10-02-2009 09:21 PM
I bought a Gateway DX4300-03 to act as a new home workstation. I do most of my work with Linux, and thought I'd leave Vista on for one of the kids' games that's Windows only. I shrank the Vista partition, and installed Linux fine. It screams(!) as epxected.
But... when I try to boot Vista, the Gateway Recovery Management ALWAYS comes up. Even if I select "Completely Restore System to Factory Defaults", which proceeds without apparent problem, no Vista; only Gateway Recovery Management.
When I boot, the GRUB boot loader gives me the choice to boot to Linux or Vista as expected.. but GRM obviously thinks Something Bad must be happening, and refuses to pass control over to Vista.
I can appreciate the fact that Gateway's trying to save themselves and the computer noob troubles, but are power users stuck with one-size-fits-all?
Is this version of Vista so brain-dead crippled that I have to go buy a retail version on top of what I paid for this computer? Must I go nuclear on the hard drive, nuke everything and start from scratch?
10-02-2009 10:00 PM
After chatting w/ Gateway support, they said "If you want support, you only use the computer like a noob." Then I was told to run the recovery disks… which don't work because that was the problem in the first place.
10-02-2009 10:06 PM - edited 10-02-2009 10:07 PM
Is there a way to shut off the gateway recovery service? May be a bios setting they had customized for specifically for them. May wanna try www.linuxforums.org to see if theres a work around for it. Did you try Lilo instead of GRUB also? I've had more luck dual booting with Lilo. BTW which distro?
10-02-2009 10:15 PM
I booted to Linux, deleted the hidden partition, told grub to boot from the Vista partition.
I've come to the conclusion that the Gateway software misbehaves like a buggy virus, and can be treated as one.
10-02-2009 10:17 PM
I appreciate the suggestions.
I've always liked LILO a lot better than GRUB, but in this case google turned up some information about grub, and I was able to hack /boot/grub/grub.conf to tell it to avoid the Gateway loader.
I may have just gotten away with changing grub.conf; if I ever have to wipe clean then I'll try that first.
10-03-2009 01:57 AM
Cool. With my old laptop I was going to put opensuse 10.3 on it. It wouldnt recognise my wireless dongle even when trying ndiswrapper. One thing that drives me nuts is some of the older wireless pcmia adapters dont play well with linux. Ironic since my one desktop is wireless and works fine with linux without elaborate configurations. Worked right out of the box.
10-03-2009 09:58 AM
Yeah, wireless bust especially software modems were not supported wellin the past. I've not tried the built-in wireless on this machine yet. The gigabit Ethernet's doing the job just fine.
For the record, in case it will help anybody else, I bypassed the evil Gateway virus thus:
The last entry should read
Change the (hd0,0) to (hd0,1). This will cause the boot loader to boot from the second partition, not the first.
In retrospect I probably didn't need to nuke the hidden partition, but I'm not 100% certain about that.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
To answer your previous question, I used http://unetbootin.sourceforge.net/ to create a 1GB USB stick that booted to Fedora 11 (64-bit). When I had tested everything to ensure all the peripherals (especially external FireWire drives) would work correctly, Installing from the live distro was the fast OS install I've ever seen in my life. I've had to use yum to install a handful of additional packages to suit my tastes, but wow.
I'll be doing some stress testing under both OSes, but so far Fedora 11's been screaming fast. Kudos to the dev teams.
10-03-2009 03:10 PM
It may have been wise to create some vista recovery discs before nuking the recovery partition, and the recovery partition didn't need to be blown away (but hey, that's taking up precious HDD space) but it sounds like you got a fairly decent fix going there. Of course when you get your free upgrade to Windows 7 you won't need that crappy old Vista recovery partition anyways
Always good to see another fan of Linux.
10-05-2009 09:43 AM
On systems with a recovery partition you need to ensure that GRUB isn't pointing to said partition.
On my new Asus, the automatically generated GRUB menu shows two Vista installations - the first one is actually recovery. Haven't gotten around to actually removing the other one.
Which Linux distro? Ubuntu should've caught both the recovery partition AND the real one (like it did on mine.)
10-05-2009 11:10 AM
Thanks for the info, guys.
I nuked the partition trying to eliminate things one at a time. I was also in frustration mode. I'm glad to have confirmation that I didn't really need to do delete it. I did make a full set of recovery disks so that if I ever need to, I can restore things.
I have Fedora 11 on the computer. When it set up GRUB, it only lists the recovery partition. To me that's kind of odd, since fdisk shows the Vista partition as marked bootable.