A simple question concerning the Linux option in EasyBCD...

#1
Hi, I have just recently began to try to understand how EasyBCD actually works...before i just followed instructions pretty much, and then drew my "conclusions" on what I thought were the facts! :lup: Now i am beginning to learn about how NeoGrub, and the Linux option on EasyBCD really works, and I am beginning to realize more and more as i read that i could have got Ubuntu booting a hell of a lot easier than the way i actually did it, using EasyBCD! :x

So my question is...

Is the option in EasyBCD, in Add/Remove Entries, under the Linux tab, titled "Grub isn't installed to the bootsector" which has a checkbox right next to it, able to automatically install Grub to the Ubuntu partition? :S If so, then that really sucks, because that means then that I could have used EasyBCD itself to install Grub to the partition, instead of doing it from the Ubuntu terminal, using the LiveCD!! :frowning:

I really wish all of this stuff was better explained in the documentation on this site, and that people had simply pointed me to it, back when i was still trying to get Ubuntu to boot from the Vista bootloader...

-Coolname007
 
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JustinW

Super Moderator
Staff member
#2
It doesn't install grub to the partition, it just tells grub4does where to get the boot information whether that is from the mbr or from the bootsector of the linux partition's drive. This is why even when using this method there will still be the occasional user that can't get it work because grub hasn't been installed properly along with thier linux installation. The checkbox is there because the default doesn't always work for everyone (for most it has to be checked before thier entry works properly).
 
#3
What that does is prevent NeoGrub from being installed into the Windows mbr while using it to point at the boot loader ubuntu uses. If you are not planning to see the Neosmart boot loader on the Windows drive used by the HnS tool you select that when adding the Linux entry into the Vista BCD. The ubuntu installer has already made the root/system partition for ubuntu the / mount point.

Works like a charm doesn't it? CG did some excellent work with it from the start to make a lot easier then always manually trying to configure the typical Grub, Lilo, or wubi boot loader.
 
#4
It doesn't install grub to the partition, it just tells grub4does where to get the boot information whether that is from the mbr or from the bootsector of the linux partition's drive. This is why even when using this method there will still be the occasional user that can't get it work because grub hasn't been installed properly along with thier linux installation. The checkbox is there because the default doesn't always work for everyone (for most it has to be checked before thier entry works properly).
So leaving it unchecked tells NeoGrub to look for the boot information on the Linux partition, while leaving it checked tells it to look in the MBR? hmm... (EDIT: In case you're wondering, I made that conclusion since I seem to recall leaving it unchecked the last time I tried it...and it worked fine!)

Thanks for the reply. :smile:

-Coolname007

Addendum:

What that does is prevent NeoGrub from being installed into the Windows mbr while using it to point at the boot loader ubuntu uses. If you are not planning to see the Neosmart boot loader on the Windows drive used by the HnS tool you select that when adding the Linux entry into the Vista BCD. The ubuntu installer has already made the root/system partition for ubuntu the / mount point.
I'm not quite sure what you mean...>.< Are you saying that if you check it, it will prevent the NeoGrub bootloader from installing??? :wtf: I am a little confused, since I thought the only way to use NeoGrub, is when it is installed...:brows:
Works like a charm doesn't it? CG did some excellent work with it from the start to make a lot easier then always manually trying to configure the typical Grub, Lilo, or wubi boot loader.
Yes, it works quite well now, now that I understand (at least partially...) how it works! My continuing thanks to Computer Guru, and to all that assisted him, for developing this awesome software! :grinning:

-Coolname007
 
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#5
So leaving it unchecked tells NeoGrub to look for the boot information on the Linux partition, while leaving it checked tells it to look in the MBR? hmm... (EDIT: In case you're wondering, I made that conclusion since I seem to recall leaving it unchecked the last time I tried it...and it worked fine!)

Thanks for the reply. :smile:

-Coolname007

Addendum:



I'm not quite sure what you mean...>.< Are you saying that if you check it, it will prevent the NeoGrub bootloader from installing??? :wtf: I am a little confused, since I thought the only way to use NeoGrub, is when it is installed...:brows:

-Coolname007
I was a little curious about that myself since there's no mention in the guide on that under the " Adding Ubuntu to the Vista Bootloader" section. http://neosmart.net/wiki/display/EBCD/Ubuntu

The key with ubuntu when installing it on a separate drive was to first unplug the one Vista is on if installing ubuntu after Windows. That prevents anything from tampering with the Vista mbr.

