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transsib
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 12:45 pm    Post subject: Gentoo on Thinkpad X230? Reply with quote

Hello Forum,
I might need help with this task.
Since last week I am the proud owner of a brand new Thinkpad X230 with Core i7 Ivy Bridge and IPS Display... :D
It´s beautiful and fast and I´ve already upgraded RAM to a roaring 16 GB (I´ve bought it with 4 GB ), one of two
upgrade steps.

Now I´ve got Windows 7 Professional 64bit installed which is just fine but I need Linux for quite a few
things. I know Ubuntu; it´s nice but I cannot adapt to certain administrative routines that Ubuntu wants.
Although i know that Gentoo is certainly not quite ready for the ivy Bridge CPU, its chip set and the embedded
Intel HD 400 graphics I´d like to install Gentoo on it as a second OS.

I´ve already secured the recovery, deleted the partition and integrated it into the rest of the hard drive.

Now comes the part I reeeeeally fear: partitioning. I intend to use the Windows 7 bootmanager and not touch
its own MBR using this howto:
http://archives.gentoo.org/gentoo-user/msg_46e77351db46341e98731b7667d699c4.xml

When do I edit this into bcdedit: before installing Gentoo or after?
How do I partition the free space I intend to give Gentoo? Do I now boot into Gentoo minimal which is on a USB stick
( I did not choose a model with optical drive ) and create those partitions boot and / and how do I go about it?

I apologize for my clumsiness. Up to now I used to install a Windows on a second hdd like in my own box with Gentoo
as main system Win7 cleanly separated.
Now I need to to a flat share AND not touch the Windows MBR.

Regards

transsib
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BillWho
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 1:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

transsib,

I purchased a laptop last month and installed lmde and gentoo on it. I really didn't care about windows and would have preferred not having it at all. I was going to remove it, but I left it intact purely for warranty purposes.

What I did was boot windows and used its shrink utility to compress its partition to 30 gig. That left about 4gig of free space for windows and about 470gig remaining on the 500gig drive.

I then booted windows again to see if it was OK. Then I booted the lmde live cd and used gparted to setup the linux partitions - 1 swap and a / and home partition for lmde and gentoo. Upon lmde's completion, I booted it and installed gentoo. Windows is booting fine from grub.

Good luck with your new laptop - it should install gentoo in 10 minutes :D
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transsib
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 2:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey BillWho,
nice to hear from you again :)
X230 does not have a optical drive. I did not want it. The installation media is a USB stick
with the Gentoo minimal install on it, so no gparted.
I used Windows partitioning tool to shrink C drive. There is 235 GB unallocated space which
the Gentoo fdisk tool doesn´t even see.
Despite what you see under my user name I am not a Guru :lol:
I guess I will have to format the unallocated space in Win 7. When I try that partition wants me to create
a new volume. But if I do that I can choose between formating ( NTFS ) or not formating the
new volume.

I cannot use grub as usual. My guess is that there are special functions put into the MBR by
Lenovo for my Thinkpad. I need to leave it untouched except for editing the BCD file in Windows.
There I need to create a link to a grub image that I must create. Oh, which answers one of my
questions: I need to edit that after installing Gentoo.

I won´t create a swap partition. I don´t expect to need it with 16 GB RAM. Just a boot partition and
a root partition within the free space I now have.

EDIT: Right now I have three volumes on hd0
/dev/sda1
/dev/sda2
/dev/sda3
where the first two are Win7 and the third is free but NTFS.
I can format that space to any linux fs.

When I create two partitions out of /dev/sda3
I want one boot and one root ( =/ ) which should give me
/dev/sda4 and /dev/sda5 :?:

Do I have to toggle the boot partition bootable ?

The link I´ve posted above refers to a Dell. I am not certain about the Thinkpad
but I guess it is advisable to leave the MBR as is her as well.
Quote:
1. Install GRUB in your Linux /boot partition and capture an image of
the partition boot record (it must be unmouted at the time):

dd if=/dev/sda5 of=boot.lnx bs=512 count=1

2. Copy the boot.lnx file to C:\boot.lnx


Sorry for being so obstinate :oops:
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 2:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

transsib,

The dd if=/dev/sda5 of=boot.lnx bs=512 count=1 copies the mbr AND partition table. To copy the mbr only bs would be set to bs=446.

