Partition Boot Manager 1.08 (PBM) Manual

 

SA Development

http://www.sadevelopment.com

Manual Revised 12/9/2007

 

Table of Contents

Important Information (Do NOT skip this section) 3

How does PBM work?  3

Unsafe Partition Changes  3

Safe Partition Changes  3

Introduction  4

Partition Boot Manager (PBM) Introduction  4

PBM Features  4

Common uses for PBM    4

Installing PBM    5

Installing PBM on a system with existing partitions that need to be kept 5

Installing PBM on a system with no partitions or partitions that can be deleted  7

Installing Operating Systems  8

Recommendations  8

Older FDISK Warning  8

How Drive Letters are Assigned  8

Int13 Extension Support 9

Operating System Installation Notes  10

Generic Operating System Installation Instructions  10

DOS and Windows 3.1  10

Windows 95  11

Windows 98  12

Windows Millennium Edition  12

Windows NT 3.51 and 4.0  13

Windows 2000  14

Windows XP  14

Redhat Linux  15

Mandrake Linux  16

Caldera Linux  16

Lycoris Linux  16

SCO Unix  17

Troubleshooting Operating Systems  18

Startup Environment 18

Updating Boot Sectors  19

PBM Concepts  20

Independent Operating Systems  20

Two-way Partition Maintenance  20

Shared Partitions  22

Partition Creation  22

Partition Modification  23

File System Support 23

Master Boot Record Support 24

Maintenance Partitions  24

Setting up a Maintenance Partition  25

Security  26

Options  26

Users  26

When is the system secure?  27

How secure is it?  28

Options  28

Startup Options  28

Display Options  29

Partition Protection Options  30

Miscellaneous Options  31

Security Options  31

PBM Setup  32

Backup  32

Restore  32

Initialize  32

Uninstalling PBM    32

Registration  32

Technical Details  33

Program Design  33

How the Traditional Boot Process works  33

How PBM improves the Traditional Boot Process  33


Important Information (Do NOT skip this section)

How does PBM work?

 

PBM works by maintaining two partition tables.  PBM’s partition table can hold up to 256 partitions and information such as partition name, security information, and much more.  When the user selects an operating system, PBM creates the traditional partition table necessary to boot the operating system.  This also works in reverse in that if the traditional partition table has any modifications such as a resized partition, PBM is smart enough to detect the change and apply it to its own partition table.

Unsafe Partition Changes

 

When the user selects an operating system to boot, the partitions it requires are put into the traditional partition table.  This leaves a problem for the operating systems and partitions that did not get selected.  The space they use on the disk appears to be available.  If the user decides to create a new partition, they could use the disk space of another operating system by mistake.  PBM’s solution for this is to protect the space by putting it in a protection partition where it cannot be overwritten by mistake.  These protection partitions are type 20h by default. 

 

PBM also uses protection partitions to also restrict where a new operating system should be installed.  It will create two protection partitions blocking off all the space except for the space the operating system should be installed.  Operating systems will not report these partitions as protection partitions.  Most likely they will be reported as unknown or type 20h partitions.  Just keep in mind that they are there to mark off where the operating system should not create a partition and just create a partition in the available space.

 

 

There are some configurations where PBM is unable to protect all the unselected partitions.  In this case the “Unprotected Warning” will be displayed unless it has been disabled.

 

If a configuration is active that doesn’t protect all the unselected partitions, these two changes should not be attempted.

 

Safe Partition Changes

 

These changes can be performed at any time.

 

 

Introduction

Partition Boot Manager (PBM) Introduction

 

PBM is unique in that it offers what no other boot manager does—escape from the limitations of the traditional partition table and compatibility with existing partition utilities.

 

Other boot managers claim they can boot hundreds of operating systems, but they can only do this with methods that cost in terms of compatibility.  They may require up to 14 hard drives as well as force multiple operating systems to share same partition.  I do not consider these methods acceptible for a boot manager because they force the user to install in non-standard directories and very complex partition configurations.  Also, operating systems are designed to boot from drive 0, not drive 4 for example.

 

PBM maintains two partition tables.  PBM’s partition table can hold up to 256 entries, security information, name, and more.  PBM uses its partition table to build the actual traditional partition table required for compatibility, and better yet, it can create a custom traditional partition table for each operating system.  While there are some other boot managers that have their own partition table like PBM, PBM goes one step further by allowing changes to the traditional partition table via a concept called two-way partition maintenance.  This makes PBM compatible with existing hard disk utilities that aren’t aware of PBM’s presence.  PBM automatically detects changes to the traditional partition table and updates itself.

PBM Features

 

Common uses for PBM

 

 

 

 

 

 

Installing PBM

Installing PBM on a system with existing partitions that need to be kept

 

A few steps need to be accomplished to assure a smooth transition to PBM.

 

 

 

 

 

If a partition is using this space, there are two ways to move a partition.  It can be moved externally with PBM Setup or a partition utility.  It can also be moved internally by using a partition utility installed within the operating system.  The importance of this applies to operating systems that allow custom drive letters such as Windows NT, Windows 2000, and Windows XP.  If one of these operating systems is installed on a drive letter other than C:, then moving it externally can cause it to lose its drive letter and fail to boot.  The easy way to check this is to go to a DOS prompt on one of these operating systems and type:  “set s<ENTER>” (set and s are separated by a space).  This will indicate the SystemRoot and SystemDrive variables.  If they do not begin with “C:”, then the operating system must be resized or moved with a partition utility that runs from within the operating system.  The partition utility will then update the custom drive letters to point to the modified partition.  The best way to avoid this issue is to install any of these operating systems correctly in the first place on C:.  Instructions in the operating system installation examples detail how to do this.

 

Another issue to be concerned with are operating systems that don’t support more than 1024 cylinders.  If their partition is moved beyond 1024 cylinders, they will likely not boot or work reliably.  See the operating system area for details on which operating systems support more than 1024 cylinders.

 

It is faster for a partition utility to resize or move an existing partition to make room for PBM instead of relying on PBM Setup to move the partition itself.  This is because PBM touches the inner workings of partitions as little as possible.  When it moves or copies a partition, it has to move the entire partition sector by sector.  This includes all the free space that isn’t in use as well as the space that is.  A partition utility is familiar with specific types of partitions and can resize or move them without moving as many sectors.

 

Once these steps have been made, PBM can be installed.

 

§          The PBM Setup Disk Creator can create a PBM Setup Disk under Windows 95/98/NT/ME/2000/XP.

§          The PBM Setup CD-ROM Image is in ISO format and can be used with CD burning software to create a PBM Setup CD-ROM.

§          The PBM Setup Disk Image is in IMG format and can be used with a disk utility. (Some free ones are available on our downloads page as well)

§          PBM can also be purchased so that a PBM Setup CD-ROM and PBM Setup Disk can be priority mailed.

 

§          Some systems may not be configured to boot the floppy drive or CD-ROM before the hard drive.  Go into the BIOS settings and configure it to boot the floppy drive or CD-ROM first.

 

§          Choose to keep the existing partitions.

§          Move or delete any partitions that are in the PBM required area.

§          Choose the 30-day trial period or enter registration information.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Installing PBM on a system with no partitions or partitions that can be deleted

 

§          The PBM Setup Disk Creator can create a PBM Setup Disk under Windows 95/98/NT/ME/2000/XP.

§          The PBM Setup CD-ROM Image is in ISO format and can be used with CD burning software to create a PBM Setup CD-ROM.

