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Thread: HOWTO: Boot & Install Ubuntu from the Grub Rescue Prompt

  1. #21
    Join Date
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    Re: HOWTO: Boot & Install Ubuntu from the Grub Rescue Prompt

    I ran the boot repair, and it updated the grub modules on my hard drive, which I confirmed. I then went to boot from the hard drive, but I am still having the same problem with grub rescue.

    Using the "ls" command, it returns (hd0) (hd0,msdos1)
    The second one is my external drive.
    Using ls (hd0,msdos1)/ returns all of the directories and files in the home directory. Awesome.
    Next, when I try to use "ls (hd0,msdos1)/boot/grub/" ,which is where the grub directory and modules are , it returns "error:file not found". If I just use "ls (hd0,msdos1)/boot/" it doesn't error, but it also doesn't return any of the files/directories that I know are in there.

    Is my grub broken?

    Also, I got the results.txt file:

    Boot Info Script 0.60 from 17 May 2011


    ============================= Boot Info Summary: ===============================

    => Grub2 (v1.99) is installed in the MBR of /dev/sda and looks at sector 1 of
    the same hard drive for core.img. core.img is at this location and looks
    for on this drive.

    sda1: __________________________________________________ ________________________

    File system: ext4
    Boot sector type: -
    Boot sector info:
    Operating System: Ubuntu 11.10
    Boot files: /boot/grub/grub.cfg /etc/fstab /boot/grub/core.img

    sda2: __________________________________________________ ________________________

    File system: Extended Partition
    Boot sector type: -
    Boot sector info:

    sda5: __________________________________________________ ________________________

    File system: swap
    Boot sector type: -
    Boot sector info:

    ============================ Drive/Partition Info: =============================

    Drive: sda __________________________________________________ ___________________

    Disk /dev/sda: 500.1 GB, 500107859968 bytes
    255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 60801 cylinders, total 976773164 sectors
    Units = sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
    Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes

    Partition Boot Start Sector End Sector # of Sectors Id System

    /dev/sda1 * 2,048 968,452,095 968,450,048 83 Linux
    /dev/sda2 968,454,142 976,771,071 8,316,930 5 Extended
    /dev/sda5 968,454,144 976,771,071 8,316,928 82 Linux swap / Solaris


    "blkid" output: __________________________________________________ ______________

    Device UUID TYPE LABEL

    /dev/loop0 squashfs
    /dev/sda1 c115a6e2-5b2a-4b13-a810-6373cec0e25e ext4
    /dev/sda5 b39b8a64-11c5-48f4-a44e-c507334989a1 swap

    ================================ Mount points: =================================

    Device Mount_Point Type Options

    /dev/loop0 /rofs squashfs (ro,noatime)
    /dev/sr0 /cdrom iso9660 (ro,noatime)


    =========================== sda1/boot/grub/grub.cfg: ===========================

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    #
    # DO NOT EDIT THIS FILE
    #
    # It is automatically generated by grub-mkconfig using templates
    # from /etc/grub.d and settings from /etc/default/grub
    #

    ### BEGIN /etc/grub.d/00_header ###
    if [ -s $prefix/grubenv ]; then
    set have_grubenv=true
    load_env
    fi
    set default="0"
    if [ "${prev_saved_entry}" ]; then
    set saved_entry="${prev_saved_entry}"
    save_env saved_entry
    set prev_saved_entry=
    save_env prev_saved_entry
    set boot_once=true
    fi

    function savedefault {
    if [ -z "${boot_once}" ]; then
    saved_entry="${chosen}"
    save_env saved_entry
    fi
    }

    function recordfail {
    set recordfail=1
    if [ -n "${have_grubenv}" ]; then if [ -z "${boot_once}" ]; then save_env recordfail; fi; fi
    }

    function load_video {
    insmod vbe
    insmod vga
    insmod video_bochs
    insmod video_cirrus
    }