What I used to do was dd if=/dev/sda of=mbr.img bs=512 count=1 to preserve the original mbr in case something went wrong.

Also I saved the entire layout with sfdisk -d /dev/sda > sda.ptbl so it could be restored with sfdisk /dev/sda < sda.ptbl

As far as the installation media is concerned, you can use any linux live media - it doesn't have to be the Gentoo minimal install media. I've been using lmde live media which has more utilities.

If you create a /dev/sda4 it has to be an extended partition since there can only be 4, lets say regular, partitions. You then create logical drives within the extended partition.

The concept of easy bcd is to be able to boot linux from the boot.lnx file that you copy to window's c:\ and making an entry in boot.ini. Creating that file has to be done after you install linux. Instead of installing grub to /dev/sda you install it to where you installed linux e.g. /dev/sda5.

Quote:
I cannot use grub as usual. My guess is that there are special functions put into the MBR by
Lenovo for my Thinkpad.

I guess that's possible, but I really don't know either way.

I guess it's really simple when you just don't care what happens to windows :D
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 3:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

First off, gentoo has a much higher admin overhead than Ubuntu. I don't know what management issues you refer to, but be aware that a gentoo requires a higher level of knowledge to install and maintain than Ubuntu. If you don't have this knowledge, this means time acquiring it. So be warned.

Disregard BillWho when he says your laptop should install gentoo in 10 minutes.... maybe in an alternate universe. If you haven't installed gentoo before, it will take you a lot longer than 10 minutes to get to the same point as a base Ubuntu install.

But, as BillWho said, you can shrink your windows partition from within Windows, that's the safest way.

As to partitioning, the best thing is to use a simple setup, get your gentoo going, and worry about learning more later. There's no one best setup, it depends upon your needs and experience level. My simple-but-flexible initial set up would be (in disk order):

- existing windows partitions
- a small 250MB boot partition
- a swap partition as big as your RAM
- a 50G root partition for everything else
- leave from there until the end of the disk UNPARTITIONED.

Some people do without the boot partition, and put everything on one big partition, but I recommend having one, it will give you much more flexibility in the long run. And it's really not a big deal. Make it ext3.

The swap partition is a must if you want to suspend/resume to disk, aka. hibernate. It's generally a good idea anyway.

A 50G partition is more than enough for a gentoo install + the ability to compile even the largest packages (eg. open office) and still have 20+G left over for you. Start with that, then reorganise as needs arise. You can always completely repartition later (it's no biggy if you have a boot partition), or extend that original partition and filesystem inplace. ext3 is a good place to start.

The boot setup you describe requires installing a boot manager under gentoo, but installing the boot sector of that boot manager to the first sector of your boot _partition_ rather than to the MBR. Then you copy that boot sector into a file call bootsect.lnx using dd, get that file into your windows partition (you'll have to think about how to achieve that), and use BCDEDIT to tell windows about it. After that, the windows boot manager chain loads your gentoo boot manager. Clearly, you can only do all this AFTER you've installed gentoo.

I recommend using grub-static as your gentoo boot manager. HINT: At some point, you will probably issue a command like "setup (hd0,n)" (where n corresponds to your boot partition). Do not use "setup (hd0)" as that will overwrite the MBR.

If you intend to share files between windows and linux, ntfs-3g will be able to read and write safely to your windows partition. If you intend to do this with a lot of data, I recommend creating a separate NTFS partition specifically for the purpose, that way there's no way you can hose your Win7 installation.

Finally regarding your windows MBR:

Save it somewhere using "dd if=/dev/sda of=MBR.backup count=1 bs=512". Keep that MBR.backup file!
If you want to restore it later use "dd if=MBR.backup of=/dev/sda bs=448 count=1". That 448 restores only the MBR code, and not the primary partition table.
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 3:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

BillWho wrote:
Quote:
If you create a /dev/sda4 it has to be an extended partition since there can only be 4, lets say regular, partitions. You then create logical drives within the extended partition.

The partition table looks like this
/dev/sda1 = SYSTEM_DRV 1,46 GB *
/dev/sda2 = WINDOS_OS C:\
/dev/sda3 = E:\

All NTFS

I now have to delete /dev/sda3 first as far as fdisk is concerned. Then I have to create two
new partitions; none of which should be toggled bootable.
Is that correct so far?

