Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

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Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

MR ZenWiz
I have a Lenovo ThinkPad at work where we are required to have Windows
on the machine. I shrank the Windows partition so I could install
Xubuntu 16.04.2 and run with that without destroying the Windows
installation.  I used my 16Gb Patriot flash drive (even though this is
the one that gave me headaches with my own laptop and never did boot
Xubuntu there, though it runs fine as a live boot - I'll be replacing
that image soon...).

Everything appeared to go well and the install finished, but when I
rebooted, the machine came up part way in Windows, then began flashing
through the RGB colors on the monitors. I never saw the grub menu or
had the option to bring up Xubuntu.  There were no error messages,
just the colors.

I had to cycle the power and tell it to boot up normally (from the
Windows safe boot options screen).

This is another first.  I'm thinking of running gparted from my
gparted flash drive to see what's going on, but I'm hesitant to do too
much since it is, after all, a work machine, not my own.

Suggestions welcome.

MR

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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

Ralf Mardorf-2
On Fri, 7 Jul 2017 18:00:39 -0700, MR ZenWiz wrote:

>when I rebooted, the machine came up part way in Windows, then began
>flashing through the RGB colors on the monitors. I never saw the grub
>menu or had the option to bring up Xubuntu.  There were no error
>messages, just the colors.
>
>I had to cycle the power and tell it to boot up normally (from the
>Windows safe boot options screen).
>
>This is another first.  I'm thinking of running gparted from my
>gparted flash drive to see what's going on, but I'm hesitant to do too
>much since it is, after all, a work machine, not my own.

Hi,

first mount all partitions, then list the content of all partitions.

ls -hAl /mnt/point_boot/grub/ /mnt/point_2/ /mnt/point_n/

Assuming there should be a Windows that looks good and a Linux,
including /boot/grub/ files, you could install grub like this

    sudo grub-install --boot-directory=/mnt/point_boot/grub/ /dev/sda

after updating grub, there likely would be a GRUB menu with a
chainloader to boot Windows, as well as the appropriate Ubuntu entries.
But I suspect you even don't need to run update-grub, grub-mkconfig or
whatever the command is named. I suspect you installed grub to an
Ubuntu partition instead of just /dev/sda without a number, so just
running grub-install might do the trick.

Regards,
Ralf


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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

MR ZenWiz
On Fri, Jul 7, 2017 at 11:02 PM, Ralf Mardorf <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> Hi,
>
> first mount all partitions, then list the content of all partitions.
>
> ls -hAl /mnt/point_boot/grub/ /mnt/point_2/ /mnt/point_n/
>
> Assuming there should be a Windows that looks good and a Linux,
> including /boot/grub/ files, you could install grub like this
>
>     sudo grub-install --boot-directory=/mnt/point_boot/grub/ /dev/sda
>
> after updating grub, there likely would be a GRUB menu with a
> chainloader to boot Windows, as well as the appropriate Ubuntu entries.
> But I suspect you even don't need to run update-grub, grub-mkconfig or
> whatever the command is named. I suspect you installed grub to an
> Ubuntu partition instead of just /dev/sda without a number, so just
> running grub-install might do the trick.
>
Update:

I discovered that the only way to control the boot sequence was on the
laptop's native screen, so that piece cleared up (it doesn't show on
the dock-station connected monitors).

The file systems looked fine, so I did the grub-install to no effect.
The laptop still boots straight into Windows.

I looked at the partition layout and this might be part of it:

Disk /dev/sda: 465.8 GiB, 500107862016 bytes, 976773168 sectors
Units: sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 4096 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 4096 bytes / 4096 bytes
Disklabel type: gpt
Disk identifier: F3DB32EB-3851-4CC0-A57E-0B50C27DC6F3

Device         Start       End   Sectors   Size Type
/dev/sda1       2048    206847    204800   100M EFI System
/dev/sda2     206848    468991    262144   128M Microsoft reserved
/dev/sda3     468992 502231039 501762048 239.3G Microsoft basic data
/dev/sda4  943554560 976773119  33218560  15.9G Microsoft basic data
/dev/sda5  502231040 502233087      2048     1M BIOS boot
/dev/sda6  502233088 935806975 433573888 206.8G Linux filesystem
/dev/sda7  935806976 943554559   7747584   3.7G Linux swap

Partition table entries are not in disk order.