During the installation you make sure that the root is set as the / mount point and then simply point to that when adding the entry into the BCD later once you have the Vista drive plugged back in. Ubuntu then loads by simply selecting it on the next startup.

It's worked here everytime whether or not the box was checked or not. I think the person that suggested that originally was simply unfamiliar with the multiboot across separate drives here at the time.
 
#6
I was a little curious about that myself since there's no mention in the guide on that under the " Adding Ubuntu to the Vista Bootloader" section. http://neosmart.net/wiki/display/EBCD/Ubuntu
Yes, it only mentions 3 steps in that guide: Step 1. Launch EasyBCD and go to the "Add/Remove Entries" page, Step 2. Choose the "Linux" tab from the bottom-half of the EasyBCD screen, and Step 3. Pick the partition you installed Ubuntu to earlier from the drop-down partition list and choose "Add Entry".

All-and-all, it is not a very complete guide (in my opinion, at least...), and doesn't describe at all what that particular box does, and the consequences of either checking or unchecking it...:huh: I also did not find the NeoGrub guide very helpful either, as it did not even mention that it would simply use the Ubuntu menu.lst automatically if you didn't spend the time configuring the NeoGrub menu.lst! :wtf: That piece of information would have been certainly more helpful if I had received it before configuring the NeoGrub menu.lst! :grinning:

Cheers. :smile:

-Coolname007
 
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#7
Well hopefully you have that all sorted out now. Someone here had originally mentioned something about checking off the box. That probably effects certain setups using other boot loaders.

The thing that worked with ubuntu however was simply seeing the root assigned as the mount point and let EasyBCD do the rest for you.
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#8
It's quite simple: the guide is intended to show *how* and not what.

As for the Linux options:
Normal entry: Get bootloader info from the bootsector of the partition the user picked.
Grub not installed: Use the copy of GRUB that comes with EasyBCD, read menu.lst from the Linux partition.

The second option will use a fully-working copy of GRUB that ships with EasyBCD (NeoGrub), but will try to load the boot info from /boot/grub/menu.lst on the Linux partition.

This will work if you installed to the MBR (because the menu.lst file will have been created), but *not* if you didn't install GRUB in the first place.
 
#9
It's quite simple: the guide is intended to show *how* and not what.

As for the Linux options:
Normal entry: Get bootloader info from the bootsector of the partition the user picked.
Grub not installed: Use the copy of GRUB that comes with EasyBCD, read menu.lst from the Linux partition.

The second option will use a fully-working copy of GRUB that ships with EasyBCD (NeoGrub), but will try to load the boot info from /boot/grub/menu.lst on the Linux partition.

This will work if you installed to the MBR (because the menu.lst file will have been created), but *not* if you didn't install GRUB in the first place.
Thanks Guru for the clarification. :joy: I guess that explains then why leaving the box unchecked saw the Linux entry work fine, as Grub was installed to the partition in my case. :wink: So you said if you check the box, then it will use NeoGrub to read the menu.lst file located on the Linux partition? hmm...maybe that was what Justin was referring to in the other thread, when he said that if you don't configure NeoGrub manually, it will use Grub4Dos to read the menu.lst on the Linux partition. Maybe he meant NeoGrub...or are they the same? :wtf: Is Grub4Dos simply another name for NeoGrub, or they are two separate bootloaders? :huh:

-Coolname007
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#10
NeoGrub is based on Grub4Dos. When Justin spoke of G4D he meant NeoGrub.

To keep the confusion down to a minimum can we all use "NeoGrub"?

Thanks :smile:
 
#12
NeoGrub is based on Grub4Dos. When Justin spoke of G4D he meant NeoGrub.

To keep the confusion down to a minimum can we all use "NeoGrub"?

