I’m using Linux on the first disk (hd0) and Windows XP on the second (hd1). I don’t know if it is important to my question, but the Dell mobo that I’m using does NOT seem to allow selection of boot order among disks. As far as I remember, I configured the GRUB menu as follows:
title Windows XP
map (hd0) (hd1)
map (hd1) (hd0)
When booting for the first time, I selected Windows XP from the menu, but it failed. Instead it started some kind of diagnostic program which probed the hardware. Never seen it before and no clue about where it came from.
I rebooted the machine.
Now my hd0 disk seems to be broken! It just goes straight to the GRUB> prompt and won’t go past it. I’ve tried all sorts of 3rd party utilities on the disk, but they all indicate that the disk is unreadable. GParted (from boot cd) displays a distorted partition scheme–nothing like what I originally had–and indicates that changes are not possible.
Is it possible that my menu entry caused the disk to break?
I might be able to exchange the disk for a new one, but don’t want to repeat the mistake! Thanks for any thoughts on this.
Thanks for the reply, caf4926! The partitioner indicated as I wrote above: no changes to partitions possible. I think it also indicated that no root partition was found. And the scheme is all but wiped out completely. I can’t reinstall, since partitioning is impossible. I don’t have the disk here at the moment, so I can’t experiment yet.
I wonder if the makeactive command did the damage. After re-mapping the drives it might have made the current (already mounted and loaded) disk/part (hd0, 0) active, thereby wiping it out; instead of activating the second disk/part (hd1, 0) as was my intent.
Thanks for the reply, caf4926! The partitioner indicates as I wrote above: no changes to partitions possible. And the scheme is all but wiped out completely. I can’t reinstall, since partitioning isn’t possible.
I wonder if the makeactive command did the damage. After re-mapping the drives it might have made the current disk/part (hd0, 0) active instead of the second disk/part (hd1) as was my intent, thereby wiping out hd0.
Incidentally, I don’t even see makeactive in that article you posted. So I question whether it is even necessary. I’m pretty sure I saw it used somewhere else though, for the same type of configuration.
Just be patient and wait until you get you suse dvd.
Incidentally, any good live cd/dvd (knoppix for eg:) is great to check out your disks. Just boot from it and they are all there.
MBR utilities are all very well, but it really depends what you are trying to do. To restore the XP MBR it is usually best to use the XP CD.
The SuSE DVD is no help in this case. I’ve tried every option available, even fsck from the Rescue Console. It always indicates the same things: either a corrupted superblock or MBR. I assume it’s the latter.
KNOPPIX won’t mount the partitions. It seems to recognize some of them as devices–/dev/sda1, /dev/sda2, etc.–and it puts icons on the desktop. But it can’t read them. I think the message indicated something about superblocks or MBR, like above.
I tried all the utilities in UBCD, but none loaded; they stop each time at the InitDisk procedure.
Looks like my new hard disk is trashed. I can’t think of any other possible tools to use…