Xubuntu install partitions 5, 6 and 7, and 5 appears to be completely
useless (that piece should be at the front of the disk).

I tried removing those partitions, but the installer can't seem to get
past there being an OS there and won't overwrite just those
partitions.

I'll try again after using gparted to reset those 3, but I'm not
messing with the Windows partitions at all unless there's a safe way
to do that.

MR

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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

MR ZenWiz
On Tue, Jul 11, 2017 at 4:02 PM, MR ZenWiz <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Fri, Jul 7, 2017 at 11:02 PM, Ralf Mardorf <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>
>> Hi,
>>
>> first mount all partitions, then list the content of all partitions.
>>
>> ls -hAl /mnt/point_boot/grub/ /mnt/point_2/ /mnt/point_n/
>>
>> Assuming there should be a Windows that looks good and a Linux,
>> including /boot/grub/ files, you could install grub like this
>>
>>     sudo grub-install --boot-directory=/mnt/point_boot/grub/ /dev/sda
>>
>> after updating grub, there likely would be a GRUB menu with a
>> chainloader to boot Windows, as well as the appropriate Ubuntu entries.
>> But I suspect you even don't need to run update-grub, grub-mkconfig or
>> whatever the command is named. I suspect you installed grub to an
>> Ubuntu partition instead of just /dev/sda without a number, so just
>> running grub-install might do the trick.
>>
> Update:
>
> I discovered that the only way to control the boot sequence was on the
> laptop's native screen, so that piece cleared up (it doesn't show on
> the dock-station connected monitors).
>
> The file systems looked fine, so I did the grub-install to no effect.
> The laptop still boots straight into Windows.
>
> I looked at the partition layout and this might be part of it:
>
> Disk /dev/sda: 465.8 GiB, 500107862016 bytes, 976773168 sectors
> Units: sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
> Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 4096 bytes
> I/O size (minimum/optimal): 4096 bytes / 4096 bytes
> Disklabel type: gpt
> Disk identifier: F3DB32EB-3851-4CC0-A57E-0B50C27DC6F3
>
> Device         Start       End   Sectors   Size Type
> /dev/sda1       2048    206847    204800   100M EFI System
> /dev/sda2     206848    468991    262144   128M Microsoft reserved
> /dev/sda3     468992 502231039 501762048 239.3G Microsoft basic data
> /dev/sda4  943554560 976773119  33218560  15.9G Microsoft basic data
> /dev/sda5  502231040 502233087      2048     1M BIOS boot
> /dev/sda6  502233088 935806975 433573888 206.8G Linux filesystem
> /dev/sda7  935806976 943554559   7747584   3.7G Linux swap
>
> Partition table entries are not in disk order.
>
> Xubuntu install partitions 5, 6 and 7, and 5 appears to be completely
> useless (that piece should be at the front of the disk).
>
> I tried removing those partitions, but the installer can't seem to get
> past there being an OS there and won't overwrite just those
> partitions.
>
> I'll try again after using gparted to reset those 3, but I'm not
> messing with the Windows partitions at all unless there's a safe way
> to do that.
>
> MR

I booted gparted and deleted the partitions, but then Xubuntu said I
need a boot partition (not a /boot partition - I don't use that
anyway) and it would not accept the 1MB empty space in front of
/dev/sda1.

I don't want to mess with the MS partitions... is this even doable?

Thanks.

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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

Guang Chao
In reply to this post by MR ZenWiz


On Sat, Jul 8, 2017 at 9:00 AM, MR ZenWiz <[hidden email]> wrote:
I have a Lenovo ThinkPad at work where we are required to have Windows
on the machine. I shrank the Windows partition so I could install
Xubuntu 16.04.2 and run with that without destroying the Windows
installation.  I used my 16Gb Patriot flash drive (even though this is
the one that gave me headaches with my own laptop and never did boot
Xubuntu there, though it runs fine as a live boot - I'll be replacing
that image soon...).

