Failure to Boot from Installation USB

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Failure to Boot from Installation USB

Postby MichaelAlbers on Thu Jan 24, 2013 7:33 pm

I recently bought a new Sony VAIO S. I've tried several times to install Linux Mint along side Windows 8. I can't seem to get the installation USB to successfully boot into Linux for the installation. The boot partially works. The computer will boot into the GRUB command line interface, but not into Linux itself.

Here's the pertinent information.

BIOS
InsydeH2O version R0081c8 ME version 8.1.0.1248
Boot mode: UEFI
Boot priority: Optical Drive, External Device, Internal HDD
Secure Boot: disabled

I created the boot USB from the Linux Mint 14 Nadia download. The downloaded ISO's checksum matched what was on the website. I used UNetbootin to create the bootable USB.

I can successfully boot into the installation Linux if I switch the boot mode to legacy, but I really want to use the UEFI method here. No sense living in the past for this.

I also downloaded Linux Mint 13 and Ubuntu 12.10 thinking there might be something wrong with the Nadia image. I have the exact same results when trying to install with those images. I also tried burning the images to DVD (correctly, not just writing the ISO file to the disc). Those boots failed as well. Booting from DVD gets me a black screen with "Operating system not found" displayed.

How do I get the installation Linux to boot? If not automatically, then what grub commands do I need to run for this to happen?
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Re: Failure to Boot from Installation USB

Postby Ivellios on Sat Feb 09, 2013 8:59 pm

I have a similar problem with my Sony Vaio model SVE171C11M. It boots neither from DVD nor USB, it either shows a message that operating system cannot be found or there's some problem with mbr file. I'm trying to boot in UEFI mode.
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Re: Failure to Boot from Installation USB

Postby MichaelAlbers on Sat Feb 09, 2013 9:53 pm

Ivellios,

I went to Sony support to see what they had to say. It's below.
===================================================================

I understand your concern on installing the Linux operating system in the VAIO. I regret to inform you that Sony's VAIO computers are fully supported only for the version of Windows which was pre-installed at our factory. If you decide to install an unsupported operating system; we cannot guarantee full usability, or functionality of all the original features.

NOTE: This includes, but is not limited to dual-boot configurations.

You can boot your VAIO computer from external devices, such as an optical disc drive, a USB floppy disk drive, or a USB flash drive by using the BIOS function. Refer the URL provided below to view the information on booting your VAIO computer from External Devices:

http://esupport.sony.com/docs/pc/SVS13A ... 01/01.html

Note: You may not be able to install a different operating system, if the Boot Mode is set to UEFI. You may try changing the Boot Mode for Windows 8 UEFI systems to Legacy mode and check if it helps.

Before changing the operating system, it is strongly recommended that a Recovery Media be created. The Recovery Media is bootable and can be used to perform a Recovery on a properly functioning hard drive. You can create the Recovery Media from Recovery Area using VAIO Care software. Below is the URL with the information on creating Recovery Media:

http://esupport.sony.com/docs/pc/SVS13A ... 12/12.html

Thank you for understanding.
=====================================================================

The gist I got out of this, through all of the disclaimer junk, was that the installation media won't work in UEFI boot mode. I switched over to legacy boot just today. I now have Windows 8 and Linux Mint 14 installed. From my point of view I don't see any real detriment to not booting in UEFI mode. The old MBR way seems to work just fine. Especially since it's the only way it seems to work.

For what it's worth, I did have one minor problem with the install in MBR mode. When I re-installed Windows it didn't completely overwrite the existing GPT data. This caused the Linux installer (and gparted) to think the HDD was completely unformatted despite the fact I had several partitions set up from the windows install. This turned out to be a simple fix. You just need to run "fixparts" to fully erase the GPT. See the following link.

http://superuser.com/questions/293339/g ... en-but-why

fixparts doesn't come with the Linux Mint live CD/USB so you'll have to go grab it. Opening a terminal and typing "fixparts" presented an error which shows the "apt-get" command. Not sure how well the "apt-get" will work with a live CD, but it worked just fine with a live USB. Once I ran fixparts the installation process detected all the partitions and the Windows installation. Everything went smoothly after that.

Hope that helps. Long story short, I'm thinking twice about buying a Sony again.
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Re: Failure to Boot from Installation USB

Postby catweazel on Sat Feb 09, 2013 11:19 pm

MichaelAlbers wrote:Long story short, I'm thinking twice about buying a Sony again.

It isn't a Sony problem. All manufacturers have the same policies about not supporting anything other than the factory-installed configuration.

As for UEFI, all machines will have it down the track. Microsoft doesn't require Windows 8 on UEFI for no good reason. It has numerous advantages over BIOS, but these are early days and a transition is underway; not unlike the move from storing data on magnetic tape to 5MB hard disks as big as four house bricks.
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Re: Failure to Boot from Installation USB

Postby Ivellios on Sun Feb 10, 2013 9:37 pm

I solved my problem by copying files from EFI/BOOT/ to boot/ folder. Now Linux Mint boots from my pendrive without any problems.

Now I just have to figure out how to install it :P When installing, I have chosen changing one partition from NTFS to EXT4, however, it changed nothing and freezed on 'checking partitions' stage when proceeded.
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Re: Failure to Boot from Installation USB

Postby Ivellios on Tue Feb 12, 2013 12:16 pm

Sorry for posting one post under another ;)

I've solved my problem with partitions, formatted to ext4, created swap and installed the system and everything looked OK, but... a problem with GRUB apppeared. I don't see GRUB when I start my computer.

It looks like I installed GRUB on wrong partition (the one with Linux, not Windows). Which partition should I install GRUB on?
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