How to update /etc/fstab on a non-booting system?

Asked by Dean von Germeten

I have a gateway Pentium 4 desktop PC with dual-boot Windows XP Pro and Ubuntu 12.04 "PP" which I updated online from 10.04.
I ran a popular Antivirus program (Dr. Web) and after removing 8 trojans on the Windows side, lost all ability to boot up, had only grub>rescue appear on a black screen. I ran boot-repair from the "try Ubuntu" live CD and now have only "multiple active partitions" and an inactive cursor. The results page of running boot repair is here: http://
Apparently some partitions are out of range. It says near the bottom that I may need to update /etc/fstab ...can someone please advise me? Thank you.

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actionparsnip (andrew-woodhead666) said :

Do you dual boot the system?
How did you install Ubuntu, did you use wubi or did you resize the NTFS and make a dual boot that way?

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Dean von Germeten (germeten-i) said :

Dear Andrew:

Yes, I used to dual-boot the system, in either Windows XP or Ubuntu 12.04, when it was working!

My system had Windows XP Pro first of all, then a friend installed Ubuntu 10.04, I don't know which
method he used. I updated to 12.04 using online prompt I received from Linux. All that was working
fine until I ran Dr. Web.

You've asked the same question a few times. Please tell me how it's relevant and the difference it
makes to updating /etc/fstab based on the boot-repair report(?)

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actionparsnip (andrew-woodhead666) said :

I suggest you boot to XP CD and reinstate NTLDR, then boot to the Ubuntu liveCD and use this guide to chroot to the installed OS and reinstall grub to the MBR, it should pick up the installed XP OS and setup the dual boot.

Alternatively, you could get NTLDR instated so that XP loads OK. Wipe out the Ubuntu partitions and then reinstall Precise and the dual boot will be re-established.

Both ways have pros and cons :)

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Dean von Germeten (germeten-i) said :

The computer was a gift, I don't have the XP NTLDR reinstall. What is the other option? I don't understand

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actionparsnip (andrew-woodhead666) said :

Use the guide and you can reinstate Grub to the MBR, the dual boot may be handled automagically

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