Everything appeared to go well and the install finished, but when I
rebooted, the machine came up part way in Windows, then began flashing
through the RGB colors on the monitors. I never saw the grub menu or
had the option to bring up Xubuntu.  There were no error messages,
just the colors.

I had to cycle the power and tell it to boot up normally (from the
Windows safe boot options screen).

This is another first.  I'm thinking of running gparted from my
gparted flash drive to see what's going on, but I'm hesitant to do too
much since it is, after all, a work machine, not my own.

Suggestions welcome.


Did you disable secure boot?  Maybe the reason GRUB not loading.  Then reinstall Ubuntu using livecd.
 
MR

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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

Xen
In reply to this post by MR ZenWiz
MR ZenWiz schreef op 12-07-2017 1:41:

> I booted gparted and deleted the partitions, but then Xubuntu said I
> need a boot partition (not a /boot partition - I don't use that
> anyway) and it would not accept the 1MB empty space in front of
> /dev/sda1.
>
> I don't want to mess with the MS partitions... is this even doable?

I am sorry I cannot provide any help but I stay away from UEFI.

Lots of people say UEFI is great but the elephant is in the room: it was
devised by Intel and other large corps to deal with huge computer farms,
not for individual computers. You will need to install Ubuntu into the
same UEFI partition that Windows uses.

I have never heard an account where UEFI was not a nightmare. Sure for
lots of people it will work, but we never hear them, nor do we ever hear
actual positive comments about it, except when in response to criticism.

There are never people saying "Oh I love UEFI" because it doesn't
actually solve any problems and when it works, people are more inclined
to not care than to actually be enthusiastic about it in any way. On
these support channels and others (like Grub) UEFI is really always a
*problem* to a greater extent than BIOS was.

It is *always* complicating things and half of the time it is someone
who cannot boot their DVD in UEFI mode or something like that. There is
some confusion of course between the BIOS boot and the UEFI partition
and not all distributions take the same approach so now you have
*different* Linux ways of dealing with UEFI as well, just as with BTRFS.

The complexity goes up and up and up without any added benefit.

If there was just one way of doing things, it would be fine, but there
isn't.

You now need a PhD in UEFI to be able to install your computer, so to
speak.

 From these support threads I find that even the people that know about
it are often confused and not very eager to deal with the complexities
that result from it. If I remember correctly, on the Kubuntu forum there
was a HUGE UEFI thread that was completely unreadable and this only
evidences its complexity.

I really don't know why you would advocate this thing but I guess it's
because "It's there and you have to live with it."

It is now used by Microsoft to prevent people from installing Linux on
its newest laptops.

Trusted Platform Modules have about the same effect. Encryption in
hardware, okay...

Intel CPUs have features that allow for remote management probably (very
very likely) by intelligence agencies (or very easy for them to gain
access to it).

Control over your own PC is going down the drain more and more.

The entire idea of Linux was to be in control. Yet those same people
support changes to the landscape that reduce the control real people
have over their computers.

SystemD for example is almost impossible to alter for the ordinary
person. Before, shell scripts. Now, binaries. What can you do about it?
Nothing. Use it as is.

The whole idea of binaries is to provide something that is hard to
change and thereby easy to guarantee. A Java binary is more "solid" than
a Python script.

But the software becomes much more opaque as well in many cases and in
our landscape we lose control.

There was nothing being solved by UEFI to begin with, for the ordinary
person.

So are we better off? No, not at all. Even if you say UEFI is not bad or
it has merits, are we better off? No. Unequivocal no.

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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

Liam Proven
In reply to this post by MR ZenWiz
On 12 July 2017 at 01:02, MR ZenWiz <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Update:
>
> I discovered that the only way to control the boot sequence was on the
> laptop's native screen, so that piece cleared up (it doesn't show on
> the dock-station connected monitors).
>
> The file systems looked fine, so I did the grub-install to no effect.

What was the *exact* command?

