[Boot direct in Windows] Loaded Ubuntu 10 in partition. Will only boot in Windows

Asked by Keith Reedman on 2010-08-13

On a computer running Windows XP, I loaded Ubuntu 10 from a live CD into a partition which the CD created. All seemed satisfactory but when I now start the computer it immediately starts in Windows with no opportunity to boot in Ununtu. I have searched the questions and Grub loader is referred to - but Windows will not access the Ubuntu partition so I cannot look for it. How can I get Ubuntu to boot Please?
I did try to re-load Ubuntu, but it wanted to partition the Windows partition again, not re-load into the original one.
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Grub not installed, two installation of Ubuntu, one to remove
Disk /dev/sda: 160GB

Number Size Type File system Flags
 1 125GB primary ntfs boot
 2 34.7GB extended
 5 33.2GB logical ext4
 6 1471MB logical linux-swap(v1)

Disk /dev/sdb: 500GB

Number Size Type File system Flags
 1 253GB primary ntfs boot
 2 247GB extended
 5 241GB logical ext4
 6 6155MB logical linux-swap(v1)

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Ubuntu grub2 Edit question
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delance
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actionparsnip (andrew-woodhead666) said :
#1
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Andrea Corbellini (andrea.corbellini) said :
#2

Keith, did you use the Live CD downloaded from <http://www.ubuntu.com/desktop/get-ubuntu/download> or Wubi from <http://wubi-installer.org/>?

In the first case (the Live CD), you'd better re-install Ubuntu on the same partition (caution: doing so will erase all changes you made to Ubuntu). If re-installing doesn't fix the problem, please tell us the number of hard disks of your computer.

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delance (olivier-delance) said :
#3

To tell us the number of hard disks of your computer, please
1) Boot on Unbuntu CD with option "Try & don't install"
2) Open a terminal (Applications->Accessories->Terminal)
3) Type
       sudo parted -l
where -l is a lowercase "L".

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Keith Reedman (k-reedman) said :
#4

Thanks actionparsnip, that solved my question.

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Keith Reedman (k-reedman) said :
#5

Although the answer from actionparsnip led me to find a way to boot Ubuntu, I still have no front end to make my choice when the computer is switched on.

I have done the action suggested by delance and it appears that there are two hard disks and for a reason which I do not understand, both appear to have a copy of Ubuntu. So I still need assistance please to delete the one from my backup disc and get grub to work on the main disk.

Thanks for your help so far.

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delance (olivier-delance) said :
#6

Please post result of "sudo parted -l".
Perhaps it's not two disks, but two partitions and one of them hold windows recovery.

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Keith Reedman (k-reedman) said :
#7

This is the result:

keith@keith-black:~$ sudo parted -l
Model: ATA ST3160815A (scsi)
Disk /dev/sda: 160GB
Sector size (logical/physical): 512B/512B
Partition Table: msdos

Number Start End Size Type File system Flags
 1 32.3kB 125GB 125GB primary ntfs boot
 2 125GB 160GB 34.7GB extended
 5 125GB 159GB 33.2GB logical ext4
 6 159GB 160GB 1471MB logical linux-swap(v1)

Model: ATA Hitachi HDS72105 (scsi)
Disk /dev/sdb: 500GB
Sector size (logical/physical): 512B/512B
Partition Table: msdos

Number Start End Size Type File system Flags
 1 32.3kB 253GB 253GB primary ntfs boot
 2 253GB 500GB 247GB extended
 5 253GB 494GB 241GB logical ext4
 6 494GB 500GB 6155MB logical linux-swap(v1)

Warning: Unable to open /dev/sr0 read-write (Read-only file system). /dev/sr0
has been opened read-only.
Error: /dev/sr0: unrecognised disk label

Hope this helps to diagnose the problem. I have no idea what it all means

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delance (olivier-delance) said :
#8

You have two bootable windows partition, one of 125 GB and the second one of 253 GB.
Too big to be recovery partition.
You have two install of Linux. Which one would you delete ? (please refer as sda or sdb)
After we will be able to relaunch automatic search of OS and installation of Grub2.