I could jump ahead now and conclude that I install grub on the boot partition and create an image
of it which I need to copy to C drive and link to in boot.ini
And how do I do that!? I `d need to write it to the USB stick?
Hm, I do feel silly...

Oh - and I forgot to tell that the recovery that I wrote to a USB stick loads Thinkvantage Tool
when I boot it. I tested it to make sure that it works before deleting Lenovos Recovery partition.
It confirms my concern with fiddling around with the original MBR.

As to the administration overhead: I´ve used Gentoo on several desktop boxes since 2003. I am used to
it and I love it. I am not a complete n00b, except for partitioning that is. :wink:
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 3:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I now have to delete /dev/sda3 first as far as fdisk is concerned. Then I have to create two
new partitions; none of which should be toggled bootable.
Is that correct so far?

Yes, don't change the bootable flag. You can create a '/' and '/home' partition and install grub to '/'. I doesn't necessarily have to be a '/boot' partition.
Quote:
I could jump ahead now and conclude that I install grub on the boot partition and create an image
of it which I need to copy to C drive and link to in boot.ini
And how do I do that!? I `d need to write it to the USB stick?
Hm, I do feel silly...

You'll be copying that .lnx file to the windows partition. I know XP used a boot.ini where you could make the entry for linux without the need for easy bcd. The entry was c:\bootsect.lnx=Your Linux Distro which then gave you a menu at boot time.

I'm not sure what win7 uses, but the instructions you have should tell you where to make the entry for easy bcd. I think you just start windows, launch easy bcd and configure it there.
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 3:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You don't have to worry about toggling bootable flags, just leave as is.

Yeah, delete sda3 if that's empty. Then create a 250MB sda3 for your boot partition, create sda4 as an extended partition which is the rest of the free space, then create sda5 as the swap partition and sda6 as you main gentoo partition.

A USB stick formatted with FAT would work to copy the boot sector across. Or you could create a temporary partition formatted with FAT on your hard disk. After your initial install, you can just use ntfs-3g to copy it directly from your gentoo install. Remember that any time you re-install grub, you'll have to copy that sector into the bootsect.lnx file. But normally, you don't need to reinstall grub.

I was just being careful with the noob stuff is all, I don't like to see people get burned.

BTW I have a W510. Initially, I used the setup you are proposing. But then I got sick of booting from Windows boot manager into grub and having two prompts. So I just saved the MBR (and the full recovery partition) away to an external drive and put grub on the MBR...
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 3:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

@Kimmie
I think BillWho was just joking when he said:
Quote:
Disregard BillWho when he says your laptop should install gentoo in 10 minutes.... maybe in an alternate universe. If you haven't installed gentoo before, it will take you a lot longer than 10 minutes to get to the same point as a base Ubuntu install.

:wink:
I am about to create the new partitions now.
/dev/sda3 which is NTFS at the moment gets deleted.
If I follow the installation guide I need to create 3 primary partitions which should give me
/dev/sda4 = boot
/dev/sda5 = swap
/dev/sda6 = /
and a rest that I should administer under Win7 as NTFS for files and exchanging data
with ntfs-3g.
None of those three Linux partitions should be toggled bootable.

How I get the grub image over to the C drive is a problem I haven´t solved yet.
The X230 has a cardreader but I guess I won´t be able to load a driver for that :cry:
May be I should get another USB stick to make that miracle happen.

@Kimmie
Quote:
You don't have to worry about toggling bootable flags, just leave as is.

Yeah, delete sda3 if that's empty. Then create a 250MB sda3 for your boot partition, create sda4 as an extended partition which is the rest of the free space, then create sda5 as the swap partition and sda6 as you main gentoo partition.

A USB stick formatted with FAT would work to copy the boot sector across. Or you could create a temporary partition formatted with FAT on your hard disk. After your initial install, you can just use ntfs-3g to copy it directly from your gentoo install. Remember that any time you re-install grub, you'll have to copy that sector into the bootsect.lnx file. But normally, you don't need to reinstall grub.

I was just being careful with the noob stuff is all, I don't like to see people get burned.

