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Problem Triple-Booting OSX, Ubuntu, Windows 7


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#1
Cjt782

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Hey all,

Got a problem with triple booting my Dell Inspiron Mini (1018).
At separate times I've had OSX (10.6.6) and Windows 7 working and I've had OSX and Ubuntu (11.04 i believe) working. I can't ever seem to get the 3rd OS on.
Currently I have a GUID Partition Table as follows:
1. EFI 200 MB
2. NTFS 60.5 GB (For Windows)
3. HTF+ 130 GB (For OSX)
4. ext3 50 GB (For Ubuntu)
5. swap 4GB (for Ubuntu)

I used NBI .8.4RCI and the Chameleon Bootloader.
My problem is that I can't seem to force Windows 7 to install on my NTFS partition. Everything I try returns the error that it can't be installed on GPT.
Anybody have any ideas?
Thanks in advance!

#2
J.B

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from my understanding, i think that windows cannot be installed on a GUID partition table (GPT), it prefers MBR. try formatting the disk as MBR, install windows first, then use the disk utility to make the HFS+ and ext3 partitions later, and install OSX on an MBR (because that is doable)

#3
beecher

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Just daul boot windows and mac os x
And with a program called wubi you can make the windows bootloader boot from ubunut

And then you'll get your triple boot machine

#4
Cjt782

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Just daul boot windows and mac os x
And with a program called wubi you can make the windows bootloader boot from ubunut

And then you'll get your triple boot machine


Oddly enough I tried that and had problems with WUBI. don't know why exactly. now i just can't even install windows because i've got GUID Partition Table... The disks I have tell me they can't install on that even though the Windows website says 64-bit versions should work...

from my understanding, i think that windows cannot be installed on a GUID partition table (GPT), it prefers MBR. try formatting the disk as MBR, install windows first, then use the disk utility to make the HFS+ and ext3 partitions later, and install OSX on an MBR (because that is doable)


any ideas on doing this without losing my mac install? I accidentally wiped the hard drive where i was keeping a bunch of files i'd need to reinstall..

#5
Houbos

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Are you sure Windows 7 cannot be installed on a GUID partition table? I've installed it without any problems right after Lion. Drive was partitioned from Disk Utility during Lion installation.

You always have to/should set that particular partition ACTIVE before you install boot loader on in.

Now I have another problem, though. I did following:
Installed Lion
Installed Widows 7
Booted from DVD into Lion + installed Chameleon (Windows rewrote it)
Windows won't boot into GUI, PC restarts in that moment.

I'm sure I have to repair Windows partition once again (as I always did in past). Automatic repair utility fails (it's from Microsoft). What's the easiest way to set Win partition to active and repair Windows partition? Same for Ubuntu's grub.

BTW: Why even bother with GUID partitioning?

#6
Cjt782

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Are you sure Windows 7 cannot be installed on a GUID partition table? I've installed it without any problems right after Lion. Drive was partitioned from Disk Utility during Lion installation.

You always have to/should set that particular partition ACTIVE before you install boot loader on in.

Now I have another problem, though. I did following:
Installed Lion
Installed Widows 7
Booted from DVD into Lion + installed Chameleon (Windows rewrote it)
Windows won't boot into GUI, PC restarts in that moment.

I'm sure I have to repair Windows partition once again (as I always did in past). Automatic repair utility fails (it's from Microsoft). What's the easiest way to set Win partition to active and repair Windows partition? Same for Ubuntu's grub.



I couldn't use Disk Utility to set up Windows 7... Disk Utility just creates a hybrid MBR to allow Windows. Putting chameleon back on rewrites the hybrid MBR to GUID, use a disk partitioning tool like Parted Magic to recreate the hybrid partition system:
http://www.rodsbooks...isk/hybrid.html
Then the problem is that installing chameleon rewrites the MBR to GUID, but you need chameleon to get into OS X.
Great??

#7
PookyMacMan

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I have that exact triple boot, actually (on GPT.) Here's how I did it.

1.While booted from the DVD, open Disk Utility, and create a HFS+ partition for Mac OS, a FAT32 partition for Windows, and create Ubuntu's partitions in the Ubuntu installer. (If you can't do that, create them in Disk Utility as HFS+ partitions to be formatted in the Ubuntu installer,) then install Mac OS X (and Chameleon and the rest.)

2. Install Ubuntu.

3. Install Windows 7 by formatting the FAT32 partition. It will make it NTFS. I didn't have a problem after that. (you can actually add more OS'es if you want, just make sure Windows is last.)


