Red Hat Bugzilla – Bug 59238
Boot loader partition not set bootable
Last modified: 2007-04-18 12:39:42 EDT
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Description of problem:
If user elects to install GRUB or LILO in a partition instead of the MBR, an
option to make that partition bootable should be provided.
Version-Release number of selected component (if applicable):
Steps to Reproduce:
1. Install Red Hat Linux (graphical install) on a machine with Windows already
2. When given the option of where to install GRUB, choose /boot partition
instead of MBR.
3. At completion of install, reboot without boot diskette.
Actual Results: Boots directly to Windows. Must boot with diskette or Rescue
CD, run fdisk, and set active partition manuallyto give GRUB control of the next
Expected Results: User should have the option to make /boot active if GRUB is
installed there. Then on reboot, GRUB would get control of boot.
In some cases, the reason for putting GRUB in /boot is to continue using another
boot loader (such as WinNT's) that gives the option of selecting a system to
boot. But there are other reasons for doing this. My laptop's suspend-to-disk
feature requires the standard MBR to function correctly, so GRUB must be
installed elsewhere--but I still want GRUB to control the boot.
Did you have an active partition on the drive prior to installing Linux? The
boot partition should get marked active as long as you don't have another active
partition; there are some bootloaders (bootmagic does this iirc) that just
install themselves in small active partitions, so we don't change the active
partition if one is already set.
I don't recall exactly now, but it is possible that the suspend-to-disk
partition was active. There were some oddities about that when I was putting
that partition together and testing it before the Linux install.
The default behavior sounds reasonable, but it still might be nice if the user
had the option to override it.
In most cases, the user will just get confused by something like that... fdisk
is there for the corner cases.