> The laptop still boots straight into Windows.
>
> I looked at the partition layout and this might be part of it:
>
> Disk /dev/sda: 465.8 GiB, 500107862016 bytes, 976773168 sectors
> Units: sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
> Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 4096 bytes
> I/O size (minimum/optimal): 4096 bytes / 4096 bytes
> Disklabel type: gpt
> Disk identifier: F3DB32EB-3851-4CC0-A57E-0B50C27DC6F3
>
> Device         Start       End   Sectors   Size Type
> /dev/sda1       2048    206847    204800   100M EFI System
> /dev/sda2     206848    468991    262144   128M Microsoft reserved
> /dev/sda3     468992 502231039 501762048 239.3G Microsoft basic data
> /dev/sda4  943554560 976773119  33218560  15.9G Microsoft basic data
> /dev/sda5  502231040 502233087      2048     1M BIOS boot
> /dev/sda6  502233088 935806975 433573888 206.8G Linux filesystem
> /dev/sda7  935806976 943554559   7747584   3.7G Linux swap
>
> Partition table entries are not in disk order.

That last line is a danger sign although not necessarily fatal.

But you have lots of primary partitions -- therefore this is not a
traditional MBR disk. It must therefore be a GUID Partition Table
(GPT) disk. I do not recall you specifying that before.

Please please please try to give us all as much information as
possible, or else we are just guessing in the dark.

If it is a GUID disk, then the laptop has UEFI, not a BIOS. I don't
recall you specifying _that_ either.

That being so, almost all bets are off.

GPT is only _needed_ for disks over 2TB. For 500GB it's not needed.
So, if it was me, for simplicity, I'd repartition with MBR. In my
experience it is much easier to troubleshoot.

In your UEFI settings, have you disabled Secure Boot?

This is what I'd do if this were my machine:

* Download a Windows 10 install ISO from microsoft.com.
* Write it to DVD or USB or your preferred media.
* Ensure you have an offline copy of any important Windows files, and
also of your Windows product key. (PRODUKEY.EXE is a free download and
will retrieve this for you.)

* Also ensure you have a bootable device with your preferred Ubuntu remix on it.

* Go into UEFI settings. Disable Secure Boot. (Google for how, it's
machine-specific.)

* With Gparted, wipe the disk and partition with MBR.
* Install a clean copy of Windows into a smallish primary partition at
the start of the disk. 64GB is enough.
* Check it works. Update as necessary.
* Now install Ubuntu into logical partitions inside an extended
partition after the Windows partition.

That's my hap'orth.

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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

MR ZenWiz
On Wed, Jul 12, 2017 at 5:28 AM, Liam Proven <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> What was the *exact* command?
>
grub-install --boot-directory=/mnt/boot/grub/ /dev/sda

> But you have lots of primary partitions -- therefore this is not a
> traditional MBR disk. It must therefore be a GUID Partition Table
> (GPT) disk. I do not recall you specifying that before.
>
I was not aware of this.  It does appear that you are right.

> If it is a GUID disk, then the laptop has UEFI, not a BIOS. I don't
> recall you specifying _that_ either.
>
> That being so, almost all bets are off.
>
> GPT is only _needed_ for disks over 2TB. For 500GB it's not needed.
> So, if it was me, for simplicity, I'd repartition with MBR. In my
> experience it is much easier to troubleshoot.
>
> In your UEFI settings, have you disabled Secure Boot?
>
Didn't have to - I just checked and it is already disabled.

> This is what I'd do if this were my machine:
>
All good advice, except this is not my laptop, it belongs to the
company and the IT department is rather picky about anything installed
on it.  I'm taking the roundabout method and going underground.
However, that's not working.

I did some poking around and I found the bare bones of how to install
(an) Ubuntu on a GPT disk, but what's missing is this:

They all say to do the partitioning by hand, which is what I always
used to do anyway, so no big deal.

But, it doesn't make clear what to do when this fails, which I believe
it has.  That extra 1MB partition in /dev/sda5 makes no sense at all,
and the laptop doesn't boot even with all that in place.

I'll see about trying again soon - I have a few minutes here :-).

