Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 29th Sep 2006 15:08 UTC, submitted by Dan Warne
Windows "One of the more questionable tactics that Microsoft has implemented in Vista is to automatically overwrite any existing MBR during the installation process without asking if you mind or giving you an option to back up. Microsoft says that the Windows installation system can't intelligently interrogate an existing non-MS MBR, although such features are quite common in the install routine for other OSes."
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This is just more of the same
by bolomkxxviii on Fri 29th Sep 2006 15:31 UTC
bolomkxxviii
Member since:
2006-05-19

XP trashes your MBR also. You have to install the second OS AFTER you install XP. Vista continues on Microsoft's tradition.

Reply Score: 5

dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

The funny part is that it has never happened for me with Win2K, XP or Windows 2003. I was actually surprised the first time Windows didn't touch grub.

But now I'm used to it.

Reply Score: 1

StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

They've done the same thing since, at least, Windows 95.

Reply Score: 2

blixel Member since:
2005-07-06

They've done the same thing since, at least, Windows 95.

That's what I was thinking. The blurb makes it sound like this is some new evil thing that is being put into Vista.

But this particular evil thing is just how Microsoft Operating Systems work. Even MS-DOS would blow away your OS/2 MBR way back in the day.

Reply Score: 1

Nothing to see here; move along
by twenex on Fri 29th Sep 2006 15:32 UTC
twenex
Member since:
2006-04-21

Some things never change. The day MS decides to "play nice" (no, I mean for real. No, I mean for really real) most of us here at OSNews will probably have a coronary.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Nothing to see here; move along
by RGCook on Fri 29th Sep 2006 16:13 UTC in reply to "Nothing to see here; move along"
RGCook Member since:
2005-07-12

Hey twemex, haven't you heard, the day is nigh! Check it out: http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/newsroom/winxp/windowsprinciples...

Reply Score: 2

Understandable
by A.H. on Fri 29th Sep 2006 15:32 UTC
A.H.
Member since:
2005-11-11

MS is a small company with limited resources and cannot possible support dozens of MBRs out there. Sacrifices have to be made, and this is the perfect place to sacrifice.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Understandable
by twenex on Fri 29th Sep 2006 15:36 UTC in reply to "Understandable"
twenex Member since:
2006-04-21

ROTFL. Funny!

Reply Score: 2

RE: Understandable
by smitty_one_each on Fri 29th Sep 2006 15:55 UTC in reply to "Understandable"
smitty_one_each Member since:
2005-07-07

Yes, but I wish that I could substitute my PHB for my HDD at the "burnt offering" step of the sacrifice to BeelzeBill.

Reply Score: 1

There's just too many boot loaders...
by ma_d on Fri 29th Sep 2006 15:32 UTC
ma_d
Member since:
2005-06-29

They'd have to identify something like 3 different boot loaders (lilo, grub, and bsd's)! Can you imagine the time it'd take to learn to do that! I mean, it's not like people have done it before (they have)! And if they did, they certainly wouldn't give these secrets away (GPL'ed, I'm sure).

Reply Score: 5

diegocg Member since:
2005-07-08

Who cares about how many bootloaders are there? I'm just asking for a "don't overwrite the MBR, let me configure it" option.


Although the REAL reason why microsoft don't ask users to overwrite the MBR is because their install procedure needs a couple of reboots (yes, even in vista). If they didn't overwrite the boot sector the windows partition would be left in a half-installed state.

Reply Score: 5

MORB Member since:
2005-07-06

During the installation, after the reboot you typically boot on the CD (which is still in there), and it then transfers control to the hard disk boot partition.

So they could just do the same, have the cd detect the vista partition and let it boot so it can resume their unwieldy multi-reboot installation procedure, and just ask for confirmation before overwriting an unrecognized MBR.

I mean, overwriting the MBR isn't even remotely helping them fight linux, it's just an unecessary, mild inconvenience. It's basically just them being petty at this point. "no, we don't want to deal with anything non-windows in any way, shape and form, even if it's just a trivial data check somewhere"

Reply Score: 3

ma_d Member since:
2005-06-29

Are you completely inept at perceiving sarcasm? It's obvious everyone else here got that, along with the other 3 sarcastic posts ;) .

