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I have successfully installed the above 3 operating systems.

Windows 7 fails to boot. In refit, I select it, its sends me to Ubuntu's Bootloader (Grub). There too i select Windows 7 from the list, after it comes up with a blank black screen with only a cursor blinking forever - MacosX Lion boots fine, as do Ubuntu 11.10...again refit and grub do see windows 7 perfectly, only it fails to load. I am using a Macbook Pro 8.1.

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4 Answers

(OP answered own question)

I maintained my macosx lion, windows 7 and downgraded to ubuntu 11.04 instead. I also recommend doing all your partitioning with the partitioning tool of ubuntu 11.04, it seems to be the most sane option...even alerts you about hidden,unused and/or empty partitions so you can recover and ensure you are within the 4 bootable partitions range required by refit to boot both linux and/or windows. Cheers. – e-zy mann Jan 6 at 8:06

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I too have the same issue with a macbook pro early 2011 17 inch model. I installed from the ground up Snow, rEFIt, used disk utility to create my partitions, installed Windows 7, then installed Ubuntu 11.10 64-bit for all OS's. Everything worked until I tried to boot back into Windows 7 after installing Ubuntu, same deal, no Windows option in rEFIT. I had to choose the Linux option in rEFIt, then it would show Windows 7 in GRUB. I chose Windows 7 in GRUB but I would not get anything. It would loop back to the GRUB menu. I too would like to know what I could do to work around this issue and get all 3 OS up and running. Thanks.

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i maintained my macosx lion, windows 7 and downgraded to ubuntu 11.04 instead. I also recommend doing all your partitioning with the partitioning tool of ubuntu 11.04, it seems to be the most sane option...even alerts you about hidden,unused and/or empty partitions so you can recover and ensure you are within the 4 bootable partitions range required by refit to boot both linux and/or windows. Cheers. –  e-zy mann Jan 6 '12 at 8:06
    
@e-zymann Can you post what worked as an answer, or report this as a bug please? This post is up for review during Clean-Up and there are no clear answers among the replies. –  Tom Brossman Mar 26 '12 at 8:12
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@TomBrossman i'm sorry it took this while to see this and reply, i'm guessing you have moved on but regardless i feel obliged, i guess it might help another (who knows)...in short, Ubuntu 12.04 was the answer, it fits the Macbook Pro 8.1 like a glove. I did not settle for a tripple boot because i found all the answers in Ubuntu 12.04...just install and update 12.04, everything works out of the box. Again, i did not need Windows so it was fine dual booting for me. :) –  e-zy mann Mar 9 '13 at 15:00
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I've had a problem with rEFIt too, after letting windows recreate the bootloader ( http://www.ehow.com/how_4836283_repair-mbr-windows.html explains how) and after that, let grub fix itself ( https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Grub2#Reinstalling_GRUB2 ) and you should be done ;)

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Tried it, didn't work especially using the windows repair tool. I don't know whether its because my partition is an EFI/GPT instead of the usual BIOS/MBR windows is used to. It did mess my partitioning up though...adding a few more empty partitions to my partition layout. Anyway, thought i'd give someone a headsup. :) –  e-zy mann Jan 6 '12 at 8:01
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I sincerely hope this post helps someone still using a Macbook Pro 8,1. I do some pretty heavy development with the device and OSX just wasn't for me although i loved the hardware's durability. So if you are like me, i will recommend Ubuntu 12.04 LTS. Its downright made for the Macbook Pro 8.1 hardware and its very stable, i don't remember a major system freeze/crash...i standby and hibernate(does not come by default) and resume with ease. Ubuntu 12.04 is the way to go for the Macbook Pro 8.1!!!! - At a point it feels like the default OSX operating system - I dual boot OSX with 12.04 and i don't remember using the OSX for anything serious. Hope someone going shoping finds this helpful. :)

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