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 Forum index » House Training » Beginners Help ( Start Here)
no grub - grub doesn't even start (Solved?)
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sulemasc

Joined: 10 Jun 2005
Posts: 69
Location: Brampton, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Sat 30 Jul 2005, 00:35    Post subject:  no grub - grub doesn't even start (Solved?)  

I've read Rarsa's Puppy hard drive install link, and researched other instances of hd installs (#2 on install puppy hard drive specifically where it formats the drive/partition). All seems to go well, Puppy installs, Grub installs correctly to hda1, using the defaults and then choosing MBR, but when I reboot I don't see any screen, info, cursor, at all what I have managed to see is the following: (I've tried the install many times and even rebooted the pc many times after each install)

a grey screen
"grub _"

"grub
..........._"

multiple reboots of computer sometimes (sometimes one, sometimes two)
"loading statage 1.5"
"loaoading stage 1.5"
"loadingng stage 1.5"
"grub_ statage1.5 ad" (then loops back to frozen "grub _" prompt
"loading stage 1.1.5"

So I understand the menu.1st configuration file as it's kindof like autoexec.bat but this grub install on the mbr of hda1 or hd(0,0) doesn't appear to even get that far.. I did look into the menu.1st file to make sure it wasn't a line in there, but I don't think the Grub bootloader is getting far enough to even show the menu.1st file.

Suggestions? Keep in mind this is a pc with no os, one 330mB maxtor hda1, and that I haven't tried installing Grub off it's main webiste either, just from 1.0.4cd.
Mark
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Flash
Official Dog Handler


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 11180
Location: Arizona USA

PostPosted: Sat 30 Jul 2005, 01:02    Post subject:  

That hard drive must be really old, to be only 330 MB. To your knowledge, did it ever have a working OS on it? Do you have another hard drive you could substitute for the Maxtor, just for test purposes?

Also, how did you get your CD of Puppy? If you're sure you got a clean download of the iso and that it was burned OK, then I'd have to wonder if the hard drive isn't somehow the problem.
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sulemasc

Joined: 10 Jun 2005
Posts: 69
Location: Brampton, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Sat 30 Jul 2005, 01:31    Post subject: no grub - grub doesn't even start  

Flash, you may be right - I haven't tried the install on another hard-drive - I don't have another at the moment that's useable - of course that can be fixed.

In fact, I've already somehow wrecked a 4 gig drive that did have info on it that I wanted to keep, and of course, I learned the 'ol "a backup means that you have TWO copies of the data". I didn't, swore, cursed, swore again, and then moved on because you can't sweat the small stuff, I figure.

This old drive was pilfered from an old w98 system, I believe. I just thought I'd use it as a tester.

Because it's an older hard-drive does that mean that grub can't work with it? That's fine, if that's the case - I just didn't even know that would be the reason, but if it is, then I'd want to know why? Or maybe that's a slippery slope of obsolete logic that is unnecessary.

I just thought it was neat that pup001 resided on the drive fine, and so I thought, "hey lets try the hard drive install on this drive and see what happens".
That's it.
Maxtor 7345AT
Mark
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raffy

Joined: 25 May 2005
Posts: 4798
Location: Manila

PostPosted: Sat 30 Jul 2005, 04:03    Post subject: Target Sizes  

Edit: Here are the minimum target sizes of Linux partitions based on version 1.03 and my fresh installation to a small drive (August 2, 2005):

part 1 - 161 MB, say 200 MB in your case;
part 2 - 2x available RAM (or less if you don't have more hard drive space).

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Last edited by raffy on Mon 01 Aug 2005, 20:02; edited 1 time in total
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Flash
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Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 11180
Location: Arizona USA

PostPosted: Sat 30 Jul 2005, 16:53    Post subject:  

Depending on what you mean by 'wrecked,' it may be possible to use that 4 GB hard drive. If you want help trying to save it, start a new thread in this forum. Ask for help using Puppy to recover a borked hard drive. Smile
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Ian
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Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 1237
Location: Queensland

PostPosted: Sun 31 Jul 2005, 09:09    Post subject:  

You could probably use the 4G HD if you can create a partition and format it as an ext2 filesystem.

