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You Grubbers, What a Mess You've Left For Us to Sort Out!

From: Donald Darden
Subject: You Grubbers, What a Mess You've Left For Us to Sort Out!
Date: Thu, 15 Jul 2010 04:31:44 +0000

I mean this is an unbelievable mess.  Windows, which has little to honor
it, at least had consistency when it came to its continued use of
Boot.ini and NTOSLRNL.EXE to manage the single or multi-boot process.
The order of installation of those operating systems was not
particularly important.

My own experience with GRUP shows no consistency between what you call
"legacy" grub and grub 2.  Now it is understandable if an older  version
does not fully understand a newer one that will supercede it, but that a
new version refuses to recognize or work wih a prior install which
involved an older version?  No tools, no details, and no instructions on
conversion or adaptation of the boot process as needed?  What sort of
madness is that?

I have problems in the Ubuntu+VirtualBox lashup, which result in some
behavior issues with the Windows client.  To try and isolate if it is
related to Ubuntu or VirtualBox, I decided to add a partition with
Fedora 13 and VirtualBox in combo and a copy of the same Windows client
to test there.

But recent releases of Ubuntu are using what you call Grub 2, and that
works fine with similar installs, but not with Fedora 13, which relies
on legacy Grub.  Put Ubuntu 9.04 on which uses legacy Grub, no problem
except none of the Grub 2 installs is recognized now.  With legacy grub
I am dealing with /boot/grub/menu.lst, but with anything later I am
either dealing with /boot/grub/grub.conf, /boot/grub/grub.cfg,
or /boot/grub.cfg, or some file in some folder that is not even named.
I search the internet and find nothing to explain any of this.

I even find a changing format, but no guide to what fits now with that
format.  And warnings that you cannot change files like grub.cfg
directly, but nothing to tell you where to go to make changes instead.

My feeling is that grub is actually being brought along by the efforts
of different individuals, none of them in tune with each other.  So you
end up with a stage2, but you have to first work through a stage1, stage
1.5, stage1.97, stage1.98, and possibly many others.

The way I see it, if you ever reach a standard, you must continue to
support that standard with whatever you move on to after that.  It seems
obvious that nobody is bothering to ensure that where grub is concerned.

If you aren't there, and from all that I have found it appears this is a
neglected area where grub is concerned, then the proper thing to do is
provide some essential tools for moving existing installs from one
standard to another.  Sorry, I could not find any of these either.

Donald Darden  

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