§          The PBM Setup Disk Image is in IMG format and can be used with a disk utility. (Some free ones are available on our downloads page as well)

§          PBM can also be purchased so that a PBM Setup CD-ROM and PBM Setup Disk can be priority mailed.

 

§          Some systems may not be configured to boot the floppy drive or CD-ROM before the hard drive.  Go into the BIOS settings and configure it to boot the floppy drive or CD-ROM first.

 

§          If any partitions are present, choose to delete any existing partitions that need to be deleted.

§          Move or delete any partitions that are in the PBM required area.

§          Choose the 30-day trial period or enter registration information.

 

 

Installing Operating Systems

Recommendations

 

Here are some general recommendations that will make all operating system installations go more smoothly.

 

Older FDISK Warning

 

DO NOT USE older FDISK versions as they can corrupt existing partitions.  ONLY the Windows Millennium Edition FDISK is safe to use.  Other versions can destroy all the data on a drive even when no partition changes have been made.

How Drive Letters are Assigned

 

Most operating systems assign their drive letters by partition order.  Operating systems like this include DOS, Windows 9x, and Windows Millennium Edition.  The primary active partition always becomes drive C:.  Moving or resizing a partition should not cause drive letter issues with these types of operating systems.

 

However, operating systems such as Windows NT, Windows 2000, and Windows XP are different.  They allow custom drive letters to be assigned to any partition.  In this case, it doesn't matter what order the partitions are in, or even which one is active.  The operating system recognizes partitions and assigns a specific drive letter to it based on information in its own registry.  While this does allow flexibility it can be a serious problem if the operating system partition was assigned a particular drive letter and is reassigned another drive letter because it was resized or moved externally.  This is why it is critical to make sure Windows NT, Windows 2000, and Windows XP installations are installed to drive C:.  See the What to do Before Installing section above to see how to check this.

 

Windows NT, Windows 2000, and Windows XP are also sensitive to the partition order because the boot.ini file points to a specific partition number to boot from.  This must be taken into account when partition protection options are changed because this change may cause a partition that was #2 to become #1.  If this happens, this type of operating system will fail to boot.  To correct this, go to the partition properties of the partition and override the global partition protection options so they are set to the original settings.

 

Every operating system can assign drive letters in its own way.

Int13 Extension Support

 

There are two ways to access a hard drive:

 

 

PBM fully supports Extended Int13 so it can use huge drives (100+Gb).  Some operating systems support Extended Int13 while others do not.  For the ones that do not, they must be located within the first 1024 cylinders of a drive.  This is typically within the first 7.8Gb on a drive, but can be smaller depending on disk geometry.  If an operating system does support Extended Int13, it can put anywhere on the drive.  The trouble is that some operating systems somewhat support Extended Int13.  An example of this is Windows NT which is capable of accessing large drives once it is up and running, but is unable to boot itself on a partition which goes past cylinder 1024.  In this case, the boot process of Windows NT does not support Extended Int13 while other aspects of Windows NT do support it.

 

Operating Systems that fully support Extended Int13 (and can be located anywhere on a drive):

 

 

Operating Systems that do not fully support Extended Int13 (and must be within 1024 cylinders):

 

 

Operating System Installation Notes

Generic Operating System Installation Instructions

 

  1. Go to Configure, Partitions, Create, Choose a position and size.  The Choose Size and Position dialog will indicate how much of the freespace is within the 1024 cylinders.  Keep in mind that some operating systems do not support Extended Int13 and must be within 1024 cylinders (7.8 Gb).
  2. Choose Prepare for OS or Partition Utility to Create Partition.
  3. Put in your operating system disk or CD-ROM and choose Restart.
  4. Go through the operating system setup until you reach the area that has to do with disk partitioning.  You will likely see two protection partitions although they might be called unknown or type 20h.  These protection partitions are masking off the area that you should NOT use, so instruct the operating system setup to use the unallocated space or create a partition using the unallocated space.
  5. Finish the operating system setup.  Typically when the operating system setup is completed, it will restart your system.
  6. If your system restart and does not come back to the PBM Menu, then the operating system that was installed replaced the MBR.  This is normal for some operating systems.  To get back to PBM boot the PBM Setup Disk and it will automatically reactivate PBM.  Then choose Start PBM from the menu.
  7. When PBM loads, it will detect the new partition you created for this operating system and ask for its name and some other information.  Enter an appropriate name and choose Accept.
  8. Test the new operating system by booting it from the main menu.

DOS and Windows 3.1

 

  1. Go to Configure, Partitions, Create, Choose a position and size.  The Choose Size and Position dialog will indicate how much of the freespace is within the 1024 cylinders.  Keep in mind that DOS will only boot in the first 2Gb of a drive normally.  PBM can update the boot sector to support booting the first 7.8Gb.  See the section on Updating Boot Sectors.
  2. Choose Prepare for OS or Partition Utility to Create Partition.
  3. Insert a DOS setup disk.
  4. Choose Restart in PBM.
  5. After the first screen, Setup will go to a screen that says “it needs to configure the unallocated space”.  On this screen, choose “Configure unallocated disk space (recommended).”
  6. Setup will need restart your computer, press Enter.
  7. Setup will restart and automatically begin formatting drive C:.  It is only formatting the partition it created from step 6.
  8. Finish Setup.
  9. At the end of Setup, it will ask to remove all disks and restart.
  10. PBM will prompt for information for the new partition.  Enter the information and choose Accept.  Because partition changes were made, the Confirm Changes dialog will also appear.  Type in yes and choose Accept.
  11. If the partition is located past the 2Gb point, update the boot sector with the DOS improved boot sector by going to Configure, Partitions, select the new Partition, Modify, Boot Sector, Update, choose DOS (improved boot sector), type in yes and choose Accept.
  12. Test the new operating system by booting it from the main menu.
  13. Optionally install CD-ROM drivers if necessary.
  14. Optionally install Windows 3.1 or Windows for Workgroups 3.11 from CD-ROM or disk.

Windows 95

 

  1. Go to Configure, Partitions, Create, Choose a position and size.  The Choose Size and Position dialog will indicate how much of the freespace is within the 1024 cylinders.  Keep in mind that early versions of Windows 95 do not support Extended Int13 fully and must be within 1024 cylinders (7.8 Gb).  Later versions of Windows 95 do fully support Extended Int13 and do not have this limitation.
  2. Choose Prepare for OS or Partition Utility to Create Partition.
  3. Insert a Windows ME Startup disk.  Even though Windows 95 is going to be installed, the FDISK and CD-ROM support of the Windows ME start disk is recommended.
  4. Choose Restart in PBM.
  5. Choose Start computer without CD-ROM support, and press Enter.
  6. Type in FDISK, and press Enter.
  7. If the Windows 95 being installed is not OSR2 or later then type in N and press Enter.  If the Windows 95 being installed is OSR2 or later then type in Y and press Enter to enable FAT32 support.
  8. Choose 1 for Create DOS partition or Logical DOS Drive, press Enter, Choose 1 for Create Primary DOS Partition, press Enter.
  9. It will ask “Do you wish to use the maximum available size …”, press Enter for yes.
  10. Press Esc to exit FDISK.  Press Ctrl-Alt-Del to restart the computer.
  11. Choose Start computer with CD-ROM support, and press Enter.
  12. Type in FORMAT C:, press Enter, type in Y, press Enter.  Formatting should begin.
  13. Assign a drive label if desired, or press Enter to continue.
  14. Insert the Windows 95 Installation CD if installing from CD, or insert Windows 95 Disk 1 if installing from Disk.
  15. If installing from CD, change to the CD-ROM drive by typing E: and pressing Enter.  (Sometimes the CD-ROM drive might be another letter)
  16. If installing from Disk, change to the Disk drive by typing A: and pressing Enter.
  17. Run Setup and go through Windows setup.
  18. Windows Setup will restart the computer a couple times during setup, and instead of PBM returning as it normally does, the system will simply boot the new Windows 95 installation.  This is normal.
  19. Once Windows Setup is finished, put a PBM Setup Disk or CD-ROM in and restart the computer.  PBM Setup will automatically reactivate PBM.
  20. Choose Start PBM from the PBM Setup Menu.
  21. PBM will prompt for information for the new partition.  Enter the information and choose Accept.  Because partition changes were made, the Confirm Changes dialog will also appear.  Type in yes and choose Accept.
  22. Test the new operating system by booting it from the main menu.