I have a 40G HD that I fried last summer but still use partitions on it for storing data and pup001 files.
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raffy

Joined: 25 May 2005
Posts: 4798
Location: Manila

PostPosted: Sun 31 Jul 2005, 17:35    Post subject: Use of Swap  

Hello, Ian. While we're at the matter of partitions, I noted that trenster222 had to manually "mkswap" and "swapon" his swap partition during his hard disk installation. Is this really needed? (I did a search of "mkswap" in the install-hd scripts but found none, though there may have been other commands or I don't know how to search) Embarassed

And, yes, I may have been spoiled by Linux distros that use automatic hard disk installation scripts up front.. The swap partition that I used was prepared that way.

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Guest
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PostPosted: Sun 31 Jul 2005, 19:24    Post subject:  

Hi raffy,

Puppy doesn't create a swap partition but will mount an existing one therefore you have to manually create one which is not hard to do.

One of the main problems working with Puppy on hard drives is that Puppy's default action is to search for an ext2 or fat32 filesystem and if it finds either one, to create a file named pup001 in that partition and mount it.
This partition cannot be unmounted as that is where Puppy is storing all it's settings and data so you cannot install Puppy to that partition.

The easiest way around this is to take the boot option that prevents Puppy from writing to the hard drive but if you have a previous pup001 file on the hard drive Puppy will try to mount it unless you take this option, so just pressing enter will allow Puppy to mount pup001 if it already exists.

In earlier versions of Puppy where the option to not write to hard drive did not exist I used to use a different version of Linux and delete all the partitions on the hard drive, boot a Puppy live CD and then create the partitions that I required and format them then install Puppy without rebooting.

This way of doing things is not now required with Puppy but if there is any confusion and the hard drive is to be used only by Puppy this is still an easy way to ensure a simple installation.

If a swap partition is required it can be created at the same time as the main partition using either fdisk or cfdisk, cfdisk is easier to use for people not familiar with Linux fdisk, and the partitions are formatted with the make file system commands mke2fs & mkswap, this makes them usable.

Cheers, Ian. ( I forgot to login )
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zenkalia

Joined: 22 Jul 2005
Posts: 14

PostPosted: Mon 01 Aug 2005, 19:48    Post subject:  

i have had similar problems with old hard drives... i've tried to do a hard drive install three or so times, using a separate hard drive entirely as a swap partition (each drive being about a gig in size) and it won't work... my error is typically "GRUB GRUB GRUB GRUB GRUBGR UBRG RGUBRGUBRUGBRBGURBG UGRB GUBR" on and on and on...

and i'm too afriad to try installing on my real hard drive (60 gigs, bought it two or three years ago)...

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Ian
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Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 1237
Location: Queensland

PostPosted: Mon 01 Aug 2005, 20:37    Post subject:  

If you are having problems with Grub you should check to see if everything is in it's correct place depending on where you have Puppy installed and you are booting from Grub.

Grub has a menu interface to enable you to select your boot options instead of having to type them in at bootup. The menu uses a configuration file named menu.ls which contains the commands to enable bootup using your settings.

This file is usually installed in /boot/grub along with the stage1, stage2 and stage1_5 file for your filesystem. If you read through it you should be able to see if it is set to boot Puppy the way Puppy is installed to your HD.

If you are not familiar with Linux you will have to learn the partition naming convention Linux uses compared to Windows and how Grub names partitions, in a nutshell it works like this:

Windows calls the first main partition on your first hard drive C:

Linux calls the first hard drive /dev/hda and the first partition 1 so you have /dev/hda1 or hda1

Grub starts from zero and calls the first hard drive hd0 and the first partition 0 and is expressed as (hd0,0), the brackets must be included.

So in Windows C: ( first HD first Part ) becomes hda1 in Linux and (hd0,0) in Grub.