Reply Score: 1

Flatland_Spider Member since:
2006-09-01

It also likes being at the first of the drive as much as possible. I've toasted many instances of XOSL trying to get Windows to work with it.

Reply Score: 1

czubin Member since:
2005-12-31

Well easy solution (and more elegant one) would be to look at the MBR if it's different from the one they plan to install then notify the user(with option to restore MBR),

this way any regular windows user won't get prompted and other users can easily avoid a new MBR (or even get it restored)

Reply Score: 1

Nothing new at all
by Nephelim on Fri 29th Sep 2006 15:33 UTC
Nephelim
Member since:
2006-07-26

This is the standard procedure from Windows 95 to Windows XP if I am not wrong. Each of these just wrote the MBR at will with no questions at all. This said, obviously it would be trivial for Microsoft to ask or even to keep the existing one without asking, Hell! It is just kind of an intelligent 'dd if=/dev/hda of=mbr.old bs=512 count=1'; I suppose that having this feature would have delayed the Vista born for about another couple of years ...

Reply Score: 2

RE: Nothing new at all
by ma_d on Fri 29th Sep 2006 18:15 UTC in reply to "Nothing new at all"
ma_d Member since:
2005-06-29

Actually Windows does check for other Windows installs and it boots those. I'm not sure if it just looks at each partition for them or reads the old MBR though.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Nothing new at all
by Flatland_Spider on Sat 30th Sep 2006 00:30 UTC in reply to "RE: Nothing new at all"
Flatland_Spider Member since:
2006-09-01

It probably just imports the old boot.ini from the old partition. If you look in it all it has is a line pointing towards the boot partition of the other version.

Supposedly if the right test string is entered into it other OSes can be loaded from the Win boot loader. I've never gotten it to work, so I'm not sure about that.

Reply Score: 1

v No problem...
by EmmEff on Fri 29th Sep 2006 15:44 UTC
RE: No problem...
by A.H. on Fri 29th Sep 2006 15:57 UTC in reply to "No problem..."
A.H. Member since:
2005-11-11

"Most people do not dual boot, and those who do are generally more technically savvy and know how to work around this long standing issue."

Most people do not dual boot and therefore do not have a non-MS MBR installed. So, even if MS handled it properly, those users would not be affected in any way shape or form.

"I say good on MS for doing it this way to prevent confusion to the average user."

Would be even better if MS found all non-MS partitions and deleted them, since people who dual boot are technically savvy and know how to reinstall their other OS.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: No problem...
by EmmEff on Fri 29th Sep 2006 19:12 UTC in reply to "RE: No problem..."
EmmEff Member since:
2005-09-16

Would be even better if MS found all non-MS partitions and deleted them, since people who dual boot are technically savvy and know how to reinstall their other OS.

I'm not quite sure why anybody would bump the score on this article for such an inane comment. This site is going downhill...

Reply Score: 0

RE[3]: No problem...
by czubin on Fri 29th Sep 2006 19:27 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: No problem..."
czubin Member since:
2005-12-31

it's sarcasm ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE: No problem...
by Hands on Fri 29th Sep 2006 16:28 UTC in reply to "No problem..."
Hands Member since:
2005-06-30

The average user will NEVER do a clean install of their own operating system. How would it be confusing to have an intelligent installation process for someone who will probably never even touch the installation?

At most the average user might do an upgrade from a previous Windows installation. In that case, I don't think it would be necessary for Vista to even touch the MBR if the previous OS is XP or 2k. In other words, if a computer is capable of upgrading to Vista, MS shouldn't touch the MBR for an upgrade.

For a clean install, an intelligent process would take into consideration a few conditions. If Vista is taking over the whole computer, there is no reason to worry about overwriting the MBR-don't ask. If Vista is being installed inside a partition, and there isn't anything on the MBR (a new computer), there is no reason to worry about overwriting the MBR-don't ask. If Vista is being installed inside a partition and there is something already in the MBR, ask (this should only happen with a person that is capable of not being confused by the question).

