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which dual boot program ?


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hey guys

whats the best dual boot porgram for dual booting windows me and ubuntu ?

i want one of those ones that goes inside the OS not one of those ones that go into the MBR and when you format they will stay their

i want one that dosent mess around to much with my computer and one so i can restore ghost images any time i feel like it or need to

and i can reformat a drive and expect it to not boot up with the dual boot program

Edited by starcraftmaster
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hey guys

whats the best dual boot porgram for dual booting windows me and ubuntu ?

i want one of those ones that goes inside the OS not one of those ones that go into the MBR and when you format they will stay their

i want one that dosent mess around to much with my computer and one so i can restore ghost images any time i feel like it or need to

and i can reformat a drive and expect it to not boot up with the dual boot program

You're probably referring to/better off running Ubuntu inside a virtual machine, like VMware, in your case.
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what about system commander ?

does that replace the drives mbr?

well if theres not one like i want then , whats the best one ? and the safest one ?

and one that will let me put ghost images back and it will still work fine

Edited by starcraftmaster
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When I was experimenting with multibooting I used XOSL. I remember I liked it a lot because of its nice and easy to use UI. I have been using it without problems for booting into either 98 or several variants of Linux (and I think 2K as well but I am not sure as it's been a long time since then.)

It does change the MBR. It does write files in the root dir of the first partition of the disk in addition to writing code in the sectors between the MBR and the first partition.

As for ghosting, albeit I never ghosted anything, if Ghost is able to image and restore partitions or physical drives (which is what it is supposed to do I guess) then I see no reason why it should be incompatible with any boot manager.

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As far as I know, all boot managers modify the MBR. For a good reason, because it's not possible for a boot manager to reside within an OS due to x86 architecture limitations.

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As far as I know, all boot managers modify the MBR. For a good reason, because it's not possible for a boot manager to reside within an OS due to x86 architecture limitations.
Not at all. GRUB4DOS can boot right from the DOS command line, after DOS has finished booting, or from config.sys or from autoexec.bat. It behaves as a common dos .exe program. Although you can install GRUB4DOS to the MBR or to the partition boot sector, it's by no means a requirement to do so. Read the Grub4dos Guide to learn more about it. XOSL is fine. But GRUB4DOS is way more versatile, and is an on-going project, for which there is a lot of support.

Now, regarding Ghost (Norton Ghost up to 2003 or Symantec Ghost, afterwards), it can image from whole disks to individual partitions, and restore them perfectly. It depends what type of image you ask it to do. Once you have a full disk image you can only restore the full disk, though, and not just one specific partition from inside the image. But if you create and individual partition image, then it'll restore just that, and not mess with any other area of the disk.

Edited by dencorso
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well if theres not one like i want then , whats the best one ? and the safest one ?

and one that will let me put ghost images back and it will still work fine

I can recommend either XFDisk or WWBMU:

http://www.mecronome.de/xfdisk/index.php

http://toolsandmore.de/Central/Produkte/So...em-Tools/WWBMU/

Both are very simple and small, work completely with code in the MBR (i.e. need no extra files on the harddisk), and survive restoring the OS from a disk image.

Both programs allow to remove the bootmanager again (e.g. if you want to re-format the HD), but of course this could also be done with a simple "fdisk /mbr".

The 2nd one (WWBMU) has only a German GUI (but this will only be needed during installation), so you may probably prefer XFDisk.

I've also used XFDisk without any problems for many years - well, until I've installed a maths program from Texas Instruments (TI-Nspire CAS) a few months ago: this TI-Nspire writes some (licence?) data to the MBR (usually I would call such a program a virus), and XFDisk doesn't like such MBR modifications (it has a built-in MBR integrity check exactly for preventing against MBR viruses) and simply stopped booting.

Thus I've switched to WWBMU (which still works after this TI-Nspire 'virus' ;-) ), but I'm sure you don't have such a crazy program which stores any data in such critical HD areas, so you could certainly use XFDisk without any problems on your system.

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When I was experimenting with multibooting I used XOSL. <...> It does write files in the root dir of the first partition
Not necessarily. You can also use a dedicated partition for it.
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As far as I know, all boot managers modify the MBR. For a good reason, because it's not possible for a boot manager to reside within an OS due to x86 architecture limitations.
Not at all. GRUB4DOS can boot right from the DOS command line, after DOS has finished booting, or from config.sys or from autoexec.bat. It behaves as a common dos .exe program. Although you can install GRUB4DOS to the MBR or to the partition boot sector, it's by no means a requirement to do so. Read the Grub4dos Guide to learn more about it. XOSL is fine. But GRUB4DOS is way more versatile, and is an on-going project, for which there is a lot of support.

Now, regarding Ghost (Norton Ghost up to 2003 or Symantec Ghost, afterwards), it can image from whole disks to individual partitions, and restore them perfectly. It depends what type of image you ask it to do. Once you have a full disk image you can only restore the full disk, though, and not just one specific partition from inside the image. But if you create and individual partition image, then it'll restore just that, and not mess with any other area of the disk.

From the guide....

Master Boot Record (MBR)

The Master Boot Record (or MBR) is always the first sector of a hard disk (sector 1). It contains the disks primary partition table, identifying which partition is marked as active (the active partition is the device boot partition). It is possible to boot a hard disk MBR by using the chainloader command. To boot the MBR of the first hard disk we would use the following command -

title Boot MBR of First Hard Disk

chainloader (hd0)+1

rootnoverify (hd0)

Where (hd0) is the whole of the first disk, (hd1) would be used to boot the MBR of the second hard disk, etc. The "+" symbol is used to specify a blocklist - in this case +1 is the first sector of the device (hd0). A block list is used for specifying a file that doesn't appear in the filesystem, like a chainloader.

So to boot the HDD, it still uses the MBR. It's totally unlike EFI, OpenBoot, SRM, or many of the other advanced firmware procedures. The x86 BIOS architecture has major drawbacks, hence why x86 vendors want to go EFI so badly....

Edited by beats
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  • 4 weeks later...

I am using (commercial) system commander.

I think unlike bootmanagers, system commander can change bootfiles within same partition.

Running 3 win98 se partitions, + on 1st partition also dos 6.22 & 5.0 (multiple configurations.

It was very useful at old times when had a multiple config.sys/autoexec.bat + diffeent dos version for gaming.

and never gave up since, lot easier to keeps of dad's partition by having kid's their own win98se install.

As usual, system commander can also change partition parameter to "hide" partition type.

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  • 2 weeks later...
As far as I know, all boot managers modify the MBR. For a good reason, because it's not possible for a boot manager to reside within an OS due to x86 architecture limitations.

More like the fact that the boot manager is generally loaded *before* OSes are taken into consideration? The boot manager's job is, afterall, to allow selection of OSes. Running it inside an OS is just not something that happens... even on Macs it isn't run from 'inside' the OS, although you can make changes to the bootable device in the OS, it still writes the change in the EFI...

OP should just install WUBI and be done with it already...

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There is Grub4DOS. It can solve almost any wild boot project. It *can* boot from inside already booted DOS. It can be placed in the MBR. It can be lauched from Win XP boot.ini. It can use a private boot partition. If multibooting is in your mind, right now, loose no time and start learning about it. All other options are yesterday's news compared to it. Grub4DOS rocks!

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