Ask the Experts: I recently reinstalled Windows on my dual boot system and now Linux no longer boots...
Question: I recently had to reinstall Windows on my dual boot system and now Linux no longer boots. Rather than booting to the grub boot manager it now boots directly into Windows. How do I recover my ability to dual boot?" --Tara Ryan, Mountain View, CA
Our friends at Apress have kindly offered one free book or ebook of your choice if we publish your Ask the Experts question. Readers, send your Ask the Experts question in to get in on the action. A free book and free tech support if your question is selected -- pretty cool right? Now on to our responses to this week's question:
Tom Metge responds: You'll need to reinstall GRUB to the MBR of your disk- Windows overwrites it on installation. If you've got a live Linux disc handy (the rescue function on your distro's install disk, for example), boot into the rescue environment and do the following:
- mount your boot and root partitions
- chroot to the root partition
where [dev] = the drive you boot from, in grub format (hd0,0 for the first drive in the system, for example).
Bill Childers, an IT Manager in Silicon Valley responds: Tom's instructions are dead-on. Alternatively, though -- in the event the BIOS doesn't want to probe the drive properly from the chroot you can also re-install grub outside the chroot. Ensure your boot and root partitions are mounted as in Tom's instructions, then run "grub-install --root-directory=/mnt/hda1 /dev/hda" (substitute /mnt/hda1 and /dev/hda for your actual mountpoint and device nodes).
Luis Cerezo responds: When using rescue mode the root part and boot, depending on how your system us set up may need to be mounted in rw mode. Mount -I remount,rw /.
Chris Stark of the University of Hawaii College of Education responds: Hi Tara. Tom, Bill, and Luis all had perfect answers for recovering from this sort of problem. For now, follow their advice for getting your GRUB installation back, then follow my advice for a strategy to help avoid the problem from happening again.
As I'm sure you know, there are hundreds of Linux distros out there, each with a slightly different audience or purpose. A specific distro I'd like to bring to your attention is the Clonezilla Live CD, http://clonezilla.org/.
Download the ISO image and burn it to CD as usual. Set the disk aside for now.
Next, get your Windows installation updated and configured to your liking. I tend to do a fairly minimal amount of tweaking: install any drivers & updates, install an anti-virus and Windows Defender, and turn off the annoying interface sounds.
Once you're satisfied with your Windows installation, reboot using the Clonezilla Live CD, and follow the prompts to create an image of your Windows partition. Clonezilla is very flexible in that it lets you save the image to a network share, external drive, or even a local partition. Now that you have an image, you can confidently go about your business, knowing that the next time Windows blows itself up (...and you know it will...), you'll be ready to get back up and running quickly and painlessly.
Be sure the read the "How to use" link from the Clonezilla homepage. You'll find that Clonezilla is very easy to use, albeit a bit quirky, and restoring your perfectly configured Windows partition means no overwriting the Master Boot Record (thus leaving GRUB intact and ready to dual boot).
If you're like me, and only need Windows around for testing purposes, consider running Windows in a virtual machine, like VirtualBox, http://www.virtualbox.org/.
James Ward of Adobe Systems responds: Boot any Live CD and then run the following command:
sudo grub-install --no-floppy /dev/sda
Assuming that /dev/sda is the device you want to install the boot loader on. Since your Grub configuration should still be intact this should just work.
>> Ask the Experts is a new weekly column featured exclusively on LinuxJournal.com.
>> Question for our experts? E-mail them.
Carlie Fairchild is the publisher of Linux Journal.
|Making Linux and Android Get Along (It's Not as Hard as It Sounds)||May 16, 2013|
|Drupal Is a Framework: Why Everyone Needs to Understand This||May 15, 2013|
|Home, My Backup Data Center||May 13, 2013|
|Non-Linux FOSS: Seashore||May 10, 2013|
|Trying to Tame the Tablet||May 08, 2013|
|Dart: a New Web Programming Experience||May 07, 2013|
- RSS Feeds
- New Products
- Making Linux and Android Get Along (It's Not as Hard as It Sounds)
- Drupal Is a Framework: Why Everyone Needs to Understand This
- A Topic for Discussion - Open Source Feature-Richness?
- Home, My Backup Data Center
- Readers' Choice Awards
- Developer Poll
- What's the tweeting protocol?
- New Products
- Web Hosting IQ
21 min 18 sec ago
- Web Hosting IQ
21 min 51 sec ago
- Web Hosting IQ
22 min 32 sec ago
- Reply to comment | Linux Journal
3 hours 23 min ago
- play with linux? i think you mean work-around linux
11 hours 49 min ago
- Where is Epistle?
11 hours 55 min ago
- You forgot OwnCloud
12 hours 24 min ago
- aplikasi free
15 hours 39 min ago
- Having a framework
15 hours 42 min ago
- Fix my computer
16 hours 22 min ago
Enter to Win an Adafruit Prototyping Pi Plate Kit for Raspberry Pi
It's Raspberry Pi month at Linux Journal. Each week in May, Adafruit will be giving away a Pi-related prize to a lucky, randomly drawn LJ reader. Winners will be announced weekly.
Fill out the fields below to enter to win this week's prize-- a Prototyping Pi Plate Kit for Raspberry Pi.
Congratulations to our winners so far:
- 5-8-13, Pi Starter Pack: Jack Davis
- 5-15-13, Pi Model B 512MB RAM: Patrick Dunn
- Next winner announced on 5-21-13!
Free Webinar: Linux Backup and Recovery
Most companies incorporate backup procedures for critical data, which can be restored quickly if a loss occurs. However, fewer companies are prepared for catastrophic system failures, in which they lose all data, the entire operating system, applications, settings, patches and more, reducing their system(s) to “bare metal.” After all, before data can be restored to a system, there must be a system to restore it to.
In this one hour webinar, learn how to enhance your existing backup strategies for better disaster recovery preparedness using Storix System Backup Administrator (SBAdmin), a highly flexible bare-metal recovery solution for UNIX and Linux systems.