View Full Version : Partition Table Problem
13th February 2004, 09:07 AM
I've tried to install Fedora on my pc but i had some problem.
The gui of Anaconda don't work and so i've used the text installation. It work, but during installation appear an alert.
Seem that my "partition table" isn't ok.
In fact i've used partition magic to expand my old partition and from that moment all the time i start the pc, the first boot don't work (he say that not find a boot sector) but if i restart the pc it work.
I've try to use the windowx XP recovery console to fix the problem (FIXMOOB, FIXMBR :-((((( ) but not work... and i have cleared all the partition during installation!
How i can fix the problem?
There's a way to re-write the partition table or to fix it?
13th February 2004, 01:42 PM
How did you set up the partition table?
I would try `fdisk /mbr` to wipe the table then again with fdisk, create a physical primary partition.
Then when your run the installer, use the automatic paritioning tool (Disk Druid to create a / logical partition, and a swap partition. (Make it 2xRAM)
You can use the Disk Druid to create manually your partitions which allows you to create separate /home, /usr etc.. but for a basic desktop setup, the automatic setup is fine.
13th February 2004, 02:34 PM
Thank for your reply.
Before install Linux i've installed windowsXP and i use his tool to create the partitions. But i had to resize partition to free space. For that operation i used Partition Magic (power quest). After the operation windows has inverted the letter associates whit the disk and so i've used the "disk management" of windows XP to correct the problem.
Only after that i've read a disclaimer from PowerQuest: it say than if the operation of resizing, creating, converting partition modify the letter in windows isn't a good idea to modify it... and so i think windows have write a bad partition table.
So, when i've installed linux, i've deleted all the old partitions and manually (because i want to decide the correct size of everyone) i've created the new partitions, but the problem persists.
now i try to use fdisk, thank for your suggestion
14th February 2004, 03:20 AM
I've never used Partition Magic, because it can cause troubles when you mix with other tools. i.e. If you start off using PM, you're most likely need to use it for every future partitioning task you do.
And free tools such as fdisk, parted and the great Red Hat tool Disk Druid get the job done just as well.
Now, when I'm setting up a dual boot system, I first install Windows because it created less problems later on.
But before that I use fdisk (booted from a floppy) to create a primary partition for Windows. If I had a 40G drive for eg, I would create asmall 10G or less partition and leave the rest as free space for linux later on.
Then I boot from linux install CD and there you can choose either auto partitioning for the installer to create a /boot, <swap>, and / (root) partitions or you can manually create your own as I mentioned above using Disk Druid.
Once it's all done, GRUB will be the boot loader that manges the loading of ither your WIndows system or Linux at startup.
16th February 2004, 08:55 AM
I think you're right when say than i have to use only one partition tools... :-( but isn't my case... but
So. I'have some news...
During the last installation i've try of linux, the installer say me than "there's a bad partition table...". I've follow the instruction to fix the problem and now seem to be alright. So, i've find than there's two different problem...
The first is due to a bad partition table created by Partition Magic. I found than you can fix this problem by use any of the partition tools like fdisk, fixboot (of windows NT)...
The second problem is a "system" problem. In fact i've enabled on my motherboard bios the "IDE PCI BUS MASTER" because after that windows have used my hard disks in "PIO Mode". Activating this options i see than 1. windows use the IDE channel of hard disks in "Ultra DMA mode" (ok :-) ) but now i have the problems whit the boot...
So i think it's a BIOS/System problem (whit windows XP???). I know than microsoft release a fix for DMA Mode in windows XP for some machine due to sp1a installation.
I also know then i'm not the olny one having this problem.... :-((
16th February 2004, 09:41 AM
So you're saying you fixed the partition table but now you have a problem booting the computer? Due to your BIOS DMA settings you think?
Well, what happens when you boot? i.e. how far along does it go, what error messages does it produce?
I can't help with WinXP but maybe if you can post some more details of this problem, I'll be able to help more.
