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Old 07-02-2012, 04:26 PM
mike cloaked
 
Default A question specifically about upgrading an existing arch system from grub legacy to grub without UEFI or GPT

I have been following the discussions in various places including on
this list about the forthcoming change from grub to become grub-legacy
and the default bootloader becoming grub2.

On all my arch systems I have grub with MBR partitioning, booting to
BIOS initially - and none of my systems is modern enough to have UEFI
instead of BIOS.

So I have been reading up on what I will need to do when grub2 version
2.00 appears in [core] - and how to successfully achieve the
changeover. However I still cannot determine if it will be "necessary"
to make sure that there is a post-MBR gap of 2MiB between the MBR and
the first partition when the system will remain using MBR partitioning
and grub2 will be the bootloader. So this applies to systems with no
GPT partitions, and no UEFI.

In my systems that have been running some time some have 64 sectors to
where the start of the first partition is, and others have 2,000
sectors which is about 1MiB - and I still don't know if grub2 version
2.00 will not work on those systems or not. I do know that other
distros such as Fedora version F16 have systems running successfully
using grub2 prior to version 2.00 with MBR partitioning and BIOS and
boot perfectly well without the 2MiB post MBR gap. Perhaps this
changes with the release of grub2 version 2.00?

Achieving a post-MBR gap of at least 2MiB will be a painful process as
shrinking the first partition and then moving it towards partition 2
with an MBR partitioned disk is time consuming and not always
successful in those systems where in the past I have adjusted the
partitions on a drive. Maybe the recent versions of tools such as
PartedMagic will cope better than it did a couple of years ago?

Can someone help out with a clear explanation please. I am usually
pretty good with upgrades and preparation but this has foxed me! i.e.
specifically for a BIOS-MBR hard drive using grub2 that it is vital to
have a post-MBR gap of at least 2 MiB (where no GPT partitioning will
be in use)?

Thanks

--
mike c
 
Old 07-02-2012, 04:39 PM
gt
 
Default A question specifically about upgrading an existing arch system from grub legacy to grub without UEFI or GPT

On Mon, Jul 02, 2012 at 05:26:23PM +0100, mike cloaked wrote:
> I have been following the discussions in various places including on
> this list about the forthcoming change from grub to become grub-legacy
> and the default bootloader becoming grub2.
>
> On all my arch systems I have grub with MBR partitioning, booting to
> BIOS initially - and none of my systems is modern enough to have UEFI
> instead of BIOS.
>
> So I have been reading up on what I will need to do when grub2 version
> 2.00 appears in [core] - and how to successfully achieve the
> changeover. However I still cannot determine if it will be "necessary"
> to make sure that there is a post-MBR gap of 2MiB between the MBR and
> the first partition when the system will remain using MBR partitioning
> and grub2 will be the bootloader. So this applies to systems with no
> GPT partitions, and no UEFI.
>
> In my systems that have been running some time some have 64 sectors to
> where the start of the first partition is, and others have 2,000
> sectors which is about 1MiB - and I still don't know if grub2 version
> 2.00 will not work on those systems or not. I do know that other
> distros such as Fedora version F16 have systems running successfully
> using grub2 prior to version 2.00 with MBR partitioning and BIOS and
> boot perfectly well without the 2MiB post MBR gap. Perhaps this
> changes with the release of grub2 version 2.00?
>
> Achieving a post-MBR gap of at least 2MiB will be a painful process as
> shrinking the first partition and then moving it towards partition 2
> with an MBR partitioned disk is time consuming and not always
> successful in those systems where in the past I have adjusted the
> partitions on a drive. Maybe the recent versions of tools such as
> PartedMagic will cope better than it did a couple of years ago?
>
> Can someone help out with a clear explanation please. I am usually
> pretty good with upgrades and preparation but this has foxed me! i.e.
> specifically for a BIOS-MBR hard drive using grub2 that it is vital to
> have a post-MBR gap of at least 2 MiB (where no GPT partitioning will
> be in use)?

Why do you need to upgrade to grub2? Even if grub-legacy won't be in the
official repositories, it'll be in the AUR. Also, you don't need to
reinstall grub every now and then, so i don't see the need to upgrade.
 
Old 07-02-2012, 04:41 PM
mike cloaked
 
Default A question specifically about upgrading an existing arch system from grub legacy to grub without UEFI or GPT