Reply Score: 4

Ubuntu clobbers MBR too
by kscguru on Fri 29th Sep 2006 15:52 UTC
kscguru
Member since:
2006-01-21

I needed a 64-bit OS on my development box ... imagine my surprise when UBUNTU overwrote the MBR! Yes, ladies and gentlemen, Microsoft is not alone in hampering multi-boot users; the "most usable" Linux distro does too.

Here is what they BOTH should do. If they find no bootloader or a known bootloader (i.e. previous version of Windows), "This installer finds that you are using a custom bootloader. This is often the case when your computer is configured to boot into multiple operating systems. Would you like to:
1) Overwrite the bootloader to boot into Vista/Ubuntu/insert-os-here.
2) Leave the bootloader untouched. At reboot, you must modify the bootloader to boot into YourOS."

I don't think this is particularly difficult. But neither Microsoft nor Ubuntu can figure it out.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Ubuntu clobbers MBR too
by markjensen on Fri 29th Sep 2006 16:15 UTC in reply to "Ubuntu clobbers MBR too"
markjensen Member since:
2005-07-26

imagine my surprise when UBUNTU overwrote the MBR!

But I'll bet you came across some screen like this:
http://users.bigpond.net.au/hermanzone/p6.htm#Installing_a_Boot_Loa...

Overwriting the MBR is optional in every Linux install I have tried.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: Ubuntu clobbers MBR too
by kscguru on Fri 29th Sep 2006 16:24 UTC in reply to "RE: Ubuntu clobbers MBR too"
kscguru Member since:
2006-01-21

Nope, no such screen. Looks like that's a Ubuntu text-based installer; the graphical live-CD installer doesn't allow you to skip overwriting the MBR. (GRUB did have an entry for one of my three Windows installs, so the installer only partially misdetected, but it never asked me anything about a bootloader.)

I was quite surprised too :-). A quick trip into Windows to revert the BootMagic MBR, another quick trip to the Ubuntu live CD to put grub on the right partition, and I was fine again.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Ubuntu clobbers MBR too
by protagonist on Fri 29th Sep 2006 22:23 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Ubuntu clobbers MBR too"
protagonist Member since:
2005-07-06

Well, it gave me that option. I installed it on a Windows machine here at the house and it asked me if I wanted to overwrite the MBR. And I did the install off the live CD by clicking on the install icon on the Ubuntu desktop.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Ubuntu clobbers MBR too
by Nephelim on Fri 29th Sep 2006 16:59 UTC in reply to "Ubuntu clobbers MBR too"
Nephelim Member since:
2006-07-26

Even in this case, the installer should do a copy of the old MBR and leave it in some documented file, after all, it is just 512 bytes and there goes the partitioning scheme as well as the bootloader, no damage having a copy of it at all.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Ubuntu clobbers MBR too
by miscz on Fri 29th Sep 2006 17:18 UTC in reply to "Ubuntu clobbers MBR too"
miscz Member since:
2005-07-17

Yes, but at least it makes an attempt to add Windows to boot menu. I don't know about other operating systems but it correctly identifies Windows XP and Vista.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Ubuntu clobbers MBR too
by DigitalAxis on Fri 29th Sep 2006 18:23 UTC in reply to "Ubuntu clobbers MBR too"
DigitalAxis Member since:
2005-08-28

It'll be easier to do once we have reliable NTFS read/write- then I might trust an installer to automatically edit boot.ini (or whatever Vista uses) for me. (naturally, with an option to edit it yourself for people who've already got a customized boot.ini)

The alternative installCD does allow you to change where GRUB is installed, but by setting that partition as bootable. I don't recall if Windows XP liked being on a non-bootable partition or not, but I think it at least used to complain. This can obviously be fixed later, but it's far from 'just works'. And even so, I'd prefer a question to having to set something not actually related (Linux does NOT need to boot from a bootable partition)

Reply Score: 1

RE: Ubuntu clobbers MBR too
by protagonist on Fri 29th Sep 2006 22:17 UTC in reply to "Ubuntu clobbers MBR too"
protagonist Member since:
2005-07-06

I distinctly remember Ubuntu asking me if I wanted to overwrite the Windows MBR or keep it. MS gives you no say in the matter. Don't blame Ubuntu because you didn't read before clicking. If I remember correctly overwrite was the default, but it did give you a choice.

