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on ubuntu, but need to format for windows


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neeks's Avatar
neeks neeks is offline
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31-Oct-2007, 09:05 PM #1
on ubuntu, but need to format for windows
the goal: I must get my dell laptop to run windows xp again!

the scenario:
1) currently running ubuntu
2) deleted my master boot record so I can't run OS restore straight from my hard drive. (dell created a hidden partition that would restore your OS if damaged, but I through my haste I managed to make waste =/)
3) i have a windows xp cd but for some reason i cant seem to run the image. I just get a blinking cursor -- why is that?

Q: Am I right to assume that I cannot create an NTFS file system from a linux machine?

Also, I thought that I could just format again using a FAT32 file format, install windows, format again, re-partition my hds with NTFS and install windows all over again. Please tell me there is a faster and better way.

Thanks in advance.
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31-Oct-2007, 09:49 PM #2
Use gparted or whatever partitioning software you have to free up an area for XP to be installed. Leave the space unallocated. Then, boot up with your XP CD and install to the unallocated space. XP setup will partition and format it for you.

You could also use gparted to create an NTFS partition ahead of time. Then boot from the XP CD again and install to it.

There is a non-destructive "convert" command in XP that will change FAT32 to NTFS, but you would be better off just starting with NTFS.
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saikee's Avatar
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01-Nov-2007, 12:02 PM #3
Any Linux can create a ntfs partition but to format it is another matter.

In creating a partition, using fdisk (Linux version), cfdisk and sfdisk, the partition type is one byte in the 16-byte partition table. A NTFS partition has type 7.

A XP, WIn2k or Vista will seize this partition for installation.
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RobLinux RobLinux is offline
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07-Nov-2007, 07:45 AM #4
Quote:
Originally Posted by neeks
the goal: I must get my dell laptop to run windows xp again!

the scenario:
1) currently running ubuntu
Cool!

Quote:
2) deleted my master boot record so I can't run OS restore straight from my hard drive. (dell created a hidden partition that would restore your OS if damaged, but I through my haste I managed to make waste =/)
I found Vista could repair itself, booting off CD/DVD and choosing the freshen install option. This worked for me because I did not delete the Vista partion. XP ought to do same.

In past with Win98SE system floppy/CDR, booting into DOS and fdisk /mbr healed the M$ stuff (well it ran, even though the OS is evil, rude and fundamentally broken).

Quote:
3) i have a windows xp cd but for some reason i cant seem to run the image. I just get a blinking cursor -- why is that?
M$ doesn't play nice with other OSes they like to think their OS is the only one you will be running.

Quote:
Q: Am I right to assume that I cannot create an NTFS file system from a linux machine?
NTFS support is tricky because M$ don't like to release specs to hackers, without non-disclosure agreements etc etc. Also M$ keep tinkering, with every major release, so it's a moving target to chase for less evil OSes.
Quote:
Also, I thought that I could just format again using a FAT32 file format, install windows, format again, re-partition my hds with NTFS and install windows all over again. Please tell me there is a faster and better way.
Did you delete XP, or did you install Ubuntu into a data partition?

Unless you knowingly destroyed your M$ stuff with the installer, Linux will not have done any thing serious, but it would let you screw up data partitions, when running as root later.

The Ubuntu Installer looks for free disk to repartition. I recently started installing Kubuntu on a Vista machine onto 2nd disk, it let me use qparted to graphically partition disk from Live CD, before I started to install (making an OS + swap partition), and then use expert mode and custom partition, so you control absolutely how much space it uses, and can seperate out data partitions.

On attempting to boot Vista, I got blinking cursor and it rebooted. This was because the GRUB boot loader entry, was slightly wrong, and once Vista has failed, it gives up, forcing you to boot from DVD to repair the installation.

Later running the Dell Utilities, they altered the partition type of my Linux /boot partition to 0x6, which caused something to complain, but I could still mount the filesystem. So simply setting the partition type to 0x83 with fdisk type program sovled the issues.

The generally recommended dual-boot configuration, is to boot into Grub and then use something like :

title Vista
rootnoverify (hd1,2)
map (hd1) (hd0)
map (hd0) (hd1)
chainloader +1

To boot Vista from the 3rd partition on 1st disk, after setting BIOS to boot 2nd disk.

Digging around, there's a free EBCD boot manager, which appears to be a 'Boot Magic' type program which tolerates M$ Vista - http://neosmart.net/dl.php?id=1

I haven't used it though, as I like GRUB and lilo, rather than GUI type stuff which tends to have a mind of its own.
saikee's Avatar
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07-Nov-2007, 09:14 AM #5
If Grub can boot 150+ systems identically with the same 3 lines of commands and Vista's BCDedit can boot 150+ Linux just by a script I wonder if a 3rd party boot loader can do it simpler and easier.
RobLinux's Avatar
RobLinux RobLinux is offline
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07-Nov-2007, 10:05 AM #6
Well exactly but 1 off Desktop users, seem to like GUIs and a bit of polish.

The Vista BCD seems to be disliked and inflexible, I cannot think of a reason to use it, if you're going to have GRUB on the system anyway.
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