You were faster than I :)
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 5:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok
Partition table looks like this now
/dev/sda1 * 7 HPFS/NTFS/exFAT
/dev/sda2 7 HPFS/NTFS/exFAT
/dev/sda3 83 Linux
/dev/sda4 5 extended
/dev/sda5 82 Linux swap / Solaris
/dev/sda6 83 Linux

On we go with the system files.

If I see that the newest kernel can hibernate the system into RAM
could I remove swap later and integrate the space into root or create another
NTFS partition for data transfer? My X230 has 16 GB RAM which I´ve given it.
Shouldn´t that be sufficient to hibernate a whole system into?
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 6:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

transsib wrote:
If I see that the newest kernel can hibernate the system into RAM
could I remove swap later and integrate the space into root or create another
NTFS partition for data transfer? My X230 has 16 GB RAM which I´ve given it.
Shouldn´t that be sufficient to hibernate a whole system into?

Since the swap (/dev/sda5) and your linux system partition (/dev/sda6) are adjacent, it shouldn't be a problem removing swap and resizing sda6 although sda6 will most likely become sda5, so you'll have to make the necessary adjustments in bcd and fstab. I think you'll also have to reinstall grub too and recreate the .lnx file since the partition layout will differ.
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 6:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

transsib, I'm too late to be of any use now, but, just for future reference, it is possible to do what you want using an easier method. Like you, I dual boot Windows 7 Professional 64-bit with Gentoo, but I used EasyBCD to set up the BCD so that the Windows Boot Manager chainloads GRUB 2:

https://fitzcarraldoblog.wordpress.com/2010/12/28/the-best-way-to-dual-boot-linux-and-windows/
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 7:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

@BillWho
Quote:
Since the swap (/dev/sda5) and your linux system partition (/dev/sda6) are adjacent, it shouldn't be a problem removing swap and resizing sda6 although sda6 will most likely become sda5, so you'll have to make the necessary adjustments in bcd and fstab. I think you'll also have to reinstall grub too and recreate the .lnx file since the partition layout will differ.

I´ll do that if the kernel proves to be able to deal with Ivy Bridge and chipset but I doubt that. I have a Core2Duo in one box and a QuadCore in
two other boxes and observe a much better implementation of those CPUs abilities with the newest kernel generation.

But I just hit a problem: digest verification mismatch for gentoo-sources. And I cannot rsync again because the timestamp would be the same :evil:

@Fitzcarraldo
That´s exactly the method that´s being discouraged by the article of the gentoo archives ( link in my first posting ).
I´ve found a way how to copy the grub image to C drive and I´ll try that first before I install third party bootloaders on this
brand-new notebook. May be I am being paranoid or something but I´d like to keep it as pristine and clean as possible until I
have become more aquainted with it.

If I am counting correctly grub needs to be setup in hd0,2
But this task can wait. If I only could download and compile gentoo-sources :evil: :twisted:
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 7:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

transsib,

Just emerge -av =sys-kernel/gentoo-sources-3.3.8

I got the digest error too, but I think it was 3.5
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 7:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Doesn´t help: the digest verification failure is for the whole folder of gentoo-sources

Solved with the manifest command :)

On your mark - set - bang :)
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 9:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

transsib wrote:
@Fitzcarraldo
That´s exactly the method that´s being discouraged by the article of the gentoo archives ( link in my first posting ).
I´ve found a way how to copy the grub image to C drive and I´ll try that first before I install third party bootloaders on this
brand-new notebook.:

:?: I'm confused by your reply. EasyBCD just makes it easy to edit the Windows BCD; it isn't a "third party bootloader". The only bootloader I'm using is Windows Boot Manager in Windows and the MBR. From that I can select Windows 7 or GRUB 2. If I select GRUB 2 from the Windows Boot Manager's menu, it chainloads GRUB 2 in the boot sector of the separate Gentoo /boot partition, which then launches GRUB 2's /boot/grub2/i386-pc/core.img. Just as in the post you linked to, I too use the Windows Boot Manager to chainload GRUB 2. To quote the post to which you linked:

Mick <michaelkintzios@...> wrote:
I have now succeeded at achieving what I wanted: to use the Windows 7 boot manager (bootmgr.exe) which is the successor to NTLDR to chainload GRUB from it and so leave the Windows installation intact (at least until the warranty expires) ;-)

By using EasyBCD to edit the BCD, it causes the MBR to be completely untouched by GRUB or anything else, which is what I believe you were also trying to do. My MBR is identical to what it was before I installed Linux on my laptop. I too use the Windows 7 boot manager bootmgr.exe to chainload GRUB. If I were to trash my Linux installation or any of its partitions, Windows would still boot normally and so would the Windows factory restore partition.
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 9:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If that is the case I should consider EasyBCD as I am about to
solve the problem how to get the grub image on to C:\ drive. :?

