Subject: Re: booting NetBSD - multi OS laptop
To: David Laight <>
From: Glenn Becker <>
List: current-users
Date: 02/21/2006 19:21:27
Thanks all for the responses -

> You may need to have grub installed in the pbr to load these systems.
> Grub is much more akin to NetBSD's /boot program than the mbr bootselect
> stuff.

Is 'pbr' = (primary|partition|?) boot record, e.g. the place in the 
specific partition that corresponds to what the mbr is for the entire 

>> I booted into Debian and installed GRUB, which
>> auto-detected everything except NetBSD. Sure enough, NetBSD would not boot
>> when I added an entry for it to the GRUB menu, utilizing the chainloader
>> option.

>That should work, you must have the parameters for grub incorrect.

OK, I had

rootnoverify (hd0,4)
chainloader +1

... got this from the GRUB manual, but it may be out of date.

>> I've seen some indication that NetBSD will not boot if it is on a
>> non-primary partition. Is this the case (got contradictory info when I
>> STFW)?
> The boot floppies installed it there, and it booted - so it must work!
> The documentation you found is out of date.

Yes ... this is true. I also found a couple of posts on the 'Net from you 
to this effect when I searched. :) Thanks!

Current status of this: I (rather stupidly, I think) decided to try to 
make WinXP boot from a logical partition ... which hasn't worked. So I 
currently have an unbootable Windows system (with most of my astronomy 
apps on it) and two bootable Linux systems. Decided to hold before doing 
further "damage" (there is little to be done - not much in the way of data 
on this disk).

When I converted the Win partition to logical using Partition Magic, it 
decided quite on its own to create a small 8MB partition at the beginning 
of my disk ... which has made everything even more sloppy. I'm millimeters 
from throwing Windows into the sea ... again.


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