[svlug] Restore LILO from floppy?

William Black wjblack at yahoo.com
Mon Mar 3 11:59:12 PST 2003

Disclaimer:  Insufficient info to tell, so this is
frought with guesses.  In all likelihood, the
instructions below will cause your computer to explode
and give everyone's firstborn prostate cancer (even
the girls!).  That said:

Your first, best bet is to boot the system whatever
way you can, and run "lilo" as root.  If your hard
drive's /etc/lilo.conf is correct, this will reinstall
the stage 2 loader that's currently MIA on the drive. 
If you're using another boot loader to get to LI (say
Boot Magic), say bye-bye to it in all likelihood.  If
not, this might just do it.

Second bet if this doesn't work:  Backup your existing
/etc/lilo.conf somewhere nice (a user's home
directory, e.g.) and copy the one from the floppy to
/etc (probably "mount /mnt/floppy; cp
/mnt/floppy/lilo.conf /etc; umount /mnt/floppy", then
eject the floppy).  MAKE SURE YOU EJECT THE FLOPPY (so
you get errors if lilo.conf is pointing to the drive)!
 Then run "lilo" and see if you get any errors.  If
not, reboot and see what happens.

If you get an error (no reboot) or booting fails (boot
"normally"), edit /etc/lilo.conf using your favorite
editor.  There should be lines that read something
like (lots of lines chopped for clarity):


This example is for Sun Linux on the first SCSI disk. 
If any of the lines read "/dev/fd0" or similar, change
them to point to your hard drive (for boot, that's
probably /dev/hda, for root, that's probably
/dev/hdaX, but YMMV).  I assume that Linux is the only
thing you have installed (or you're using LILO to boot
whatever's on your system, Linux or otherwise. 
boot=/dev/Xda WILL change if this is not the case). 
If you need to know what root=, try running "df /"
from a prompt.

Good luck, and let us know how it turns out!


--- Bill Schoolcraft <bill at wiliweld.com> wrote:
> Hello Family,
> I was experiencing a weird situation where the
> computer will boot fine from LILO "only" when it's 
> booted first from the floppy then a reboot is
> then the regular lilo works.
> Booting cold straight to using the computers lilo
> gives the "LI" error.
> There are apparently good settings on the floppy I'd
> like to "restore/transfer" to the system. 

B.J. Black <wjblack at yahoo.com>

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