Reply Score: 1

No need to identify bootloader..
by reduz on Fri 29th Sep 2006 16:01 UTC
reduz
Member since:
2006-02-25

Just ask the user "Do you want to overwrite the MBR?".

Back in the Win98/Win2K times, I rememeber installing windows AFTER installing linux was dangerous...
The MBR is a non issue, It's very easy to get it back from a rescue disk or a chrooted env, but I remember windows installer screwed up partitions outside it's limits sometimes (even when you tell it to install to a specific one).

Reply Score: 1

eMagius Member since:
2005-07-06

Vista's installation is pretty automatic and straightforward. I suppose Microsoft could make an "advanced options..." link at the very start, but for a single option that matters to less than a tenth of one percent of customers, that would be overkill.

Reply Score: 1

That's not the worst thing...
by markob on Fri 29th Sep 2006 16:21 UTC
markob
Member since:
2005-07-06

...the worst thing is that if you select unallocated disk space, it'll also automaticaly install on that hard disk, overwriting every other OS (only WinXP remained untouched) not making a NTFS partition and overwriting everything on the disk.

Reply Score: 2

RE:
by Yomama on Fri 29th Sep 2006 16:23 UTC
Yomama
Member since:
2005-07-21

I can understand Microsoft for doing it. This will ensure no other OS is breathing on the same system. ;) I would imagine they could have an option in the installer asking if you are planning on running other OS's or if you have something else running already. Well, instead we will get the nice shiny sidebar with gadgets.


Medora Solutions Inc. http://www.medora.ca

Reply Score: 0

principles
by redm on Fri 29th Sep 2006 17:01 UTC
redm
Member since:
2005-07-06

Look they just want to innovate. It is against their principles and *your* best interest for them to be held back by the old fashion and obsolete MBR of the past or your selfish "needs". They are doing this for the greater good.

Why does everyone want to stop MS from innovating?! Its just crazy!

Reply Score: 2

The REAL reason
by KenJackson on Fri 29th Sep 2006 17:42 UTC
KenJackson
Member since:
2005-07-18

[Microsoft] argues that an “official” Vista MBR is required for security features — such as measured boot, which works with Trusted Platform Module (TPM)-enabled chips to check that the OS hasn’t been hacked or altered each time it boots — to work correctly.

And there you have it! Microsoft needs to nuke the MBR so that it's Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) plan can adequately keep it's users under control.

A fitting resonse would be to join http://defectivebydesign.org/. I did.

Reply Score: 5

RE: The REAL reason
by n4cer on Fri 29th Sep 2006 18:25 UTC in reply to "The REAL reason"
n4cer Member since:
2005-07-06

And there you have it! Microsoft needs to nuke the MBR so that it's Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) plan can adequately keep it's users under control.

More correctly, to keep the user's data safe from those without authorization to access it (e.g., a laptop thief). The metrics are used by BitLocker, an optional volume encryption feature to determine whether someone has tampered with the system.

Stop jumping to conclusions and do some research. If companies and governments take advantage of BitLocker, you'll be glad it was in use the next time someone steals a laptop with your medical, financial, or other sensitive information on it.

Reply Score: 1

v RE[2]: The REAL reason
by eggman on Fri 29th Sep 2006 18:30 UTC in reply to "RE: The REAL reason"
RE[2]: The REAL reason
by KenJackson on Fri 29th Sep 2006 19:27 UTC in reply to "RE: The REAL reason"
KenJackson Member since:
2005-07-18

TPC is a component of DRM and I believe it is the driving force. But it would be harder to sell the need for TPC if it was only for DRM, hence the value adders like BitLocker.