Windows 98

 

  1. Go to Configure, Partitions, Create, Choose a position and size. 
  2. Choose Prepare for OS or Partition Utility to Create Partition.
  3. Insert a Windows ME Startup disk.  Even though Windows 98 is going to be installed, the FDISK and CD-ROM support of the Windows ME start disk is recommended.
  4. Choose Restart in PBM.
  5. Choose Start computer without CD-ROM support, and press Enter.
  6. Type in FDISK, and press Enter.
  7. To enable FAT32 support, type in Y and press Enter.  To disable FAT32 support, type in N and press Enter.
  8. Choose 1 for Create DOS partition or Logical DOS Drive, press Enter, Choose 1 for Create Primary DOS Partition, press Enter.
  9. It will ask “Do you wish to use the maximum available size …”, press Enter for yes.
  10. Press Esc to exit FDISK.  Press Ctrl-Alt-Del to restart the computer.
  11. Choose Start computer with CD-ROM support, and press Enter.
  12. Type in FORMAT C:, press Enter, type in Y, press Enter.  Formatting should begin.
  13. Assign a drive label if desired, or press Enter to continue.
  14. Insert the Windows 98 Installation CD.
  15. Change to the CD-ROM drive by typing E: and pressing Enter.  (Sometimes the CD-ROM drive might be another letter)
  16. Run Setup and go through Windows setup.
  17. Windows Setup will restart the computer a couple times during setup, and instead of PBM returning as it normally does, the system will simply boot the new Windows 98 installation.  This is normal.
  18. Once Windows Setup is finished, put a PBM Setup Disk or CD-ROM in and restart the computer.  PBM Setup will automatically reactivate PBM.
  19. Choose Start PBM from the PBM Setup Menu.
  20. PBM will prompt for information for the new partition.  Enter the information and choose Accept.  Because partition changes were made, the Confirm Changes dialog will also appear.  Type in yes and choose Accept.
  21. Test the new operating system by booting it from the main menu.

Windows Millennium Edition

 

  1. Go to Configure, Partitions, Create, Choose a position and size. 
  2. Choose Prepare for OS or Partition Utility to Create Partition.
  3. Insert a Windows ME Startup disk.
  4. Choose Restart in PBM.
  5. Choose Start computer without CD-ROM support, and press Enter.
  6. Type in FDISK, and press Enter.
  7. To enable FAT32 support, type in Y and press Enter.  To disable FAT32 support, type in N and press Enter.
  8. Choose 1 for Create DOS partition or Logical DOS Drive, press Enter, Choose 1 for Create Primary DOS Partition, press Enter.
  9. It will ask “Do you wish to use the maximum available size …”, press Enter for yes.
  10. Press Esc to exit FDISK.  Press Ctrl-Alt-Del to restart the computer.
  11. Choose Start computer with CD-ROM support, and press Enter.
  12. Type in FORMAT C:, press Enter, type in Y, press Enter.  Formatting should begin.
  13. Assign a drive label if desired, or press Enter to continue.
  14. Insert the Windows ME Installation CD.
  15. Change to the CD-ROM drive by typing E: and pressing Enter.  (Sometimes the CD-ROM drive might be another letter)
  16. Run Setup and go through Windows setup.
  17. Windows Setup will restart the computer a couple times during setup, and instead of PBM returning as it normally does, the system will simply boot the new Windows ME installation.  This is normal.
  18. Once Windows Setup is finished, put a PBM Setup Disk or CD-ROM in and restart the computer.  PBM Setup will automatically reactivate PBM.
  19. Choose Start PBM from the PBM Setup Menu.
  20. PBM will prompt for information for the new partition.  Enter the information and choose Accept.  Because partition changes were made, the Confirm Changes dialog will also appear.  Type in yes and choose Accept.
  21. Test the new operating system by booting it from the main menu.

Windows NT 3.51 and 4.0

 

  1. Go to Configure, Partitions, Create, Choose a position and size.  The Choose Size and Position dialog will indicate how much of the freespace is within the 1024 cylinders.  Keep in mind that Windows NT does not support Extended Int13 during boot time and must be within 1024 cylinders (7.8 Gb).
  2. Choose Prepare for OS or Partition Utility to Create Partition.
  3. Insert a Windows NT 3.51 or 4.0 CD-ROM.  If the system does not support bootable CD-ROM also insert Disk 1 for Windows NT Setup.
  4. Choose Restart in PBM.
  5. Windows NT Setup will start.  Press Enter to continue at the Welcome to Setup screen.
  6. Continue until setup is at the screen that says “The list below shows existing partitions and spaces available for …”.
  7. Arrow down to the “Unpartitioned space”, and press Enter.
  8. Choose either the FAT or NTFS file system.  Windows NT will not allow a partition larger than 4 Gb because Windows NT setup doesn’t actually format any NTFS partitions; it always formats a FAT file system and then schedules a conversion to NTFS later if the NTFS file system was selected.  The FAT file system in Windows NT supports a maximum size of 4 Gb.
  9. Windows NT Setup will format the disk and continue the installation.
  10. Continue until setup asks to restart.  Remove the Windows NT Setup CD-ROM.  Press Enter to restart.
  11. PBM will prompt for information for the new partition.  Enter the information and choose Accept.  Because partition changes were made, the Confirm Changes dialog will also appear.  Type in yes and choose Accept.
  12. Choose the new operating system by booting it from the main menu.
  13. Insert the Windows NT Setup CD-ROM as it will be needed to finish setting up Windows NT.
  14. Finish Windows NT Setup.  At the final setup window, remove the Windows NT Setup CD-ROM and choose Restart Computer.

Windows 2000

 

  1. Go to Configure, Partitions, Create, Choose a position and size. 
  2. Choose Prepare for OS or Partition Utility to Create Partition.
  3. Insert a Windows 2000 CD-ROM.  If the system does not support bootable CD-ROM also insert Disk 1 for Windows 2000 Setup.
  4. Choose Restart in PBM.
  5. Windows 2000 Setup will start.  Press Enter to continue at the Welcome to Setup screen.
  6. Continue until setup is at the screen that says “The following list shows the existing partitions …”.
  7. Arrow down to the “Unpartitioned space”, and press Enter.
  8. Choose either the FAT or NTFS file system.
  9. Windows 2000 Setup will format the disk and continue the installation.
  10. Continue until setup asks to restart.  Press Enter to restart.  (If the system was installed using Setup Disks and not a bootable CD-ROM, Step 13 may occur at this point.  If so, complete step 13 now and continue to step 12.
  11. Finish Windows 2000 Setup.  At the final setup window, remove the Windows 2000 Setup CD-ROM.
  12. Put a PBM Setup Disk or CD-ROM in and choose Restart.  PBM Setup will automatically reactivate PBM.
  13. Choose Start PBM from the PBM Setup Menu.
  14. PBM will prompt for information for the new partition.  Enter the information and choose Accept.  Because partition changes were made, the Confirm Changes dialog will also appear.  Type in yes and choose Accept.
  15. Test the new operating system by booting it from the main menu.

