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Thread: Ubuntu Installation Freezes Randomly on MSI GE72 2QF Apache Pro 2

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
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    Ubuntu Installation Freezes Randomly on MSI GE72 2QF Apache Pro 2

    Hi

    I am fairly advanced with configuring and setting up Ubuntu and have been an Ubuntu user for about 10 years. So I usually get through problems quite easily. But I cannot seem to get past this problem. The problem is:

    When installing or running Ubuntu 14.04.2 the laptop would randomly hang. Sometimes it can run for an hour before it does so. But other times it barely makes it past boot. I have tried the following:
    1. Disabled FastBoot
    2. Disabled Intel SpeedStep
    3. Disabled SecureBoot
    4. Enabled UEFI with CSM
    5. Even tried running it in a virtual machine, using VirtualBox and also VMWare workstation on a windows 8.1 host, tried Ubuntu 14.04.2 64 bit and 32 bit also tried Ubuntu 15.04 64 bit. But it simply freezed the entire machine and windows throws an exception saying "MACHINE_CHECK_EXCEPTION". I have disabled various options inside each virtual machine's like VT-x as well as in my BIOS. I disabled 3D acceleration mode.
    6. I added nomodeset into the grub parameters
    7. I added acpi=off into the grub parameters


    I have been struggling for about 4 days now, and it seems like this laptop is allergic to Ubuntu, or possibly any Linux kernel for that matter. It might be because it is a very new generation CPU (i7 5700HQ) that the Linux kernel is not compatible with. The weird thing is that it happens inside an emulator like VMware and VirtualBox where it also crashes the host, as well as when running directly on the hardware.

    The specific Laptop model is a GE72 2QF Apache Pro with the added 256 SSD and 16GB Ram. http://www.msi.com/product/nb/GE72-2...#hero-overview

    I can't seems to find any articles or forums regarding issues with this model or with the 5th generation i7 processors. Any help would be very very much appreciated.

    Thank You










    I have got it working now. Here is the solution:

    I have got Ubuntu running on my GE72 2QF. It runs very well. Setup was a bit of a problem but other than that Ubuntu runs like a charm now. Everything works. Even hibernation and suspend works 100%. Sometimes it would not pick up my wifi hotspot but then I simply click "Connect to hidden wifi network" and select my hotspot from the list. Then it will connect with no problems. But I am very happy with the installation. Ubuntu runs amazingly fast.


    The reason that the installation crashes is because of 2 reasons. One is that the SSD and Ubuntu does not work properly with asynchronous transfers. The other is Intel speed step. I think both cause the same exception.


    I have posted the complete process that I followed to get it set up earlier on in this thread but I will post it again here for convenience. Here it is:


    1. You HAVE to install ubuntu 15.04 64bit. Any other version simply does not work. Some people also reported that 14.04.3 64bit works too.
    2. In the BIOS you have to disable the following: FastBoot, Intel Speedstep, SecureBoot
    3. In the BIOS make sure that UEFI is enabled with CSM
    4. When starting the Ubuntu installation you have to add the kernel option "libata.force=noncq". This is a MUST!
    5. After the installation do a full update on Ubuntu. Then you can remove the kernel option "libata.force=noncq". Your SSD should perform faster now. But SpeedStep is still a problem. I have to keep it off.
    6. I even re-enabled Fastboot and Secure in the BIOS and it still runs fine.


    I have tried to install it inside a VM using VirtualBox as well as VMware but I never got it working properly, still freezes now and then. I just run it natively on the hardware.
    Last edited by steven-wooding; September 15th, 2015 at 06:12 PM. Reason: Got it working

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    Elgin, IL USA
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    Ubuntu 16.10 Yakkety Yak

    Re: Ubuntu Installation Freezes Randomly on MSI GE72 2QF Apache Pro 2

    Of course if you ask MSI, they will tell you that MSI does not support Linux.

    I personally bought an MSI GE60 2OE with Win7 while I still could in Oct 2013, and while it is capable of UEFI, the BIOS version for Win7 defaults to regular BIOS and uses msdos partitions. So it was pretty much mainstream i7-4700MQ with hybrid Intel HD 4600/Nvidia GTX 765M graphics. The only unusually thing I ran into removing its Win7 D: partition and installing Ubuntu 13.10 at that time is that when I put grub2 on sda4 (wanting to leave the mbr untouched) and marked that as the boot partition (removing boot flag from sda2) something kept resetting sda2 boot flag, so I had to resort to installing grub on USB memory stick to boot Linux. That is no longer an issue since I installed 64-bit 14.04 with grub on mSATA SSD and set that (sdb) to be the boot drive. Note that although nomodeset is typically used for desktops with Nvidia graphics, I read a post where that did not work for hybrid Intel/Nvidia laptop, so I did not use nomodeset. I am currently using nvidia-331-updates for that from the normal repositories, but I do not know if the GTX 970M needs something newer (xorg-edgers ppa has versions through nvidia-352 package).

