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Old 01-20-2011, 10:49 AM
Enrique Becerra
 
Default Repairing Ubuntu without loosing data or breaking Windows

Hi people
Is there any guide I can follow to repair my Ubuntu installation
without loosing important Ubuntu data or breaking Windows XP
installation?

My PC has a dual boot (Ubuntu 10.10 / Windows XP) but Ubuntu is not
working because it freezes when gdm shows and can't run in safemode
from any grub entry. I have my CD ready to begin, but I get "scared"
when I reach the point where it asks me partition stuff... will it
format everything again, right?

Hope someone can help me
Greets,
_____________________________
Enrique Becerra
twitter: @kabeza
http://www.beza.com.ar

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Old 01-20-2011, 08:08 PM
MR ZenWiz
 
Default Repairing Ubuntu without loosing data or breaking Windows

On Thu, Jan 20, 2011 at 3:49 AM, Enrique Becerra <kabeza@gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi people
> Is there any guide I can follow to repair my Ubuntu installation
> without loosing important Ubuntu data or breaking Windows XP
> installation?
>
> My PC has a dual boot (Ubuntu 10.10 / Windows XP) but Ubuntu is not
> working because it freezes when gdm shows and can't run in safemode
> from any grub entry. I have my CD ready to begin, but I get "scared"
> when I reach the point where it asks me partition stuff... will it
> format everything again, right?
>

Just make sure you do a custom disk setup and tell it NOT to format
anything you want left alone. If you put your /home on a separate
partition from / (and /boot), you should be able to reformat the /
(and /boot) partition(s) without affecting your /home or your Windows.

(Yes, I've done it - it's only scary the first time around but you
*do* have to be careful. :-)

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Old 01-20-2011, 08:52 PM
Enrique Becerra
 
Default Repairing Ubuntu without loosing data or breaking Windows

Hi MrZenWiz.
I have some doubts

1) custom disk setup? you mean to build a custom dvd install disc? how?
2) I don't have /home on a sep. partition. Can I move/separate with a
partition tool?
3) Any visual stuff available on the installation DVD that allow me to do this?

And finally

4) a friend of mine told me he believes the gdm freezing is being
caused by grub with ext3 and that I should reinstall everything from
scratch (backup before) and put everything on ext4

Thanks a lot for helping me to stay a little less freaked


On Thu, Jan 20, 2011 at 6:08 PM, MR ZenWiz <mrzenwiz@gmail.com> wrote:

> Just make sure you do a custom disk setup and tell it NOT to format
> anything you want left alone. *If you put your /home on a separate
> partition from / (and /boot), you should be able to reformat the /
> (and /boot) partition(s) without affecting your /home or your Windows.
>
> (Yes, I've done it - it's only scary the first time around but you
> *do* have to be careful. :-)

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Old 01-20-2011, 09:04 PM
MR ZenWiz
 
Default Repairing Ubuntu without loosing data or breaking Windows

[Grr - bloody reply-to-whatever feature....]

On Thu, Jan 20, 2011 at 1:52 PM, Enrique Becerra <kabeza@gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi MrZenWiz.
> I have some doubts
>
We all do the first time around.... *:-)

> 1) custom disk setup? you mean to build a custom dvd install disc? how?

No. *When you install Linux, you get to a point where it wants to lay
out your hard drive, usually with a pre-configured LVM setup. *There's
always an option here to roll your own, usually it's called "Custom"
or "Create my own" or something like that.

> 2) I don't have /home on a sep. partition. Can I move/separate with a
> partition tool?

Gparted is good for that, and you can get it in a bootable CD image
format - check Google.

> 3) Any visual stuff available on the installation DVD that allow me to do this?
>
Not sure what "this" is....

> And finally
>
> 4) a friend of mine told me he believes the gdm freezing is being
> caused by grub with ext3 and that I should reinstall everything from
> scratch (backup before) and put everything on ext4
>
No. *I have my systems set up with /boot as ext2 (it doesn't change
often enough to warrant a journal for a 100MB file system), / is ext3
(because ext4 is not always available to other OSs - it's a fallback
paranoia option that's not required, but it works just fine) and the
rest of the Linux-only partitions are all ext4.