Windows XP

 

  1. Go to Configure, Partitions, Create, Choose a position and size. 
  2. Choose Prepare for OS or Partition Utility to Create Partition.
  3. Insert a Windows XP CD-ROM.  If the system does not support bootable CD-ROM also insert Disk 1 for Windows XP Setup.
  4. Choose Restart in PBM.
  5. Windows XP Setup will start.  Press Enter to continue at the Welcome to Setup screen.
  6. Continue until setup is at the screen that says “The following list shows the existing partitions …”.
  7. Arrow down to the “Unpartitioned space”, and press C for Create Partition.
  8. Press ENTER to accept the value.
  9. It will say “New (Raw)” next to the partition you created.
  10. It is *VERY IMPORTANT* that this step be carefully completed.  One problem with Windows XP is that it assigns a drive letter other than C: to the new partition you created in steps 7-8.  To correct this, you must press F3 twice and reboot the system, load Windows XP Setup again and continue through the prompts until you get back to the partitioning screen.  After returning you will see that Windows XP Setup has assigned C: to the new partition you created in steps 7-8.  Now you can press down and select C: to install Windows XP on.  If you fail to change the XP Partition to drive C: now, it will haunt you later as partition changes of any kind will cause XP to fail to start.
  11. Choose either the FAT or NTFS file system.
  12. Windows XP Setup will format the disk and continue the installation.
  13. Continue until setup asks to restart.  Press Enter to restart.  (If the system was installed using Setup Disks and not a bootable CD-ROM, Step 13 may occur at this point.  If so, complete step 13 now and continue to step 12.
  14. Finish Windows XP Setup.  At the final setup window, remove the Windows XP Setup CD-ROM.
  15. Put a PBM Setup Disk or CD-ROM in and choose Restart.  PBM Setup will automatically reactivate PBM.
  16. Choose Start PBM from the PBM Setup Menu.
  17. PBM will prompt for information for the new partition.  Enter the information and choose Accept.  Because partition changes were made, the Confirm Changes dialog will also appear.  Type in yes and choose Accept.
  18. Test the new operating system by booting it from the main menu.

Redhat Linux

 

  1. Go to Configure, Partitions, Create, Choose a position and size.
  2. Choose Prepare for OS or Partition Utility to Create Partition.
  3. Insert a Redhat Linux CD 1.
  4. Choose Restart in PBM.
  5. Redhat Linux Setup will start.
  6. Continue until setup is at the dialog that says “Choosing Your Partitioning Strategy”.
  7. Select the bottom option, “Manually partition with fdisk [experts only]”.
  8. Click Next, Click hda.
  9. If your free space is in the middle of the drive:  Type in “n” , Enter, ‘e’, Enter, ‘3’, Enter, Enter, Enter, ‘w’, Enter.
  10. If your free space is at the end of the drive:  Type in “n” , Enter, ‘e’, Enter, ‘2’, Enter, Enter, Enter, ‘w’, Enter.
  11. Click Back, Choose the top option, “Have the installer automatically partition for you”.
  12. Click Next, Choose the bottom option, “Keep all partitions and use existing free space”.
  13. Click Next Twice, Choose “Use LILO as the boot loader”, Choose “First sector of boot partition”, Click Next.
  14. Continue until setup says it is complete.  Remove the Redhat Linux CD-ROM if it is still in the drive.  Click Ok to restart.
  15. PBM will prompt for information for the new partition.  Enter the information and choose Accept.  Because partition changes were made, the Confirm Changes dialog will also appear.  Type in yes and choose Accept.
  16. Test the new operating system by booting it from the main menu.

Mandrake Linux

 

  1. Go to Configure, Partitions, Create, Choose a position and size. 
  2. Choose Prepare for OS or Partition Utility to Create Partition.
  3. Insert a Mandrake Linux CD-ROM.
  4. Choose Restart in PBM.
  5. Mandrake Linux Setup will start.
  6. Continue until setup is at the dialog that says “The DrakX Partitioning wizard found the following solutions:”.
  7. Click Ok to accept the default “Use free space”.
  8. Continue until setup is at the dialog that says “Where do you want to install the bootloader”.
  9. Click “First sector of boot partition”.
  10. Continue until setup says it is complete.  Remove the Mandrake Linux CD-ROM if it is still in the drive.  Click Ok to restart.
  11. PBM will prompt for information for the new partition.  Enter the information and choose Accept.  Because partition changes were made, the Confirm Changes dialog will also appear.  Type in yes and choose Accept.
  12. Test the new operating system by booting it from the main menu.

Caldera Linux

 

  1. Go to Configure, Partitions, Create, Choose a position and size. 
  2. Choose Prepare for OS or Partition Utility to Create Partition.
  3. Insert a Caldera Linux CD-ROM.
  4. Choose Restart in PBM.
  5. Caldera Linux Setup will start.
  6. Continue until setup is at the dialog that says “Installation Target”.
  7. Click Next to accept the default “Free disk space”, then Click “Use free space for Linux”.
  8. Continue until setup is at the dialog that says “Boot Loader”.
  9. Uncheck “Write master boot record”, and Click Next.
  10. Continue until setup says “Create a rescue disk”.  You can create a rescue disk if you like.  Click Finish to continue.  Choose to Restart when possible and remove the Caldera Linux Setup CD-ROM.
  11. PBM will prompt for information for the new partition.  Enter the information and choose Accept.  Because partition changes were made, the Confirm Changes dialog will also appear.  Type in yes and choose Accept.
  12. Test the new operating system by booting it from the main menu.

Lycoris Linux

 

  1. Go to Configure, Partitions, Create, Choose a position and size. 
  2. Choose Prepare for OS or Partition Utility to Create Partition.
  3. Insert a Lycoris Linux CD-ROM.
  4. Choose Restart in PBM.
  5. Lycoris Linux Setup will start.
  6. Continue until setup is at the dialog that says “Select Target”.
  7. Click Next to accept the default “Use unpartitioned disk space”, then Click “Use free space for Linux”.
  8. Continue until setup is at the dialog that says “Set Up Boot Loader”.
  9. Click Next.
  10. Continue until setup says it is complete.  You can create a rescue disk if you like.  Click Finish to continue.  Put a PBM Setup Disk.  Choose to Restart when possible and remove the Lycoris Linux Setup CD-ROM.
  11. PBM Setup will automatically reactivate PBM.
  12. PBM will prompt for information for the new partition.  Enter the information and choose Accept.  Because partition changes were made, the Confirm Changes dialog will also appear.  Type in yes and choose Accept.
  13. Test the new operating system by booting it from the main menu.

