Working 10.3: Grub immediately loads XP now?! Help!

I had a working Suse 10.3 on an old machine, that I update regularly. In the KDE shutdown menu, I decided to reboot to Windows XP (bad idea, I’m real sorry).

Now it always boots into Windows! Grub flashes something like a black and white ASCII menu briefly, but I cannot do anything about it.

I can only boot from CD, not DVD. Thus I booted a 10.3 live CD and then a 11.0 live CD. At Grub’s prompt, I press ESC to leave the graphical menu. I intend to boot manually, entering “root (hd2,0)” and such stuff.

However, whatever I enter at the prompt, I always receive a “Could not find kernel image:” error message. Even for “help” and such.

I am at a loss what happened - and how I might repair my machine!

PS: I also tried the following: Booting 11.0 live from CD, Yast->Bootloader->Reinstall. Did not work either. It continues to boot Windows. The Suse Grub FAQ only deals with the opposite problem, i.e. assuming you can still boot Linux but not Windows.

Looks like we have a similar problem, if you’re a little more linux handy than I am then these might help:

Boot Multiboot openSUSE Windows (2000, XP, Vista - any mix) with Windows bootloader.

GRUB Boot Multiboot openSUSE Windows (2000, XP, Vista) using the Grub bootloader.

I’m struggling through them, not sure if they’ll help or not but worth a try if you haven’t seen them.

This probably will not be difficult to repair. We need you to boot from a Live-CD, get into a terminal window, switch to root, and post the output from the following commands back here:

fdisk -l -u

cat /boot/grub/menu.lst

cat /boot/grub/device.map

cat /etc/grub.conf

ls /boot

uname -r

This will not work. In the Live-CD, the application is not (and should not be) operating on your installed OS.

Hmm, I resolved my problem now. Booting the live CD did work - albeit in a strange fashion though:

I reinstalled Grub through the live CD, just by letting it guess the right menu.

Reboot showed no difference, still booting to windows.

The next reboot showed the original grub menu again, everything back to normal. It is definitely not the menu proposed by the live CD, so I dont know what happened!

I rebooted several times now, and everything seems really fine now. Puzzling!

what exactly did you do? I’m still struggling.

Just as I wrote: Booting from the live CD, firing up Yast and reinstall the Bootloader, and also restoring the MBR.

I admit that my config is weird and that I had the problem once before after an online update, albeit at that time, I could just resolve it by entering the Grub commandline and booting manually, reinstalling grub from 10.3 as usually.

I think my trouble is due to having a dormant 10.0 reiser partition on the first harddisk, while 10.3 resides in a reiser partition on the third harddisk, which also hosts the ext3 home directory. The second harddisk is just fat32. The third harddisk is connected via a cheap SATA-PCI-card.

After one online update, I also saw the old 10.0 grub menu at boot. I configured it to boot both 10.0 and 10.3 and after a while the 10.3 boot menu (which also offers 10.0) was back again. I guess these problems will vanish once I overwrite that 10.0 partition with 11.1