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  1. #1
    Star Lounger
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    Unhappy FUBAR dual-boot netbook XP and Ubuntu

    Such a tale of woe have I-an Acer Aspire 1 with XP home that I dual-booted with Ubuntu 10.04. It did well up until a few weeks ago when I tried to update the Ubuntu to 12.04. Not good; something broke in the installation. I could not get a proper update either for the 10.04 or the 12.04; it would only try to give a partial update. I could still use either OS for work, just not update or install other software in the Ubuntu.
    One thing led to another and I wound up having to get a new HDD to reinstall an image backup I made because the boot partition in the original HDD would give a GRUB 1.5 Error 22 and refuse to let me boot into the repair CD to access the external drive containing the image. I could not figure a way to remove that partition (at least not via Windows 7) to allow me to re-use the original drive, hence the new one mentioned earlier.
    Okay, I finally restored the most recent image I had and could access the Ubuntu, but not the XP; it came up with a "no partition found." The XP is still in there as I could see the folders in the Ubuntu file manager but there is still a fault in the booting setup.
    What I want to accomplish now is to: (1) repair/resolve the booting to get my XP back and then remove the Ubuntu and stick with the XP or (2) do that and then install the 12.04 in such a fashion that it won't mess up the booting as it did originally when I first installed the 10.04 and had to reinstall the XP to properly allow a dual-boot start-up or (3) repair the booting AND the 10.04 Ubuntu (least desired.) I have tried a couple of boot repair schemes as found on the Ubuntu forums to no avail. One peculiarity I noted when I did the reimaging was that the software showed the external disk as C: and my internal (the one to receive the image) as E:. Maybe the letter stuck and is not allowing the Windows booting due to misnaming; just a guess.
    Anyway, I am quite comfortable working in Windows, but not in the Ubuntu so any operations I am asked to do in same must be a step-by-step sort of thing. Please remember that something in the Linux is broken so doing work in it may not be successful. Accomplishment (1) would be preferred and probably easier. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Star Lounger
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    It's been two months since this went up, so maybe it's moot now, but if not:

    I'm not going to give a step by step, but will point you in the right direction.

    Restoring XP may be no more difficult than using the Recovery Console on the XP installation CD to return XP's boot flag to the MBR. The command is FIXMBR. The default administrator password, if you haven't entered one, is (ENTER). If that doesn't work, and you have a good image of XP to restore, then reinstall XP, which will format the drive and remove Ubuntu, and then restore your image. You should then have XP as you want it.

    Before deciding about Ubuntu, you should question whether or not 12.04 has issues with your hardware. FWIW, experimenting on a dual boot setup is not the best way to find out. ;-) Installing Ubuntu on the XP system will create another dual boot system.

    BTW, you should appreciate that you cannot use Windows to work on Linux. Windows doesn't understand Linux. :-)

  3. #3
    Star Lounger catilley1092's Avatar
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    First off, it's always best to backup the drive before making major changes to the machine, such as adding a OS.

    When I remove a Linux OS from the HDD, I use a partitioning boot disk, Mini Partition Tool Home will do. Delete the Linux OS, then click onto the very left of the hard drive scheme (where the size is usually stated). Then select "Rebuild MBR" & Apply. This, 9 out of 10 times brings the Windows partition back & it'll reboot into Windows afterwards (the installed OS doesn't matter).

    As a rule of thumb, just as with Windows, updating Ubuntu is normally a disaster in the making. It's so much easier & a lot faster to backup the drive, & install the later version by the DVD, making sure NOT to format the /home partition (unless you want to install from scratch), this preserves the settings. The upgrade takes a long time in many cases & often leaves a lot to be desired. Usually, the user has to reinstall anyway.

    Cat
    My System Specs:

    http://speccy.piriform.com/results/N...gWw3zT1A30RkV3 MSI Notebook (OEM Win 7 Pro x64)

    http://speccy.piriform.com/results/8...3hQlSkXzuDfbKb Dell XPS 8700 w/Windows 8

  4. #4
    Star Lounger
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    Ubuntu updates are very well written, and typically apply without any issues. :-)

  5. #5
    Star Lounger
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    Update to all of this: I threw up my hands, found and purchased another Acer netbook of the same make/model and configured the unit for my purposes. Due to problems with my original backup software (or possibly the netbook environment) a clone of the original HDD failed. I then came across Macrium Reflect free, used it with the Windows-based recovery disc for a disk image and copied 2 more systems onto other HDDs. I now have 2 netbooks in fine shape and a backup HDD to put into one of the netbooks if needed. Since netbooks do not have optical drives already in their system, I used an external USB drive. Also Acer uses a recovery partition that the home-made "recovery" disc they ask to be made and the drives could not be redone that way; no recovery partition was available, hence the use of a disc image. At least it worked. Thanks all.

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