SCO Unix

 

  1. Go to Configure, Partitions, Create, Choose a position and size.  The Choose Size and Position dialog will indicate how much of the freespace is within the 1024 cylinders.  SCO UNIX must be within the first 1024 cylinders (7.8 Gb).
  2. Choose Prepare for OS or Partition Utility to Create Partition, Put in your SCO CD and choose Restart.
  3. Continue with the installation until you get to “Preparing your disk and choosing software” .
  4. Press SPACE and it will take you to “Setting up your hard disks”.  Press SPACE again and it will open a menu, Press DOWN TWICE to select “Interactive fdisk/divvy”, Press ENTER.  Press ENTER on Continue.  Press DOWN once to get to “Accept above choices”, and ENTER to continue.  Now you should be on the “Preparing your disk and choosing software” screen again, but this time Hard disk setup will say “Interactive fdisk/divvy”.  Press DOWN twice to get to “Accept above choices”, and ENTER to continue.
  5. Continue with the installation until you get to “Starting Hard Disk Initialization”
  6. Press 1 ENTER for “Continue with hard disk intialization”
  7. Press 1 ENTER to “Display current disk parameters”
  8. Make sure the Cylinders (#1), Heads (#2), and Sectors/Track (#8) are set correctly.  If any are not correct, select #2 from the menu and correct them.  If you do not get these parameters set correctly, your SCO install will fail to boot.  Press 1 ENTER again to verify any changes you made.  When the parameters are correct, Press Q ENTER to continue.
  9. You will be at the partition menu now, Press 3 ENTER for “Use Rest of Disk for UNIX”.  You will see that it made a partition in slot 1 of type UNIX.  Press ENTER to continue.  Press 5 ENTER for “Activate Partition”, Press 1 ENTER to select the UNIX one.  Press 1 ENTER for “Display Partition Table”, You will see that #1 is UNIX and ACTIVE.  Press ENTER to continue.  When the partition table is correct, Press Q ENTER to continue.
  10. The next menu will begin with “Print Current Bad Track Table”, Press Q ENTER to continue.  It will ask about the number of bad tracks to allocate space for, just Press ENTER to accept the default.  Press ENTER to accept the swap area default.  Press ENTER to accept the boot area default.  Answer N ENTER to do you want a separate /u filesystem.  Answer N ENTER to any manual adjustments.
  11. Let the installation finish.  At the end it will say to remove the SCO CD and restart.  SCO will boot and start at the boot menu, press ENTER and it should load.
  12. Put your PBM Setup Disk back in and restart.  It will reactivate PBM.  Choose Start PBM from the menu.
  13. PBM will ask about a partition name, call it SCO or UNIX, etc.  You will then be at the boot menu.  Test the new operating system by booting it from the main menu.  You will get a warning about PBM being deactivated because of this type of OS.  Choose Accept and SCO should boot again.  This warning can be disabled in Options->Miscellaneous Options.  Whenever SCO is booted, to return to the boot menu boot the PBM Setup Disk.

 

Troubleshooting Operating Systems

Startup Environment

 

Please refer to the How the Traditional Boot Process works section below for more help on how the boot process works.

 

To boot, each operating system has a boot process that starts with a boot sector which loads the operating system.  This can be simple or complicated depending on the operating system.  Here is a list of commonly needed components and files for successful operating system boots:

 

§          Partition requires a DOS boot sector.

§          File IO.SYS.

§          File MSDOS.SYS.

§          File COMMAND.COM.

 

DOS is very sensitive about where the IO.SYS and MSDOS.SYS files are located in the partition and directory structure.  The command to attempt to make a partition bootable is:  SYS C:.  The DOS boot sector contains a bug and doesn’t support Normal Int13 fully as its boot sector is unable to boot a partition past the first 2Gb of a drive in many cases.  PBM can fix this by replacing it with one that does not have this limitation.  This example does not include any files for compressed hard drive support such as DRVSPACE.BIN or DBLSPACE.BIN.

 

§          Partition requires Windows 95, 98, or ME boot sector.

§          File IO.SYS.

§          File MSDOS.SYS.  (This file is now just a configuration file)

§          File COMMAND.COM.

 

Windows 95, 98, and ME are also sensitive about where the IO.SYS file is located in the partition and directory structure.  The command to attempt to make a partition bootable is:  SYS C:.  Early versions of Windows 95 are not fully Extended Int13 compliant and may fail to boot past cylinder 1024.  This example does not include any files for compressed hard drive support such as DRVSPACE.BIN or DBLSPACE.BIN.

 

§          Partition requires Windows NT, 2000, or XP boot sector.

§          File NTLDR.

§          File NTDETECT.COM.

§          File BOOT.INI.

§          Possibly File NTBOOTDD.SYS if referencing a SCSI drive in BOOT.INI.

 

Windows NT 3.51 and 4.0 are not Extended Int13 compliant and will fail to boot past cylinder 1024.

Updating Boot Sectors

 

While most of the time it is not necessary to update a boot sector, there are a few situations that will require it:

 

DOS has a limited boot sector that can only boot the first 2Gb of the drive.  PBM has an improved boot sector that can boot the first 7.8Gb of the drive.  Updating a DOS boot sector with the improved boot sector can allow booting DOS partitions past the 2Gb point.

 

When upgrading to PBM from another boot manager, some of the existing partitions may not have the correct boot sector.  The Update Boot Sector feature in PBM can help fix partitions that do not have the correct boot sector loaded.

 

To update a boot sector on a partition, choose Configure, Partitions, select the partition, choose Modify, Boot Sector.  It will indicate the current boot sector if it recognized it as well as whether the partition will work with the boot sector.  To install a new boot sector, choose Update.  Be very careful with this option because using it incorrectly can cause operating systems to fail to boot and/or corrupt the file system if the wrong one is installed.

 

PBM will recognized and update these boot sectors:

 

 

PBM Concepts

Independent Operating Systems

 

PBM is designed for keeping operating systems independent from each other.  It does this by creating a boot environment consisting of a partition table as well as a custom MBR tailored to the requirements of each operating system.  By truly hiding unselected operating systems from the selected operating system, PBM also keeps the other partitions from being used or modified.

Two-way Partition Maintenance

 

Two-way partition maintenance is a feature of PBM that sets it apart from other boot managers.  This feature allows changes to be made to partitions both inside PBM using PBM itself and outside of PBM using operating systems and partition utilities.  The importance of this is compatibility for two main reasons.  The first is that users can use the same partition utilities as they are accustomed to.  The second important reason is to allow operating systems to create and format their own partitions.

 

The components of two-way partition maintenance are:

 

 

This is the component that does the actual work of two-way partition maintenance.  When PBM starts, it compares the traditional partition table to its own PBM Partition table and reconciles any differences.  This is a sophisticated algorithm that takes into account all conceivable partition changes.

 

 

Protection partitions are special partitions that PBM puts in the traditional partition table to protect partitions that are not selected.  This allows a user or operating system to create a new partition or move, resize, or copy existing partitions without having to tell PBM about it ahead of time.

 

 

These options control how and when protection partitions are created.  A user can customize their settings to disable protection partitions or require them for the best protection.  Please review the Options chapter to get information on each one.

 

Here are a few examples of how protection partitions work:

 

Example configuration:

 

Win 95

Win 98

Win NT

Win 2000

Win XP

Mandrake

Caldera

Empty

 

If you choose to boot Win 2000, and Partition Protection Mode is set to the default Force Basic, here is what PBM will create:

 

Protection Partition

Win 2000

Protection Partition

Empty

 

The protection partitions protect the first 3 partitions before Win 2000 as well as the next 3 partitions after Win 2000.  Because the mode was Force Basic, the basic part means that only partitions that are actually present will be protected.  This is why the empty space at the end of the drive is still empty.