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Keith Reedman (k-reedman) said :
#9

The one to delete would be the one on sda

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delance (olivier-delance) said :
#10

Boot on Ubuntu CD, choose "Try" option (Live CD).
System->Administration->Gparted.
The displayed disk is sda.
Select partition sda5.
If mounted, right-click + unmount.
Rigth-click + delete.
Do the same for sda6.
After you have to decide what to do a free space.
1) If you want to expand sda1 partition, you have to delete partition sda5, and then move/resize partition sda1.
2) If you want to use free space for data, create a partition which use whole space and choose
      ext4fs (or ext3fs) for Ubuntu
      ntfs for WIndows

For booting on Linux or Windows, have a look at:
      https://help.ubuntu.com/community/RecoveringUbuntuAfterInstallingWindows

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Keith Reedman (k-reedman) said :
#11

delay owing to being away yesterday.

After selecting sda5 and checking it was unmounted, tried to delete.

Message: Unable to delete. Please unmount any divisions higher than 5.

sda6 does not have an unmount option, nor is delete available (greyed out).

So still stuck.

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delance (olivier-delance) said :
#12

Partition 5 is a logical partition which hold partition 6.
So you need to delete partition 6 before deleting partition 5.

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Keith Reedman (k-reedman) said :
#13

It is not possible to delete sda6 because the delete option is greyed out and not available to use.

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delance (olivier-delance) said :
#14

did you unmount sda6 before trying to delete it ?

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Keith Reedman (k-reedman) said :
#15

Unlike sda5, sda6 does not have the unmount option

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delance (olivier-delance) said :
#16

You are right, it's a swap partition, which can't be mounted.
So if you have booted under Ubuntu CD, you must be able to delete it directly.
I have no explanation.
I did a mistake, it's sda4 which is an extended partition, so you can unmount and then delete sda5 (the word "extended" is both used by windows for partition holding partitions and Linux as extended file system!).

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delance (olivier-delance) said :
#17

Is your problem solved ? If not I can try to help, else, please, could you mark question "Solved".

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Keith Reedman (k-reedman) said :
#18

Still not solved but I go away for a day or more and am not by my computer continuously.

Problem now is that the following are the partitions offered after the command Gparted:

sda1 ntfs
sda2 extended
sda5 ext4
Unallocated Unallocated
sda6 linux swap

I tried, as you suggested to delete sda 5 but this will not work. You suggested deleting sda4 but this does not appear.

What next please?

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Joe (jfarina) said :
#19

This is what I would do if I were you. I would go into Windows Disk Management by right clicking my computer and selecting manage and then I would delete the partition you are using for Linux and it will say that it is free space. After you do this, then reinstall Linux on the free space. You are all set. Grub will work fine...

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Keith Reedman (k-reedman) said :
#20

Thank you for your suggestion. My only concern here is that I would loose all the emails and contacts which I have recently built up. Is there a way to save these for re-installation afterwards?

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actionparsnip (andrew-woodhead666) said :
#21

Sure, what email client do you use?

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Keith Reedman (k-reedman) said :
#22

Not absolutely sure what is meant by that, but my email is - incoming POP3 and outgoing SMTP.

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delance (olivier-delance) said :
#23

Which software do you use to manage e-mail: Evolution (the default one in Ubuntu), Thunderbird or another one.
If you use Evolution, all data are in ".evolution" folder in your home directory. N.B.: in Unix, files beginning with a dot are hidden files, you have to parameter your files explorer, or if you use terminal, add "-a" to ls command.

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Keith Reedman (k-reedman) said :
#24

I am using Evolution and was able to find the .evolution folder. Should I copy this to a memory stick to copy back into a new installation?

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Best delance (olivier-delance) said :
#25

Yes

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Keith Reedman (k-reedman) said :
#26

Thanks delance, that solved my question.

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Keith Reedman (k-reedman) said :
#27

Thanks to all who helped