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Grub2 with VirtualBox Physical Partitions

From: Tyler Hardin
Subject: Grub2 with VirtualBox Physical Partitions
Date: Tue, 9 Oct 2012 19:22:56 -0400


There seems to be a bug (or at least a bad idea) in the design on Grub2. When using it with VirtualBox's physical partition feature, a feature which allows a user to boot a physical partition in a virtual machine, it fails to load. More specifically, it freezes. This is likely due to VBox limiting the virtual machines disk access the specified partitions and the first 63 sectors of the disk. It seems that Grub2 is depending on data stored past those first 63 sectors and not in the partition it is installed on, which causes it to freeze when it tries to load its later stages from the disk. (FWIW, VBox returns zeros for reads to parts of the disk which are not allowed.)

So, my question is: where is Grub2's later stages actually installed and how hard would it be to install them in the first 63 sectors (32KiB)? Is it too big to fit there?

Thanks for your time and otherwise GREAT product,

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