If you examine the menu.ls file you will see where Grub is looking for the things it requires to boot Puppy.
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Flash
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Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 11180
Location: Arizona USA

PostPosted: Tue 02 Aug 2005, 01:06    Post subject:  

zenkalia wrote:
i have had similar problems with old hard drives... i've tried to do a hard drive install three or so times, using a separate hard drive entirely as a swap partition (each drive being about a gig in size) and it won't work... my error is typically "GRUB GRUB GRUB GRUB GRUBGR UBRG RGUBRGUBRUGBRBGURBG UGRB GUBR" on and on and on...

and i'm too afriad to try installing on my real hard drive (60 gigs, bought it two or three years ago)...
I'd be really surprised if Puppy or GRUB or any other Linux-related program could physically damage a hard drive. They might corrupt the data on the hard drive, but the hard drive could be reformatted and reused. I've repeatedly reformatted and installed different distros of Linux and Windows on 5 different brands of hard drive. So far, the only one that failed apparently did it because of a design flaw. Fujitsu lost a group lawsuit and wound up paying $40 to everyone who bought one, to make up for it.
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rarsa


Joined: 29 May 2005
Posts: 3053
Location: Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Tue 02 Aug 2005, 01:45    Post subject:  

I've had the GRUBGRUBGRUB problem (never in puppy as I don't use a HDD install)

I have two solutions, pick one:

First and easiest one:
For this exact problem, once I found how to fix it I added the solution to the end of This thread

It may work for both problems, Zenkalias and sulemask.

Second, more drastic but may solve most problems except HDD failure:
Warning: You will loose any and all information on that HDD.

I would recomend doing a low level initialization using the HDD vendor's provided tools (you can usually download them from the vendor's web site). Actually I had to resort once to this one as the MBR was completely corrupted from many different experiments with installing and reinstalling boot managers and distributions. One distribution changed my HDD geometry.

So if all the data on the HDD is 'disposable' then I would recommend a 'low level initialization':
- For Very old HDDs you have to do a low level formating,
- For newer disks they also call it that but it's actually a 'zero write'.

This tool will have the advantage in Old drives of identifying and marking 'bad sectors'.

Please bear in mind that the 'useful life' of a desktop HDD is about 5 years. after that it's a coin toss. It may work it may stop one day, so I would not put important information in a HDD newer than 3 months or older than 5 years.

I hope this helps
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sulemasc

Joined: 10 Jun 2005
Posts: 69
Location: Brampton, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Fri 05 Aug 2005, 20:18    Post subject: no grub - grub doesn't even start  

Well, I have to finish this by saying I'm dumbfounded - I retried everything again - and now I have no problem getting to the grub screen, and that's with the old Maxtor330 drive. So yehaa:)

I really dunno what to say except sometimes you just have to redo everything again. Man I hate it when I just have to concede that I won't know why it didn't work the first 5 times...

Oh well, moving on to learn more.. and thanks for the replies - they are still useful to me.

Mark
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rarsa


Joined: 29 May 2005
Posts: 3053
Location: Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Fri 05 Aug 2005, 21:25    Post subject:  

My guess is that Grub was not installing correctly.

Are you sure that you used the same version of Grub every time including the last one?

I'm glad it works now, That's what counts.
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sulemasc

Joined: 10 Jun 2005
Posts: 69
Location: Brampton, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Fri 05 Aug 2005, 23:11    Post subject: no grub - grub doesn't even start  

Same version of Grub each time, Rarsa, the one off the install pup hard-drive option from 1.0.4cd - I chose the same defaults everytime, and MBR. The drives I was testeing were formatting many times using Puppy as well, but that's part of the install too. Maybe, Grub just didn't install correctly and I won't know enough to know why, and am just happy to have Puppy and Grub working finally - I knew it was logical.

As an aside, I did download Grub and install to floppy off a link from it's website as was also able to manually load puppy from its grub> console setup too.

Till the next time - guess this subject could be changed to solved.
Mark
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