How to Run Linux and Windows on the Same
Dual booting Linux and Windows is always a painstaking task
for most people especially if you have Win2000 (NTFS) and using
LILO in Linux. In this paper I will discuss how to dual boot
Red Hat Linux (RHL) with Windows2000 (NT5).
(Carolyn's note: This also works for Windows XP using the
NTFS file system. If you are running Windows
95/98/ME, click here for help.)
I assume you have a Windows 2000 Professional in full NTFS
mode, Red Hat Linux 7.0 with Kernel 2.2 both in one HDD. Well,
it's true there are some tools available out there that will
do the job for you but we are hackers and we love doing things
with whatever minimum we have available at hand.
In scenario 1 let's assume you already have Linux and Windows
installed and you use a boot disk to start-up Linux. To get rid
of the floppy you have to do the following:
Boot to your Linux partition and cat /etc/lilo.conf. At the
beginning (global section) of the lilo.conf file you'll see something
like boot=/dev/hda8. Take a note of this line.
Now, you have to copy the boot sector file. For this as root
do the following:
dd if=/dev/hda8 bs=512 count=1 of=mylinux.lnx
Here, I assume that your linux partition is in /dev/hda8.
After executing this command you'll see something like this:
1+0 records in
1+0 records out
Now, a file named mylinux.lnx has been created in your home
directory. To make sure, type 'ls'. And you will see the file.
Now, you need a FAT formatted floppy disk to copy this file.
Put the floppy in and type this command:
mcopy mylinux.lnx a:
This will copy the file in the floppy. In case, if you don't
have the command mcopy, you have to install an rpm named mtools.
Easy!! Just go to your Linux CD (/mnt/cdrom/RedHat/RPMS) and
find out the file mtools-some_version.rpm and install it.
Ok now as you have mcopy the mylinux.lnx file in the floppy,
remove the floppy and restart to Windows2000. Now, in Windows
C: drive you have to do 2 things. First, copy the file (mylinux.lnx)
from the floppy to C drive. And then edit your boot.ini file
(which is located in your C drive). If unfortunately you can't
see boot.ini then check the hidden files and folder in Windows
>> View options. After copying the file, notepad to your
boot.ini file and add the following lines at the end of the section
c:\ mylinux.lnx ="Linux"
Save it and restart again. Now, you'll see two options to
If unfortunately you see that the process is not working you
have to do some troubleshooting. Please note that whatever troubleshooting
you do, after that you have to go through the whole process again.
Ok. if the process doesn't work at first place go to your
Linux box and type LILO. This will update LILO. But if you see
something unusual like "can't write to LILO because the
cylinder of the partition is 1024" then Vi to /etc/lilo.conf
and you'll see a line named Linear. Replace Linear with lba32
quit and update LILO. This will solve the problem.
Also sometimes adding the following lines to lilo might help:
You can also install W2k first in FAT32 mode. Install Linux
with LILO on MBR and put the upper line on the /etc/lilo.conf
file. This will do the job fine for you. Now, you can freely
convert your W2k partition in NTFS mode keeping the current installation
intact. To convert to NTFS type the following at your DOS prompt:
Convert C: /FS:NTFS (Change the drive letter as you deem fit)
In this paper I have described ways to make it possible to
make NTFS and Ext2 to live together. I hope this was of help