[kwlug-disc] how the ^#*&^)(& do i convince debian to install grub, not LILO?

Robert P. J. Day rpjday at crashcourse.ca
Thu Sep 10 06:39:36 EDT 2009

On Wed, 9 Sep 2009, Robert P. J. Day wrote:

>   for the first time, i'm doing a manual partitioning install of
> debian lenny (5.0.3), where i'm creating a small primary partition
> /dev/hda1) for /boot, and the rest of the HD is devoted to a single
> LVM PV, which will contain a number of other logical volumes.
>   my problem is that, no matter what variation i use, i'm only given
> the option of installing LILO as the boot loader, not grub.  it's as
> if my selection of partitioning confuses the install process to the
> point where it thinks grub is not an option.
>   i've googled a fair bit, and one suggestion was to make that /boot
> primary partition bootable, which i did, and it made no difference.
> i finally just left LILO in there, after which the install
> completed, and the reboot crashed, unable to mount the root
> filesystem.
>   does anyone know what it is about a partitioning selection that
> would make a debian install give up on grub as a bootloader option?
> thanks.

  ok, i think i've debugged this one.  AFAICT, if you select ext3 as
the filesystem type for the primary /boot partition, you will no
longer be given the opportunity to install grub when installing debian
-- you need to use ext2.  why is that?  i have a fedora system which
uses ext3 for the primary /boot partition and grub works just fine

  is this really what a debian install looks for (ext2 vs ext3 for
/boot partition) in deciding whether or not to allow you to use grub?


Robert P. J. Day                               Waterloo, Ontario, CANADA

        Linux Consulting, Training and Annoying Kernel Pedantry.

Web page:                                          http://crashcourse.ca
Twitter:                                       http://twitter.com/rpjday

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