Laptop Diaries II

How to  build a triple boot laptop. First, I salvaged as much as possible. Fortunately this consisted of the whole of the windows partition, and some parts of the Linux partition, including some parts of $HOME & /opt. Most importantly it included /opt/install which acts a bit like “My Downloads”. This meant that I have a list of most of the products originally installed on top of RH Linux. (These include Star Office, Acroread & Mozilla (I also downloaded GNOCL, but only played with it). I used “Ghost” to save the windows partition.

I then installed RH Linux 9.0. I used the RH installer to reconstruct the partition table and install grub. We used two partions, one for root and one for swap. It went on a dream, and the window manager started up with a 1024×768 screen without trouble, unlike my previous experience where I had extreme difficulty getting X-Windows to work. This is despite the excellent advice on the Dell C400 (Red Hat 7.2) page at

With the help of Phil & Ho, we ghosted the windows files back onto the second partition. We then added a windows partion entry in the grub menu. For RH Linux the Grub menu is held in /boot/grub in a file called menu.lst.

rootnoverify (disk-id,partition#)
chainloader +1

We then cut a version of the S10 V73 build iso bootable image and installed S10. This had the normal linux swap vs Solaris installable disk recognition problem, so I deleted the Linux Swap partion used the Soalris installer to cut a new partition for Solaris and installed Soalris. Note: This suggests that my install order is sub optimal. I believe that Solaris engineering are working on this problem, but a later version of the installer is required. An additional consequence is that the boot disk had the Solaris boot manager installed.

I then booted the system using the RH Linux boot disk and used the RH disk druid to reset the partion sizes and codes, reinstall linux, reinstall grub and prepare the candidate windows partiton for another restore. (This had to be done because I had damaged the partition definitions while installing Solaris. (I’m not sure if this is me or a feature of the Solaris installer.)The Solaris grub menu entries are:

rootnoverify (disk-id,partition#)

I now have a Laptop, with Grub managing the boot sequence and Linux, Windows & Solaris as operating systems. Next, networking, X-Windows and look & feel

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