Nightmare

#1
Tried to install Fedora 10 as dual boot with Vista 64. Couple of thoughts:

I am a video motion graphics designer who wants to try a few demos on Linux (Autodesk Alias, Toxic) to see how they work on Linux, (IE, to see if they're faster, so that I can be more creative.)

However, because of this process, I seem to be trapped in a nerd nightmare from which there is no escape.

Here's the problem:
1) Nerds are the only ones that use Linux.
2) They are no good at explaining processes to non-nerds.

Hence the endless loop I'm stuck in.

For example, although claiming to be user friendly, this software is only user-friendly to people who enjoy partitioning hard disks. Also, it is useless to me, since it only goes to Fedora 8. Fedora 10 has a subtly different install process, without the minor bootloader screens present in the Fedora 10 install process. /sarcasm (yuk yuk)

Anyway, I pathetically attempted to follow the instructions to install Fedora as a dual boot with Vista. Since the Fedora 10 screens aren't the same as shown in the installation guide, I stumbled through and probably did many wrong things. (The partitioning instructions are laughably incomplete to a non-nerd) It did seem like Fedora installed on the partition I created. Fortunately, Vista still loaded. I ran Easy BCD and tried to do Grub, then NeoGrub, but each time the Vista Bootloader told me that the boot failed.

At $100 per hour my rate x 10 wasted hours, I'm up to $1000 for this free solution. Could have hired quite a few nerds to install it for me, but no, want to learn a little bit about Linux. Too bad I can't get the *(#*$ thing installed! All I know so far is that I hate it.

Anyway, maybe it's my new Dell XPS Studio i7 with 12GB of RAM that's causing it to not work. Really have no way of knowing. If so, I apologise to any nerds I might have offended.

Here's how this software should work for non-programmers and creative professionals like myself.

It should detect the linux installation. It should detect whether or not you have a Grub. It should analyze your disks and tell you whether it's set up properly or not. If not, it should set it up properly.

If it doesn't do that, why bother? Why waste thousands of hours programming something that
a) if you're not a nerd, you can't use it.
b) if you are a nerd, you don't need it.
 

JustinW

Super Moderator
Staff member
#2
Steven, welcome

Thanks for your feeback. While not the positive we always hope for many hours have been spent making EasyBCD the best it can be. While it may not do a lot of things "automatically" like you'd want it to, it does have a purpose, most importantly saves you from having to issue a few dozen commands to get a task done. While I do admit the wiki isn't quite as updated you also need to remember that newer versions are coming out regulary, every few months or so, so when something significant occurs that is the best time to update. You really should have consulted thier documentation, as it will be more current for that.

Now on to your problem...

Get [thread=642]EasyBCD 2.0 Beta[/thread] and re-add the non-working entries. Some of these newest linux builds coming out (like Fedora 10) have changed slightly in the way they operate and the beta addresses this while the current stable version (1.7.2) doesn't.

Now if you're still having problems after this....


We will need specific "nerd" information as you like to call it. It is hard to troubleshoot your problem off of the frustration you're having with the situation alone. What nerd information? Well for starters...
  • A screenshot with disk management. If your partitions are not labeled per thier use like "Vista" for Windows Vista than you will also need to detail which partitions are used and for what.
  • Your bcd details from EasyBCD's view settings page.
  • Details from your /boot/grub/menu.lst file on your linux (Fedora) partition
For the last part you should be able to boot from your Fedora live disc to get the menu.lst information.
 
#3
Tried to install Fedora 10 as dual boot with Vista 64. Couple of thoughts:

I am a video motion graphics designer who wants to try a few demos on Linux (Autodesk Alias, Toxic) to see how they work on Linux, (IE, to see if they're faster, so that I can be more creative.)

However, because of this process, I seem to be trapped in a nerd nightmare from which there is no escape.

Here's the problem:
1) Nerds are the only ones that use Linux.
2) They are no good at explaining processes to non-nerds.

Hence the endless loop I'm stuck in.

