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dashing_cavalier's Journal: My Linux Journey, Part 2 4

Journal by dashing_cavalier

Part 2 - The Installation

After prepping my system two nights ago (see Part 1), I was anxious to install Mandrake 9.1. Last night I actually had some free time (miracle of miracles!) so I went to work installing Mandrake. I popped in the first CD, booted up and the install program came up. I opted to go with the standard install, rather than the advanced install and proceeded to go through most installation options quickly. It recoginized my mouse and keyboard without trouble and I chose standard security (not really interested in opening up this box to the Internet at large yet.) So far so good...

The first major decision was what to do about disk partitioning. This was my biggest worry about the whole process, but fortunately Mandrake made it easy. I chose custom disk partitioning and the DiskDrake utility started. My worry was I didn't want to wipe out my Windows XP disk. Since I installed a new hard drive I wasn't too worried. I selected the "hdb" tab and clicked "AutoPartition". Done! It created a 5 GB root partition, a ~ 500 MB swap partition, and used the remainder (~ 24.5 GB) for the user partition. Impressive - I barely had to do anything. Even WinXP won't do automatic partitioning - maybe there *is* something to this Linux thing I keep hearing about! :P After formatting the partitions on the drive, the install moved on to the packages installation section.

I'm a software developer (mostly Windows, but I'm trying to learn Linux programming), so I like having software tools and compilers installed. Naturally I selected that package group. And console tools, of course! I selected just about every package and added the Web/FTP and Database server groups. I also made sure KDE was selected for the graphical environment, then hit next and let Mandrake install the packages. Uh oh, wife calling, Queer Eye is about to start! (That show is hysterical! :P) So I let the install continue in my absence...

Back from watching Queer Eye (episode 106), I checked on the install - "Please insert CD labelled 'disc 2'..." DOH! Ok, well that's an hour of time lost... So I swapped CDs and let the install progress. After at least one more CD swap, the package install was done. I set the Root password, created a user account for me (hmmm, I'll add the wife later :P) and then it skipped the Boot Loader section and went straight to the configuration review screen. I went through that through the Internet package update, then the install was finished! I clicked Reboot and...

... Linux came up! Woohoo! So I logged on with my user account, and I was in! Next step, update the system. So I went to the Mandrake Control Center and searched for updates for my system. There were a *ton*! So rather than download ~100 MB worth of updates, I just pick the few that were the most relevant. I'll get the rest later. That's when it hit me...

I didn't recall seeing "WindowsXP" or "OtherOS" in the LILO menu. Uh oh, I've got a bad feeling about this... So I went to the Boot configuration section in the Mandrake Control Center. Hmmm, how to add an entry for WinXP... I try to add a menu item for WinXP, told it to boot from hda1, but "Check configuration" didn't like that. Yikes! Ok, so I'm having trouble with getting Windows XP to boot. It's about 12:30 AM now. This can't be fixed tonight - it's going to have to wait until I can research the issue. Now I *did* look into this before I installed, and the consensus I got was "It's ok, Mandrake will take care of it for you." Hmmmm, well that didn't quite work out. So that's my next todo...

Fast-forward to this morning:
/wife: "Honey, where's Windows?"
/me: "Ummmm, it's there, it's just hidden. I'll fix it. Eventually..."
/wife: "Sigh. What did you do?"
/me: "Well, I, uh, I'll fix it. Use the laptop for now." :P

To be continued...

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My Linux Journey, Part 2

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  • edit /etc/lilo.conf, add this:

    Other = /dev/hda1
    label = WindowsXP
    • Thanks! Yeah it's LILO. At first I did try manually editing /etc/lilo.conf (backed it up first, of course). I think I added something like:

      #WinXP part
      label=WindowsXP
      other=/hda1 #Yeah shoulda been /dev/hda1
      table=/dev/hda

      Then rebooted and didn't see the WindowsXP entry in the menu (menu was the graphical one, not sure if that made a difference - I set it to use text from now on). So I decided rather than kill Mandrake by fragging lilo.conf I'd get some sleep & think about it...

      I found some good links

      • dont add table=/dev/hda, that should allready be there as /dev/hdb earlier in the file
        table tells lilo what drive is is on.
        label should come after other=
        Not to sure because I use Windows :p
        • Yes - I got WindowsXP to boot! Your tip did the trick. I added this to /etc/lilo.conf:

          other=/dev/hda1
          label="WindowsXP"
          table=/dev/hda

          I tried it first without the table=/dev/hda, but the WindowsXP entry did not appear on the lilo menu. After I added the table=/dev/hda the WindowsXP entry did appear. The documentation stated that it does use the table= directive to find the partition table for that entry, so I guess that's why it needed it. Thanks!

          Cheers,
          Alan

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