Thanks :smile:
Thanks Guru. I think I understand it now (mostly!)...:wink: I just have one more question though...
Was he right then that NeoGrub does not have to be configured manually (i.e. with the NeoGrub menu.lst), and if it is not, it will just use the menu.lst on the Linux partition to boot Ubuntu? :huh: I'm referring of course right now to the NeoGrub (not the Linux!) section of EasyBCD, in case you're wondering...
In other words, i want to know if after adding the NeoGrub bootloader, under the NeoGrub tab, if you don't setup the NeoGrub menu.lst, it will use the Ubuntu menu.lst to boot Ubuntu instead (automatically, of course...)?

-Coolname007
 
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#13
Once NeoGrub is installed to the Vista primary when pointing out the root partition the menu.lst is automatically created in the NST folder there. There's no manual editing required to see the ubuntu Grub load the distro. You simply select the ubuntu entry on the Vista boot menu while Windows is starting to boot into ubuntu from there.
 
#14
Once NeoGrub is installed to the Vista primary when pointing out the root partition the menu.lst is automatically created in the NST folder there. There's no manual editing required to see the ubuntu Grub load the distro. You simply select the ubuntu entry on the Vista boot menu while Windows is starting to boot into ubuntu from there.
I know the NeoGrub menu.lst is automatically created when clicking the "Add NeoGrub" button under the NeoGrub tab...however, it wasn't setup automatically when it was created! :wink: I believe it looked something like this when being first created:

# NeoSmart NeoGrub Bootloader Configuration File
# This is the NeoGrub configuration file, and should be located at C:\NST\menu.lst
# Please see the EasyBCD Documentation for information on how to create/modify entries:
# EasyBCD Documentation Home - NeoSmart Technologies Wiki
That was it. As you can see, there were no entries whatsoever in it, so I had to manually add them in later...not knowing of course if i left it alone it would have used my Ubuntu menu.lst on the Ubuntu partition to boot.

But anyway, here's another puzzle! :smile: I just tried adding another entry to boot Ubuntu again, under the Linux tab, with the box already mentioned unchecked, which uses Bootpart, naming it "NeoSmart Linux", and it still didn't work! :S It appears as if the auto-config is still not working for me, even though Grub is installed to the partition...:wtf: When i select the entry at bootup, I just get a black screen, and nothing happens...and then i push ctrl + alt + Delete to reboot. :tongueout:oint:

Perhaps EasyBCD is not communicating correctly with Bootpart??? :scared: Or is it because I am now using EasyBCD 2.0 Beta, which may still have a couple of bugs?

I simply do not understand why the auto-config for Linux doesn't work for me...:wtf:

-Coolname007
 
#15
I haven't had any time with the 2.0 beta as of yet to see what you are running into there. With the 1.7.2 release once you have ubuntu installed with the root set as the mount point you would then see NeoGrub installed with the box checked off since you only want NeoGrub installed at the Vista root not a full install of the G4D boot loader used by HnS. That won't hurt but simply isn't needed.

Once NeoGrub is on the drive you go into the Linux tab to select the drive and partition where the ubuntu root/system partition is located, name it how you like let's ubuntu 8.10 as it will appear on the Vista boot menu, and then simply click the add entry button. From there click on view settings to see how it appears overall.

Once you restart the system ubuntu should load when selected if all necessary steps were used. The entire process goes quickly making this a versatile method rather then the hassles of trying to manually configure each entry at a console or command prompt. CG will have to answer you on anything 2.0 related however if any problems are seen when going to use the beta there.
 
#16
Once NeoGrub is on the drive you go into the Linux tab to select the drive and partition where the ubuntu root/system partition is located, name it how you like let's ubuntu 8.10 as it will appear on the Vista boot menu, and then simply click the add entry button. From there click on view settings to see how it appears overall.

Once you restart the system ubuntu should load when selected if all necessary steps were used. The entire process goes quickly making this a versatile method rather then the hassles of trying to manually configure each entry at a console or command prompt. CG will have to answer you on anything 2.0 related however if any problems are seen when going to use the beta there.
NeoGrub was already installed, when I added this last entry for Ubuntu under the Linux tab with the box unchecked...and I also made sure to select the correct "drive" (partition) to boot from as before, when i tried it, but it still didn't work. :wink:

-Coolname007
 
#17
What partitioning option did you use when going to install the 8.10 release there? To see a working setup the one thing found here was first using a separate drive tool like GParted to create and format the root either ext2 or ext3 will work when using GParted live.