    insmod part_msdos
    insmod ext2
    set root='(hd0,msdos1)'
    search --no-floppy --fs-uuid --set=root c115a6e2-5b2a-4b13-a810-6373cec0e25e
    if loadfont /usr/share/grub/unicode.pf2 ; then
    set gfxmode=auto
    load_video
    insmod gfxterm
    insmod part_msdos
    insmod ext2
    set root='(hd0,msdos1)'
    search --no-floppy --fs-uuid --set=root c115a6e2-5b2a-4b13-a810-6373cec0e25e
    set locale_dir=($root)/boot/grub/locale
    set lang=en_US
    insmod gettext
    fi
    terminal_output gfxterm
    if [ "${recordfail}" = 1 ]; then
    set timeout=10
    else
    set timeout=10
    fi
    ### END /etc/grub.d/00_header ###

    ### BEGIN /etc/grub.d/05_debian_theme ###
    set menu_color_normal=white/black
    set menu_color_highlight=black/light-gray
    if background_color 44,0,30; then
    clear
    fi
    ### END /etc/grub.d/05_debian_theme ###

    ### BEGIN /etc/grub.d/10_linux ###
    if [ ${recordfail} != 1 ]; then
    if [ -e ${prefix}/gfxblacklist.txt ]; then
    if hwmatch ${prefix}/gfxblacklist.txt 3; then
    if [ ${match} = 0 ]; then
    set linux_gfx_mode=keep
    else
    set linux_gfx_mode=text
    fi
    else
    set linux_gfx_mode=text
    fi
    else
    set linux_gfx_mode=keep
    fi
    else
    set linux_gfx_mode=text
    fi
    export linux_gfx_mode
    if [ "$linux_gfx_mode" != "text" ]; then load_video; fi
    menuentry 'Ubuntu, with Linux 3.0.0-12-generic-pae' --class ubuntu --class gnu-linux --class gnu --class os {
    recordfail
    set gfxpayload=$linux_gfx_mode
    insmod gzio
    insmod part_msdos
    insmod ext2
    set root='(hd0,msdos1)'
    search --no-floppy --fs-uuid --set=root c115a6e2-5b2a-4b13-a810-6373cec0e25e
    linux /boot/vmlinuz-3.0.0-12-generic-pae root=UUID=c115a6e2-5b2a-4b13-a810-6373cec0e25e ro quiet splash vt.handoff=7
    initrd /boot/initrd.img-3.0.0-12-generic-pae
    }
    menuentry 'Ubuntu, with Linux 3.0.0-12-generic-pae (recovery mode)' --class ubuntu --class gnu-linux --class gnu --class os {
    recordfail
    insmod gzio
    insmod part_msdos
    insmod ext2
    set root='(hd0,msdos1)'
    search --no-floppy --fs-uuid --set=root c115a6e2-5b2a-4b13-a810-6373cec0e25e
    echo 'Loading Linux 3.0.0-12-generic-pae ...'
    linux /boot/vmlinuz-3.0.0-12-generic-pae root=UUID=c115a6e2-5b2a-4b13-a810-6373cec0e25e ro recovery nomodeset
    echo 'Loading initial ramdisk ...'
    initrd /boot/initrd.img-3.0.0-12-generic-pae
    }
    submenu "Previous Linux versions" {
    menuentry 'Ubuntu, with Linux 3.0.0-12-generic' --class ubuntu --class gnu-linux --class gnu --class os {
    recordfail
    set gfxpayload=$linux_gfx_mode
    insmod gzio
    insmod part_msdos
    insmod ext2
    set root='(hd0,msdos1)'
    search --no-floppy --fs-uuid --set=root c115a6e2-5b2a-4b13-a810-6373cec0e25e
    linux /boot/vmlinuz-3.0.0-12-generic root=UUID=c115a6e2-5b2a-4b13-a810-6373cec0e25e ro quiet splash vt.handoff=7
    initrd /boot/initrd.img-3.0.0-12-generic
    }
    menuentry 'Ubuntu, with Linux 3.0.0-12-generic (recovery mode)' --class ubuntu --class gnu-linux --class gnu --class os {
    recordfail
    insmod gzio
    insmod part_msdos
    insmod ext2
    set root='(hd0,msdos1)'
    search --no-floppy --fs-uuid --set=root c115a6e2-5b2a-4b13-a810-6373cec0e25e
    echo 'Loading Linux 3.0.0-12-generic ...'
    linux /boot/vmlinuz-3.0.0-12-generic root=UUID=c115a6e2-5b2a-4b13-a810-6373cec0e25e ro recovery nomodeset
    echo 'Loading initial ramdisk ...'
    initrd /boot/initrd.img-3.0.0-12-generic
    }
    }
    ### END /etc/grub.d/10_linux ###

