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Can't boot to Vista.

Hi there, I just installed Ubuntu, and everytime I turn my laptop on, it just boots straight to Ubuntu, instead of showing the boot screen, if I press esc to choose other options, there is no option for Vista and just ones for ubuntu. How do i get onto Vista? Because I desperately need to use it, and I have no Vista Recovery Disc, unfortunately, because my laptop never came with one. I'll even settle for uninstalling Ubuntu if thats what it takes to get Vista back. Thanks for the help.


  • mfillpot
    mfillpot Posts: 2,177
    Usually Ubuntu has no problems detecting windows based operating systems and auto-assigning them in the grub boot loader. the absence of that option is making me question if you accidentally overwrote your vista installation with the Ubuntu installation.

    Please respond with the output of "sudo fdisk -l" so we can see your partition structure and also let us know what version of Ubuntu you installed so we know which boot loader needs to be adjusted.
  • Disk /dev/sda: 160.0 GB, 160041885696 bytes
    255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 19457 cylinders
    Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
    Disk identifier: 0xa573e9b2

    Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
    /dev/sda1 * 1 365 2931831 83 Linux
    /dev/sda2 366 729 2923830 5 Extended
    /dev/sda5 366 605 1927768+ 83 Linux
    /dev/sda6 606 729 995998+ 82 Linux swap / Solaris
  • fedev
    fedev Posts: 9
    For what I can see, you must have accidentally overwritten the partition which contained Vista.
  • mfillpot
    mfillpot Posts: 2,177
    fedev wrote:
    For what I can see, you must have accidentally overwritten the partition which contained Vista.

    I agree, if what is showing is representing all of your hard drives and partitions then you had overwritten windows in which a reinstallation is necessary to get it back. You must have chosen the automatic partition setup when you installed ubuntu.
  • How do I reinstall? I don't have a Vista Installation CD
  • mfillpot
    mfillpot Posts: 2,177
    Usually when a disk is not given the computer manufacturer loads a prtition on your system with the reinstallation utilities, but unfortunately that was also removed when you installed Ubuntu.

    There should be a link on your computer manufacturer's website to request the recovery and system disk (for a small fee). If you can tell use the make and model of computer and the nation you reside in then we may be able to locate that link for you.
  • Toshiba Satellite L300D
  • mfillpot
    mfillpot Posts: 2,177
    It is either a L300D-ST3501 or L300D-ST3503.

    I could not find a link for them to send you the recovery disks, but I found the following on the toshiba website from the manual from your system (page 60) it may help you.

    The options were on your system to create the recovery disks yourself, so hopefully your did that and can use the disks you created rather than having to request disks.

    "It is strongly recommended that you create recovery DVDs before
    using your system. For more information on creating Recovery
    media see “Creating Recovery DVDs” on page 60.

    The system will prompt you to insert the appropriate number of blank
    DVDs to copy the hard drive recovery. If your optical disc drive is not
    writable, contact Toshiba Customer Support to obtain the Recovery
    media for your system.
    The Toshiba Customer Support Center in the United States is
    (800) 457-7777, outside the United States it is (949) 859-4273."
  • You may also be able to borrow a OEM Windows Vista disk from anyone who has the same version of Vista that you do. (However you may have to download additional drivers.)
  • Is that your only HD? If it is, you'll need to carefully resize your HD so that you can have room to reinstall Vista. As for reinstalling Vista - do you have a legal key? If you do, just torrent a copy of Vista, burn it, and install it(using your legal key). If you don't have a legal key, then buy a legal copy. The cheapest places you can get it are from almost any University (are you a student, do you know a student). If you have to buy a copy, then get Windows 7. Vista == Windows ME if you have any idea of what I'm talking about. To put it simply - it sucks.
  • Yes I do not see any reason to reinstall Vista, It consumes to many system resources to say the least. If you absolutely have to install windows I suggest considering windows XP or like stated correctly by altNull Windows 7. Your best bet would be to buy a cheap hard drive so you can have Linux on one and Windows on the other, that will eliminate the need to partion your hard drive. If you have any knowledge of virtual machines that is another option you might consider installing windows 7 or windows XP in a virtual machine and run it from inside the Linux operating system.

    Whatever you decide to do, I highly discourage subjecting you to having to deal with windows Vista. You will see system performance increase when you are not using inefficient operating systems such as Vista. As my personal opinion you might decide to give Linux a chance and not install Windows altogether, I don't think any version windows surpasses the abilities of what Linux can do. Try downloading applications such as Cairo-dock to add eye candy and ease of use.

    Linux is highly configurable and you can pretty much get it to look anyway you want it to. Try this site to even convert the way Ubuntu 9.10 looks virtually into the way Vista looks. I haven't tried it myself though.


    Even windows lovers admit Vista is a mistake. Give Linux a shot though, if you run into trouble, we will be glad to help you out. I don't think you will find Windows necessary once you install Wine or run windows inside a virtual machine. Heck the battery life on my Dell Inspiron 1545 almost tripled when I replaced the Windows 7 OS with Ubuntu 9.10


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