When reaching the screen during the install for guided or custom partitioning you won't need to do much there besides a possible reformat of the root just to make the installer happy and then select the edit option to assign that as the / mount point not boot/mount. That should readily see the new entry you create for it load 8.10 without fuss.

The box was still checked when adding the entry here since NeoGrub only goes onto the root. The add entry option once the correct partition/drive is seletected takes care of adding the entry into the menu.lst without the need for editing anything.

The key to getting it to load was seeing the root set as the mount point and checking off the box once NeoGrub was on. If you didn't see the root set as mount during the installation you will simply have to reinstall 8.10 all over again to set it that way. Then NeoGrub can work with ubuntu's own loader.
 

JustinW

Super Moderator
Staff member
#18
Guys, you don't go and add neogrub via the neogrub tab. You make sure its uninstalled first and than go straight to adding a new linux entry. This will install NeoGrub in the background, and with the hope everything goes correctly it should work. Assuming you did it in this fashion and havent tried to set it up manually there won't even be a menu.lst in the \NST directory.
 
#19
You'll notice that Coolname007 already has NeoGrub installed. The option for the Neosmart boot loader is for HnS there not when simply using EasyBCD to dual with Linux.
 
#20
What partitioning option did you use when going to install the 8.10 release there? To see a working setup the one thing found here was first using a separate drive tool like GParted to create and format the root either ext2 or ext3 will work when using GParted live.
I created the Ubuntu partition as Linux Native filesystem format with BING...and then i simply transferred my Wubi installation to the partition with LVPM (loop-mounted virtual partition manager), which automatically formats the partition you transfer to with ext3 format...:wink: Anyhow, can't we agree that everything on that end is ok, since i can boot fine into Ubuntu with the entry i configured manually with the bootpart commands??? not to mention the fact that NeoGrub and the BING bootloader both can boot just fine into Ubuntu...:wink: In case you're wondering, my Ubuntu menu.lst is also configured correctly, and located properly on the Ubuntu partition, as is Grub...:lol:

The box was still checked when adding the entry here since NeoGrub only goes onto the root. The add entry option once the correct partition/drive is seletected takes care of adding the entry into the menu.lst without the need for editing anything.

The key to getting it to load was seeing the root set as the mount point and checking off the box once NeoGrub was on. If you didn't see the root set as mount during the installation you will simply have to reinstall 8.10 all over again to set it that way. Then NeoGrub can work with ubuntu's own loader.
I am aware now that checking that box installs NeoGrub (if not already installed, which is how it is in my case...), and leaving it unchecked will give you an entry that uses Bootpart to load the selected partition. :wink: However, the reason why the Ubuntu entry created by EasyBCD which uses Bootpart, doesn't work continues to elude me...:huh:

-Coolname007

EDIT: And like i recall mentioning before, NeoGrub on mine already works to boot Ubuntu!

Addendum:

Guys, you don't go and add neogrub via the neogrub tab. You make sure its uninstalled first and than go straight to adding a new linux entry. This will install NeoGrub in the background, and with the hope everything goes correctly it should work. Assuming you did it in this fashion and havent tried to set it up manually there won't even be a menu.lst in the \NST directory.
Ahh...thanks for clarifying that part! :smile: That was the missing piece of the puzzle that i was missing before, and that i now have, thanks to you! :grinning: So you say adding NeoGrub via the NeoGrub section of EasyBCD will create a menu.lst, while simply checking that box under the Linux tab will not, and will only use the Ubuntu menu.lst? hmm...i will certainly remember that next time, so i wont have to go to all the hassle of setting up my NeoGrub menu.lst again! :lol:

And yes, NeoGrub already works on my computer. The issue now is getting the Linux entry that uses Bootpart to work with the auto-config.

Of course, i am only wanting to know this for future reference only, since i can now boot into Ubuntu just fine, with or without NeoGrub, via the Vista bootloader. :wink:

-Coolname007
 
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