LILO installation problem, writing to MBR

LILO installation problem, writing to MBR

Post by Jef » Fri, 05 Jun 1998 04:00:00






>> > I'm a newcomer to Linux, so excuse me if this is a lame question or I
>> > haven't given enough info.  I've just installed RedHat 5.0 on an intel box
>> > (single HDD).  I slapped the bootloader into the Master Boot Record, but
>> > when I reboot all I get is "LI" and a flashing cursor in the top left
corner
>> > of the screen right after the memory check.  Any ideas?

Hi my name is Jeff, and I'm a Linux newbie, too.

I have a Seagate 84320A8 4.3 GB IDE with NT on the 1st 2.1 Gig, and all the
other Linux partitions on the 2.2 leftover.
This is on a pentium with a Award BIOS circa 1997, does LBA, auto detect,
yada,yada,yada... The drive has 5765 physical cyl, but is config'd  with
8400/16/63 as per Seagates's dox in my BIOS settings.

I used to have the same problem. Further install attempts have gotten me
further along to where I can attempt to install LILO to the MBR, but it
notifies me that the attempt failed and gives me the choice of :
Previous step, Retry to install LILO in MBR, or a Menu of install routines.

I've seen posts (and docs) that insist that the root fs be located within the
first 1024 cyls of the c: drive but thats related to a BIOS limitation. Right?

LBA is what we used to call sector translation and it assures that BIOS can see
all cylinders of a drive, regardless of the actual physical # of cyls. If your
BIOS doesn't have that limitation its a non-issue. Right?

Has anybody solved this problem bypartitoning 80or so MB for Linux as the first
partition, then creating the NT part, then continuing on with Linux parts?? To
a hardware guy like me it seems a lot a head thrashing would occur as linux
moved from the root, across the NT part to the other Linux parts. MTBF is

Quote:>400,00 hrs., but hey, why tempt fate?

Besides... everything I've read on dual booting NT & Linux says install NT
first, implying that whatever NT wants, NT takes, and if that includes a maxed  
out partition, over 1024 cyls in size then so be it.

I check to make sure the boot sector virus checking was disabled too, in case
BIOS thot a virus was trying to install itself there.

Quote:>> Check to see if you hard drive is set to "LBA" mode. I had that problem,
>> and when I changed my hard drive setting to "Normal" it work find. Also
>> I had a problem with
>> RH5 setup program when it came to installing "lilo" on drives larger the
>> 2.1g.

Is this problem documented by others?

Quote:

>I seem to be having the same problem.  How do I change my hard drive
>mode.

The mode is chosen in BIOS setup, Award BIOS has an automatic setting that
supposedly makes the best selection for you.
 
 
 

LILO installation problem, writing to MBR

Post by Neil Ricke » Fri, 05 Jun 1998 04:00:00



>I've seen posts (and docs) that insist that the root fs be located within the
>first 1024 cyls of the c: drive but thats related to a BIOS limitation. Right?

Right.

Quote:>Has anybody solved this problem bypartitoning 80or so MB for Linux as the first
>partition, then creating the NT part, then continuing on with Linux parts?? To
>a hardware guy like me it seems a lot a head thrashing would occur as linux
>moved from the root, across the NT part to the other Linux parts. MTBF is
>>400,00 hrs., but hey, why tempt fate?

Just make a small partition, say 5M, nearer the start of the disk.
When installing your system, make this partition '/root'.  For RH,
that solves the problem.  For slackware, you have to move the kernel
to '/root', and put a symlink in '/'.  Everything that 'lilo' needs
to boot the system is in '/root' or the kernel (which you have just
moved to '/root'.

When your system is running you won't much use 'root', except when
reinstalling lilo.  So the head thrashing is unlikely to be a
problem.

 
 
 

LILO installation problem, writing to MBR

Post by Brian McCaule » Sat, 06 Jun 1998 04:00:00



> Just make a small partition, say 5M, nearer the start of the disk.
> When installing your system, make this partition '/root'.  For RH,
> that solves the problem.  For slackware, you have to move the kernel
> to '/root', and put a symlink in '/'.  Everything that 'lilo' needs
> to boot the system is in '/root' or the kernel (which you have just
> moved to '/root'.

I've never used RH but unless RH is highly non-standard you mean
"boot" not "root".

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LILO installation problem, writing to MBR

Post by Neil Ricke » Sat, 06 Jun 1998 04:00:00




>> Just make a small partition, say 5M, nearer the start of the disk.
>> When installing your system, make this partition '/root'.  For RH,
>> that solves the problem.  For slackware, you have to move the kernel
>> to '/root', and put a symlink in '/'.  Everything that 'lilo' needs
>> to boot the system is in '/root' or the kernel (which you have just
>> moved to '/root'.
>I've never used RH but unless RH is highly non-standard you mean
>"boot" not "root".

Oops.  You are quite right.  I should have caught that typo (or
series of typos).  It must have been one of those times when the
thinking part of the brain does one thing but the typing fingers
decide to do something else.
 
 
 

LILO installation problem, writing to MBR

Post by Jef » Sat, 06 Jun 1998 04:00:00


I tried loadlin and syslinux last nite, still to no avail. Looks like I'm gonna  
delete/re-install an NT partition this weekend.

Am I being unreasonable about my obsession with all parttions of a particular
type being physically located next to each other?

 
 
 

1. write LILO to mbr?

Near the end of my RH 5.2 install, the setup program gave me a choice
of putting LILO in the mbr, or putting it in /boot, which is my first
partition (primary).  I chose the latter, and the system won't boot
except with a boot floppy.  Is there a simple way of moving LILO to
the mbr - or is that necessary (ie, why give me the choice if option 2
is not workable?!).  

I tried the command lilo with no parameters;  it took a few seconds
and returned to the prompt with no message returned (either completion
or error) - so I'd assume that didsomething - but I still can't boot
from the HDD.  Any suggestions?
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