Reformatted and Cannot Get Into Linux

by on July 24, 2007

Q: I had windows both Windows Vista and SUSE Linux 10 installed on two separate partitions on my computer. I cleaned the hard drive using Toshiba’s CD for the windows partition. Afterwards the computer no longer gives me the option of booting in Linux. How can I get back into Linux?

A: The first thing you want to do is to find out how large your C: drive is in windows. You can do this by right clicking on the drive and selecting “Properties…” to figure out how much space is allocated to your C: drive.

This is important because a lot of times the CD’s that come with Windows computers will actually format the entire drive not just a single partition. So we are trying to figure out if the other partition is still there. If it is not there then you will have to work on repartitioning the hard drive and installing.

If the other partition is still there then what happened is the MBR (Master Boot Record) was modified and it does not know how to boot to your Linux partition. Now from here you have the option of using LILO, Grub, Windows boot manager, or one of the million other boot managers out there. Sorry to leave you off here but since there are so many options and so many people have their own preference we suggest referring to your Linux documentation on which route you want to go in terms of getting booted back into Linux.