Discussion in 'Linux+' started by Jellyman_4eva, Jul 23, 2005.

  1. Jellyman_4eva

    Jellyman_4eva Byte Poster


    Have got to section in Linux+ on boot loaders and have mega confused myself.

    Right, the MBR is the first sector (512 bytes) on a hard disk. It contains the partition table and for Linux a bootloader (GRUB or LILO etc) if installed there.

    So the system boots and as the BIOS automatically goes to the MBR, the system finds the bootloader. Bootloader launches stuff + filesystem recognition and mounts /boot partition etc etc etc...

    For Windows, I take it the MBR merely contains a pointer to NTLDR which is on the boot sector of the first (primary partition) of the disk?! If so how does this work, because surely it must somehow load the filesystem in order to be able to read NTLDR?!

    And how is GRUB and NTLDR able to load each others OS without directly supporting each others file systems?!
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  2. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

    At the point before the operating system is loaded, you aren't really dealing with file systems (FAT32 or NTFS vs ext2 or ext3). Found a few tutorials on the subject that might help explain things:



    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  3. Phoenix
    Honorary Member

    Phoenix 53656e696f7220 4d6f64

    grub and lilo work in very similar ways to the windows boto system inthat they are not soley cotnained in the MBR, they are too large, grub and lilo will point you to binarys and config files in the /boot directory whilst the windows MBR will point you to ntldr which in turn goes through ntdetect.com and boot.ini for booting information

    and at this level we are generally dealing with RAW data not filesystem specific information
    Certifications: MCSE, MCITP, VCP
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