For example, although claiming to be user friendly, this software is only user-friendly to people who enjoy partitioning hard disks. Also, it is useless to me, since it only goes to Fedora 8. Fedora 10 has a subtly different install process, without the minor bootloader screens present in the Fedora 10 install process. /sarcasm (yuk yuk)
Well, you can't expect to get a dual-boot working if you're not willing to at least do all the necesary basic stuff first, such as partition your hard disk. :wink: Partitioning is not really all that hard, and if you use the free tool Gparted, its only a matter of pushing a couple of buttons to do it in a easy-to-understand GUI.
Anyway, I pathetically attempted to follow the instructions to install Fedora as a dual boot with Vista. Since the Fedora 10 screens aren't the same as shown in the installation guide, I stumbled through and probably did many wrong things. (The partitioning instructions are laughably incomplete to a non-nerd) It did seem like Fedora installed on the partition I created. Fortunately, Vista still loaded. I ran Easy BCD and tried to do Grub, then NeoGrub, but each time the Vista Bootloader told me that the boot failed.
Try the [thread=642]latest beta version of EasyBCD[/thread]. It has more support for Linux.

Cheers,

Jake
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#4
This is a forum in which volunteer Nerds have provided countless hours of free advice which would have cost millions of dollars if sought through commercial channels. Often we help people fix problems where the professional help they sought advised them to "buy a new computer" (from them of course), being totally unable to provide the real expertise that should have been available.
The free software written here, and provided with 24/7 global support, is regularly being updated to cope with the constantly changing software with which it's required to interface, and if you weren't aware, is the work of a single individual who has to fit it all in with his University studies.
I'm very sorry you didn't find the module
GuesswhatStevenTimothywantsanddoitallinasingleclick.exe
Perhaps CG will start working on it tonight for you.

btw. This is not a Linux forum.
 
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#5
Easy BCD 2.0

Sorry to be snarky - that's what fatigue + staring at lines of linux commands when you don't know linux, will do to you!

I partitioned the disk successfully, I believe, during the original install, as it appears during the EasyBCD process. I think I was also successful with putting the Grub on the boot sector thingy. It seemed to be an EasyBCD issue that it wasn't booting properly.

I tried the beta version 2, and made some progress, it seems now to try to boot Linux , but now I just get a flashing cursor. I tried NeoGrub, and got to a grub command prompt. It said something about basic commands can be entered.

So now it sounds like a Linux issue, not EasyBCD.

BTW, to the Bug Fix department, it now shows both the partitions on my Disk1 as being the same size. In actuality, partition 1 is 231 GB and partition 2 is 50 GB. (I'm attempting to install Fedora on partition 2). It shows both as being 231 GB.

Addendum:

I tried one other thing, indicated that i didn't have a grub installed in the MBR or boot, and it seemed to take me to a new menu offering me to boot "Fedora" with a bunch of characters indicating the release number, or "other".

I selected "Fedora" and it said that there were missing files.

I am downloading the live CD to see if that will boot.
 
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mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#6
steventimothy, the partition size problem in EasyBCD 2.0 is a known issue - it's been fixed and should be displayed properly in the next build. It has to do with improperly partitioned devices.

If you see the "Fedora with a bunch of characters" but it still doesn't work; there's something wrong with your Linux installation, not EasyBCD.

---------

With regards to the guide.... If you take screenshots of the setup procedure for Fedora 10 we'll be more than happy to update the documentation with them. Not sure if you know, but it takes ages to install, document, and upload a million different distributions (with new versions coming out daily) - especially while providing near real-time support in the forums.
 
#7
Found problem - now, what to do...

I found out why I couldn't load Fedora and dual boot with Vista, I think.

When I received my Dell system it was originally setup with a two drive raid, from which it was booting. I installed a 300 GB WD Velociraptor to be used as a new C drive, and was planning on using the original two drives as media drives.

So to make a long story short, the boot sector was installed on the raid drive and stayed there when I reinstalled windows, although I thought that I had reformatted both drives.

The solution should be to move the boot sector from the raid to the WD drive. I tried to disconnect the raid, then run the Vista installation CD, then do the the "Repair Vista Startup" option. However, it just hangs up there and doesn't go anywhere.

When running the Vista installation CD without the raid drives connected, it fails to find an operating system (though it's definitely loaded on the WD) and asks to load drivers for the disk. I tried inserting the driver & utility disk which came with the Dell, but that didn't help.

I tried running the Bootrec.exe command from the Vista installation disk command prompt. The /fixmb modifier works, but the /fixboot modifer gives a "missing element" error, as does the /rebuildbcd modifier; although the latter at least acknowledges that there was a windows operating system there.

Is there any other way to move the boot sector to the disk which has the Vista installation on it? Then, to delete the Raid partition which currently has the boot sector (a small 75 MB partitition which I originally had not seen). It's labelled EISA and appears unmovable.