DRM is the REAL reason. And DRM is defective by design.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: The REAL reason
by n4cer on Fri 29th Sep 2006 20:42 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: The REAL reason"
n4cer Member since:
2005-07-06

The TPM is not a DRM component. It's a storage mechanism. Common DRM technologies don't even use the TPM, though they can be modified to do so just as any other application.

DRM is the REAL reason. And DRM is defective by design

I hope you're consistent in this belief when you suffer identity theft because the entity in posession of your information didn't adequately protect it because they thought as you do about access controls.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: The REAL reason
by KenJackson on Fri 29th Sep 2006 20:58 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: The REAL reason"
KenJackson Member since:
2005-07-18

Identity theft is a real issue that I am concerned about. But do you think Windows with TPC would better protect me from identity theft than GNU/Linux without TPC?

I insisted that my company benefits administrator NOT store my information on a Windows PC (I think I was ignored--I got no reply), because I just don't believe that Windows can give very good protection with or without TPC. I have more confidence that my GNU/Linux systems can protect me, but I still try to limit what information is on them.

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: The REAL reason
by n4cer on Fri 29th Sep 2006 21:12 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: The REAL reason"
n4cer Member since:
2005-07-06

Yes. Any system using the TPM will be more secure than an equivalent system that lacks (or does not use) a TPM.

As for Linux protecting you better than Windows, this belief is ideological, not factual. The facts are that it comes down to the knowledge and practices used by the administrator of the system. Just using Linux didn't stop portions of Windows' source from leaking (It leaked from a Linux box run by Mainsoft) or keep Debian's repository from being hacked multiple times.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: The REAL reason
by KenJackson on Fri 29th Sep 2006 21:35 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: The REAL reason"
KenJackson Member since:
2005-07-18

...it comes down to the knowledge and practices used by the administrator of the system. Just using Linux didn't stop...

Well, this is true. But I find it much easier to control access with Linux (e.g. itemizing ports with iptables) than I ever could with Windows. As a result, I think you find a disproportionately larger number of exploited Windows systems than Linux systems.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: The REAL reason
by n4cer on Fri 29th Sep 2006 22:07 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: The REAL reason"
n4cer Member since:
2005-07-06

Not when the admin is unfamiliar with or lax in securing the system, which is the primary reason for exploitation on any platform.

In your previous post, you said:

I insisted that my company benefits administrator NOT store my information on a Windows PC (I think I was ignored--I got no reply), because I just don't believe that Windows can give very good protection with or without TPC.

This isn't an example of you admin'ing the system so your familiarity with Linux means nothing. Based only on ideology you believe Windows is less secure than Linux under any circumstances and without taking into account the knowledge of the admin on either system and the policies in place. There's no factual basis for your claims.

Plus assume that your data is only stored on Linux PCs and another employee's data is stored on Windows. Laptops containing that data are stolen. The Windows laptop uses BitLocker w/ a TPM and USB key to secure the data. The Linux laptop just uses Linux. I can mount the drive and use automated tools to gain access to the data on the Linux drive. I can't even read the data on the Windows drive. I can't boot the system without the key. I can't change the hardware or boot environment.

Edited 2006-09-29 22:20

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: The REAL reason
by wirespot on Sat 30th Sep 2006 02:29 UTC in reply to "RE: The REAL reason"
wirespot Member since:
2006-06-21

There are other ways to accomplish data protection, without taking over the entire MBR and negatively impacting other OS's on the machine. What's wrong with using on-the-fly encryption and ask for the password as the OS starts? But that doesn't use DRM and doesn't control the entire machine, so what's the fun in that...

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: The REAL reason
by n4cer on Sat 30th Sep 2006 07:39 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: The REAL reason"
n4cer Member since:
2005-07-06

If you don't control the entire machine (or more correctly, use its specific metrics), you are open to attack. Unauthorized users can use various tools to get at the data. If you rely only on a password, an attacker could probably break it via brute force means in little time. Also, since you don't secure the boot environment, the attacker could take the harddrive, put it in a different computer, and hack on it for as long as he wants.

Reply Score: 2

Edward
Member since:
2005-09-17

Is this news to anyone, all windows versions did this.