    But I have not had to deal with Secure Boot or UEFI yet. And not sure if "Exclusive Super RAID 2 with 3 SSD RAID0" might result in some proprietary issues (recently read another post about someone attempting to install Ubuntu on dual Win8 RAID drives). Sometimes when you are cutting edge not everything gets support right away in Linux until someone works that out. For example hybrid graphics were somewhat of a pain in 13.10 because it used bumblebee and optirun needed additional parameters for certain games (never could get primusrun to work). But in 14.04 with nvidia prime the active graphics device can be switched from NVIDIA X Server Settings. So you may want to test a newer Ubuntu version like 15.04 to see if that works any better.
    i5 650 3.2 GHz upgraded to i7 870, 16 GB 1333 RAM, nvidia GTX 1060, 32" 1080p & assorted older computers

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
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    Re: Ubuntu Installation Freezes Randomly on MSI GE72 2QF Apache Pro 2

    For fun, try a different desktop edition - that is, try Lubuntu instead of Ubuntu. Maybe it's not a driver issue at all.

    And you should re-enable Intel Speedstep if you haven't already. That lets the CPU slow down when idle to save power and is really important for keeping the laptop cool and saving battery life, etc.

  4. #4
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    Jun 2015
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    Re: Ubuntu Installation Freezes Randomly on MSI GE72 2QF Apache Pro 2

    Quote Originally Posted by weatherman2 View Post
    For fun, try a different desktop edition - that is, try Lubuntu instead of Ubuntu. Maybe it's not a driver issue at all.

    And you should re-enable Intel Speedstep if you haven't already. That lets the CPU slow down when idle to save power and is really important for keeping the laptop cool and saving battery life, etc.
    Ok. I have enabled everything again in the BIOS (SpeedStep, Fastboot, UEFI etc) and installed Lubuntu 14.04 64bit in an VMWare emulator. And it seems to be standing it's ground. I went through the whole installation process and the upgrade process afterwards. Also installed VMWare tools and it is running fine. Haven't crashed yet. So maybe you are right. It's something inside Ubuntu that it not fully compatible with the hardware.

    The next step is to run it natively on the hardware without an emulator. I will do that tonight and post the results. But thanks for the help so far.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
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    Re: Ubuntu Installation Freezes Randomly on MSI GE72 2QF Apache Pro 2

    Lubuntu 14.04 x64 just crashed the laptop from within the VMware emulator. Exactly the same issue as Ubuntu. But it seems to run a bit longer before it crashes. Going to try Lubuntu 15.04 x64 directly on the hardware now.

  6. #6
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    Jun 2015
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    Re: Ubuntu Installation Freezes Randomly on MSI GE72 2QF Apache Pro 2

    Seems like I have figured it out. Thanks to efflandt. The SSD was the problem. With the boot grub flag "libata.force=noncq" to fix the SSD issues, and disabling fast boot, secure boot and speed step in the BIOS. And it has to be Ubuntu 15.04 x64 or later. Previous versions just won't work. And after the installation you can run a full update and enable speed step again as well as remove the "libata.force=noncq" flag from grub. Seems to run fine now .

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
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    Re: Ubuntu Installation Freezes Randomly on MSI GE72 2QF Apache Pro 2

    I have a very similar computer (MSI GE62 Apache) and seem to be having the same freezing problem when I try to install Ubuntu (I'm dual booting Windows 8.1). Unfortunately this is my first time installing Ubuntu, so I have very little experience in this area.

    I have disabled fast boot, secure boot, speedstep in BIOS, and using the 15.04 x64 iso. How do I add the boot grub flag prior to installation? Can I modify it through the Try Ubuntu Without Installing/Install Ubuntu screen?

    Thank you

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
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    1

    Re: Ubuntu Installation Freezes Randomly on MSI GE72 2QF Apache Pro 2

    This might help:https://help.ubuntu.com/community/AspireTimeline/Fixes
    Last edited by pesalamone; August 2nd, 2015 at 02:58 PM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
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    1

    Re: Ubuntu Installation Freezes Randomly on MSI GE72 2QF Apache Pro 2

    Hi Steve,

    Well, the computer doesn't have problem. Only you need to boot your Ubuntu using upstart service, as you may or may not know that Ubuntu has switched to systemd. So by default Ubuntu is using it.

    Solution for VM:
    Follow this method if you want to use Ubuntu in the VirtualBox or VMware, once you start your Ubuntu VM immediately press ESC key to see boot options > choose advance option > and boot Ubuntu with (upstart). I am pretty sure it will work for you.
    If it does work for you and you want to switch permanently to upstart then you can do it from here https://wiki.ubuntu.com/SystemdForUp...ack_to_upstart

    I can't test it on the hardware but you can check the same method on your laptop and don't forget to let us know. It may help others who run into same problem like you do.

    Since the core i7 5xxxhq series is newer than 4xxxhq series, so you may have to wait little bit to get everything work properly. Hopefully this issue will be addressed soon.

    Umair from http://NoobsLab.com
    Don't forget to visit us for Ubuntu related stuff, also checkout our Virtual machines project http://osboxes.org

    Best,
    Last edited by noobslab; August 21st, 2015 at 01:12 AM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
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    6

    Re: Ubuntu Installation Freezes Randomly on MSI GE72 2QF Apache Pro 2

    Hi, I intend to buy a MSI GP62 laptop, which has a very similar configuration to the one you bought! It would be very nice of you if you could share some of your experience with your laptop on linux, in particular i would like to know if you have had any other trouble beside the one you told about (is not a problem anymore , is it?). Thank you very much!

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