Grub doesn't care what file system you use as long as it's recognized,
and that includes other FSs than ext4 - the list of options is in the
installation GUI....

Now if your partition is ext3 and damaged, that might be a problem,
but the ext3 alone is not.

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Old 01-20-2011, 09:04 PM
Lucio M Nicolosi
 
Default Repairing Ubuntu without loosing data or breaking Windows

On Thu, Jan 20, 2011 at 7:52 PM, Enrique Becerra <kabeza@gmail.com> wrote:

> I have some doubts

>
> 4) a friend of mine told me he believes the gdm freezing is being
> caused by grub with ext3 and that I should reinstall everything from
> scratch (backup before) and put everything on ext4

Grub 1 (Legacy) has issues with ext4, not the other way around (Grub2
supports ext3).

About freezing, have you run memtest? Linux is not as forgiving as
Windows on a faulty hardware.


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L M Nicolosi, Eng.
GNU-Linux Regist. User #481505 - http://counter.li.org/
Ubuntu 10.10 AMD64

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Old 01-20-2011, 09:13 PM
Enrique Becerra
 
Default Repairing Ubuntu without loosing data or breaking Windows

On Thu, Jan 20, 2011 at 7:04 PM, Lucio M Nicolosi <lmnicolosi@gmail.com> wrote:

> Grub 1 (Legacy) has issues with ext4, not the other way around (Grub2
> supports ext3).

AFAIK I have latest grub. I always kept updated and upgraded since 9.04...

> About freezing, have you run memtest? Linux is not as forgiving as
> Windows on a faulty hardware.

Yes, I run it without problems. Also tried every entry in my grub
list. Time before the freezing, I upgraded kernel because I read it
solved a bug with nvidia drivers, etc. and had been running with this
for some months until one day PC reset and then gdm begun freezing at
startup. I'm also suspecting that the nVidia or some video stuff may
be going bad, because the freeze occurs when gdm shows userlist

PS: any way I can try reinstalling the nvidia driver from my Ubuntu
10.10 by launching LIVECD?

Thanks

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Old 01-20-2011, 11:22 PM
Lucio M Nicolosi
 
Default Repairing Ubuntu without loosing data or breaking Windows

On Thu, Jan 20, 2011 at 8:13 PM, Enrique Becerra <kabeza@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Thu, Jan 20, 2011 at 7:04 PM, Lucio M Nicolosi <lmnicolosi@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>> Grub 1 (Legacy) has issues with ext4, not the other way around (Grub2
>> supports ext3).
>
> AFAIK I have latest grub. I always kept updated and upgraded since 9.04...
>
>> About freezing, have you run memtest? Linux is not as forgiving as
>> Windows on a faulty hardware.
>
> Yes, I run it without problems. Also tried every entry in my grub
> list. Time before the freezing, I upgraded kernel because I read it
> solved a bug with nvidia drivers, etc. and had been running with this
> for some months until one day PC reset and then gdm begun freezing at
> startup. I'm also suspecting that the nVidia or some video stuff may
> be going bad, because the freeze occurs when gdm shows userlist
>
> PS: any way I can try reinstalling the nvidia driver from my Ubuntu
> 10.10 by launching LIVECD?

Perhaps you could boot from the Live CD and check if your the problem
persists, if so you may gave a hardware problem, if not you could try
to reconfigure your system with "dpkg-reconfigure -a".

L.

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Ubuntu 10.10 AMD64

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Old 01-21-2011, 01:14 AM
NoOp
 
Default Repairing Ubuntu without loosing data or breaking Windows

On 01/20/2011 04:49 AM, Enrique Becerra wrote:
> Hi people
> Is there any guide I can follow to repair my Ubuntu installation
> without loosing important Ubuntu data or breaking Windows XP
> installation?
>
> My PC has a dual boot (Ubuntu 10.10 / Windows XP) but Ubuntu is not
> working because it freezes when gdm shows and can't run in safemode
> from any grub entry. I have my CD ready to begin, but I get "scared"
> when I reach the point where it asks me partition stuff... will it
> format everything again, right?
>