Reply Score: 1

Really, The Real Reason...
by MikeekiM on Fri 29th Sep 2006 18:37 UTC
MikeekiM
Member since:
2005-11-16

- This would require MS to hire "another" smart person to do this work, instead of shipping this job off to China. If MS were to hire another smart person every time an issue like this came up, they'd be LESS PROFITABLE!

Gees, you Opens Sourcers will Never Understand.

Reply Score: 2

Solution is /IR switch
by nedvis on Fri 29th Sep 2006 18:57 UTC
nedvis
Member since:
2006-01-02

Most people don't know there is /IR setup option switch
(at least in WIndows 98) that tells setup to not update the master boot record ( MBR).
So it shouldn't be the problem for people who have already Linux installed to install Windows 98 after Linux
being installed first.
Problem is why didn't they utilize that switch in Vista.
Anyway, Microsoft MBR practice proves Redmond people still tends to own your PC. Too bad !

Reply Score: 3

Get With the Times M$
by oxleyn on Fri 29th Sep 2006 18:58 UTC
oxleyn
Member since:
2005-10-04

Why don't MS just incorporate some form of "expert" install mode, i.e. like most Linux ditros. During such an installation the user would receive a prompt regarding any non-MS bootloaders etc. I mean it wouldn't be the first time they copied an idea now would it? ;-)

Reply Score: 3

VMARE your machine
by hoser_9 on Fri 29th Sep 2006 21:00 UTC
hoser_9
Member since:
2006-03-02

Everyone should be running vmware or something similar, Then windows can think its doing something to the MBR. With Quad Core processors people having Gigs and gigs of mem, Video cards being powerful, CPU's having Virtual Technology support built into them.. people should just run their OS's that the same time if they want. Forget the dual boot crap. Run them at the same time. Then when Vista gets a virus you can back up the Virtual Machine to a previous saved spot that did not have the virus.

Reply Score: 2

Well...
by PJBonoVox on Fri 29th Sep 2006 22:03 UTC
PJBonoVox
Member since:
2006-08-14

I've had quite a few Linux distros in the past that have hosed my boot sector, but I agree it is extremely annoying practise on behalf of MS.

It forces you to install Windows XP before any other operating systems, and that in itself is a pain.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Well...
by hal2k1 on Fri 29th Sep 2006 23:22 UTC in reply to "Well..."
hal2k1 Member since:
2005-11-11

//I've had quite a few Linux distros in the past that have hosed my boot sector, but I agree it is extremely annoying practise on behalf of MS.

It forces you to install Windows XP before any other operating systems, and that in itself is a pain.//

I have found one way to compensate for this type of bad behaviour by Microsoft OSes.

If, after you re-installed Windows, you boot a PCLinuxOS livedCD (and I'm sure some others would do as well), you can use the PCLinuxOS Control Centre to re-write the MBR. This process will cater for your older install(s) of Linux distribution(s) as well as catering for your freshly-installed Windows.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Well...
by growchie on Sat 30th Sep 2006 06:48 UTC in reply to "RE: Well..."
growchie Member since:
2005-07-07

As far as i can understand it will be impossible to boot vista after overriding the mbr.

"It also argues that an “official” Vista MBR is required for security features — such as measured boot, which works with Trusted Platform Module (TPM)-enabled chips to check that the OS hasn’t been hacked or altered each time it boots — to work correctly."

Thus will make dualbooting harder if not even impossible using 3th party boot loaders. And that is definitely anticompetative move. In theory one could install grub on a partition, and set the linux partition to be active. But i don't know if it will be possible to boot vista that way using grub because the data about the active partition is stored on the mbr and thus it might fail 'official vista mbr test' on startup... sort of.
As for linux it has partition encryption for ages. The fact that some of you don't know about it doesn't mean that it does not exist. In fact you could have bitlocker like features right now with XP or linux using truecrypt, and linux has its own 'cryptoloop' too.

Reply Score: 1

Well
by Sphinx on Fri 29th Sep 2006 23:02 UTC
Sphinx
Member since:
2005-07-09

It's not like I haven't seen it do that before. Most people won't need to use it much less need to dual boot it since the linux desktop will be ready by the time it comes out at the pace they're going anyway.