    ### BEGIN /etc/grub.d/20_linux_xen ###
    ### END /etc/grub.d/20_linux_xen ###

    ### BEGIN /etc/grub.d/20_memtest86+ ###
    menuentry "Memory test (memtest86+)" {
    insmod part_msdos
    insmod ext2
    set root='(hd0,msdos1)'
    search --no-floppy --fs-uuid --set=root c115a6e2-5b2a-4b13-a810-6373cec0e25e
    linux16 /boot/memtest86+.bin
    }
    menuentry "Memory test (memtest86+, serial console 115200)" {
    insmod part_msdos
    insmod ext2
    set root='(hd0,msdos1)'
    search --no-floppy --fs-uuid --set=root c115a6e2-5b2a-4b13-a810-6373cec0e25e
    linux16 /boot/memtest86+.bin console=ttyS0,115200n8
    }
    ### END /etc/grub.d/20_memtest86+ ###

    ### BEGIN /etc/grub.d/30_os-prober ###
    ### END /etc/grub.d/30_os-prober ###

    ### BEGIN /etc/grub.d/40_custom ###
    # This file provides an easy way to add custom menu entries. Simply type the
    # menu entries you want to add after this comment. Be careful not to change
    # the 'exec tail' line above.
    ### END /etc/grub.d/40_custom ###

    ### BEGIN /etc/grub.d/41_custom ###
    if [ -f $prefix/custom.cfg ]; then
    source $prefix/custom.cfg;
    fi
    ### END /etc/grub.d/41_custom ###
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    =============================== sda1/etc/fstab: ================================

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    # /etc/fstab: static file system information.
    #
    # Use 'blkid' to print the universally unique identifier for a
    # device; this may be used with UUID= as a more robust way to name devices
    # that works even if disks are added and removed. See fstab(5).
    #
    # <file system> <mount point> <type> <options> <dump> <pass>
    proc /proc proc nodev,noexec,nosuid 0 0
    # / was on /dev/sda1 during installation
    UUID=c115a6e2-5b2a-4b13-a810-6373cec0e25e / ext4 errors=remount-ro 0 1
    # swap was on /dev/sda5 during installation
    UUID=b39b8a64-11c5-48f4-a44e-c507334989a1 none swap sw 0 0
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    =================== sda1: Location of files loaded by Grub: ====================

    GiB - GB File Fragment(s)

    376.131866455 = 403.868516352 boot/grub/core.img 1
    356.174201965 = 382.439137280 boot/grub/grub.cfg 1
    1.427730560 = 1.533014016 boot/initrd.img-3.0.0-12-generic 1
    1.005863190 = 1.080037376 boot/initrd.img-3.0.0-12-generic-pae 2
    356.172374725 = 382.437175296 boot/vmlinuz-3.0.0-12-generic 1
    0.700729370 = 0.752402432 boot/vmlinuz-3.0.0-12-generic-pae 2
    1.427730560 = 1.533014016 initrd.img 1
    356.172374725 = 382.437175296 vmlinuz 1

    =============================== StdErr Messages: ===============================

    unlzma: Decoder error
    Last edited by volinkov; November 12th, 2011 at 09:23 PM.