BTW, have you tried booting Fedora with your boot floppy disk?
16th February 2004, 01:41 PM
The partition table's problem seem to be fixed, all the tool i've used to verify it say that it's all ok.
I try to explain the boot error i have:
When a start my pc first time it search a "boot sector" on all of my device.
He try first the IDE0 device whitout find anything e so continue on other devices. So i "reset" my pc (whitout power off it) and the system boot normally.
Sometimes (but before the last installation) appear "GRUB ERROR on stage 2" (i hope to remember correctly).
I think this last one isn't important and maybe only a consequence of the misconfigured system.
From other device (like floppy, cdrom...) i don't have problems.
If i disable the bios option "IDE PCI BUS MASTER" the system work correctly (the boot start even the first time) but windows (i don't know if also linux cause i don't know where i can look) use all the devices in my primary IDE BUS (in that case my two hard disks) in PIO MODE :-(((
This evening i try to reflash my motherboard bios... maybe it's a solution???
PS The fedora installation from the first "fix" of my partition table run also in graphic mode (my first problem).
17th February 2004, 05:07 AM
Boot to Fedora with your floppy/CD and then attach the output (using Attach feature below) of `/sbin/fdisk -l`, /boot/grub/grub.conf and /var/log/messages and maybe someone can spot a problem with your configuration.
17th February 2004, 07:32 AM
I think this doc would be a good guide to all your partitioning/dual-booting problems:
All the RHL9 docs from the above site are excellent sources of information for doing all sorts of tasks in RH/Fedora. If you're looking for a tutorial on something, a quick search of the docs will bring up many good references. Then, if you're still having problems with a particular aspect of the guide or something, you can post it here. :) Someone will surely be able to help.
17th February 2004, 08:58 AM
OK, some news.
I understood than i had two different problem.
The first is a problem whit a bad partition table created by the Partition Magic tool. I have resolved this problem when the fedora installer say me than i have a problem whit partition and i not ignore it. So the partition tool of anaconda installer (i think disk druid???) fix the problem but losing all the data on the hard disk (in my case nothing :) ). I think this problem is fixable whit any of the tools of the different os (ex. fdisk /mbr --- thank mhelios ).
The second i think is a system/hardware problem than cause a boot error on the hard disk. This one is not (i think :rolleyes: ) due to a particular OS but seem to be due to a bios setting. I've flash my bios system whit a old version where the "PCI IDE BUS MASTER" setting is not active... and so all work!!! ... quasi!
Linux boot correctly :D , but windows have some problem. It start the first time, reset the machine after some times (during instalation) and so it work correctly.
I hope this may aid someone...
PS My motherboard isn't recent (1999) ECS - Socket A
17th February 2004, 10:57 AM
I am glad you seem to have fixed this problem. :)
One last tip:
If you have recurring problems, add
ide=nodma to the end of your kernel line in /boot/grub/grub.conf. That will disable the use of DMA on your IDE disks in linux.
Actually, if you add that to the boot options, and re-enable PCI IDE BUS MASTER in the BIOS, WIndows should be able to use DMA instead of PIO mode.
I realise you said you flashed your BIOS to an older version not supporting this, but unfortunately, I didn't think of suggesting this kernel option earlier.:(
24th February 2004, 07:40 PM
Hmm... ok, I know there is a tool on the Fedora CDs to create partitions but how do I use it to resize a HD with preinstalled XP and split the HD (60 GB) in the following way:
Swap (how much with 512 MB -> 1024 MB?)
FC1: 5 GB
FC2 or other distro: 5 GB
Win XP: 10 GB
plus the rest (about 38 GB)
Any suggestions regarding how I split and what I have to look for regarding the tripple boot and resizing XP?
25th February 2004, 09:53 AM
The application in the installer will allow you to define how much space you want on each partition including the current one.
It'll create the new partitions in the space that hasn't been used up on the current installation of Win XP.
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