PDA

View Full Version : cannot detect existing partitions on ssd during install



thelost
January 27th, 2014, 12:58 AM
Hi there

I have a dell xps 15 (l502x) laptop with a newly installed samsung 250gb evo 840 ssd and the original 750gb internal sata drive (now moved to the where the dvd drive was). I want to be able to install windows 7 and linux to the ssd and use the secondary drive for data.

So far I have successfully installed windows 7 to the ssd in a 160gb partition, and now want to install linux on the remainder of its freespace. The problem is that whilst the buntu installation recognises the 750gb harddrives partitions, it does not recognise the ssd's. It sees that the drive's there, listed as sda, but does not see any of the partitions that are on it.

I've tried pulling the second drive out so that only the ssd is present (my old windows installation is still on it), but that made no difference. I tried quitting the installation to the live desktop and launching gparted, but indeed it only sees the disk, not any of its partitions.

I have generated a report from boot-repair, here's a link: http://paste.ubuntu.com/6823079/

Any help people could give in this respect would be gratefully received. I'm sure that others have had similar problems, but I've been digging so much that I finally decided rather than vanish down a rabbit hole I should probably ask for help.

Cheers
Lost

fantab
January 27th, 2014, 08:37 AM
The problem seems to be with the SSD. Did you change the partition table when installing Windows?
If its an option, then remove all the partitions on the SSD (You will erase Windows install). Create a new Partition Table with Gparted from LiveCD and create some partitions.
Reboot the Ubuntu LiveCD and see if Ubuntu sees the SSD partitions.

If that doesn't help then try Fixparts (http://www.rodsbooks.com/fixparts/).

If you have an UEFI system then I suggest you install both OS in UEFI mode.

Also Hibernating Windows too can cause similar issues. Make sure your Windows in NOT hibernating.

thelost
January 27th, 2014, 11:20 AM
I installed windows 7 to the ssd fresh, creating a 160gb partition for it (plus 100mb system reserved partition which windows automatically creates).

Wiping windows really isn't an option as I need my laptop operable for work, unless I perhaps clone the partition and then restore it afterwards. Is it not possible to work with partitions as they are and make them recognisable? I am not very conversant with the boot-repair report and what's being shown, I guess I need to understand a little more about what the system is/isn't seeing and how to repair it if necessary. I feel uncomfortable making sweeping changes like wiping my whole disk on the off-chance they might work, I'd rather know what the problem is beforehand so that the outcome was predictable. Are there any resources that go into detail on this?

cheers

fantab
January 27th, 2014, 12:14 PM
Alright.
There is something definitely not right with your SSD/Windows install. Try following:

Get into your BIOS and see what mode is SATA set to, IDE, AHCI or RAID. We need it be AHCI.
Also check in BIOS against SSD for any special settings. Check for IntelSRT, if its there and enabled then disable it.
Are you sure your Windows is NOT hibernating.

Run 'chkdsk' on your SSD: http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/433-disk-check.html (http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/433-disk-check.html)

thelost
January 27th, 2014, 12:53 PM
SATA is set to AHCI. No special settings for the SSD. I've run chkdsk and no errors reported, but I wouldn't expect anything to be wrong with the ssd as it's new, unless it's defective.

I could always delete the hibernation file just to be sure, but I am pretty sure that it isn't hibernating, I never hibernate my laptop, though I do sleep it occasionally. There is a hibernation file on the c drive, but I think windows generates that as long as the system has hibernation turned on as an option.

oldfred
January 27th, 2014, 05:55 PM
Boot-Repair is reporting all the zram partitions. I have not seen that and thought you have to enable that.
http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=news_item&px=MTM1NjQ

So if Ubuntu is not working how is system showing zram? Or is this from Windows and not really zram but something in Windows?

It is not mounting any of the Windows NTFS partitions. Often caused by hibernation or chkdsk needed flags.
Also if drive was gpt from UEFI install the suggested fixparts may fix it by removing old gpt data.
It is not showing SFS or dynamic partitions, but again zram is unusual.