  2. #22
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    Re: HOWTO: Boot & Install Ubuntu from the Grub Rescue Prompt

    volinkov,

    The problem most likely is that your Grub files are located on a portion of the drive which can't be seen by BIOS or Grub 2. On many BIOS there is a 137GB limitation on what the BIOS can see. Your Grub 2 files are beyond that limit.

    You can check by booting and entering the BIOS setup. Check the reported disk size. If it reports approximately 137 GB, that is the problem. If there is a setting to enable large drives or LBA, enable it. You might also be able to update the BIOS.

    If your setup will allow it, shrinking your sda1 partition to approximately 130GB will probably also fix the problem, since it will force the Grub 2 files to be placed within the 137GB limit. If you have to shrink the partition, you will need to use the LiveCD or another 'rescue' type CD since your Ubuntu partition must be unmounted. Gparted is an excellent tool for resizing linux partitions.

    The usual caution about backing up critical data files whenever performing partitioning operations.
    GRUB2

    Retired.

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
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    5

    Re: HOWTO: Boot & Install Ubuntu from the Grub Rescue Prompt

    I resized the partition and she booted up just fine. Thanks for your help!

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
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    1

    Re: HOWTO: Boot & Install Ubuntu from the Grub Rescue Prompt

    Help!

    I've found that my linux partition is (hd1,1)

    I've also found that my grub modules are in (hd1,1)/usr/lib/grub/i386-pc

    I then typed

    Code:
    set prefix=(hd1,1)/usr/lib/grub/i386-pc
    insmod linux
    At which point, it gives me the error:

    error: symbol not found: 'grub-mm-base'.

    I don't know what to do from here. Please help!!

  5. #25
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    Re: HOWTO: Boot & Install Ubuntu from the Grub Rescue Prompt

    Quote Originally Posted by brewmasterkyle View Post
    I've found that my linux partition is (hd1,1)

    I've also found that my grub modules are in (hd1,1)/usr/lib/grub/i386-pc

    I then typed

    Code:
    set prefix=(hd1,1)/usr/lib/grub/i386-pc
    insmod linux
    At which point, it gives me the error:
    Good for you for being able to locate the modules.

    Where you found them is where the originals are stored, but they are the source and are transferred to the boot folder during installation. You might be able to copy them to your /boot/grub folder. I don't know if the installation process does anything more than a direct copy regarding the modules.


    You can use the LiveCD to try a direct copy to the mounted grub folder. However, if you use a LiveCD I'd recommend chrooting into your Ubuntu partition and reinstalling Grub 2 completely. I suspect that would be more reliable unless your only problem is missing modules, and nothing else. That is covered in the "Chroot" link in my signature line.

    If the modules exist in hd1,1/boot/grub, you can try manually booting with these commands:

    Code:
    ls (hd1,1)/boot/grub 
    # Do you see the modules? If not, try the alternate module loading command later.
    set prefix=(hd1,1)/boot/grub
    set root=(hd1,1)
    insmod (hd1,1)/boot/grub/linux.mod
    # Alternate module load:
    # insmod (hd1,1)/usr/lib/grub/i386-pc/linux.mod
    # Other modules may be needed as well. Watch for errors when you try to boot.
    linux (hd1,1)/vmlinuz root=/dev/sdb1 ro
    initrd (hd1,1)/initrd.img
    boot
    GRUB2

    Retired.

  6. #26
    Join Date
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    Cyprus
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    Distro
    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Re: HOWTO: Boot & Install Ubuntu from the Grub Rescue Prompt

    'out of disk' can be caused by many things. Often it means the BIOS cannot read the drive. You should probably open up your BIOS setup during boot and check the reported drive size. If the BIOS does not report the full size of your drive, any files physically located beyond the limit seen by the BIOS will not be found.
    This little snippet of information was all that I needed to find to get my otherwise no-starting 11.10 installation to boot. I had wondered how it could be that the CD would run perfectly but yet the full install did not.