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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

Liam Proven
On 13 July 2017 at 00:29, MR ZenWiz <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Wed, Jul 12, 2017 at 5:28 AM, Liam Proven <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>
>> What was the *exact* command?
>>
> grub-install --boot-directory=/mnt/boot/grub/ /dev/sda
>
>> But you have lots of primary partitions -- therefore this is not a
>> traditional MBR disk. It must therefore be a GUID Partition Table
>> (GPT) disk. I do not recall you specifying that before.
>>
> I was not aware of this.  It does appear that you are right.
>
>> If it is a GUID disk, then the laptop has UEFI, not a BIOS. I don't
>> recall you specifying _that_ either.
>>
>> That being so, almost all bets are off.
>>
>> GPT is only _needed_ for disks over 2TB. For 500GB it's not needed.
>> So, if it was me, for simplicity, I'd repartition with MBR. In my
>> experience it is much easier to troubleshoot.
>>
>> In your UEFI settings, have you disabled Secure Boot?
>>
> Didn't have to - I just checked and it is already disabled.
>
>> This is what I'd do if this were my machine:
>>
> All good advice, except this is not my laptop, it belongs to the
> company and the IT department is rather picky about anything installed
> on it.  I'm taking the roundabout method and going underground.
> However, that's not working.

:-o

Wow! Well if they don't like you to install your own software, they
almost certainly won't like you installing a separate OS on it!

In this case: is the Windows disk encrypted?

I'm afraid I do not own any UEFI PCs (just one Mac) so I don't know
much about installing on UEFI or GPT. However, as others have
commented, I believe GRUB must go into the existing UEFI system
partition.

Installing into the MBR, the way you're doing, is the old DOS way. It
won't work on a UEFI system, as you have discovered. GPT disks have a
dummy MBR -- it doesn't do anything.


> I did some poking around and I found the bare bones of how to install
> (an) Ubuntu on a GPT disk, but what's missing is this:
>
> They all say to do the partitioning by hand, which is what I always
> used to do anyway, so no big deal.
>
> But, it doesn't make clear what to do when this fails, which I believe
> it has.  That extra 1MB partition in /dev/sda5 makes no sense at all,
> and the laptop doesn't boot even with all that in place.
>
> I'll see about trying again soon - I have a few minutes here :-).

This any help?

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/UEFI

I used rEFIt on my Mac. Might be worth a look.


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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

Bob
In reply to this post by Liam Proven
** Reply to message from Liam Proven <[hidden email]> on Wed, 12 Jul 2017
14:28:08 +0200

> On 12 July 2017 at 01:02, MR ZenWiz <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> > Update:
> >
> > I discovered that the only way to control the boot sequence was on the
> > laptop's native screen, so that piece cleared up (it doesn't show on
> > the dock-station connected monitors).
> >
> > The file systems looked fine, so I did the grub-install to no effect.
>
> What was the *exact* command?
>
> > The laptop still boots straight into Windows.
> >
> > I looked at the partition layout and this might be part of it:
> >
> > Disk /dev/sda: 465.8 GiB, 500107862016 bytes, 976773168 sectors
> > Units: sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
> > Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 4096 bytes
> > I/O size (minimum/optimal): 4096 bytes / 4096 bytes
> > Disklabel type: gpt
> > Disk identifier: F3DB32EB-3851-4CC0-A57E-0B50C27DC6F3
> >
> > Device         Start       End   Sectors   Size Type
> > /dev/sda1       2048    206847    204800   100M EFI System
> > /dev/sda2     206848    468991    262144   128M Microsoft reserved
> > /dev/sda3     468992 502231039 501762048 239.3G Microsoft basic data
> > /dev/sda4  943554560 976773119  33218560  15.9G Microsoft basic data
> > /dev/sda5  502231040 502233087      2048     1M BIOS boot
> > /dev/sda6  502233088 935806975 433573888 206.8G Linux filesystem
> > /dev/sda7  935806976 943554559   7747584   3.7G Linux swap
> >
> > Partition table entries are not in disk order.
>
> That last line is a danger sign although not necessarily fatal.

I don't know if it is a danger sign but that is how gparted does things and the
partitioning program the installer uses. I can not speak to other partitioning
programs because I have only used gparted but I think it is because of the
brain dead method of assigning partition names by linux and I was very
surprised by this when I started using Ubuntu.

