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Thread: This GPT partition label has no BIOS Boot Partition

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Montréal (Québec)
    Ubuntu Development Release

    This GPT partition label has no BIOS Boot Partition


    On Ubutu Natty fully during update of grub-PC I got this error message.

    Could someone explain what this is about:

    Paramétrage de grub-pc (1.99~rc1-13ubuntu3) ...
    /usr/sbin/grub-setup: warn: This GPT partition label has no BIOS Boot Partition; embedding won't be possible!.
    /usr/sbin/grub-setup: warn: Embedding is not possible. GRUB can only be installed in this setup by using blocklists. However, blocklists are UNRELIABLE and their use is discouraged..
    Installation finished. No error reported.
    Generating grub.cfg ...


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Southern California, USA
    Ubuntu Development Release

    Re: This GPT partition label has no BIOS Boot Partition

    Download boot_info_script (see my link), then copy&paste RESULTS.txt file.

    Also read this topic, starting around post#51, might help.
    boot_info_script | AMD64 Athlon X2 Dual-Core - nVidia Geforce 6150 SE - 4GB DDR3

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Chicago Suburbs
    Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr

    Re: This GPT partition label has no BIOS Boot Partition

    Some more info on bios_grub gpt partition, since it is gpt it can be anywhere on drive:

    grub2 & GPT info
    In a GPT partition map, the 31 kiB area after Master Boot Record where GRUB is usually embedded to, does not exist. When GRUB can't be embedded, its only option is to use blocklists, which are unreliable and discouraged.

    If you have gpt you need another small (8-32mb) partition for grub. Are you using efi or BIOS compatible mode?
    "unknown" filesystem! may be shown
    However, in the GPT setup, there is no space following the 512-byte MBR for embedding the "second stage" core.img. Thus, you must make a separate "BIOS boot partition" to hold core.img. Make it 128 kiB as recommended in the following link. Actually, using ext2 for example, and GParted Live CD, the minimum partition size is 8 MB, or 32 MB for FAT32. You can set bios_grub flag in gparted or with command line: In GPT fdisk (gdisk), give it a type code of EF02.
    sudo parted /dev/sda set <partition_number> bios_grub on

    It only needs to be about 32 KiB in size, although in most cases make it 1 MiB because of partition alignment issues

    This link says they just installed grub2 to the drive and it found the BIOS boot partition.
    Legacy BIOS issues with gpt
    Oldfred on vacation. Back Sept 9. Will not have much if any Internet access.
    For info on UEFI boot install & repair:
    Please use Thread Tools above first post to close thread when/if answered completely.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Woonsocket, RI USA

    Re: This GPT partition label has no BIOS Boot Partition

    Oldfred's information is good; however, it appears he's copied recommendations from at least three sources, each of which has different recommendations for the size of the BIOS Boot Partition (8-32MB, 128KiB, and 32KiB-1MiB), which may lead to confusion. The minimum space requirement for this partition is about 32KiB, but it's wise to make it bigger than that in case future versions of GRUB require a bigger space. Partitioning tools sometimes impose their own requirements or make a larger size sensible. If you've already got partitions with data on your disk, they may impose their own unique limits. Seeing the output of the following command can help us determine what will fit:

    sudo parted /dev/sda unit s print
    Please post the results here between [code] and [/code] strings to retain legibility. The Boot Info Script that VMC suggested will provide similar information, but is not otherwise required.
    If I've suggested a solution to a problem and you're not the original poster, do not try my solution! Problems can seem similar but be different, and a good solution to one problem can make another worse. Post a new thread with your problem details.

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