BTW, Dell's bios has an ATA mode and a RAID mode for for it's SATA settings, and it was on RAID. I changed it to ATA, but to no avail.

Thanks
 
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JustinW

Super Moderator
Staff member
#8
From command prompt:

Code:
cd /d "c:\program files\neosmart technologies\easybcd\bin"
bootsect.exe /nt60 all /force
Try to keep the same issue in the same thread please. We monitor all of them and it makes things confusing when you start posting on the same issue in multiple places.
 
#9
Wasn't sure whether to try from within Vista, or from the command prompt on the Vista installation disk, so I tried both - it said that the command is not recognized and wouldn't execute it.

From the Vista Installation CD I also changed directly to the easybcd/bin directory, and typed in the command with and without the modifiers, and it wouldn't execute the command.

Also, I did notice that easybcd was located in the program files (x86) directory and not the program files directory.

Bear in mind i'm using Vista 64 as well.

Is this because I have the v.2 Beta?

Addendum:

My system is not booting up at all now - looks like a complete reinstall of everything, unless someone has a better idea.
 
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#10
I don't have XP, I have no idea what you're talking about. Please re-read post, "Found Problem, now what to do....". I did get the system to boot up again, re-ran the bootrec.exe /fixboot and it worked this time.

Anyway, the bootsect.exe command doesn't run. Perhaps because Vista64 or EasyBCD 2.0 Beta?

Any other suggestions for transferring the BCD from the raid drives to the WD drive?
 
#12
Reinstall

Reinstalled Vista 64 and Fedora. Turned off the raid, switched to the ATA setting, unplugged the two raid drives. Got both of them to work with the Grub menu.

Booted into Vista, installed EasyBCD 2.0 Beta. Added the Linux install. Naturally, it didn't work. Vista boots, Fedora has a flashing cursor. No more Grub menu. Now need to do more research to find another way to make Fedora work.

I would recommend you advise people against using your software if you're using Windows Vista 64 and/or Fedora 10.

It's noble of you to make a lovely free program, but as I've found out, you certainly get what you pay for.
 

JustinW

Super Moderator
Staff member
#13
Ok 2.0 is a beta and hey... you're getting support here right?

Now if you can post the "nerd" information requested [post=34425]earlier today[/post] so we can see whats up with Fedora not booting we'll try to help you with that.
 
#14
Yeah, like Justin said, we need more information to help you with your problem...:wink: How about while in the Live session getting the contents of the menu.lst also running the following command in the Terminal (Applications>System Tools>Terminal):

Code:
fdisk -l
and posting its output here? The last letter is a lowercase "L". And if you get some kind of message in the terminal indicating that failed, then that means you need to first become "root user" by running "su -" without the quotes, and then typing your root password. Then, it should work when you try running that command again. Also, it wouldn't hurt to post the output of the following commands run from EasyBCD's Power Console in the "Useful Utilities" section as well:

Code:
Mbrfix /drive 0 listpartitions
bootpart
Jake

EDIT: And you will find the menu.lst at /Grub/menu.lst since Fedora maintains a separate /boot partition (and on that line of thought...sure you pointed the Linux entry at the /boot partition, and not at your root partition?)
 
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#15
Here's the result from fdisk -l


Disk /dev/sda: 300.0 GB, 300069052416 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 36481 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
Disk identifier: 0x57fefd5a

Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
/dev/sda1 * 1 30108 241833980 7 HPFS/NTFS
/dev/sda2 30109 30133 200812+ 83 Linux
/dev/sda3 30134 36481 50990310 8e Linux LVM

More coming soon...

Addendum:

Thanks for your attempts to help. I extended my Vista partition over top of the Linux Fedora installation, deleting it (on purpose). I uninstalled EasyBCD.

Linux is plain-out too difficult for me to use. I'm a content creator, not a programmer. After reading up on some Linux basics, I realize it's hopeless for now. I can't even get it installed, let alone use it. I noticed that installing the Maya trial on RH/Fedora has been giving other users fits, I don't want to go there.

Again thanks for your help. Sorry for the bitching!
 
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JustinW

Super Moderator
Staff member
#16
Well you could always use a VM to try linux out until you're more comfortable with it... that's probably the safest route to take.
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#17
Or just experiment with a live distro without installing it on your HDD, till you decide whether it's got what you want. ( a bit slow, but you should see whether it has any promise for what you need)