efi bootable usb [solved]

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efi bootable usb [solved]

Postby laconic on Fri Mar 01, 2013 11:46 am

I am trying to install mint 14 kde. I already have windows 8 installed. The computer is a laptop and it came with windows 8.
From what I have read, I need to install mint 14 in efi mode. I tried making a dvd but it hangs right after choosing linux mint.
I tried using unetbootin to make a live usb but its like the usb isnt even there. (Usb has the highest boot priority)
I then decided to instal ubuntu and the dvd worked but I couldnt get the usb live to work. (guess unetbootin doesnt work for efi)
So I installed ubuntu and ran the boot fix utility and windows 8 and ubuntu work together in efi.
Problem is I really dont like ubuntu and would rather have mint 14 kde but I guess I am just not smart enough.

I have read the efi boot manager thread a couple times. I need a 'how to create bootable efi usb for dummies guide'.
Cant find the info anywhere at least not in a format my dumb self can understand.
Last edited by laconic on Fri Mar 01, 2013 6:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: efi bootable usb

Postby laconic on Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:40 pm

Ok so Its really easy. Just extract the iso to the usb drive.

Its so easy....


Anyway so now I need to fix the boot manager to be able to boot windows.

I have no idea how to that.
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Re: efi bootable usb

Postby srs5694 on Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:48 pm

It's not clear if you've installed in BIOS mode or in EFI mode. If the latter, "update-grub" should theoretically get it working; but GRUB's Windows boot stanzas sometimes fail, so this method might fail. There are numerous examples on the Web of alternatives you can add to /etc/grub.d/40_custom, but they're all rather hit-or-miss -- what works for one computer fails on another. Alternatively, you could install my rEFInd boot manager, which can boot Windows or Linux (even without GRUB).

If you've installed Linux in BIOS mode, the trick will be to get it booting in EFI mode, since switching between BIOS-mode and EFI-mode boots is awkward on most computers. There are a number of ways to do this. The easiest are to use Ubuntu's "Boot Repair" tool or to install rEFInd from Mint. In either case, you may need to fiddle with your firmware settings to get the computer to boot in EFI mode rather than in BIOS mode.

To determine your current Linux boot mode, look for a directory called /sys/firmware/efi. If it's present, you've booted in EFI mode; if not, you've probably booted in BIOS mode.
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Re: efi bootable usb

Postby laconic on Fri Mar 01, 2013 1:35 pm

After figuring out that just extracting the iso allows the efi firmware to see the usb as a bootable device, I was able to install linux mint 14 kde in efi mode.

I then installed refind with the handy install script that is included and everything works!!!

My boot partition is a mess but as long as it works.... everything is good for now.

I dont like having 6 different things that refind displays as bootable but I dont feel comfortable yet messing with the boot files and refind.conf to fix it.

windows grub2 entry(which doesnt work), windows generic entry(works), old ubuntu entry(ubuntu was uninstalled), Linux Mint entry(works), generic linux entry(havent tried), generic linux entry(havent tried)

At some point, I will probably fiddle with refind.conf to consolidate the display because I just cant seem to restrain myself from fixing things that arent broken.

Thanks for the response. I think I was way over thinking things.
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Re: efi bootable usb [solved]

Postby laconic on Fri Mar 01, 2013 6:43 pm

So I looked through this page http://www.rodsbooks.com/refind/configfile.html and fiddled around with the /boot/efi section of my hard drive.

I have sucessfully removed all entries except Windows 8 and Linux Mint!

What I initially tried:
Since the /EFI/Boot was a redundant windows 8 entry and the normal windows 8 entry was screwed up by the ubuntu boot repair utility(maybe, its what i assume anyway), I thought I would try to get refind to exclude the Microsoft folder. I guess that is a built in hard coded setting so even putting it in the dont_scan_dirs variable didnt work.

Next option:
I figured I would try repairing the normal windows 8 boot entry since that was bugging me anyway. When I tried the broken entry, a grub recovery promt would come up with some error about invalid drive or something. However, what it was trying to execute was the bootmgfw.efi file. SO I figured that must be the problem. After looking in the microsoft/boot folder there were quite a few .efi files. 2 contained the string 'bootmgfw.efi'. The first was bootmgfw.efi and the other was bkpbootmngfw.efi. So I just switched the names around and that seems to have fixed the problem.

I post this all here so that some may learn from my example. however poor it may be
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