Btw: if /dev/sda6 is my root partition what´s the hd count then:
/dev/sda1 hd0,0
/dev/sda2 hd0,1
/dev/sda3 hd0,2
/dev/sda4 = the extended partition hd0,3
/dev/sda5 = swap hd0,4
/dev/sda6 = / hd0,5
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 10:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

transsib wrote:
If that is the case I should consider EasyBCD as I am about to
solve the problem how to get the grub image on to C:\ drive. :?

Btw: if /dev/sda6 is my root partition what´s the hd count then:
/dev/sda1 hd0,0
/dev/sda2 hd0,1
/dev/sda3 hd0,2
/dev/sda4 = the extended partition hd0,3
/dev/sda5 = swap hd0,4
/dev/sda6 = / hd0,5

They're correct for grub .97 - for grub2 /dev/sda6 would be '(hd0,msdos6)'
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2012 7:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I´ve made a mistake: I´ve created the grub image while /dev/sda3 was mounted
which resulted in a error message from the Win7 bootloader that the image
was damaged.
Now I´m back on my fresh Gentoo installation and try to recreate the grub
image :cry:
I was close - tiny set-back - should be easy to fix shouldn´t it
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2012 2:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My confidence was premature. The file seems to be corrupt.
I get a boot splash where I can choose Windows 7 and Gentoo but
BCD complains about boot.lnx being damaged.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2012 4:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What commands are you using to install grub to sda3?
To get the boot sector?
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 7:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

@Kimmie
Boot partition was /dev/sda3 which means it is hd0,2 for grub
root (hd0,2)
setup (hd0,2)

Unmount /dev/sda3 and then:

dd if=/dev/sda3 of=boot.lnx bs=512 count=1

Probably wrong all this but that´s history. I´ve deleted everything
and installed Gentoo on Windows in Virtualbox.

Btw i even gave EasyBCD a chance with the result that i had to import
the backup of the MBR I´ve made before starting as EasyBCD wrote
a couple of entries that my pure editing in the Windows shell did not.
Confirms my mistrust of third party tools, I must say.

Regards
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 7:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

transsib wrote:
Btw i even gave EasyBCD a chance with the result that i had to import the backup of the MBR I´ve made before starting as EasyBCD wrote a couple of entries that my pure editing in the Windows shell did not. Confirms my mistrust of third party tools, I must say.

EasyBCD didn't touch the MBR on my laptop. You must have explictly selected an option in EasyBCD to do so, as explained in the EasyBCD FAQ:

EasyBCD FAQ wrote:
Does EasyBCD modify my MBR or Bootsector?

Nope. EasyBCD is a very special and unique application in that it doesn't even touch your bootsector or MBR, yet it's still the most powerful bootloader on the planet! Vista installs the "BCD Bootloader" to your MBR and Bootsector. EasyBCD simply adds functionality to the BCD files on your Windows Vista installation to add features and make it a more capable bootloader. EasyBCD never touches the MBR unless you specifically ask it to, namely when attempting to fix a corrupted bootloader, switch bootloaders, or backup/restore MBR images.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 14, 2012 12:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

:( sorry it didn't work out for you
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l33t
l33t


Joined: 26 Jul 2003
Posts: 860

PostPosted: Tue Aug 14, 2012 12:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

May be it the EFI BIOS that I don´t know yet.
I should have done more research about the new X230.
At least I have Gentoo in Virtualbox where you don´t have to take
care that nothing gets overwritten.

As to EasyBCD - I may be unfair here. I shouldn´t have combined
shell editing AND EasyBCD.
All I can say is that editing the shell - hands-on BCD editing - is better
for me as I find it more transparent.

All in all - I´ve learned a great deal here, which will come in handy some
day.
At least I know ALL the commands for the first steps and chrooting into
the new Gentoo environment by heart now. I haven´t installed a new Gentoo
system for quite some time now, the last 3 years ago :)
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