If everything went right, you should boot only to Windows 7. That's not a problem. Open Internet Explorer and come back here. Download EasyBCD (linked below) and iReboot (also linked below). iReboot isn't actually necessary, just more convenient.

Attached File  EasyBCD_2.1.exe   1.38MB   28 downloads
Attached File  iReboot_1.1.1.exe   247.28KB   21 downloads

After installing EasyBCD, open it, and click Add New Entry in the sidebar. Choose Mac from the top, name it whatever you want, and then switch the pop up menu to MBR. Even though the drive is GUID, I found that EFI never booted right....

After that, click Add New Entry again, and choose Linux (and name it.) From the pop up menu, choose GRUB (Legacy) if you are using Ubuntu 10.10 or earlier, or GRUB 2 if it's 11.04. If you choose GRUB (Legacy) you have to choose which partition it's on.

That's it! Reboot your computer. You should see the Windows Boot Manager with the list of OS'es. Choose Mac OS X (or whatever you named it) and press enter. You should see the familiar Chameleon bootloader. You might see a few EBIOS Read Errors first, though...

Let us know if that works!

#8
Houbos

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EasyBCD is inferior in comparison with Chameleon. My PC is mainly Mac, actually since Lion I don't have dual boot. In the past, my settings always worked, but I've always had MBR, not GUID. I'm sure if you change active partitions according to what you're gonna install and place Chameleon on separate 200 MB partition, it must work.

Like I said, I just forgot to set active partition before I installed Chameleon. Windows boots past black screen, but PC restarts just before entering GUI. System is fully set up, all actualizations and drivers in place, I don't want to reinstall. Microsoft boot repair doesn't work, it crashes. Diagnostic message prepared for sending to Redmond is just joke, no relevant informations whatsoever.

I will try to replace Windows boot loader with EasyBCD and point Chameleon to EasyBCD (i think Chameleon will find out what to do without my assistance).

#9
PookyMacMan

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EasyBCD is inferior in comparison with Chameleon. My PC is mainly Mac, actually since Lion I don't have dual boot. In the past, my settings always worked, but I've always had MBR, not GUID. I'm sure if you change active partitions according to what you're gonna install and place Chameleon on separate 200 MB partition, it must work.

Like I said, I just forgot to set active partition before I installed Chameleon. Windows boots past black screen, but PC restarts just before entering GUI. System is fully set up, all actualizations and drivers in place, I don't want to reinstall. Microsoft boot repair doesn't work, it crashes. Diagnostic message prepared for sending to Redmond is just joke, no relevant informations whatsoever.

I will try to replace Windows boot loader with EasyBCD and point Chameleon to EasyBCD (i think Chameleon will find out what to do without my assistance).


I think you might be misunderstanding. Let me explain.

First of all, EasyBCD is not a bootloader. EasyBCD simply modifies the Windows Boot Manager to add extra Windows/Mac/Linux/BSD OS selections. Second of all, it actually has to be reversed; EasyBCD points to Chameleon. In my experience (both on MBR and GUID) I could not have Chameleon load Windows because my Mac partition would be the system partition. My solution is to install Windows AFTER Chameleon, install EasyBCD (as well as set the stuff like I directed in my first post,) and reboot. You should then see the Windows Boot Manager with selections for Windows 7 and Mac OS X (or whatever you named your other one.) If you select Mac OS X, Chameleon will show up to load Lion. In other words, you select to boot Lion from the Windows Boot Manager, which directs you to Chameleon. If you still don't understand, I can put up screenshots for you. ;)

#10
Cjt782

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I think you might be misunderstanding. Let me explain.

First of all, EasyBCD is not a bootloader. EasyBCD simply modifies the Windows Boot Manager to add extra Windows/Mac/Linux/BSD OS selections. Second of all, it actually has to be reversed; EasyBCD points to Chameleon. In my experience (both on MBR and GUID) I could not have Chameleon load Windows because my Mac partition would be the system partition. My solution is to install Windows AFTER Chameleon, install EasyBCD (as well as set the stuff like I directed in my first post,) and reboot. You should then see the Windows Boot Manager with selections for Windows 7 and Mac OS X (or whatever you named your other one.) If you select Mac OS X, Chameleon will show up to load Lion. In other words, you select to boot Lion from the Windows Boot Manager, which directs you to Chameleon. If you still don't understand, I can put up screenshots for you. :rolleyes:



Ok here is my problem as well stated as I can...
I just broke my mac install by messing the disk permissions. Using disk utility to repair permissions doesn't work it just freezes about halfway in. Therefore I have to re-install the mac partition. However, even before this I had the following problem:
EasyBCD pointed to a version of chameleon that didn't work!
The chameleon on my install USB does work, and therefore before I broke the mac install I could boot into the mac partition using the install USB. Reinstalling chameleon from the install USB breaks Windows Boot Manager, and even if I repair that and then go for EasyBCD again it goes back to a different version of chameleon that doesn't work. I'm going to re-do the mac partition and see if that will fix anything. Unfortunately that will convert the hybrid MBR back to pure GPT so I'll have to use GParted to change it back again...
Ideas welcome!

