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Thread: Ubuntu / Backtrack 2 multiboot USB HDD Installation with GRUB on USB

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  1. #1
    Just burned his ISO
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    Default Ubuntu / Backtrack 2 multiboot USB HDD Installation with GRUB on USB

    Hi, I'm trying to install backtrack and ubuntu on an external USB hard disk, with grub on the external hard disk. I can partition and install ubuntu with no problems. But I've tried so many things , I just can't seem to get backtrack to boot correctly. I installed backtrack without writing to the MBR, I edited my menu.lst file in ubuntu to boot backtrack, but it's not recognizing the partition that backtrack's installed in, keeps saying -

    VFS cannot open root device "sdb3" or unknown-block (0,0)
    Kernel panic - not syncing.......etc.

    I'm sure that it's sdb3 cos I checked it in fdisk -l. I deleted the partition, recreated the partition and reinstalled backtrack 2, and I'm still getting the same error. But now, it's messing up ubuntu. when I try to load ubuntu, it says it cannot load 'apt-get' and it cannot mount my primary hard disk... Does this have anything to do with the LILO bootloader interfering with GRUB or something?

    Just to let you know, my disk is partitioned 5 ways: -

    sdb1 - Ubuntu
    sdb2 - swap
    sdb3 - bactrack
    sdb5 - (future linux installation)
    sdb6 - fat32 shared files

    I just don't know what's going on..., I've tried editing menu.lst in many ways, using chainloader, changing sdb3 to sda3, hda3, etc. in case it was named wrongly... just don't know what's wrong...

  2. #2
    My life is this forum thorin's Avatar
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    I don't want to tell you not to use BT, because I definately think BT is the best of the pack. However, nUbuntu might make things easier for you if you really like Ubuntu.

  3. #3
    Just burned his ISO
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    Thanks for the suggestion, but actually cos I'm new to linux, I want to experiment with different distros... but if I can't get this to work, I'm gonna be using nubuntu! But in the meantime... any ideas on how to solve the problem? Maybe should I install backtrack without LILO?

    I just remembered something, I had files in my rootcopy folder of the backtrack iso.... could this be causing problems? I don't see how...

  4. #4
    Developer
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    Quote Originally Posted by thorin View Post
    I don't want to tell you not to use BT, because I definately think BT is the best of the pack. However, nUbuntu might make things easier for you if you really like Ubuntu.
    nunbuntu is a super big pain in the ass to install to hard disk

  5. #5
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    Does anyone have any ideas? Please help me... I'm dying here, I've tried repartitioning and reinstalling both distros like 10 times....

  6. #6
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    I checked around the gentoo forum and saw the same problem, someone said that means the kernel doesn't recognize sdb1 fdisk -l will tell you how linux sees your hd configuration, so you can make sure grub matches it, sorry if that's not much help but if you post grub's configuration and what fdisk -l tells you maybe someone could help you out

  7. #7
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    The thing is that I already checked fdisk -l.... but it clearly lists my hard disk partition where backtrack is as sdb3, here's the output of fdisk -l

    Disk /dev/sdb: 80.0 GB, 80026361856 bytes
    255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 9729 cylinders
    Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes

    Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
    /dev/sdb1 1 1245 10000431 83 Linux
    /dev/sdb2 1246 1494 2000092+ 82 Linux swap / Solaris
    /dev/sdb3 1495 2102 4883760 83 Linux
    /dev/sdb4 2103 9727 61247812+ 5 Extended
    /dev/sdb5 2103 3347 10000431 83 Linux
    /dev/sdb6 3348 9727 51247318+ b W95 FAT32


    This is what I'm typing in menu.lst -

    title backtrack 2
    root (hd0,2)
    kernel /boot/vmlinuz ro root=/dev/sdb3
    initrd /boot/splash.initrd

    I've tried removing the initrd line, I've tried loading lilo through the chainloader command, nothing seems to work, I've tried substituting sdb3 with hda3, sda3, just in case it's addressing it wrongly, but it's not working, I'm so confused...

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