 

Here is the same example booting Win 2000 but with Partition Protection Mode set to Force Full.

 

Protection Partition

Win 2000

Protection Partition

 

Because the mode was Force Full, the full part means that any space not being used will be protected.  This shows the difference between basic and full, but the next example really shows why basic is the most flexible:

 

Another sample configuration:

 

Win 95

Win 98

Win NT

Win 2000

Win XP

Mandrake

Empty

Caldera

 

Now we’ll boot Mandrake with Force Basic and see the result:

 

Protection Partition

Mandrake

Empty

Protection

 

Notice the empty space after Mandrake is still present with Force Basic.  All the unselected partitions are still protected, but now resizing could occur to make Mandrake larger.

 

If the configuration of a partition is more complicated, then there may not be enough room in the traditional partition table to protect all the unselected partitions.  An example of this is:

 

Win 95

Win 98

Win NT

Win 2000

Win XP

Shared

Caldera

 

Each partition in PBM can have up to 3 more partitions included with it.  This is useful when an operating system requires more than one partition.  In this example, the Win 2000 partition has in its properties an included partition Shared.  This means that when Win 2000 is booted, PBM will also include Shared in the configuration.  Here is what this means for partition protection however:

 

Protection Partition

Win 2000

Protection

Shared

Empty

 

Notice that the first 3 partitions are protected, and the Win XP is protected, but that the Caldera is Empty.  What happened here is that the Caldera should have also been protected, but was unable to because only 4 partitions can be located in the traditional partition table.

 

The serious issue with this is that if a partition is created in the empty area, or the shared partition is resized into this area, the Caldera partition will be corrupted.  This is why these two operations without the help of full partition protection are unsafe and listed in the unsafe changes area above. 

 

The Force or Attempt component of the Partition Protection Mode option specifies whether a configuration like this can be booted.  If the mode were set to Force, then this configuration would generate an error and not be booted.  If the mode is set to Attempt, it would put it all the protection it could, but the Caldera would still be left unprotected.

 

The configuration above may be necessary for some configurations, and the Unprotected Warning (set to Enabled by default) can help when this situation exists.  The Unprotected Warning will warn the user not to create, move, resize, or copy any partitions when not all the partitions are protected.

 

In addition to the global Partition Protection Mode and Unprotected Warning, each partition also contains these settings, which can override the global settings.

Shared Partitions

 

A shared partition is one that has a common file system that can be accessed from multiple operating systems.  Typically it is a good idea to use a FAT file system as most OS’s understand it.

 

A downside to a shared partition is that it complicates protection of the unselected partitions.  This will usually require overriding the partition properties of the operating system that needs the shared partition so that they don’t protect, or ignore the unprotected warning.  This is a perfectly fine way to have a shared partition, but keep in mind that partition changes should NOT be done within this operating system or its configuration.

 

It might be an easier and better idea to use a second hard disk for the purpose as a shared drive because PBM will change the partition table on the first drive.  This will not complicate any protection partitions.  If using a RAID setup, you could create two logical drives, drive 0 for all the operating systems and PBM to manage, and drive 1 for the shared drive.

Partition Creation

 

It is recommended to let the operating system create and format the partition it needs.  PBM needs to prepare the drive for this operation so that the other partitions are kept safe.  PBM allows the user to specify exactly where the new operating system should be installed, then PBM protects every area on the drive except the specified area.  Here is an example:

 

Win 95

Win 98

Empty 20 Gb

 

When a user goes to Configure, Partitions, Create, PBM will prompt them to specify how large they want the new partition to be.  In this case if the user chooses 4 Gb, here is what PBM will do:

 

Protection Partition

Empty 4 Gb

Protection Partition

 

Notice that even though the area after the Empty 4 Gb partition is empty area, PBM still put it in a Protection Partition.  It did this to keep the operating system from using more space than the user specified.

 

Note that if your drive actually has more than one freespace area, PBM will display all the empty areas and ask which one the new partition should created in.

 

After PBM has prepared for a partition to be created, the user would typically reboot to boot an operating system installation CD-ROM or disk.  The user can also use a Maintenance Partition if one is available.

Partition Modification

 

It is recommended that PBM be used to prepare for a partition to be modified.  When a partition is selected to be modified, PBM will wrap all the in-use areas around the partition so they will be safe during the modification.  Here is an example:

 

Win 95

Empty 3 Gb

Win NT

Win 2000

Win XP

Shared

Caldera

 

If the Win NT partition is being modified, here is what PBM would do:

 

Protection

Empty 3 Gb

Win NT

Protection Partition

 

Note that the empty space before Win NT is left empty.  PBM leaves any freespace before or after the partition available in case the user wants to move or resize the partition into it.

 

After a user modifies a partition, the system would typically be rebooted to load a partition utility to make partition changes.  The user can also use a Maintenance Partition if one is available to perform these tasks.

File System Support

 

PBM attempts to modify the contents of partitions as little as possible.  It does this because even in the same file system such as FAT, there can be many discrepancies to the exact specification and format between operating systems.  By maintaining a policy of as few changes as possible, PBM keeps the highest level of compatibility with all current file systems and all future file systems.

 

With that said, there are a few changes that PBM has to make to ensure a partition is still capable of booting properly:

 

 

 

Master Boot Record Support

 

PBM supports custom a MBR for each partition of up to 4 sectors in size (2048 bytes).

 

Some operating systems require their own special MBR to boot properly.  Also, this feature can allow other boot managers to run within PBM.  Since PBM expand the partition table to boot up to 256 partitions, it considers each partition as a single operating system.  If for some reason, a single partition needed to run multiple operating systems with itself, another boot manager such as VCom System Commander could be used in conjunction with PBM.

Maintenance Partitions

 

A maintenance partition is used when creating or modifying partitions to perform partition maintenance tasks without having to boot from a CD-ROM or disk to load these programs.

 

A maintenance partition typically contains items such as:

 

 

The only requirement is that the maintenance partition must be located at the very end of the drive, so there is no freespace after it.  On many large drives this will be well past cylinder 1024 and will require an operating system on it that can boot with Int13 extension support.  Since most of these utilities will be DOS based, Windows 98 Second Edition startup files are recommended.

Setting up a Maintenance Partition

 

A Windows 98 Second Edition Startup disk will be required.

 

A Windows ME startup disk will not work because the format c:/s command has been disabled by Microsoft.

 

  1. From the PBM Main Menu, Go to Configure, Options, Miscellaneous and set the Last Partition is Maintenance option to Yes.
  2. Go to Configure, Partitions, Create.
  3. If more than one freespace is available, choose the last one that is at the end of the drive.
  4. Choose a size for the maintenance partition.
  5. Go to the field "Space Before" and type in the value that is currently in the "Space After".
  6. Press TAB to leave the "Space Before" field and it will adjust the "Space After" field to 0.0.
  7. Choose "Create Unformatted Partition".
  8. Type must be set to 0eh FAT (assuming it is past cylinder 1024).  If no part of the maintenance partition is past cylinder 1024, use 06h FAT instead.  Type in a name for the new maintenance partition.  Also, Display In Menu can be set to No to prevent the maintenance partition from appearing in the main menu.
  9. Insert the Windows 98 Second Edition Startup Disk, and choose Restart.
  10. When the Windows 98 Second Edition Startup Disk Starts, choose Start computer without "CD-ROM" support.
  11. Run the command "format c:/s".
  12. To change the startup options, the msdos.sys file can be edited with these commands:

attrib -r -s -h -a c:\msdos.sys

del c:\msdos.sys

copy con c:\msdos.sys

[options]

bootgui=0

logo=0

disablelog=1

<Press F6 which should put a ^Z on your screen and press ENTER>

  1. Install any utilities on it that you would like to use.
  2. Verify your maintenance partition works by booting PBM, choose Configure, Partitions, Choose any partition but the maintenance partition, Modify, Prepare for OS or Partition Utility to Modify Partition.  If the maintenance partition is working properly, there should now be a Maintenance option in the bottom of the menu.  Select it and the maintenance partition should boot.

