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Thread: Uninstall Knoppix 3.7(Debian) LILO from HDD MBR

  1. #1
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    Uninstall Knoppix 3.7(Debian) LILO from HDD MBR

    I have both Windows 2000 pro and knoppix3.7 lloaded on different partitions of the first HDD ( Hda1 & Hda2). I put Lilo into the MBR, and get a choice of operating systems when the Debian LILO screen comes up. Now I'm thinking about taking Knoppix off and Installing Mandrake to try it out, but I'm concerned about what may happen to my MBR. Is there a way to Uninstall Knoppix in such a way that Lilo will be safely removed from the MBR ?

  2. #2
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    I'd leave it as is. Chances are that Mandrake will overrite it anyway and using any of the usual tools to do it may make 2K unbootable. (But, the obvious way to do it is from within 2k where there's some kind of "restore boot sector" tool IIRC. That should be safe enough).

    Why on earth, though, do you want to install Mandrake rather than Debian?

  3. #3
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    If windows was the first install, and then knoppix was installed second ... then Lilo will have placed a copy of your first sector in the /boot director of the knoppix install.

    Look for a file called "boot.0300", that will be an mbr/table copy. As it was before knoppix went in.

    If you zer a floppy disk, then copy "dd" it directly to the floppy, you should have a working boot loader for your windows OS. It dosen't hurt to do that check first, just to be sure.

    ]# lilo -u

    will cause Lilo to copy that file back. Effectively wiping out any Linux, or any install/thing thats happened since knoppix went in.

    But .. You could just let Mandrake overwrite it during its' own install process. Grab the "boot.0300" file first though. Why wast a good boot copy .


    I think windows has some sought of fdisk fixmbr facility, i'm not to up on that though. Probably somewhere in its' control-panel area, or the equiv.



    jm
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

  4. #4
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    Actually, I plan to install Debian after Mandrake. The "Debian" cedit in the header is there because the documentation for Knoppix states that once Knoppix is installed to a HDD, it becomes Debian . I don't think it's 100% though, because Knoppix on a hard drive is actually quirkier that the version on the Live CD. For instance , on the live cd, I can Ctrl/alt/F1 to look back to the boot messages, then Ctrl/Alt/F5 back to the KDE desktop. When I boot from the HDD, I can get out of KDE with the F1 combo, but cannot get back into KDE using either either C/A/F5 or Init 5 ; there is some kind of functionality missing there . Somehow, I don't think Knoppix is intended to be installed to the HDD . I'm going to to do a full Debian Woody install in about a month, and so I bought a Linix combination CD set from Linix Central which has about 5 different versions of Linux, including Debian and Mandrake. mandrake just got bought by Connectiva or something, and supposedly uses Red Hat RPM packages, and I'm having major troubles learing how to compile source code, so I thought I'd exlplore the RPM univers a bit before I buckled back dow to Debian . What the heck, Knoppix is actually a great product, but I'm loooking for something that's meant to be installed and uninstalled routinely. Thanks for your help though. I'm planning to use a dedicated hard drive for the sampler session. I may leave my Knoppix/ Windows combo just the way it is. Do you have any idea if I can upgrade the Knoppix HDD install from 3.7 to 3.8 and keep the MBR functionality ?

  5. #5
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    >>
    The "Debian" cedit in the header is there because the documentation for Knoppix states that once Knoppix is installed to a HDD, it becomes Debian ...
    >>

    Well, yes, knoppix is a debian based system. But the supplied sw will be more recent than a standard deb woody. Unless you can dload one of the sid/sarge iso set(s) and make your own cd's. Or you have the band width for a full apt-get update.

    There are a few deb systems around, iv'e noticed that "mepis" seems to get a good review from different directions. But i haven't tryed it myself.

    The thing with woody aside from a probable desire to update sw, especially if your going to run a 2.6.x kernel (recommended), is that it's libc6_2.2.5 based. Where as, all of the recent sarge/sid packages will be compiled against libc6_2.3.2. That will mean that you will have to do a libc6 upgrade first, before any other updates will install. I would think that apt would auto that though.

    Compiling from src can be fun, using the policy files (.dsc and .diff.gz), though some edits are usually required. Especially when it comes to things like, it wants tK8.4 as a dependency, and you have tK8.3 and couldn't be bothered to install tK8.4 ... a few edits never hurt (grin).

    But it is a long drawn out process, but if thats a form of fun (as is for me), then go for it.

    >>
    because Knoppix on a hard drive is actually quirkier that the version on the Live CD
    >>

    That just sounds like a config issue. Have a look at your /etc/inittab file, mainly concerning tty invokation. And how your /etc/rc#.d directories are aranged.

    When i installed my Knoppix (3.3), i didn't know how to do a hdd install , so i did a raw copy of files from knoppixs' ramdisk image etc, using "tar". Had to do heaps of reconfiguring. The "var" directory was radically missconfigured with every thing set to read-only (grin).

    I ended up having to replace the whole /etc directory with an existing deb one to get it to boot. But iv'e been slowly replacing every thing with the saved knoppix directory since. Now it runs quite well ... then i found out about "knp-install" script (good_grief.png) hehe.


    >>
    but I'm loooking for something that's meant to be installed and uninstalled routinely.
    >>

    Well, if you have the space you could try a few at once. If you set up a few dedicated partitions that you can mount to a dedicate root partition, that will probably make the install-reinstall process easier. A partition for "home", a "personal" data/working partition, etc. Just let the new install create a default skeleton home directory at install, the copy those files out somewhere (saves), then reference your "home" partition in /etc/fstab to mount at boot. As long as you have the same user:group ids', then you shouldn't have any problems. You would likely need to use the Xauthority file from the new install, and so would need to backup the prior one. An different sw versions can play a bit of havoc with the configs that you already have in "home". But nothing that can't be fixed. There are different ways to get around all that stuff.


    >>
    Do you have any idea if I can upgrade the Knoppix HDD install from 3.7 to 3.8 and keep the MBR functionality ?
    >>

    I would imagine so ... As lilo/grub, being a first stage loader that can act as a bootstrapper (but technically isn't), it will need its' secondary files. So, a new install will have to use its' own lilo/grub. Otherwise the mappings won't work. With out installing lilo/grub with the new install, the secondary files wont be created.

    Though an upgrade of an existing system wouldn't require that.

    And installing another Linux, or any OS also wouldn't require a new Lilo/Grub install. You would just need to reference it in the existing configs. And in Lilos case run ...

    ]# lilo -v

    or "-t -v" first to test run it.

    So, from 3.7 to 3.8, i don't really see how any mbr/boot issues would come into it.

    The different installers around don't really bother enough in this regard, imo ... but ...

    You don't really need to install lilo/grub to the mbr. Any partition in reach of your bios' addressing limits will do. Including the primary extended-logical. As long as there isn't an OS that uses the first sector of its main "drive" as a boot loader it's ok. So any Linux partition or the main extended-logical are about the only ones that can be used in that regard . Not the win partition(s), or BSD or anything like that.

    Just in case ... concerning the floppy and boot.0300 stuff above ... By a "dd" copy i mean,

    ]# dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/fd0 bs=1024 count=1440

    ]# dd if=boot.0300 of=/dev/fd0 bs=512 count=1

    No offence meant if that was already known. I hjust figured i'd mention it in case thoug. A great little utility, but a total bugger when the "if=" and "of=" parameters get accidently reversed


    Anyhow ... Good Luck with all that.


    jm
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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