<snip>

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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

Xen
Bob schreef op 13-07-2017 21:54:

>> > Device         Start       End   Sectors   Size Type
>> > /dev/sda1       2048    206847    204800   100M EFI System
>> > /dev/sda2     206848    468991    262144   128M Microsoft reserved
>> > /dev/sda3     468992 502231039 501762048 239.3G Microsoft basic data
>> > /dev/sda4  943554560 976773119  33218560  15.9G Microsoft basic data
>> > /dev/sda5  502231040 502233087      2048     1M BIOS boot
>> > /dev/sda6  502233088 935806975 433573888 206.8G Linux filesystem
>> > /dev/sda7  935806976 943554559   7747584   3.7G Linux swap
>> >
>> > Partition table entries are not in disk order.
>>
>> That last line is a danger sign although not necessarily fatal.
>
> I don't know if it is a danger sign but that is how gparted does things
> and the
> partitioning program the installer uses. I can not speak to other
> partitioning
> programs because I have only used gparted but I think it is because of
> the
> brain dead method of assigning partition names by linux and I was very
> surprised by this when I started using Ubuntu.

Parted can reorder them. Only sda4 is actually sitting at the end. It's
a confusing thing and seems to be unnecessary, but also seems to not
matter a thing...

Regards.

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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

MR ZenWiz
On Thu, Jul 13, 2017 at 1:27 PM, Xen <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Bob schreef op 13-07-2017 21:54:
>
>>> > Device         Start       End   Sectors   Size Type
>>> > /dev/sda1       2048    206847    204800   100M EFI System
>>> > /dev/sda2     206848    468991    262144   128M Microsoft reserved
>>> > /dev/sda3     468992 502231039 501762048 239.3G Microsoft basic data
>>> > /dev/sda4  943554560 976773119  33218560  15.9G Microsoft basic data
>>> > /dev/sda5  502231040 502233087      2048     1M BIOS boot
>>> > /dev/sda6  502233088 935806975 433573888 206.8G Linux filesystem
>>> > /dev/sda7  935806976 943554559   7747584   3.7G Linux swap
>>> >
>>> > Partition table entries are not in disk order.
>>>
>>> That last line is a danger sign although not necessarily fatal.
>>
>>
>> I don't know if it is a danger sign but that is how gparted does things
>> and the
>> partitioning program the installer uses. I can not speak to other
>> partitioning
>> programs because I have only used gparted but I think it is because of the
>> brain dead method of assigning partition names by linux and I was very
>> surprised by this when I started using Ubuntu.
>
>
> Parted can reorder them. Only sda4 is actually sitting at the end. It's a
> confusing thing and seems to be unnecessary, but also seems to not matter a
> thing...
>
It is set up that way because /dev/sda3 is the Windows partition that
used to fill the whole space between /dev/sda2 and /dev/sda4.

I shrank that partition to put a Linx one in there and didn't move 4
to line up with 3 before the blank space.  4 is the Lenovo recovery
partition.

MR

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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

MR ZenWiz
In reply to this post by Liam Proven
On Wed, Jul 12, 2017 at 4:20 PM, Liam Proven <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> :-o
>
> Wow! Well if they don't like you to install your own software, they
> almost certainly won't like you installing a separate OS on it!
>
That does appear to be the case.  Nevertheless, I'd like to give it a
shot.  I can always back out if I get it working, and I'll know that
much more about the process.

> In this case: is the Windows disk encrypted?
>
No.

> I'm afraid I do not own any UEFI PCs (just one Mac) so I don't know
> much about installing on UEFI or GPT. However, as others have
> commented, I believe GRUB must go into the existing UEFI system
> partition.
>
> Installing into the MBR, the way you're doing, is the old DOS way. It
> won't work on a UEFI system, as you have discovered. GPT disks have a
> dummy MBR -- it doesn't do anything.
>
Agreed.  However, the UEFI boot and secure boot and all the related
options are off or disabled in the boot PROM.

> This any help?
>
> https://help.ubuntu.com/community/UEFI
>
I didn't see anything there that would help so far.  I'll have to try
tthe boot repair option and see what happens.

My latest effort involved removing the three new partitions and
re-setting them, then reinstalling Xubuntu 16.04.  It did install
without any complaints, and when the system boots, I noticed something
different - the default is the Windows boot loader.  If I skip past
that to the HDD itself, it comes up in Grub, starts to boot, then
falls back to BusyBox.  In grepping through dmesg for something that
looked of use, I found no errors, no "find"s, no "can't"s and nothing
unusual with "boot" in it.  It just can't seem to find the boot
partition or kernel.

