reinstall xp after 11.1

Hello - I am pretty new to linux. I would like to try to reinstall a barebones xp on a compac laptop as a dual boot with 11.1. I repartitioned using gparted so I now have 20 Gb free. Here (I hope) is the output of fdisk -lu

Can I do this? I spent a lot of time setting up opensuse and don’t want to lose the settings, etc. Should I repartition with the 20G space “in front” of the linux partitions? Can I back up the linux settings so I can reinstall them if I lose everything? Is there a sort of windows emulator (wine?) that will run programs that won’t run on opensuse, like netflix, tax prep software, etc? Too many questions I know but I would like a fairly simple foolproof fix if possible.

Thanks - d

If you do not plan on running cutting edge Windows games why not install Windows in a Virtual machine like Sun’s VirtualBox. That way you can have Linux a Windows running at the same time.

Where is the 20Gb free? I can’t spot it.

I don’t know where it is but I have a larger problem now: I tried to install the Virtual Box. It didn’t work so I went back and clicked on the debug function as well. Now I can’t boot. Here is the screenshot I have tried the repair function from the install disk, load from disk, failsafe from hd and disk, and clicking Y and n from the endpoint. Suggestions greatly appreciated. - d

The partitioning you ended with after Gparted looks really weird to me. Looks like you have only one primary partition encompassing all cylinders. And inside that you have the linux partitions and some free space at the end.

When you change the partition table you must also edit Suse’s file system table (fstab) and Grub’s bootlist (menu.lst) or Suse will get lost. And it seems that sadly Suse has got lost.

Finally, windows xp will not boot from a “logical” partition in the extended partition (the spare space at the end).

So IMHO there’s nothing I can see for you to do now except salvage your data, wipe the drive, install xp first, reinstall Suse and then put the Suse data back into the new Suse.

Thanks. That’s interesting. It worked for a few days after the partitioning through several restarts. During one of the repair sessions it said it needed to rewrite the boot, so I let it. After that it died. I don’t have any data there but I would like to try to salvage the setup stuff, like the wireless network config settings, etc. Is there any way to get that?

I would be willing to use a virtual box for XP if I can get it to work. I don’t game. I just would like to run a few programs like tax software. I tried to use Wine but the installer called for MS .NET and it gagged on that. Open to suggestions…

Unfortunately the picture you have given us does not show the whole screen.near the bottom the line that starts with “find”,and the following line starting with “want me to fall back to” are interesting, can you give us a shot of the full screen? we are missing the right hand side.(the bit where we get “OK”,“fail”)

You chose “n” did you try “Y” the default?

Yes I tried Y. I will try to get a screenshot later but it failed. I went to the expert tools in the repair module and it said sda 5, 6 and 7 are corrupted but when asked to repair them it said they were busy or in use by another system. It acts like a virus. It all started when I tried to install debug module of the VirtualBox software that was in the repository.

I think it is beyond saving but sometimes you can learn things at autopsy - d

They can’t be checked while they are mounted.
I gather you have a gparted liveCD or similar, boot from that and have a nother go at checking.

They can’t be checked while they are mounted.

I was not totally accurate here, this is from man e2fsck.

Note that in general it is not safe to run e2fsck on mounted filesystems. The only exception
is if the -n option is specified, and -c, -l, or -L options are not specified. However,
even if it is safe to do so, the results printed by e2fsck are not valid if the filesystem is
mounted. If e2fsck asks whether or not you should check a filesystem which is mounted, the
only correct answer is ``no’’. Only experts who really know what they are doing should con-
sider answering this question in any other way.

I would still try a repair from a live gparted CD,(partitions unmounted of course) It may help you save the config data important to you.
And I apologize, I missed the fact you had already tried “Y” ,no need for a new image of that.

I have gparted live 0.5.1-1. I will try that again but the repair mod I was using was from the opensuse 11.1 live iso dvd. Would the partitions be mounted if I was running the repair module from the dvd? What kind of repairs can I do from gparted? I ran it last night for a while but couldn’t figure out how to fix anything or even how to see what was wrong.

It’s interesting that I would have a problem with the boot/root when all I changed was to shorten up the other end of the drive. That’s why I think it has to do with the debug part of the virtual box. I don’t know how much more time I can spend on this. I’ll have to partition the drive, install xp then suse and call it quits on this soon - d

Been awhile since I have used it now but right click on the partition and I think you will find the option there.
I have only seen the warning you mentioned given on a mounted partition.I have to leave for work now.hope this helps.

I downloaded a rescue disk iso and searched around but couldn’t do much so I reformatted a 25 gig partition for xp and I’ll have 50 for 11.1. xp is installing as we speak. Hopefully it will work. thanks for trying…

Disappointed to read it did not work for you,unfortunately I could only give minimum info in my previous post as I should had already left for work.

On rescue discs for this sort of thing Parted magic does an excellent job, it is worth downloading and burning a copy and spending some time exploring it, there is more there than you might expect. It includes gparted also,and you can explore the options available in gparted without it making any changes by NOT clicking on the commit button,no changes are applied, including if it is just a check.

I do not have a openSUSE DVD install disc so I have not been able to try its recovery options,but I know some options will require partitions to be mounted, you mentioned doing some repairs before the partition check.

Hope your new install works well, and hopefully you find some useful advice in my ramblings.

Oops, in gparted it’s the green apply button , not commit my error!

There is always something to learn. It’s just how much time is available and I have spent way too much on this. My wife got a mac and said I could fool with her old laptop. So far I’ve ruined one win and 2 linux installations lol. The windows was all backed up so nothing lost there but I spent quite a few hours setting up the latest linux so it would have been nice to save it (or at least know what killed it) but no more time. Thanks again for your help - d

Fair enough, At any time you want to give it another shot, there will be some one happy to help.

We can not be here 24/7 though, so if time frames clash, Hey that happens!

As a side note, I am not convinced any of this needed to be ruined or lost.

From what I can tell we could have avoided it,patience can be useful.