|Summary:||installer puts LILO in MBR even though I told it not to!|
|Product:||[Retired] Red Hat Linux||Reporter:||Jonathan Kamens <jik>|
|Component:||installer||Assignee:||Jay Turner <jturner>|
|Status:||CLOSED CURRENTRELEASE||QA Contact:|
|Fixed In Version:||Doc Type:||Bug Fix|
|Doc Text:||Story Points:||---|
|Last Closed:||1999-11-05 17:26:37 UTC||Type:||---|
|oVirt Team:||---||RHEL 7.3 requirements from Atomic Host:|
|Cloudforms Team:||---||Target Upstream Version:|
Description Jonathan Kamens 1999-11-05 13:34:54 UTC
I was installing RedHat 6.1 onto a PC with an existing NT 4.0 installation. I read the instructons for where to install LILO, and I *thought* I followed them and told it to install lilo at the beginning of the boot partition instead of in my MBR. Nevertheless, when I rebooted after the installation, up came Linux instead of NT. At this point, I tried to restore my MBR using the NT setup "rescue" tools, and that didn't work. I then tried to restore the MBR by doing various different upgrades and reinstallations of NT, and that didn't work either. In the process, I screwed up my NT installation somehow and had to reinstall it from scratch (a time-consuming and frustrating experience). Somewhere in the middle of all this I consulted the support.microsoft.com and discovered that what I *should* have done right at the start was logged into Linux and run "lilo -u /dev/hda" to put the MBR back to its previous state. Doh! When all the NT garbage was done and I had a working NT MBR again, I reinstalled Linux. This time, it put LILO in the right place, which makes me suspect that it's possible that I didn't specify the correct location the first time even though I thought I did. But I still think there are at least two, and possibly three bugs here: 1) Is it possible that the installer *sometimes* puts lilo in the MBR even when told to put it at the beginning of the boot partition? If so, that's obviously a bug. 2) The installer has a good idea that NT is installed on the machine, since it knows there's an ntfs/hpfs partition. In that context, if the user asks to install LILO in the MBR, the installer should display a really obvious warning that by doing this, the user could screw up his NT installation. When software can prevent the user from doing stupid things, it should :-). 3) The documentation should explain very prominently how to recover from the mistake I made, i.e., right after the section explaining what to specify on the LILO installation screen, it should explain that "lilo -u" can be used to restore the MBR if it is screwed up accidentally.
Comment 1 Jay Turner 1999-11-05 17:26:59 UTC
I will keep an eye on lilo and make sure that things are working right, but in all of my testing, I have yet to see lilo go somewhere that I did not tell it to. As for second guessing the user, this is really not an option. Lilo is capable of booting an NT installation and therefore installing lilo in the MBR of a machine which is going to dual-boot NT and linux is not a totally bad thing . . . it just means that you will be using lilo to boot the NT boot loader which will then boot NT. I will pass the suggestion about insrtuctions for removing lilo on to the documentations staff.