[Solved] Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

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[Solved] Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby catch22 on Thu Nov 15, 2012 1:36 pm

Before I installed Mint I changed the settings in BIOS for boot order, with F2 at start up.
I want to to change it back now so it'll boot quicker - hard disk first - but I can't get into BIOS anymore :(
No matter if I click F2 a hundred times very quickly after turning on the desktop, or keep it pressed down immediately after hitting the start knob, I always get my Mint GUI-login screen.

Is there any way I could reach BIOS-settings?
Maybe via terminal?
Last edited by catch22 on Sun Dec 23, 2012 9:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby cwsnyder on Thu Nov 15, 2012 3:49 pm

Try putting a CD in the CD drive to slow the hardware check.

If all else fails, turn off the power, open the case and disconnect the two cables from your hard drive.
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby remoulder on Thu Nov 15, 2012 8:15 pm

catch22 wrote:Maybe via terminal?

BIOS is a function of the machine and is accessed before any OS loads.
[Edit] your original post and add [SOLVED] once your question is resolved.

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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby srs5694 on Fri Nov 16, 2012 4:44 pm

remoulder wrote:
catch22 wrote:Maybe via terminal?

BIOS is a function of the machine and is accessed before any OS loads.


This is true of a traditional/legacy BIOS, which account for what's used on most systems. On new computers that use EFI/UEFI, though, you can adjust the boot order by using the efibootmgr utility, as in:

Code: Select all
sudo efibootmgr -o 7,2


This command tells the system to try to boot using boot loader #7, and to fall back to #2 if that fails. You can get a list of boot loaders by typing "sudo efibootmgr -v".

This might work for catch22 if the computer in question uses UEFI, as do most computers sold in 2012 and a good number sold in the last half of 2011. Even then, though, Linux must have been installed in EFI mode, not in BIOS/legacy mode, for this to work. Most UEFI-based computers support BIOS/legacy boots, so Linux may be installed in this way even on a new computer. Most older computers lack EFI support, so chances are catch22 will just have to find the "sweet spot" for hitting the function key. Personally, I find that repeatedly pressing the key in question is the most reliable way to get this done -- as soon as I power on, I start tapping away at the key until the firmware's configuration screen comes up.
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby catch22 on Sat Nov 17, 2012 4:15 pm

"efibootmgr"-command is nout found, so I guess there's no efi (it's a new machine from 2011).
Thanks all of you for comments and suggestions. The CD-trick didn't work, and tapping like mad is what I did many times already (the sweet spot here is very narrow I suppose).
I'll give the cable unhinging suggestion a go - it sounds like a workable idea.
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby keghn on Mon Nov 19, 2012 3:13 pm

Hi.
If you are not using a laptop but a tower there is a back to bios button on the back of the tower.
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby andreap85 on Tue Nov 20, 2012 12:17 pm

hi,
I'd like to know if and how you solved the problem?
I bought a chronos 7 and I installed LinuxMint13......I also deleted all the disk, deleting Microsoft Windows 7 and the recovery disk
now I can't accede to the BIOS even if I type F2 as I'm requested before starting LinuxMint13
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby catch22 on Tue Nov 20, 2012 3:31 pm

keghn wrote:Hi.
If you are not using a laptop but a tower there is a back to bios button on the back of the tower.
Not on this machine http://www.tranquilpc.co.uk/media_centres.html
of which I only bought the housing btw, the internals were put together by a friend.
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby catch22 on Tue Nov 20, 2012 3:35 pm

andreap85 wrote:hi,
I'd like to know if and how you solved the problem?
I bought a chronos 7 and I installed LinuxMint13......I also deleted all the disk, deleting Microsoft Windows 7 and the recovery disk
now I can't accede to the BIOS even if I type F2 as I'm requested before starting LinuxMint13
Every time I boot I retry the F2 tapping and so far it did work once.
Obviously the "sweet spot" is very narrow here.
I'm expecting a visit from my friend, who put the pc together, in a week or two.
I hope to find out more then and will report here (if I forget, you can PM me to remind me 8) )

EDIT: I didn't dare try the cable disconnect trick yet, since the housing is very small and the machine is absolutely packed with stuff inside; waiting for my friend to do that :?
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby DrHu on Tue Nov 20, 2012 3:40 pm

catch22 wrote:Is there any way I could reach BIOS-settings?

Sure read the manual for your computer, search for the bios name, you will find it under the desktop when it loads Mint, if you look at the system information
--hardware profiling, there is a speed test to compare your machine, as well as various info in regards to the BIOS and devices being used

I don't know if Dmesg in a console will show the BIOS name (AWARD etc..)
--when you find the name or see it on your boot, the numbers appear on the bottom of the screen, you can searcfh for that name (name number) on the internet to find the infor for your BIOS
[list]There are some genweral defaults for access to any BIOS, usuallly the DEL, ESC keys or one of the F(Funtion keyes) F!, F10 and so on[list]

Typical BIOS hotkeys..
http://gluek.info/wiki/hardware/howto-e ... os-hotkeys

If you are really stuck on the BIOS hotkey, you can reflash the BIOS, you need to get a utility (it will save your cotrrent BIOS before reflashing it
--an example is award
http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/mainbo ... pdate.html
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BIOS

