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Thread: fsck Dirty Bit Options

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Ubuntu Studio 19.04 Disco Dingo

    fsck Dirty Bit Options

    MY COMPUTER

    Model: Msi GL72 7QF
    Processor: Intel i7-7700HQ; 2.8GH
    RAM: 16GB DDR4
    GPU: nVidia GTX960M, Optimus enabled
    SSD: 500GB, GPT UEFI
    OS: Windows10 Insider Preview; Mageia 7; Ubuntu 18.04.3 LTS

    Secure boot and fast boot are disabled.




    I'm trying to install Ubuntu 18.04.3 and am receiving an error message that Grub cannot install. One of the things I did to troubleshoot was run fsck to examine the ESP partition. This is the results:
    Code:
    root@msi:~# fsck /dev/sda2
    fsck from util-linux 2.31.1
    fsck.fat 4.1 (2017-01-24)
    0x41: Dirty bit is set. Fs was not properly unmounted and some data may be corrupt.
    1) Remove dirty bit
    2) No action
    ? 2
    There are differences between boot sector and its backup.
    This is mostly harmless. Differences: (offset:original/backup)
      65:01/00
    1) Copy original to backup
    2) Copy backup to original
    3) No action
    ? 3
    /dev/sda2: 725 files, 16131/76646 clusters
    root@msi:~#
    I chose not to fix anything because I don't know what fsck is telling me. What is a dirty bit and why should I care about it? Also, since I'm having trouble installing Ubuntu, do I really want to rely on the backup boot sector? Any insights would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
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    Ubuntu Mate 16.04 Xenial Xerus

    Re: fsck Dirty Bit Options

    Windows didn't close all the partitions correctly, so Linux will not touch them. I think there are 2 settings inside Windows that need to be changed to ensure when you shutdown, that is actually closes all the file systems. Fast start or fast boot ... something like that (microsoft changes the names). You'll want to do some reading on installing and running dual-boot Windows + Linux. It is a common issue. Also, disable hibernation in Windows.

    BTW, using fsck on a fat32 partition isn't a good idea.

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Re: fsck Dirty Bit Options

    TheFu- Thank you for your suggestions. Hibernation, secure boot, and fast boot are disabled in BIOS and in Windows. The problem I'm experiencing is with Ubuntu, not with Windows. The Ubuntu installer, Ubiquity, gives an error message saying it cannot install grub. I have another Linux distro, Mageia, already installed and working properly. In fact I can boot up Ubuntu if I use reFINd instead of the missing Grub.

    I am not very familiar with Linux and it's diagnostic tools. What can you suggest I use to verify the integrity of the ESP partition?

  4. #4
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    Kubuntu 19.10 Eoan Ermine

    Re: fsck Dirty Bit Options

    I would choose to use Windows chkdsk over fsck on FAT/NTFS partitions.
    If you ask for help, do not abandon your request. Please have the courtesy to check for responses and thank the people who helped you.

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  5. #5
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    Re: fsck Dirty Bit Options

    The "dirty bit" on a file system means it wasn't properly closed. That means it is 99% likely a Windows problem, not Linux.

    However,
    * I don't dual boot.
    * I don't run 18.04 or newer.

    When you boot from a "Try Ubuntu" flash drive, are the same issues seen? Can it open all the partitions?

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    Re: fsck Dirty Bit Options

    You can run fsck.vfat or dosfsck on FAT32. Or use Windows chkdsk.
    Linux does not have any good tools to repair NTFS, ntfsfix really just turns on the chkdsk flag, so Windows will fix it.
    fsck, e2fsck is only for ext2, ext3, ext4 family of formats.

    dosfstools - dosfsck (aka fsck.msdos and fsck.vfat) utilities
    Must be unmounted, change sda1 example to your FAT32 partition(s).
    sudo dosfsck -t -a -w /dev/sda1
    The -a seems to help in clearing dirty bit
    https://bbs.archlinux.org/viewtopic.php?id=164185

    man dosfsck
    NAME
    fsck.fat - check and repair MS-DOS filesystems
    For more info on UEFI boot install & repair - Regularly Updated :
    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2147295
    Please use Thread Tools above first post to change to [Solved] when/if answered completely.

  7. #7
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    Ubuntu Studio 19.04 Disco Dingo

    fsck Dirty Bit Options

    Using fsck -a /dev/sda2 cleared the dirty bit.
    Using Windoiws chkdsk returned zero errors.
    Installing Ubuntu 18.04 fails with the same error as previously noted.
    I have to consider this (dirty bit) problem solved. However, I'll likely open another thread to try and solve the problem with installation errors.

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