tell grub, "reside here"?

The Windows bootloader will load the proper instance of XP based on which drive I select as primary. Can grub not do the same?

I don't mind unplugging sda and reinstalling Mint if you think that will help, but I don't want to touch a drive that's on its way out. That kind of defeats my purpose here.
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Re: Problems with dual XP/Mint dual boot

Postby jungle_boy on Tue Mar 12, 2013 11:38 am

pointfive wrote:I don't want to touch sda.

Is there a way to put grub on sdc? ...any way to explicitly tell grub, "reside here"?


Yes, during the installation process choose /dev/sdc like picture

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