Win10 + Fedora25

2016-Dec-14, Wednesday 09:51 pm
chebe: (StepIntoTheLight)
Golly gosh gawd darn. I just learned me some things.

I just dual-booted my new(ish) Windows 10 laptop with Fedora 25.
The usual process applies;
- shrink Windows partition using Windows own tool in Disk Management
- create nifty live usb (from new live usb creating program from Fedora)
- boot into live usb

(An aside; in order for the boot menu (F12) to be accessible/work, first I had to go into the BIOS (F2) and enable the boot menu.)

- inside live usb, install to hard disk (Fedora handles all the details, just point it at the empty space)

Then things have gotten a little bit different. No messing with boot sectors, no dd, no MBR editing, no bcdedit. You reboot, and things just work.

(Another aside; Except, when they don't. I tried many things, but it seems I needed to go back into my BIOS, set a Supervisor Password. This unlocked the Secure Boot menu, which allowed me to add a trusted image. Follow the menus down through Fedora to grubx64.efi, and select. Save and exit. Go back into BIOS, to the boot menu order, grub will now be in the list, make it goes to the top of the list. Save and exit.)

On boot you will be greeted with the grub menu; offering you Fedora, or to go to the Windows Boot Menu.

Happy days. I'm dual-booted again!

(On the plus side; everything just seems to work in Fedora 25! From the wlan, to the touch screen, it just, it's beautiful. *wipes tear away*)
chebe: (DarkStare)
"Why do you still care about dual booting? Why don't you just run everything in a VM?"

I gave it a go, I really did. Created a Ubuntu 1110 vm in VirtualBox. Fixed storage size, everything was going well enough. (Ubuntu has a problem with my wireless card, but that's almost traditional at this point.) I was using it for college work so I needed stability and didn't upgrade for a while. Too long it seems. When I went to upgrade the repos had vanished, and for added benefit, the vm lost the ability to use any network connection.

I noticed VirtualBox had an update, and thought, maybe they'll have better drivers. But instead the vm wouldn't even start. I attempted to mount the .vdi filesystem. Discovered the way I knew only worked with Windows vms, but found another method using guestmount. So I mount with guestmount, but seemingly my /home no longer exists!

Frustrated I try running the vm again, and for some unknown reason it actually starts, but the graphics crash and die leaving me with a text-only terminal. Grand, as soon as I remembered my password. I log in, and right there is my /home! I quickly copy everything to a previously set-up shared folder in the host, and exit.

VirtualBox says there's another update available. So I update, and now the vm won't run again, giving me error messages about something disabled in the BIOS. I should have known better.

And this is just another reason why I dislike virtual machines. (And before you start, it's not just VirtualBox, I've had even more problems with VMWare.)

The Plan

2012-Jan-09, Monday 05:57 pm
chebe: (AliceWithTea)
For the laptop, so far; things haven't changed that much, and most of what has is a clear improvement.

- For one, you can resize Windows partitions inside of Windows now. I did run into a problem where it would only shrink it by less-than half the total space. Turned out that that was where the system restore points were saved, and defragmenters couldn't move them. So instead, I turned off system restore and Windows deleted them for me. Resize, then re-enable if you wish. This problem didn't become clear until I used Auslogics Disk Defrag which has a nice block-level visualisation that you can query. (However, you download it through CNet, and my machine started doing funny things, until I uninstalled it. You've heard about CNets antics?)

- Then, as usual, reboot into System Rescue CD, and with gparted create a new partition, formatted NTFS, and label it 'storage'. However, the laptop came with three primary partitions, and this made four (which is the maximum allowed). So I had to make the rest an extended partition.

- Boot into your linux install disc, use all the empty space (of the extended partition), and install. It must have been a common bugbear, because now there is a nice little checkbox during the Fedora install asking whether or not you want to use LVM! (It's easy to make me happy.) It asked where to put the bootloader, and I pointed it at the extended partition as well. (So that's; /, /home, swap, and /boot in total.)

- Reboot back into System Rescue CD, use gparted again to get the name of the boot partition path (e.g. /dev/sda6), then as usual, copy the first 512-bytes using dd. I must have been using an old System Rescue CD because it was loading the NTFS partitions read-only, but having a FAT32 usb-key around is always handy. I saved the bytes of the boot partition there, then rebooted into Windows.

- This for me was the newest bit. boot.ini has been replaced with bcdedit. Found a couple helpful walkthroughs though, and it's simple enough. Edit the boot file through cmd-line instead of directly in text file. When done, reboot, and choose whichever OS you want :)

Excellent tutorial/walkthroughs I found very helpful;
chebe: (Default)
Problem: Grub replaced MBR without asking.

I'm a dual-booter. I keep the XP installation that my laptop came with because some proprietary software, especially the newest stuff, only really works on Windows. I also have a partition for work purposes, with crazy-strict security. And then, then I like to install different flavours to play around with. So happened one day I was playing with Ubuntu. Then it did something that I disliked very much, it replaced my Windows MBR with grub. But not just any grub, one with config files bloated with comments and talk of auto-updating. I quickly decided that Ubuntu (at least that release) wasn't for me*, but I couldn't delete for fear of what it would do to my booting ability. Fast forward a few months and I've managed to get the grub menu to be chain-loaded from the default Windows MBR. (I did it mostly ass-about-backwards, but these are the important steps.)


Solution:
1. Burn yourself a linux rescue cd, just in case. Personally I like SystemRescueCd (also, wget for Windows? *glee*). Backing up all the files in question is a good idea as well.

2. Boot into your Linux that maintains the active grub menu. Copy the boot sector to a file (name unimportant).
dd if=/dev/sda4 of=/mnt/external/bootfile.lnx bs=512 count=1

3. Boot into Windows XP, copy the bootfile.lnx somewhere, and edit your boot.ini. It's probably hidden, so from cmd.exe:
cd C:\
edit boot.ini


Append to end of file (under operating systems) something like:
C:\bootfile.lnx="Linux Grub"
Save and exit.

4. Insert a Windows Installation disc, or Windows rescue disc. Reboot into cd. Go to the Recovery Console (R), select which Windows partition (generally 1), enter password (may be null, in which case just press return), and at prompt enter:
fixmbr
Accept warning. When complete, reboot.

5. Try out your new menu.


I am almost back to where I was. One of my Linux partitions is still buried inside the grub menu. I was unable to create a working bootfile for it to give it it's own MBR entry, but I haven't given up. Also, I did most of this in reverse order, and used the linux rescue cd to reinstall/re-setup grub on the Ubuntu partition. I don't think that was necessary, but I was/am just figuring things out. Maybe that's what allowed me to create the working bootfile? I don't know yet, but I'll keep looking.




*(I don't intend to do any kind of flavour bashing here, this is just personal opinion. If you disagree, good, variety is, as they say, the spice of life :)
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