You can keep old BIOS/MBR type install, but Windows 7 can be installed in UEFI mode from flash drive if flash drive is updated a bit.

thelost
January 27th, 2014, 10:15 PM
Boot-Repair is reporting all the zram partitions. I have not seen that and thought you have to enable that.
http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=news_item&px=MTM1NjQ

So if Ubuntu is not working how is system showing zram? Or is this from Windows and not really zram but something in Windows?

It is not mounting any of the Windows NTFS partitions. Often caused by hibernation or chkdsk needed flags.
Also if drive was gpt from UEFI install the suggested fixparts may fix it by removing old gpt data.
It is not showing SFS or dynamic partitions, but again zram is unusual.

You can keep old BIOS/MBR type install, but Windows 7 can be installed in UEFI mode from flash drive if flash drive is updated a bit.

I belive the zram is the Lubuntu Live USB showing up in the boot-repair report. I was running the report from a usb-key I prepared with Lubuntu installed on it.

I just checked with diskpart and disk management in windows and the ssd is showing as MBR not GPT.

oldfred
January 27th, 2014, 10:25 PM
I see this:

/dev/sda1 ?

Where the ? is normally an * for boot flag set. With question mark that may just be enough minor corruption to be an issue.

From Windows reset active partition to sda1 or whatever Windows sees it as. Or if gparted, Disk Utility, testdisk or fixparts let you adjust it.

It looks like a partition table except for ?


This doesn't look like a partition table
Probably you selected the wrong device.

Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
/dev/sda1 ? 2048 206847 102400 7 HPFS/NTFS/exFAT
/dev/sda2 206848 335544319 167668736 7 HPFS/NTFS/exFAT
/dev/sda3 335544320 488392703 76424192 7 HPFS/NTFS/exFAT

thelost
January 28th, 2014, 12:51 AM
Ah that's perfect. Well spotted! Inside windows I went into Disk Management and made sure the windows boot disk (sda1) was set to active. This worked perfectly, and now I have a fully functioning lubuntu installation.

thanks very much, really appreciated.

oldfred
January 28th, 2014, 01:32 AM
Glad that worked, we were out of ideas otherwise. :)

thelost
January 28th, 2014, 12:44 PM
out of interest, everything is working now, but when the computer booted this morning it presented me with the grub2 menu, and then afterwards the windows boot manager, and then booted as normal. last night I did change the boot order in grub2 so that windows would boot by default, but it seems like this means that it is now showing both boot managers on booting, perhaps as a result of changes, I'm not sure.

Is it possible to just use grub2, ie remove windows boot manager or similar?

oldfred
January 28th, 2014, 03:08 PM
Windows does not show normally unless it has more than one entry in BCD. You may need to update or repair BCD?

How to fix Vista/Window 7 when the boot files are missing - rebuild BCD with bcdedit
http://ubuntuforums.org/showpost.php?p=5726832&postcount=4
Some advanced BCD rebuild, Vista post #17 on:
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1426103
http://neosmart.net/wiki/display/EBCD/Recovering+the+Vista+Bootloader+from+the+DVD

thelost
January 28th, 2014, 03:28 PM
hmmm. i do have my old install of windows on the secondary disk, which does show up as a boot option in grub2. I might transfer the data off, format the disk and then transfer it back on.

oldfred
January 28th, 2014, 03:49 PM
Windows always installs all boot file to the one primary partition with the boot flag or active partition. And it uses the drive set as default in BIOS for boot files into primary partition.
So if you have two Windows installs that is why BCD will show other Windows installs and grub will only find one Windows install as only one has boot files.

To get each MS to have its own boot loader make a second primary NTFS partition and set its boot flag on, then install the 2nd product in it. Multibooters, Pictures here worth 1000+ words
http://www.multibooters.co.uk/multiboot.html
More tech info - BIOS boot process & some UEFI
http://homepage.ntlworld.com./jonathan.deboynepollard/FGA/windows-nt-6-boot-process.html
BIOS/Grub/Ubuntu boot process
http://www.thegeekstuff.com/2011/02/linux-boot-process/
A user who installed two windows & it worked to boot from grub directly
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1271600
Another user who disconnected and used a second drive
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1334346

thelost
January 28th, 2014, 05:00 PM
much appreciated. there should be more than enough there to sort me out. i'm not really looking to keep the old windows install on the second drive, it was more a case of migrating data over safely once I was sure everything worked.