 

To install Partition Magic or Drive Image on the maintenance partition:

 

  1. Make the recovery disks and copy the appropriate files off of them into a directory on your maintenance partition.
  2. For Partition Magic you need the following files to run in DOS.  The pqpb.rtc file may have the hidden attribute on it, so you may have to remove this by using the “attrib –r –h –s –a pqpb.rtc” command on your Partition Magic disk before you can copy it.

pmhelp.dat

pqmagic.exe

pqmagic.ovl

pqmagic.pqg

zabout.pqg

pqpb.rtc

  1. For Drive Image you need the following files to run in DOS.  The pqdi.rtc file may have the hidden attribute on it, so you may have to remove this by using the “attrib –r –h –s –a pqpb.rtc” command on your Drive Image disk before you can copy it.

dihelp.dat

pqdi.exe

pqdi.ovl

pqdi.pqg

pqdi.rtc

 

Security

Options

 

This option specifies whether PBM will automatically login the last user or force a login every time PBM starts.  If the last user logs out at the main menu, PBM will ask the user to login the next time PBM starts even if this option is set to automatically login the last user.  The default setting is Automatically Login as Last User.

 

This setting specifies whether the last login name should be displayed in the login dialog.  For more security this can be set to No.  The default setting is Yes.

 

When a guest account is available, the login dialog also has a choice for logging in as Guest.  This allows an administrator to allow anyone to use the system via a special user account with restricted access even if the user doesn’t have a name and password.  This option can be disabled by selecting (None).  The default setting is Guest.  A Guest account is created by default and does not have setup access or access to any partitions.

Users

 

By default, two users are created when PBM is first installed.  You can change or delete these two users if necessary for a more secure environment.  The only restriction is that you must have at least one account with configure level access.  PBM supports up to 32 users.

 

“Administrator” is the default administrative account, set with no default password.

 

“Guest” is the default guest account, also set with no default password.

 

This is the user login name, which can be up to 64 characters.

 

This is the user login password, which can be up to 32 characters.

 

This setting specifies whether the user can go into Configure from the main menu or not.  The current logged in user is unable to disable this option.

 

This list will indicate which partitions the user has access to.  Partitions the user does not have access to will not be listed.

 

This setting specifies whether this user will have access to newly added partitions.  Whenever a new partition is added, this user will automatically be granted access when this is set to Yes.

 

This is the same option found under Startup Options.  Please see that section of the manual for information on this option.

 

This is the same option found under Startup Options.  Please see that section of the manual for information on this option.

When is the system secure?

 

If security is of the utmost importance, this it is important to know which state PBM is left in. 

 

PBM protects your system by removing partitions from the partition table and holding them in its encrypted database.

 

For this reason, when an operating system is active, any partitions that were activated for it are not secure.

 

To maintain the most secure environment, always shut the operating system down and return to the PBM Logout Dialog.  It is recommended that the Security Option, Startup Login should be set to Automatically Login as Last User so that each time PBM starts it returns to the most secure state.

How secure is it?

 

PBM utilizes 128-bit Two-fish encryption for all of its data structures.  This protects all your partition information, users, and settings with an industry accepted encryption algorithm.

 

The location and type of each partition is in PBM’s data structures and therefore encrypted.  Because the actual partition is not encrypted, it can be accessed by someone who knows where a partition is located and its type.  They can use a disk tool like our Large Drive Tools to put the partition in and then access it.  Also, the entire drive can always be accessed at the sector level with a low-level disk tool as well.  PBM’s encryption will prevent someone even with these sorts of disk tools from gaining your user information or partition information from PBM itself.

 

Options

Startup Options

 

This specifies whether PBM boots to the Menu, or uses Text Mode to boot.  To start in Text Mode, these requirements must be met:

§          Startup Mode must be set to Text

§          Startup Login must be set to Last User

§          The user must have access to at least one partition.

§          The system must not be logged out.

§          The system must not have any partition changes to process.

If any of these conditions is not met, the system will start in normal menu mode.  The default setting is Menus.

 

This specifies whether PBM will display the PBM copyright window when starting in menu mode.  The default setting is Yes.

 

§          Text Mode Notification

Applies only when PBM starts in Text Mode.  This setting determines what PBM shows on the screen.

§          Message will show a message “Press <Alt+M> for Partition Boot Manager”.  Please note that the Alt+M may be different if the Text Mode Key has been changed.

§          Block Cursor will change the cursor to a block while PBM is waiting for the Text Mode Key.

§          None will show nothing, making PBM invisible to users.

The default setting is Message.

 

Applies only when PBM starts in Text Mode.  Specifies in seconds how long PBM will wait for the Text Mode Key to select the PBM Menu.   Pressing SPACE to skip the delay and boot the default operating system more quickly.  The default setting is 3 seconds.

 

Applies only when PBM starts in Text Mode.  This specifies the key that must be pressed to select the PBM Menu.  The advantage in changing this value is when a system administrator wants to hide the presence of PBM.  By changing this value to some unknown key as well as changing the Text Mode Notification above to None or Block Cursor, it will be difficult to get to the PBM Menu.  The default setting is Alt+M.

 

When in a special mode such as creating or modifiying a partition, PBM detects if the actual changes the mode suggests have occurred.  If the changes have not occurred, PBM will prompt the user to make sure they wish to continue and exit the special mode, or restart to do what the special mode was selected for.  The default setting is Yes.

 

Specifies the amount of timeout at the PBM Menu before booting the default partition.  This setting is set per user.  The default setting is Disabled.

 

Specifies the default boot partition.  It can specify an exact partition or (Last) which will always select the last selected partition.  This option can be used with Menu Selection Timeout to default to a specific operating system after a specific amount of time as passed.  This setting is set per user.  The default setting is (Last).

 

When this is set to Yes, the Menu Selection Timeout and Default Partition settings are copied to all users.  The default setting is No.

Display Options

 

This determines the order that partitions are listed in.

§          Name sorts them by their Name.

§          Speedletter, then Name sorts them by their Speedletter first, and then by Name.

§          Custom allows a custom order, which can be set in Configure, Partitions.

§          Drive Order sorts them by their position on disk.

The default setting is Name.

 

Specifies the amount of time before the screen saver will be displayed.  The default setting is 5 minutes.

 

This selects how the window corners appear.

§          Curved gives the windows a curved corner.

§          Square gives the windows a square corner.

The default setting is Curved.

 

§          Custom Message

This option specifies up to a four line custom message at the login dialog.  This can be handy for displaying lost and found information, contact information, or login information.  The default message is empty.

Partition Protection Options

 

This determines how protection partitions are created.  Please refer to the section above on Two-way Partition Maintenance on how Protection Partitions work.

§          None will prevent protection partitions from being created.

§          Attempt Basic will create basic protection partitions when possible.

§          Attempt Full will create full protection partitions when possible.

§          Force Basic will create basic protection partitions.  It will not allow a configuration that has unprotected partitions.