I think what Zenwiz is attempting to advise is to try an in-place
reinstall from the liveCD. Note: *before* attempting to do this, back up
any critical data files that you have in your home folders. You can use
the liveCD to do this. This is from my notes of doing an in-place
reinstall from 9.04, but you should be able to do the same with 10.10
without much effort. If you'd prefer to wait, I'll replicate on a 10.10
tomorrow or the next day & update the instructions:

Boot to the liveCD and then select the run as normal option just to make
sure that all is working. Use the liveCD to save any data off of the
drive that is critical to you (taxes, photos, documents, etc). Open
gparted (System|Administration|Gparted) and make note of all of your
partitions. You can also open a terminal and:

$ sudo fdisk -l

In fact, it's a good idea if you do that & post the results back here
before you proceed further.

Unmount the drive and then select the install icon on the desktop.

When you get to the install part it will go something like this (this
was from one of my old Jaunty/9.04 notes, but lucid/10.04 /maverick
10.10 should be pretty much the same:

Where to you want to put Ubuntu 9.04?
o Install them side by side, choosing between them at each startup (by
default this is checked)
o Install using the entire disk
o Specify partitions manually (advanced)
(select this last option)

Forward
I choose to 'Edit Partition' /dev/sda1 (*format unchecked*)
(You'll need to determine which is the correct /dev/sdaX on your system)
Use as: ext4
Format Partition: *UNCHECKED*
Mount Point: /
OK
Forward
I get the standard warning "The file system on /dev/sda1
assigned to / has not been marked for formating...".
Continue

That will perform an in-place reinstall of the system on the /dev/sdaX
you've selected without disturbing your /home and /opt folders.

That said, it might be better if you tell us exactly what what started
the problem to begin with & what you've done to troubleshoot so far. Try
booting to recovery mode and select the dpkg option to see if that will
correct the problem first. If it's a gdm problem, then quite often the
issue is an incorrect graphic driver; give us as much details about your
system as you can (model, graphic card, memory, monitory etc.) An easy
way to do this is to boot to the liveCD, ensure you have internet
working, and then in a terminal issue:

$ sudo lshw > myhardware.txt
$ gedit myhardware.txt

and then copy & paste the results here:
http://pastebin.ubuntu.com/
past it into the 'Content' box, then click the 'Past!' button. Post back
here on the resulting URL/link so that someone can take a look at your
hardware details.



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Old 01-21-2011, 10:55 AM
Enrique Becerra
 
Default Repairing Ubuntu without loosing data or breaking Windows

On Thu, Jan 20, 2011 at 9:22 PM, Lucio M Nicolosi <lmnicolosi@gmail.com> wrote:
> Perhaps you could boot from the Live CD and check if your the problem
> persists, if so you may gave a hardware problem, if not you could try
> to reconfigure your system with "dpkg-reconfigure -a".
>
> L.

LiveCD starts and works perfect, no problems.
where should I run dpkg-reconfigure -a ? in the liveCD terminal?

Thanks,

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Old 01-21-2011, 11:15 AM
Lucio M Nicolosi
 
Default Repairing Ubuntu without loosing data or breaking Windows

On Fri, Jan 21, 2011 at 9:55 AM, Enrique Becerra <kabeza@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Thu, Jan 20, 2011 at 9:22 PM, Lucio M Nicolosi <lmnicolosi@gmail.com> wrote:
>> Perhaps you could boot from the Live CD and check if your the problem
>> persists, if so you may gave a hardware problem, if not you could try
>> to reconfigure your system with "dpkg-reconfigure -a".
>>
>> L.
>
> LiveCD starts and works perfect, no problems.
> where should I run dpkg-reconfigure -a ? in the liveCD terminal?

- Remove the live CD
- Restart your system
- In the GRUB menu there is a "Recovery Mode" that will boot in to
single user mode (terminal only)
- there you should run "sudo dpkg-reconfigure -a"


If your system starts up automatically with no Grub menu you'll
probably have to edit grub.cfg for it to do so as explained in:
"Command Line and Rescue Mode" on
https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Grub2#/etc/default/grub%20%28file%29
.

L.

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Ubuntu 10.10 AMD64

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