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Smoothwall Problems


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#16 n_K

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 19:54

As budman said formatting won't erase the bootloader unless you format the whole drive. If you want to clean up a drive so it's not been deleted but it's quick and fast then load up a linux distro, open fdisk or parted, delete all visible partitions and write changes then use the command budman gave
dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/hda bs=512 count=63
And go back to installing and it should do it fine.

The reason having a previous bootloader can cause problems is lots of script installers see there is a bootloader already and it presumes it's doing an update of an old version to a new major version or you're adding it to an existing bootloader that you don't want overwritten (multiboot) so it doesn't bother creating a new bootloader.


#17 +BudMan

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 16:44

^ exactly how were you formatting it? As stated above deleting partitions and creating new ones, or just formatting the existing partitions have nothing to do with the bootloader that might be on there.

This is not a windows install that will overwrite the bootloader on install ;)

Linux and bsds don't assume just because your installing them that they should overwrite an existing bootloader.. You would have to specifically do that! Now some installs might ask, etc. But others that have been trimmed down to just install a specific distro might not.

Wipe the zero track and you should be fine on install of whatever new OS you install - as you "tinker" with different OSes you will find this out. Or just use VM for your tinkering and then you don't ever have to worry about it, because you can just create a clean new virtual disk for all your different installs ;)

#18 OP Sikh

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 23:03

If i used VMS then i would never experience this. First time i formatted entire disk via mac os disk utility. Next part in mint. Third time (yesterday) wipe disc bootable disc 1 pass.

I can definitely low level this drive. I didn't think i would ever have to.

But i have to say I'm glad I ran into this problem and i love dd so i don't have a problem using it.

#19 n_K

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 23:09

You don't need to low level format it - that's just overkill.
All you need to do is overwrite the MBR and partition table!

#20 OP Sikh

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 23:38

@n_K: how would i make sure that i have formatted the MBR / partition tables?

#21 n_K

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 01:44

dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/XXX bs=512 count=63
Where XXX is your drive, hda or sda or hdb or sdb, etc. (Make sure you get the right drive and it has no numbers on the end, numbers on the end like sda1 indicate a partition, not the drive itself)

#22 OP Sikh

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 03:44

Ok i know how to do it via dd. I thought you were going to tell me a different way. Sorry about that.

I will report back sometime this week letting you guys know how it works. Work will be busy tomorrow and hopefully that's it.



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