§          Force Full will create full protection partitions.  It will not allow a configuration that has unprotected partitions.

This option can be overridden at the partition level by a partition that has a Partition Protection Mode not set to Use Default.  The default setting is Force Basic.

 

Warns the user if a configuration leaves any partition unprotected.  If this warning appears, do not create a new partition, or move, resize, or copy an existing partition.  Please see the section on Two-way Partition Maintenance for more information.  This option can be overridden at the partition level by a partition that has an Unprotected Warning not set to Use Default.  The default setting is Yes.

 

Normally PBM doesn't change the partition configuration more than asked to.   This option will wrap all partitions in a single protection partition if the user asks to Restart at the main menu.  The default is Yes.

 

Normally PBM doesn't change the partition configuration more than asked to.   This option will wrap all partitions in a single protection partition if the user asks to Shutdown at the main menu.  The default is Yes.

 

This specifies the actual partition type of a protection partition.  In the event that the default value is not compatible with a specific configuration the user has, it can be changed.  It is not advised that this be changed unless absolutely necessary.  Never change it to a value that any existing partition uses.  The default is 20h.

Miscellaneous Options

 

When a new operating system is installed that replaces the MBR with its own, this option will save the MBR and assign it to the active partition in PBM when it starts.  The default setting is Yes.

 

Some operating systems such as Windows 2000 ignore the partition type and attempt to mount partitions based on their boot sector information.  Because a protection partition will likely have a real partition at the beginning of it, this feature will empty the boot sector and then put it back when the protection partition is removed.  This keeps an operating system from mounting a protection partition accidentally.  The default setting is Yes.

 

This feature enables a maintenance partition if one exists.  See the sections on Maintenance Partitions above for more information.  The default setting is No.

 

Many programs will attempt to assist users by hiding partitions when multiple partitions are present.  Since PBM manages all partitions, this older style assistance is not necessary.  The default setting is Yes.

 

This option will help to assist custom partitions become the partition number specified in their custom order.  When booting a partition with a custom partition order, if there are any empty spaces before it, this option will split a protection partition into two protection partitions to fill the empty space.  The default setting is Yes.

 

This option prevents the logout option from being displayed in the main menu, but Alt+L will still logout regardless of how this setting is set.  The default setting is Yes.

 

When a partition is booted that needs to replace the PBM MBR with the actual MBR, this displays a warning when enabled.  The default setting is Yes.

 

On some rare computers, the bios actually checks to see if a partition is active before it boots the MBR code.  By changing this value to a yes, PBM will ensure that at lease one partition is marked active.  The default setting is No.

Security Options

 

The security options are covered in full detail in the Security section above.

 

PBM Setup

 

PBM Setup will prompt for a password if the default account Administrator is assigned a password, or renamed to another user.  In this case, a user with Configure level access must be used to login.

Backup

 

The backup option in PBM Setup backs up all of PBM’s data structures.  This is highly advised and can be very helpful.

Restore

 

This option restores a backup disk created from the backup command above, or within PBM from the configure menu.  It restores all the data structures including partitions, users, and settings.

Initialize

 

This options completely initializes the data structures, destroying all partitions and returning PBM to all of its default settings.

Uninstalling PBM

 

This will completely uninstall PBM allowing you to choose up to 4 partitions to keep.

 

PBM will put these partitions in the partition table in their order on the disk.

 

**IT IS IMPORTANT** to adjust any NT/2000/XP operating systems to look for themselves in the correct partition number BEFORE uninstalling.  The reason for this is that NT/2000/XP have a file called boot.ini which contains a pointer to the partition number to boot.  It is usually in two or three places and must be updated in all places.  If you know that after uninstalling PBM, that the 2000 partition will be the 3rd one on the disk, then for each partition(1) you see, you should change it to partition(3).

 

If you do uninstall PBM, please take a small moment to tell us why.  We are always improving PBM and you may have an idea or found a shortcoming that could be improved upon.  Please email us at support@sadevelopment.com.

Registration

 

This feature in PBM is where all registration tasks are handled.  It manages the trial period, entering a purchased license, and extending a trial license.  It will also display information about the current license.

 

Technical Details

Program Design

 

·        PBM is written in C++ with some help from assembly code.

·        It was designed to be as stable and secure as possible.

·        All of PBM’s data structures are encrypted using a 128bit Two-fish encryption.

·        PBM can automatically repair any of its data structures on-the-fly without user intervention.  All the critical structures are stored on disk twice to allow a recovery if one structure copy is corrupted.  All of this happens transparently.

·        Menu based design with full mouse support.

·        Unique two-way partition maintenance allows all your favorite partitioning tools to still be used.

·        Protection partitions automatically keep unselected partitions safe.

How the Traditional Boot Process works

 

The traditional boot process on a hard drive consists of these components:

 

 

The Master Boot Record contains both the Master Boot Record Code and the Traditional Partition Table.  It is the first sector on a hard drive located at LBA 0 (or Cylinder 0, Head 0, Sector 1 in CHS Format).  The Master Boot Record Code is the program part of the MBR and is loaded by the computer BIOS.  The Traditional Partition Table holds up to 4 primary partitions and contains very basic partition information such as type, active status, size, and position.  The Master Boot Record Code analyzes the Traditional Partition Table to determine which partition is marked active.  It then loads the Boot Sector for the active partition and passes control to it.

 

The Boot Sector is the first sector of each partition and is loaded by the Master Boot Record.  It then gains control and looks for operating system startup files to start the operating system.  The Boot Sector of a partition usually varies by file system type and configuration.  An example would be that a FAT32 Boot Sector is different than a NTFS Boot Sector.  Likewise, a NTFS Boot Sector for Windows NT 4.0 is different from a NTFS Boot Sector for Windows 2000.  It is very important to have the correct Boot Sector to successfully boot an operating system.

How PBM improves the Traditional Boot Process

 

Feature

Traditional Partition Table

PBM Partition Table

Maximum Number of Partitions

4

256

Protects Operating Systems From Each Other

No

Yes

Fault-tolerant (Stored on disk twice, automatically recovers from either copy if one if corrupted)

No

Yes

Secure Access Control

No

Yes

Descriptive name

No

Yes

 

PBM supports up to 256 partitions or operating systems on a single drive by using its own PBM Partition Table.

 

The Traditional Partition Table does not protect operating systems from each other.  This is because all partitions are present when each operating system is booted.  This often results in an operating system mounting and/or changing another operating systems’ partitions.  This can result in an unstable or non-standard operating system.  An example of this is how Windows 2000 upgrades Windows NT NTFS partitions.  If Windows 2000 is started, it will update all NTFS partitions in the system.  If one of those NTFS partitions that was updated belonged to an NT 4.0 installation, then it will no longer be able to run CHKDSK because it doesn’t understand the newer NTFS format.  PBM solves this issue because its partition table was designed for booting and protecting all operating systems.  It only includes the partitions specified and all the others are hidden and safe.  This would allow full compatibility for running multiple operating systems on the same drive and prevent them from interfering with each other.

 

PBM’s security allows multiple users to be defines.  Each user can be granted or denied access to each partition.  This allows complete flexibility so that only the users desired can access the correct operating systems.

 

Since PBM can have up to 256 partitions, it is much easier to identify them by using a name.  The Traditional Partition Table didn’t have a name at all, so users would have to guess which is which by their position, size, and type.  There are also other extended fields in the PBM Partition Table that help to identify the boot environment necessary for that specific operating system or partition.