I did try running grub-install after the installation, and I got this:

xubuntu@xubuntu:~$ sudo grub-install --boot-directory=/mnt/boot/grub /dev/sda
Installing for i386-pc platform.
grub-install: warning: this GPT partition label contains no BIOS Boot
Partition; embedding won't be possible.
grub-install: warning: Embedding is not possible.  GRUB can only be
installed in this setup by using blocklists.  However, blocklists are
UNRELIABLE and their use is discouraged..
grub-install: error: will not proceed with blocklists.

I also tried with /dev/sda5, just to see if that worked, and got the
same result.

There's something on this disk that makes it difficult (at best) to
boot anything but Windows.

MR

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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

Liam Proven
In reply to this post by Bob
On 13 July 2017 at 21:54, Bob <[hidden email]> wrote:

>> That last line is a danger sign although not necessarily fatal.
>
> I don't know if it is a danger sign but that is how gparted does things and the
> partitioning program the installer uses. I can not speak to other partitioning
> programs because I have only used gparted but I think it is because of the
> brain dead method of assigning partition names by linux and I was very
> surprised by this when I started using Ubuntu.

Well, no, not really. Gparted doesn't do it. Gparted lets you do
whatever you want. It does what you tell it to. If you tell it to
create out-of-order partitions, it will. It is up to the human
operator to take care to avoid this happening.

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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

Bob
** Reply to message from Liam Proven <[hidden email]> on Fri, 14 Jul 2017
13:13:52 +0200

> On 13 July 2017 at 21:54, Bob <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> >> That last line is a danger sign although not necessarily fatal.
> >
> > I don't know if it is a danger sign but that is how gparted does things and the
> > partitioning program the installer uses. I can not speak to other partitioning
> > programs because I have only used gparted but I think it is because of the
> > brain dead method of assigning partition names by linux and I was very
> > surprised by this when I started using Ubuntu.
>
> Well, no, not really. Gparted doesn't do it. Gparted lets you do
> whatever you want. It does what you tell it to. If you tell it to
> create out-of-order partitions, it will. It is up to the human
> operator to take care to avoid this happening.

No, I do not tell gparted to create an out-of-order partition.  I tell gparted
to create a partition, then depending on what has been done in the past gparted
my do strange things when it creates the partition.  This is because linux is
brain dead when it comes to partition identifiers, I think they may be trying
to fix the problem but they are not there yet.

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Robert Blair


If you don't read the newspaper you are uninformed, if you do read the newspaper you are misinformed.  -- Mark Twain

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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

Xen
Bob schreef op 15-07-2017 9:25:

> ** Reply to message from Liam Proven <[hidden email]> on Fri, 14 Jul
> 2017
> 13:13:52 +0200
>
>> On 13 July 2017 at 21:54, Bob <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>
>> >> That last line is a danger sign although not necessarily fatal.
>> >
>> > I don't know if it is a danger sign but that is how gparted does things and the
>> > partitioning program the installer uses. I can not speak to other partitioning
>> > programs because I have only used gparted but I think it is because of the
>> > brain dead method of assigning partition names by linux and I was very
>> > surprised by this when I started using Ubuntu.
>>
>> Well, no, not really. Gparted doesn't do it. Gparted lets you do
>> whatever you want. It does what you tell it to. If you tell it to
>> create out-of-order partitions, it will. It is up to the human
>> operator to take care to avoid this happening.
>
> No, I do not tell gparted to create an out-of-order partition.  I tell
> gparted
> to create a partition, then depending on what has been done in the past
> gparted
> my do strange things when it creates the partition.  This is because
> linux is
> brain dead when it comes to partition identifiers, I think they may be
> trying
> to fix the problem but they are not there yet.

No. The numbers are entries in a table. If you remove an existing
partition and create new partitions in that space, they will get higher
numbers (higher indices in the table) while having lower physical
addresses.

