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The following is an archive of a post made to our 'vox-tech mailing list' by one of its subscribers.

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Re: [vox-tech] Win2k and Linux Dual Boot
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Re: [vox-tech] Win2k and Linux Dual Boot

On Tue, 24 Jul 2001, John Verderber wrote:
> I have done a dual boot with W2K and Redhat very successfully. And I used the 
> NT loader in W2K to boot both systems. It is  a bit involved for an e-mail so 
> if you want ot call me at (530) 661-3858 I can help you with it or I can 
> write down instructions if you like. Let me know
> 						John Verderber
> 						derb58@pacbell.net

If this is the method of using dd to pull ~500 bytes from the lilo
modified mbr+ and then storing it in a file on the root of the C: drive of
the machine that has W2k, it has some limitations: 
(Don't get me wrong, I have used this system and found it to be useful
in a few places.)

1) If your Win 2K system has a C: drive that is on NTFS, then though there
is an ntfs module for use with accessing NTFS based filesystems, it is
experimental. Reads work just fine, but write can cause problems
especially if the file being written is of a different length than the one
that was previously there. (This info may be old.) If you do not use the
dd system and actually move the kernel to the window root disk, then
different kernels are almost always different sizes. :-/ dd of the mbr+
can lead to files that are the same length, but you can still have
problems getting the file "there". (the boot.ini thingy and mbr.lnx file
is what I write about here.)

2) Recompiling a new kernel and/or modification of the lilo.conf settings
leads to a need to reissue this process, or (as I did for one case) modify
the real name of lilo.conf and basicly create a wrapper to automate the
process of moving the necessary boot information for LILO/Linux to the
windows side for each issuance of the lilo command.

I have found the LILO system for managing Windows 2K Advanced Server
Edition (which has destroyed LILO/Linux MBR info unlike the Windows 2K
Professional edition that seems to be nicer to the MBR) and Windows ME on
the same box as Debian Linux. (3 OS that may boot from the same box - all
managed by LILO.) LILO has been the easiest for long-term support on my
end but YMMV.

For LILO with WinME/W2K/Linux, the procedure is simple.

Use your Linux boot disk to make your needed partitions:
1 Primary partition for each Windows OS. (my case, 1 for Win2K and 1 for
WinME) (I set W2K parts to be NTFS and WinME to be FAT32 LBA)
1 Primary partition for my Linux "/" (root)
1 Partition converted to extended to include partitions for /var, /home,
/usr, /usr/local with another disk that exclusivly contained swap and /tmp
(Even if you wish to have 1 ext2 partition for linux you should re-think
this notion and at least add a separate partition for /var so logs dont
kill you, and also think twice about one for /home for easier migration to
a new Linux distro if you should ever have that desire. Don't make the
mistake of trying to be smart and make a separate partition for /etc since
/etc/fstab is needed for mounting the filesystems and will prob give you
lots of grief. ;-)

* Some older machines may have problems with LILO if they try to reference
a partition for "root" and booting if the partition is beyond the 1024th
cyl. Most newer machines do not have problems from my experience. If you
have a machine that has the limit with 1024 cyls for booting OS, just make
sure all of your booting OS have root filesystems *and* kernels within
the first 1024 cyls of the boot disk. (For linux, you can place /home and
other mounted volumes farther beyond the 1024 cyl boundary as the kernel
won't need to be so limited by the BIOS info.)

Next, boot from the Windows 2K CD (or by other means) and delete the
partition created for it within linux. Create a new partition over the
same space as the one deleted. (Why even create a partition in Linux if
you are just going to delete it in the W2K setup? With Windows NT, there
were problems with NTFS fs not stopping at the specified partition
boundaries, but windows would respect pre-existing boundaries of
partitions when creating its own partitions. I am not sure if this was
ever fixed in W2k. By allocating the space shared of time withing Linux,
there is much less risk of issues with partitions boundaries being
broken.) Then install Win2K as usual on that partition. If you plan to
install Windows ME on the same box, then you should make the filesystem
NTFS fr Win2K. If you do not, then Windows ME may try to install itself on
the C: drive and not let you choose an alternate. If this happens and the
WinME installer can see your C: drive as being available (with Win2K) it
may try to over-write some win2K files and cause problems. By making the
first drive NTFS, WinME will not see it as a possible C: drive but instead
will see the second partition (FAT32 LBA) as drive C:)

If you made partition 2 FAT32 with LBA, you can just boot from the
3.5" WinME floppy, and issue a format of drive C: then CD to the winme dir
on the CD and run SETUP.EXE and install it as usual. Both Windows feel
they are using the C: drive. Windows 2K can however see the Windows ME
C: drive will call it something else like D: or E: or whatever you assign
in the Disk Manager.

Now install Linux with the "/" (root) filesystem starting in the 3rd

As/after Linux is installed, allow it to install LILo over your MBR.

Now in the completed Linux install (maybe even after a reboot to make sure
LILO is really there and working) you can modify the /etc/lilo.conf

Scroll to the bottom of it and add entries like the following:
--- chop to append to /etc/lilo.conf ---
#This would boot Windows 2000 from partition 1 of a primary IDE Master
# disk if at the LILO prompt "w2k" was entered as the choice after
# pressing shit at the LILO prompt:

#This would boot Windows ME from partition 2 of a primary IDE Master
# disk if at the LILO prompt "wme" was entered as the choice after
# pressing shit at the LILO prompt:
--- end append ---
If you installed your windows 2K or ME onto a different disk, or partition
or /dev/sdX then you would of course include your /dev instead.

Hope this helps,

This seems like a FAQ to me. I wonder if anyone has written a how-to or
mini-howto on this. Anyone know of the most current repository on
this? Maybe I'll donate some time and update it if it does not include
such information.

Version: 3.12
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decode: http://www.ebb.org/ungeek/ about: http://www.geekcode.com/geek.html
     Systems Department Operating Systems Analyst for the SSU Library

> On Tuesday 24 July 2001 11:23 am, you wrote:
> > Well, the subject line pretty much says it all.  Has anyone successfully
> > installed Linux and Win2k on a dual boot machine?  If so, how?  If it
> > makes a difference, the two systems will be on two different hard drives.
> > The linux system will be Debian, again, if that makes a difference.
> > Thanks in advance for the help.
> >
> > Patrick
> >
> > P.S. I rapidly looked through some of the basic news groups this morning
> > but didn't find much on the subject other than that people had been having
> > trouble with this...

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