On Mon, Jul 2, 2012 at 5:26 PM, mike cloaked <mike.cloaked@gmail.com> wrote:
> I have been following the discussions in various places including on
> this list about the forthcoming change from grub to become grub-legacy
> and the default bootloader becoming grub2.
>
> On all my arch systems I have grub with MBR partitioning, booting to
> BIOS initially - and none of my systems is modern enough to have UEFI
> instead of BIOS.
>
> So I have been reading up on what I will need to do when grub2 version
> 2.00 appears in [core] - and how to successfully achieve the
> changeover. However I still cannot determine if it will be "necessary"
> to make sure that there is a post-MBR gap of 2MiB between the MBR and
> the first partition when the system will remain using MBR partitioning
> and grub2 will be the bootloader. So this applies to systems with no
> GPT partitions, and no UEFI.
>
> In my systems that have been running some time some have 64 sectors to
> where the start of the first partition is, and others have 2,000
> sectors which is about 1MiB - and I still don't know if grub2 version
> 2.00 will not work on those systems or not. I do know that other
> distros such as Fedora version F16 have systems running successfully
> using grub2 prior to version 2.00 with MBR partitioning and BIOS and
> boot perfectly well without the 2MiB post MBR gap. Perhaps this
> changes with the release of grub2 version 2.00?
>
> Achieving a post-MBR gap of at least 2MiB will be a painful process as
> shrinking the first partition and then moving it towards partition 2
> with an MBR partitioned disk is time consuming and not always
> successful in those systems where in the past I have adjusted the
> partitions on a drive. Maybe the recent versions of tools such as
> PartedMagic will cope better than it did a couple of years ago?
>
> Can someone help out with a clear explanation please. I am usually
> pretty good with upgrades and preparation but this has foxed me! i.e.
> specifically for a BIOS-MBR hard drive using grub2 that it is vital to
> have a post-MBR gap of at least 2 MiB (where no GPT partitioning will
> be in use)?
>
> Thanks

The best I could guess at for the way an upgrade with my systems would
work - is that if I have a disk with a 64 sector post-MBR gap (where 1
sector is 512 bytes), is that grub2 with BIOS-MBR and a /boot
partition, would still work but that it might be more efficient
putting it on a disc where the post-MBR gap is 2MiB - but changing to
the larger post-MBR gap is not an "essential" change prior to changing
from grub to grub2 - though I would like someone more expert than me
to tell me if I am right or wrong!

Thanks

--
mike c
 
Old 07-02-2012, 04:48 PM
mike cloaked
 
Default A question specifically about upgrading an existing arch system from grub legacy to grub without UEFI or GPT

On Mon, Jul 2, 2012 at 5:39 PM, gt <static.vortex@gmx.com> wrote:

> Why do you need to upgrade to grub2? Even if grub-legacy won't be in the
> official repositories, it'll be in the AUR. Also, you don't need to
> reinstall grub every now and then, so i don't see the need to upgrade.

OK if the general policy will be that for existing systems there is no
need to upgrade grub in this situation that will be great - and if
grub-legacy is in the AUR but no further development or changes takes
place then that would satisfy me and there would be presumably no need
to install the grub-legacy package from AUR? Just continue to update
using pacman -Syu?

A further question then arises - let's say there is a system on which
arch is not yet running and a new arch install needs to be done - but
that the disk is pre-partitioned and has perhaps Windows XP or Windows
7 that the user would like to preserve with a dual boot system - and
which perhaps has an OEM (HP) recovery partition between the MBR and
the NTFS Windows partition with a post-MBR gap of 64 sectors. When
installing arch when the default is grub2 - would it then need a
larger post-MBR gap to achieve a successful (and bootable) install?
(This is for the presumption that it has BIOS and MBR partitioning
only - and again no GPT or UEFI) - or would an install along the lines
that most people have been used to doing with existing install media
work perfectly well?



--
mike c
 
Old 07-02-2012, 06:23 PM
Leonidas Spyropoulos
 
Default A question specifically about upgrading an existing arch system from grub legacy to grub without UEFI or GPT

On Jul 2, 2012 5:48 PM, "mike cloaked" <mike.cloaked@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> On Mon, Jul 2, 2012 at 5:39 PM, gt <static.vortex@gmx.com> wrote:
>
> > Why do you need to upgrade to grub2? Even if grub-legacy won't be in the
> > official repositories, it'll be in the AUR. Also, you don't need to
> > reinstall grub every now and then, so i don't see the need to upgrade.
>
> OK if the general policy will be that for existing systems there is no
> need to upgrade grub in this situation that will be great - and if
> grub-legacy is in the AUR but no further development or changes takes
> place then that would satisfy me and there would be presumably no need
> to install the grub-legacy package from AUR? Just continue to update
> using pacman -Syu?

That's what I assume also. I'm using syslinux so I am not directly affected
by the upgrade, but always good to know.

Also since this could potentially break you system the update would be in
the news add well when it happens, along with info on how to proceed on
various situations.

>
> A further question then arises - let's say there is a system on which
> arch is not yet running and a new arch install needs to be done - but
> that the disk is pre-partitioned and has perhaps Windows XP or Windows
> 7 that the user would like to preserve with a dual boot system - and
> which perhaps has an OEM (HP) recovery partition between the MBR and
> the NTFS Windows partition with a post-MBR gap of 64 sectors. When
> installing arch when the default is grub2 - would it then need a
> larger post-MBR gap to achieve a successful (and bootable) install?
> (This is for the presumption that it has BIOS and MBR partitioning
> only - and again no GPT or UEFI) - or would an install along the lines
> that most people have been used to doing with existing install media
> work perfectly well?
>
>
>
> --
> mike c
 

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