This is why things get out of order. Unfortunately parted does not have
an option to reorder stuff. But gdisk can:

sudo gdisk /dev/sda
p (print/show)
s (sort)
p (print/show)
w (write)
q (quit)

If you wanted these numbers to always be in physical order, you would
have to always do this reordering. It just doesn't happen by itself, I
mean that the parted or gparted tool would also have to always reorder
the tables.

They are just entries in a list. You have to reorder the entries if you
want them to have increasing numbers on disk.

The reason, ostensibly, that parted (or gparted) does not do this on its
own, or by itself, automatically, is because it might change your fstab
entries and so on.

I know it seems peculiar and it is not very helpful to have out-of-order
partitions but all the same it is just to prevent partition table
operations to have disastrous consequences on the booting of the
machine. Personally I wouldn't mind a parted option to sort. I would
always sort myself. But if you used fixed identifiers such as /dev/sda3
to reference anything in fstab or in Grub, you would have to change that
after your work is done.

For me the best solution would be a "sort partition table" that every
user can get used to.

That's all.

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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

Nils Kassube-2
Xen wrote:
> No. The numbers are entries in a table. If you remove an existing
> partition and create new partitions in that space, they will get
> higher numbers (higher indices in the table) while having lower
> physical addresses.
>
> This is why things get out of order. Unfortunately parted does not
> have an option to reorder stuff. But gdisk can:

But what would be the advantage if the partitions are sorted? OK, there
would be no (IMHO useless) warning message, but that's it.

> If you wanted these numbers to always be in physical order, you would
> have to always do this reordering. It just doesn't happen by itself, I
> mean that the parted or gparted tool would also have to always
> reorder the tables.
>
> They are just entries in a list. You have to reorder the entries if
> you want them to have increasing numbers on disk.
>
> The reason, ostensibly, that parted (or gparted) does not do this on
> its own, or by itself, automatically, is because it might change your
> fstab entries and so on.

I think fstab entries using the device name could produce unexpected
results after removing partitions, no matter if the partiton names are
sorted. Example: I have partitions sda5, sda6, sda7 and sda6 is in my
fstab. Now I remove sda5 for whatever reason. Then my fstab entry for
sda6 points to the partition which was sda7 before I removed sda5. Next
I add two partitions in the space which was sda5 previously. If the
entries are not sorted, my fstab entry for sda6 still points to the
partition which was sda7 in the beginning. If the partition entries
would be sorted, my fstab entry for sda6 would now point to the second
of the newly created partitions. So no matter if the entries are sorted
or not, bad things could happen, if someone really uses device names in
fstab entries.


Nils

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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

Xen
Nils Kassube schreef op 15-07-2017 10:24:

> Xen wrote:
>> No. The numbers are entries in a table. If you remove an existing
>> partition and create new partitions in that space, they will get
>> higher numbers (higher indices in the table) while having lower
>> physical addresses.
>>
>> This is why things get out of order. Unfortunately parted does not
>> have an option to reorder stuff. But gdisk can:
>
> But what would be the advantage if the partitions are sorted? OK, there
> would be no (IMHO useless) warning message, but that's it.

Nothing probably.

> I think fstab entries using the device name could produce unexpected
> results after removing partitions, no matter if the partiton names are
> sorted. Example: I have partitions sda5, sda6, sda7 and sda6 is in my
> fstab. Now I remove sda5 for whatever reason. Then my fstab entry for
> sda6 points to the partition which was sda7 before I removed sda5.

No, it will still be called sda7.

Sda6 will still be sda6 and sda5 won't exist.

> So no matter if the entries are sorted
> or not, bad things could happen, if someone really uses device names in
> fstab entries.

No, the in device numbers do not mutate.

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Re: Xubuntu install on Win7 laptop fails

Nils Kassube-2
Xen wrote:
> Nils Kassube schreef op 15-07-2017 10:24:
> > I think fstab entries using the device name could produce unexpected
> > results after removing partitions, no matter if the partiton names
> > are sorted. Example: I have partitions sda5, sda6, sda7 and sda6 is
> > in my fstab. Now I remove sda5 for whatever reason. Then my fstab
> > entry for sda6 points to the partition which was sda7 before I
> > removed sda5.
> No, it will still be called sda7.

Oops - you're right! I mixed up GPT partitions and logical partitions of
traditional disks with MBR.


Nils


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