Reply Score: 1

external drive
by MysterMask on Sat 30th Sep 2006 02:26 UTC
MysterMask
Member since:
2005-07-12

Is it possible to install Windows / Linux on an external drive and boot from that?
(as a mac user I don't understand the hassle to get a system able to boot multiple OSes or different versions of the same OS ..)

Reply Score: 1

RE: external drive
by monkeyhead on Mon 2nd Oct 2006 00:27 UTC in reply to "external drive"
monkeyhead Member since:
2005-07-11

MysterMask... you said:

as a mac user I don't understand the hassle to get a system able to boot multiple OSes or different versions of the same OS ..

Shut up fanboy... Linux will boot off pretty much whatever you want, and is quite happy to reside with multiple OS's and even different versions of one said OS.

The only 'hassle' as you've put it is when Vista gets installed, it overwrites the software that allows multi-booting several OS's in favor of their own.

RTFA next time before posting your mindless mac-rhetoric.

Reply Score: 2

Raymond Chen
by skx2 on Sat 30th Sep 2006 10:33 UTC
skx2
Member since:
2005-07-06

If you're following Raymond Chen, who is a Microsoft Developer, and his blog you might remember this from last year:

http://blogs.msdn.com/oldnewthing/archive/2005/12/20/505887.aspx

["Why does Windows setup lay down a new boot sector?"]

I love reading his rationale for a lot of Microsoft decisions and backward compatability hoop-jumping, even though I run Debian on my systems..

Reply Score: 1

the borg collective just loves MS Vista
by justin.68 on Sat 30th Sep 2006 15:50 UTC
justin.68
Member since:
2006-09-16

we r the borg. you will be assimilated. your technological distinctiveness will be added to our own. you will adapt to serve us. your MBR will be overwritten. resistance is futile.

Reply Score: 1

n4cer Member since:
2005-07-06

We are GPL. Your code will be assimilated. Your technological distinctiveness will be added to our own. You will adapt to serve the FSF whether you like it or not. You will have an irrational hatred of all things non-GPL. You will be incapable of believing many people actually choose to use non-GPL technologies or some combination thereof. Resistance is futile.

We are Apple. Your code will be assimilated. Your technological distinctiveness will be added to our own. You will adapt to serve Steve Jobs. You will succumb to the RDF and believe Apple invented all technologies. You will hate other companies until we start using their products. You will buy an iPod. You will believe we invented the letter i, the word pod, and the color white. Resistance is futile.

Reply Score: 2

situation solved
by bolomkxxviii on Sat 30th Sep 2006 22:57 UTC
bolomkxxviii
Member since:
2006-05-19

My setup solves this entire issue. I have six OSes, each on their own separate hard drive on a slide out mount. My files are on a separate fixed hard drive with a FAT 32 partition. The OSes don't have to play nice and if an OS gets corrupted or you just want a change, no problem. This used to be an expensive proposition, but not today.

Reply Score: 1

Ronald Vos
Member since:
2005-07-06

What Vista is doing is no difference from previous MS OSes. Apparently, we no longer take for granted that an MS OS overwrites the MBR and appropiates the computer for itself, and hence the article. That's a good thing.

Reply Score: 1

Re: Some things never change
by Darkelve on Mon 2nd Oct 2006 10:09 UTC
Darkelve
Member since:
2006-02-06

"Some things never change. The day MS decides to "play nice" (no, I mean for real. No, I mean for really real) most of us here at OSNews will probably have a coronary."

And the number of comments will probably go down by about 60% :p

Reply Score: 1

RE: the borg collective
by Darkelve on Mon 2nd Oct 2006 10:12 UTC
Darkelve
Member since:
2006-02-06

Without this one, the list isn't complete:

"We are Microsoft.

Your code will be stolen. Your technological innovations will be copied by us and your successful software companies bought out.

We prefer you do not think at all.

Resistance is futile."

Now someone write one for another entity, maybe IBM...

Reply Score: 1