#11
PookyMacMan

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Ok here is my problem as well stated as I can...
I just broke my mac install by messing the disk permissions. Using disk utility to repair permissions doesn't work it just freezes about halfway in. Therefore I have to re-install the mac partition. However, even before this I had the following problem:
EasyBCD pointed to a version of chameleon that didn't work!
The chameleon on my install USB does work, and therefore before I broke the mac install I could boot into the mac partition using the install USB. Reinstalling chameleon from the install USB breaks Windows Boot Manager, and even if I repair that and then go for EasyBCD again it goes back to a different version of chameleon that doesn't work. I'm going to re-do the mac partition and see if that will fix anything. Unfortunately that will convert the hybrid MBR back to pure GPT so I'll have to use GParted to change it back again...
Ideas welcome!


Hmm....here's what I would do.

Install Chameleon on your Mac partition. That is important. After you install Windows and install EasyBCD, add the new entry and make sure that the pop-up menu says MBR and NOT EFI. That is very, very key. Direct EasyBCD to your Mac partition and it should work. If you REALLY want to use your USB, plug it in and direct EasyBCD to your USB drive. Wait a bit and I'll post screenshots......

That hybrid MBR...is that really accurate? Windows has absolutely no problem with GPT; I don't think that actually happens....

#12
Cjt782

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Hmm....here's what I would do.

Install Chameleon on your Mac partition. That is important. After you install Windows and install EasyBCD, add the new entry and make sure that the pop-up menu says MBR and NOT EFI. That is very, very key. Direct EasyBCD to your Mac partition and it should work. If you REALLY want to use your USB, plug it in and direct EasyBCD to your USB drive. Wait a bit and I'll post screenshots......

That hybrid MBR...is that really accurate? Windows has absolutely no problem with GPT; I don't think that actually happens....


The reason you had no problem installing Windows on GPT is that Mac Disk Utility actually creates a hybrid MBR for you when you created the NTFS partition. And no I don't want to use the USB but so far thats been my only option because EasyBCD points to an obscure version of chameleon, so I'm reinstalling the mac partition to get rid of that (and install the version that works). Then I'll hopefully still have windows and can use EasyBCD as suggested.

#13
Cjt782

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In case anyone finds this useful... Use gptsync /dev/sda (assuming your drive is disk 1) from an linux live boot like gparted to fix all hybrid gpt/mbr issues. alternatively, try gptsync /dev/disk0 from a mac install disk.

#14
douglasrp

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use to repair in linux gptsync , after reinstall chamaleon and put timout in grub 0 ...

#15
Lordadmiral Drake

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Something to Windows 7: it can be installed on GPT-Disks, but only when installer is started in UEFI mode.

#16
dmazar

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Correct. But then you can not boot it with Chameleon then. Only with Clover or XPC. Or by choosing it from BIOS.

Cjt782 is right - when you make win partition on a GPT drive in OSX, then OSX creates hybrid disk (GPT with MBR). That's why everybody recomends to install OSX first - to install it on GPT disk and then let OSX converts it to hybrid. OSX will see it as GPT, and BIOS installed Win will see it as MBR.

Plus, making partition active with fdisk does not make any sense fot pure GPT disks. Only for MBR or hybrid. Lot of people are saying that they have GPT disk, while they actually have hybrid. That was very confusing for me at the beginning.

#17
douglasrp

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I currently have TB - W7, OS X, Ubuntu . I have hybrid disk. I first install e format OS X, then W7 and Ubuntu.


I used gptsycn (after install Ubuntu) that repaired windows 7, so, I enabled (in windows 7) the partition of OS X, I left as activation (do this at the prompt), and then reinstalled the chameleon (in OS X) overwriting grub. After I set up grub (in Ubuntu) to not show the boot screen and select your own Linux through the settings in / etc / default / grub .



Sorry my bad english, I hope that everyone understands







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