Many thanks. I'm reasonably clued up about sorting out NTLDR and boot.ini. My main problem is that, in Ubuntu specifically, I have no idea how to move the location of Grub from a floppy disk to the boot partition. Do I use the installation CD's rescue mode? If so, how? Or, with the Grub floppy in the drive after having booted into Ubuntu, can I simply copy Grub across somehow? I assume I need to get in by some method and run
# grub-install /dev/hda2
and that the command will need to pick up Grub either from the CD or the floppy but I don't know how exactly to do this and I'm afraid the man pages don't really help me much.
The procedure I always follow to set up WinXP/SuSE dual boots is:
1. During installation, I change the default bootloader location (MBR) to the boot sector of the boot partition
2. After basic installation has finished and the system reboots (with the CD still in the drive) I choose
3. Installation, I select the language, then I choose Boot installed system
4. The installation completes and I log-in to SuSE
5. Then, in a terminal, as root, I copy the linux boot sector onto a floppy as follows:
# mount /dev/fd0
# dd if=/dev/hda3 bs=512 count=1 of=/media/floppy/bootsect.lnx
# umount /dev/fd0
6. I reboot, which takes me straight into WinXP
7. I copy bootsect.lnx to the root directory of C drive
8. I edit boot.ini in Notepad to add
at the end as a last line
9. I reboot again and then have the option of either WinXP or Linux on the XP boot menu
However this is made very easy by the fact that SuSE has a nice graphical installer from which it is immediately obvious how to proceed after the initial reboot.
Not so with Ubuntu's text installer, where I am completely lost. When I installed the first time, I put Grub on the boot sector of the boot partition (as is my practice with SuSE) but then of course after the first part of installation was completed, Ubuntu spat the CD out and obviously the computer booted straight into Windows.
I then couldn't fathom out from Ubuntu's text installer how to get back in to complete the installation. So I started the installation all over again and this time put Grub on a floppy, which did enable me to get back in after the initial reboot and thus complete the installation.
Unfortunately this means I am now stuck with having to use a floppy every time I want to access Ubuntu, which is a bit of a pain. Hence my desire to move Grub on to the boot sector of the boot partition. But I don't know how to do this. I have tried using the installation CD with the rescue option at the boot prompt. It runs through the language and keyboard selection, followed by the network settings. Then I come to a screen which says:
Enter a device you wish to use as your root file system
At this stage I do not know how to proceed. I am assuming part2 refers to hda2 which is my Ubuntu root partition, but if I select this all that happens is I get a blank blue screen and the whole thing just hangs. My partitions are as follows: hda1 is WinXP, hda2 is root, hda3 is extended, hda5 is swap.
All I really want to know is, specifically for Ubuntu, if you have Grub on a floppy disk how do you then transfer that to the boot sector?
I don't want to put Grub on the MBR because I am using a Toshiba Satellite 1800 laptop, with no WinXP CD provided - only a "restore" CD, so if my MBR gets messed up I have no way of doing a fixmbr
I really like the look of Ubuntu but I must say I find its documentation sadly lacking on matters such as this. I've obviously been spoilt by using SuSE and YaST too long !