    Thank you DRS305

  7. #27
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    Re: HOWTO: Boot & Install Ubuntu from the Grub Rescue Prompt

    Quote Originally Posted by sprintexec View Post
    This little snippet of information was all that I needed to find to get my otherwise no-starting 11.10 installation to boot. I had wondered how it could be that the CD would run perfectly but yet the full install did not.

    Thank you DRS305
    You are most welcome.

    This issue comes up fairly often, especially on older systems.

    Even with today's larger drive sizes some relatively recent BIOS's still have the 137GB limit built into them. Presumably because the manufacturers believe that users will only have one OS installed on their computers and the boot files will be very early on the disk.
    GRUB2

    Retired.

  8. #28
    Join Date
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    Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Re: HOWTO: Boot & Install Ubuntu from the Grub Rescue Prompt

    Hi drs305,
    I was just going through your nice HowTo making some crib notes when I noticed that you could save a step (and some typing) by omitting the 'iso-scan/filename=' kernel parameter. Without this, the /isodevice directory does not get mounted, and you are left with just the read-only /cdrom mount point -- at least this is how it works when booting 10.04.

    Also, for times when you do include the 'iso-scan' param, the file you select can be any existing file on the drive; it doesn't have to be the ISO. A while back I dug down into the lupin-casper shell scripts to see how it worked, because I wanted to have /isodevice mounted when not booting from an ISO file -- again this is on 10.04, so hope it hasn't changed.
    Solo mis dos centavos,
    Last edited by c.cobb; December 20th, 2011 at 04:27 AM.
    The difference between theory and reality is that, in theory, there should be no difference but, in reality, there always is.

  9. #29
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    Re: HOWTO: Boot & Install Ubuntu from the Grub Rescue Prompt

    Quote Originally Posted by c.cobb View Post
    Hi drs305,
    I was just going through your nice HowTo making some crib notes when I noticed that you could save a step (and some typing) by omitting the 'iso-scan/filename=' kernel parameter. Without this, the /isodevice directory does not get mounted, and you are left with just the read-only /cdrom mount point -- at least this is how it works when booting 10.04.

    Also, for times when you do include the 'iso-scan' param, the file you select can be any existing file on the drive; it doesn't have to be the ISO. A while back I dug down into the lupin-casper shell scripts to see how it worked, because I wanted to have /isodevice mounted when not booting from an ISO file -- again this is on 10.04, so hope it hasn't changed.
    Solo mis dos centavos,
    I appreciate the input.

    I've been swamped lately but I'll try to test this in my other releases and update the file.

    We struggled with how to set this up before there was any documentation and there are some pretty amusing posts by a group of us scattered around these forums as we tested various ideas. While we got it working, as you discovered there very well can be other and better ways of doing things.

    In the meantime, happy holidays and thanks again.
    GRUB2

    Retired.

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Re: HOWTO: Boot & Install Ubuntu from the Grub Rescue Prompt

    Yes, I've followed several of your threads on Grub2, and they've all been very helpful. By coincidence I had a chance to confirm that lupin-casper on Natty still works the same way.

    After posting here last night, I tried another of your suggestions to update Grub2 on a 10.04 install and, in addition to the three packages you mention, it also happened to update lupin-casper. So, this morning I went poking around and, while things have changed some (iirc), the 'iso-scan' mount part works the same.

    Thanks and happy holidays to you as well.
    Cheers,

    p.d. For Natty the pertinent parts are in these two scripts.
    /usr/share/initramfs-tools/scripts/casper-premount/20iso_scan
    /usr/share/initramfs-tools/scripts/lupin-helpers
    The difference between theory and reality is that, in theory, there should be no difference but, in reality, there always is.

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