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Computing Share This Page
Lilo
by Ashwin Acharya Bookmark and Share

Now comes the time when you will first boot up your computers after installation. Notice one big change. When you boot it up, the computer gives all the BIOS information and then types

Lilo boot:

and stops. This is your boot prompt. As you have two operating systems on your computer, you need to choose between them at startup. Press 'tab' for options. There are normally two :

  1. dos - This is the label to your Windows partition. On typing this, your Windows partition is made active and the computer boots from this.
  2. linux - This, of course, accesses your Linux partition and boots into it.

By default Lilo will boot into the Linux partition at the end of 10 seconds. This can of course be changed.

What is Lilo?
Lilo (LInux LOader) is the boot loader used by Linux to load the operating system kernel. Windows 95/98 does not believe in multiple operating systems resulting in a lack of a boot loader.

Booting:
When a computer boots, it first accesses and loads the BIOS. The BIOS is then used to read the MBR (Master boot record), which is the first boot sector of your drive that contains the partitioning information and bootstrap code. This then loads the appropriate OS kernel into memory. To be able to choose between operating systems you need to install LILO, which changes the boot sector of your hard drive to allow you to choose between a DOS and a Linux partition as the boot source partition.

Lilo manipulation is a bit tricky and difficult, so be very careful and keep a boot disk handy.

When you choose linux and boot into it, you will be faced with a login prompt. For e.g.

Rattail login:

Enter 'root' the first time. Next enter the password you typed in at installation. You are now inside a Linux system for the first time. As we mentioned earlier, the default boot partition is linux. However, for most of you who are used to windows this can be irritating. Hence we can change it to boot into Windows by default.

Type 'linuxconf' at the prompt.
In this, choose Lilo and press enter.
Within Lilo, choose default boot configuration and change it to dos by going to it and pressing space.
Tab to 'Accept' and press 'Enter'.
Confirm and exit (use ctrl-c) if necessary.

To test whether the changes you made are satisfactory, type

lilo -t

To test the changes. If correct make the permanent by typing

lilo

Remember no changes can be made after this. Reboot and things will work as required.     

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31-Mar-2001
More by :  Ashwin Acharya
 
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