OK. (Pardon the long explanation, but I want to be clear. There IS a question
at the end.)
I got a Windows Me box from Dell with a 40 GB drive, and RedHat 7.1.
I had read various howtos, which pointed out the problem of Linux /boot
needing to be in the first 1024 cylinders (7ish GB), and they mentioned
that the newer lilos only sometimes fix that problem.
Following (sort of) the old linux+windows howto, I decided to create:
/dev/hda1 6 GB FAT32 (Windows C:)
/dev/hda2 32M Linux (/boot)
/dev/hda3 20GB Extended
/dev/hda4 14 GB FAT32 (Windows D:)
/dev/hda5 128M Linux swap
/dev/hda6 19.9GB Linux (/)
First, I used Windows fips to create a second partition from 6-40 GB.
Then I booted up the RedHat CD. Disk Druid wasn't going to let me create
FAT32 partitions, so I went into fdisk. Using it, I created a partition
table that looked very much like the above. Went on with the install, which
worked like a charm. Booted up Linux beautifully. I was very impressed with
myself. Then the trouble started.
Rebooted Windows, which now said it had a 6G C: and D: had 0 bytes free, 0 bytes
used. That sounded about right. So I double clicked on D: and windows said
it needed to be formatted. So I clicked OK. (This followed pretty closely
the instructions in the linux+windows howto, I thought.)
Well, the formatter said something like
"checking filesystem" and didn't move beyond it. Eventually, I did a
Ctrl-Alt-Delete and the task manager told me the formatting task wasn't
responding so I killed it.
The next time I tried booting up, Me booted OK, and logged me in (my
wife and I are separate Me users), but then froze soon after displaying
the desktop. This happened several times. Eventually I tried C-A-D, and it
said Windows Explorer wasn't responding. That strikes me as Bad. Linux still
booted just fine, though, not a care in the world.
Eventually, I used the Windows bootup floppy and ran (windows) fdisk and
deleted the /hda4 partition. Hooray! Windows now boots up again! But I now
have only 6 GB, and 14G of wasted space.
I tried creating another Primary partition in windows fdisk, but it says
something like, "A primary partition already exists". Which makes no sense
to me: I thought you could have up to four! It also won't let me create
a new Extended partition, since it says that exists, too.
Creating the new partition with Linux cfdisk didn't work any better, even
when I tried the "dd" to zero the first 512 bytes of the /dev/hda4 partition
that I saw in the fdisk man page.
So the question (finally!) is: What do I do?
Options I can think of are:
(1) delete RH, repartition to 20G+20G and use Loadlin. I don't know anything
about Loadlin, though.
(2) delete RH, repartition to 20G+20G and trust the new lilo to work.
(3) "extend" the extended partition from its current end at 26 GB to fill
the disk, and (possibly with Windows fdisk) make a FAT32 logical partition
inside it, which will be D:. I don't know if this will work any better than
making D: primary, besides which it seems scary to put FAT32 and Linux into
the same extended, besides which I don't know if you can extend a partition
(in which case I'd have to do (2a) delete RH and redo the partitions), which
still suffers from some of these problems.
(4) delete RH, use fips to create *four* partitions (because fips doesn't
see to mind creating multiple primary partitions), of length 6G, 32M, and
20G, 14G. Then use Linux fdisk: change the 32M partition to be /boot and type
83, delete the 20G partition, and create an extended partition there to hold
swap & / partitions.
(5) Use some other windows partitioning tool?
I would be happier if I didn't have to reinstall RH, but it only took about
an hour, so I'm not too unhappy redoing it if necessary. What's most important
is getting access to those 16G, and having the thing work correctly.
My solution #4 seems maybe the most likely towork, since it uses each
operating system to create things for itself. But I would hate to go through
all that work and have the thing break Me again.
So (you got to the end of the post!) I would really appreciate any advice,
pointers to howtos that will work correctly, etc.
Thanks in advance.