Or you can remove of use the the mainboard chip (or dip) switch selection to clear (CLR) the BIOS
--removing the mainboard battery will also work; the BIOS will lose its current setup and boot with default selections, then you can re-edit ..
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby catch22 on Tue Nov 20, 2012 4:24 pm

Thanks drHU, In dmesg I did catch this line:
Code: Select all
Calgary: detecting Calgary via BIOS EBDA area
but I know for a fact that the BIOS key here is F2, so that's not an issue really.
I'd rather wait for my previously mentioned friend rather than getting in deeper technically than I can handle.
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby andreap85 on Mon Dec 03, 2012 6:03 am

some news? didi you solve the problem with your friend?
let me know :-)
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby catch22 on Mon Dec 03, 2012 7:10 am

andreap85 wrote:some news? didi you solve the problem with your friend?
let me know :-)
He hasn't been around yet, so I'm still waiting.
I will report once it's solved 8)
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby catch22 on Sun Dec 09, 2012 9:25 am

Well, my friend still hasn't been around, but I thought I had found something that would be of (some) help.
In the book "Ubuntu Linux Toolbox" (page 201) I read about the "menu.lst"-file.
If I would alter the timeout there, I would at least see GRUB while booting (I don't see any GRUB now, so timeout must be at "0", I suppose).
But... I don't see any menu.lst in /boot/grub/
Are things different than in Ubuntu on this?
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby srs5694 on Sun Dec 09, 2012 1:44 pm

catch22 wrote:Well, my friend still hasn't been around, but I thought I had found something that would be of (some) help.
In the book "Ubuntu Linux Toolbox" (page 201) I read about the "menu.lst"-file.


That file controls GRUB Legacy (that is, pre-1.0 versions of GRUB), but recent versions of Mint uses GRUB 2 (which is really version 1.9x and later). There is an equivalent for GRUB 2, but IIRC (I haven't re-read the whole thread), your problem is with getting to the BIOS setup screen to change the boot order. Since either version of GRUB runs after the BIOS does its own boot-device scan, adjusting GRUB options won't help.
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby bigj231 on Sun Dec 09, 2012 2:49 pm

If it's a desktop, you can often open up the case, and pull the BIOS reset jumper. You will have to find it's location in your motherboard manual (please don't randomly start puling jumpers. I burned up and old CPU doing that. It did boot and the CPU monitor said that I had overclocked it about 40%)
If you can't find a BIOS jumper, or you have a laptop, you can usually just unplug your system and remove the CMOS battery on the motherboard. Leave it sit for ~10 minutes, replace the battery, and plug your system back in. It will then (usually) complain about the CMOS being reset, and will give you an option to enter the BIOS and reset everything. Be sure to reset your system clock while you are in the BIOS.

Alternatively, you can just start pressing the F2 key (or whatever you BIOS setup key is) as fast as possible as soon as you push the power button. If you miss the BIOS menu, just shut it off and repeat. Keep trying until you get lucky and catch it.
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby Oyabunbaba on Sun Dec 09, 2012 3:15 pm

I am fresh from buying new laptop and have efi problem. BTW. First time i have efi/uefi bios.
I installed linux mint 13, unfortunately, for the first time after the installation mint does not start and the computer shows errors on boot like that the hdd can be plugged in not properly etc. I came to the conclusion that computer trying to boot from the network because the system could not be find anywhere else. As it turned out, the laptop has a new EFI BIOS type and, therefore, in the second approach, i installed with EFI partition set in the system partition, and format the whole thing again. Now the system starts up and works normally, but it is a little messy in the EFI boot priority as there was 7 devices on purchase but after messing and installing mint there is now 15 because everything doubles. I also noticed that the system name is shown in the EFI BIOS as pictured. But why should it double all the equipment? I think I preferred the normal BIOS. :cry:
PS. i installed ubuntu and now there is additional ubuntu as a choice (not in the picture), linuxmint is still there even though not installed anymore.

Image

Can anyone say whats going on? is this recorded in bios flash or somewhere on hdd?
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby srs5694 on Sun Dec 09, 2012 7:17 pm

Oyabunbaba, I recommend you start a new thread for your problem, since it doesn't seem to be very closely related to the original problem in this thread, and trying to address two peoples' problems in one thread can get very confusing and counterproductive.

I will say this, though: The "efibootmgr" utility can probably solve your problem. Try reading its man page.
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby catch22 on Mon Dec 10, 2012 9:23 am

srs5694 wrote:... Since either version of GRUB runs after the BIOS does its own boot-device scan, adjusting GRUB options won't help.
Thanks, I realize that and know it's off-topic from my original question, but found it strange that I never see any GRUB passing by when starting the desktop.
I used to have two Linux's on my older pc and now just LinuxMint by itself, maybe GRUB doesn't show up because it sees only one distro then? (yeah; newbee forever :? )
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Re: Changing boot order in BIOS from terminal?

Postby catch22 on Mon Dec 10, 2012 9:26 am

bigj231 wrote:...please don't randomly start puling jumpers. ...Alternatively, you can just start pressing the F2 key (or whatever you BIOS setup key is) as fast as possible as soon as you push the power button. If you miss the BIOS menu, just shut it off and repeat. Keep trying until you get lucky and catch it.
It's F2 alright - the button has worn out from trying :lol: I guess I'll still have to wait for my friend to do it for me - I'm not touching anything inside, like cables or jumpers. Ah, patience is such a virtue - I will report when it's solved.
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