please help with legacy grub

Gregory Nowak greg at
Thu Feb 10 21:29:15 EST 2011

Hash: SHA1

Christopher and all,

On Thu, Feb 10, 2011 at 07:57:43PM -0500, Christopher Moore wrote:
> First, there is a grub rescue floppy disk which should help you fix your grub problems.  You might need sighted assistance to run it.  I forget the name
> , but you can google it.

Yes, it's called supergrub, and the need for sighted assistance is why
I haven't tried it, at least not yet.

> Second, in the old days, we were able to copy the vmlinuz image to a floppy with dd and boot from it.

Yes, however, I seem to recall reading somewhere that new kernels
don't support doing that anymore. Even if they do, the initrd won't
fit on a floppy, and without the initrd, there's nothing that I could
really do.

> Third, when grub doesn't boot successfully, you can get into a shell prompt.  This allows you to use many of the normal shell commands to help determine 
> what went wrong.  In particular, you can mount devices and move/copy files.  Again, you won't have speech.  

Yes, I've tried getting into that, like I described in my first post,
but without sighted help.

> Finally, save yourself from further headaches and trash the machine.

Yes, that thought has crossed my mind too, but even though software
speech is all fine and good, there's still some part of me that
refuses to let go of my doubletalk pc as long as it still works, and
as long as I have a machine to use it in. Some might think this silly,
I know.

Thanks for all your ideas everyone, they're much appreciated. I have
an old version of systemrescuecd lying around here somewhere, which I
seem to recall works on this system. If that's correct, then hopefully
it won't be too old for me to be able to chroot into the system on the
hd with it. If it is, then I thought I could use it to upload the
kernel, and initrd to another machine on my lan, and use isolinux to
boot with them. I'll post back with whatever finally happens for the
record, but since this machine isn't a priority, and since getting it
bootable again looks like a somewhat complex project, that may not be
soon. Thanks again.


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