chainload freeldr from syslinux for frugal installation of ReactOS

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JClu
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu May 14, 2020 5:43 am

chainload freeldr from syslinux for frugal installation of ReactOS

Post by JClu »

Good Day everyone,
i want to boot a frugal install of Reactod to test it for a while.
i tried few things and read a lot in vain.
Here is what was done :
. downloaded ReactOS-0.4.13-live.zip
. extracted ReactOS-0.4.13-live.iso from it
. then poured all the (significant) files from the iso into my SSD
. and now you have this :

Code: Select all

SSD :
 |-- androidx86
 |-- boot
 |   `--- syslinux.cfg
 |-- reactos
 |   |-- Profiles
 |   |-- autorun.inf
 |   |-- freeldr.ini
 |   |-- icon.ico
 |   |-- loader
 |   |   |-- AppPatch
 |   |   |-- ...
 |   |   `-- winsxs
 |   |-- reactos
 |   |   |-- efisys.bin
 |   |   |-- isoboot.bin
 |   |   `-- setupldr.sys
 |   `-- readme.txt
 |-- slitaz
 `-- tinycore11
notice that there are already a few tiny distros of linux and androx86 :
all of them boot an work as expected.
in syslinux.cfg you will find these lines dedicated to ReactOS :

Code: Select all

label reactOS
      menu ReactOS-0.4.13-Live
      kernel mboot.c32
      append /reactos/loader/setupldr.sys
all i get is a blincking cursor once this boot selected.

several variations were used :
- chain.c32 instead of mboot.c32
- prefixing reactos=/reactos/loader/setupldr.sys
- appending "SystemPath=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)/reactos/reactos"

none of it worked.
at one moment i even got a "could not find freeldr.ini", but can't reproduce the case.

So, in hope someone had figured out a way to get this working i came to submit my problem.

Thank you very much for your kind attention.

JClu
202005144

User avatar
binarymaster
Posts: 375
Joined: Sun Nov 16, 2014 7:05 pm
Location: Russia, Moscow
Contact:

Re: chainload freeldr from syslinux for frugal installation of ReactOS

Post by binarymaster »

JClu wrote:
Thu May 14, 2020 6:55 am
. extracted ReactOS-0.4.13-live.iso from it
. then poured all the (significant) files from the iso into my SSD
It's not correct way to install ReactOS, follow this guide: https://reactos.org/wiki/Installing_Rea ... B-RAM_boot

User avatar
binarymaster
Posts: 375
Joined: Sun Nov 16, 2014 7:05 pm
Location: Russia, Moscow
Contact:

Re: chainload freeldr from syslinux for frugal installation of ReactOS

Post by binarymaster »

JClu wrote:
Thu May 14, 2020 6:55 am
all i get is a blincking cursor once this boot selected.

none of it worked.
at one moment i even got a "could not find freeldr.ini", but can't reproduce the case.
I got your email message, but still it's not clear what is happening without a debug log. You wrote you have read the whole wiki, so you should know how to get it.

I remember other users have encountered similar problem on boot, but nobody was able to debug it so far. You said you were able to reproduce this hang in QEMU, so maybe you can join our chat https://chat.reactos.org/ so we could investigate this together?

Btw. are you using this guide? https://reactos.org/wiki/Boot_FreeLoader_from_GRUB

Don't be afraid to critize my answers publicly, as long as it's reasonable.

JClu
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu May 14, 2020 5:43 am

Re: chainload freeldr from syslinux for frugal installation of ReactOS

Post by JClu »

Well, i did some (real) progress :
1. still in frugal instal but i put all the files at the root of the partition (WHAT a MESS!)
2. of course i had to asjust syslinux.cfg to point to /loader/setupldr.sys
and similarily in \freeldr.ini to SystemPath=\reactos
3. then booting as recommended, in debug mode :
in Qemu : failed with "no NT kernel header" msg
on metal it worked... with lots of glitchs, but it worked and i even could run some apps such as
doublecmd .98, notepad2-mod, tinyclock, irfanview..
some run badly : processhacker, minipad2...
but no audio, network...
and many small apps not working : fastlauncher, opera12.16, ukalender...
4. all this is beside the point : a clean frugal helps to get each OS in it own folder (the proper portable way)
so the question remains the same : any way to tell setupldr.sys that freeldr.ini is in \ROS-Folder and not \ ?
and assuming that being done, will "SystemPath=\ROS-Folder\reactos" be enough to ensure the rest of the boot to proceed ok?
5. and of course there's still the problem of booting within qemu. NB : the iso file boots with no problem without any tweaking.
...
now, how do i attach the debug log files? (one from the qemu boot and the other on the PC itself)
FYI, went to the chat : crouded so, unless PM?

JClu
202005166

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