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Bug#394963: Don't install grub/lilo on MBR

Some servers don't accept strange MBR modifications. Sometimes it is compilations server+some systems (xp for example).

I suggest:
1. clear first disk sectors (boot some linux live, dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/some_disk_device usually hda or sda) 2. install XP with this own partitions. DON'T USE DYNAMIC PARTITION! (feature in windows server systems that allow create software raid&mirror for windows) 3. after installation, boot XP and create all partitions for linux. you shuldn't initiate or format ths partition. 4. begin installation. select EXPERT mode, help is on the screen. don't create partitions, only change partition types, assign to format and assign to mountpoints. make sure, linux boot partition is active, and windows is inactive. Change this attributes if nesessary. 4a. usually after partition modification & before reboot, i run fdisk (not cfdisk & other, only the simplest fdisk), & look to partition types. If it is nesessary, i correct it to properly partition types, this is usually linux & linux swap. 4b. you should't create swap partition. you can use swap as file over linux partition. t degrade a bit performance, but make partition table simpler. sometimes it is very recommended, specially when you use only one hard drive. 5. when you install grub or lilo, DON'T USE MBR that is default behavior. Use linux boot partition for grub or lilo. You can simply specify linux boot partition, /dev/hdaX (X number partition) or (hd0,X). Be sure, (hd0,X) X begin from 0, but /dev/hdaX X begin from 1. 6. continue installation process. For time saving, use as simplest installation as possible. Select only base text install, without graphics, window enviroments (withiut gnome, kde & others) and without additional servers. You can install it later. In aptitute it is "tasks", last directory in package menu.
7. after installation be sure, that linux boot properly.
8. add to lilo or grub windows boot menu. you have help in /etc/lilo.conf (other file system) or /boot/grub/ some file, but I don't remember what do exactly.
9. after grub config modification do nothing, after lilo.conf type lilo
10. try again boot linux.
11. try boot XP. This should boot, whithout active flag over his partition.
12. look out after active flag modification. when windows change this flag, under disk management tools (under windows) correct active flag to linux partition that should be presented as unknown & isn't assigned to any disk drive letter.

This method guard against geometry incompatibilities, & unsupported MBR modfications made by lilo, grub or other boot managers like this.

Grzegorz Szyszło
Departament Informatyki
Lublin, tel. (81)532-77-20 w.240 , kom.607-940-478

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