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[Bug-grub] Booting DOS from a floppy image

From: Dr A V Le Blanc
Subject: [Bug-grub] Booting DOS from a floppy image
Date: Thu, 14 Sep 2000 16:34:43 +0100

I am sending this (reluctantly) to this list, although it is rather
a wishlist question than a bug report.

I have been a GRUB user for some years, originally to allow users
on teaching machines to select the operating system to boot; at
one time we had Windows 3.1, Windows 95/98, NT, and Linux on each
of these machines.  Some time ago I began using GRUB itself to
install Linux, originally by chainloading LILO to boot a kernel with
an initrd, then later using GRUB directly.  This means that we can
reinstall Linux on these machines with little effort.

Unfortunately, this is not the case for the MS systems, which we
usually install using Ghost, which is accessed over the network
by booting from a boot floppy.  Now, clearly we could create a
netbootable image of such a floppy and boot it using a Net Boot
ROM or a PXE ROM.  But it would be much easier (and cheaper) if we
could load the image using GRUB, either from a local disk or from
a tftp server.

It seems to me that any existing netbootable image should work,
although I don't know whether GRUB itself or the boot code in the
image needs to replace the int 13H handler.  But there must be some
way of doing this.  Would it mean adding an extra 'kernel' format
to GRUB to allow it to load a bootable floppy image?

     -- Owen

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