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Thread: Can I install Ubuntu 22.04 on a Bios Legacy disk?

  1. #1
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    Can I install Ubuntu 22.04 on a Bios Legacy disk?

    I have an old sata Samsung EVO 840 ssd with a Windows 10 and an Ubuntu 22.04 boot partition (/dev/sda3). Because Ubuntu gives problems, I wanted to reinstall Ubuntu on the same partition as before.

    To get this old SSD recognized in the bios I have to USE LEGACY and UEFI. I have also added two newer NVME M.2 ssds which I don’t want to use for booting.
    The install medium is also on a newer USB memory stick able to use UEFI.

    During the install I specified that the old Ubuntu partition (/dev/sda3) had to be the root device and that grub should be put on /dev/sda.

    This leads the to the complaint that there is "no EFI system partition". If I go on without creating a EFI partition, the installer crashes and mentioned that update-grub failed.

    If I press Ctrl-Alt-t, mount /dev, /proc and /sys on /target (mount point of /dev/sda3) and

    chroot to /target and run grub-update, it gives the following output: Memtest86+ needs a 16-bit boot, that is not available on EFI

    And doesn't use OS Prober.

    If I add GRUB_DISABLE_OS_PROBER=false to /etc/default/grub, update-grub blocks.

    If I remove in the bios all UEFI modes for the USB disk from the list of boot devices and boot the USB disk and run in the above mentioned way again grub-update, it still does not use OS Prober, but doesn't mention "Memtest86+ needs a 16-bit boot, that is not available on EFI"

    Booting the disk thereafter brings me in some command line Ubuntu error repair screen.
    Last edited by jkaltes; September 10th, 2022 at 07:13 PM.

  2. #2
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    Ubuntu 24.04 Noble Numbat

    Re: Can I install Ubuntu 22.04 on a Bios Legacy disk?

    Is Windows installed in UEFI mode?

    Edit:-
    Windows 10 must be in Legacy mode if there was no sign of an EFI partition?

    Did you boot the Ubuntu USB in Legacy mode?
    Last edited by tea for one; September 10th, 2022 at 05:58 PM.

  3. #3
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    Re: Can I install Ubuntu 22.04 on a Bios Legacy disk?

    Windows 10 is on the disk in legacy mode. The Ubuntu USB was in UEFI mode. Later I hoped to boot it in legacy mode by removing the UEFI usb disk boot options in the BIOS settings.

  4. #4
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    Kubuntu

    Re: Can I install Ubuntu 22.04 on a Bios Legacy disk?

    I have seen where Ubuntu now in BIOS mode suggests an ESP - efi system partition for all installs. Someone posted just continuing worked.

    Basically all systems since 2012 are UEFI as that was when Microsoft required UEFI/gpt.
    And you could use gpt with BIOS boot with Ubuntu since about 2010.
    With my old BIOS systems back then I added both the bios_grub & ESP on gpt partitioned drives. Then easy to convert to UEFI as partition existed.

    Also if system is so old as to require BIOS boot, it probably would work better with a light weight flavor. Full Ubuntu assumes a newer system that now would be UEFI boot. And very new systems are UEFI only, no BIOS boot option at all.

    If you have not updated firmware for UEFI and also updated firmware for SSD, that may be why you have issues.
    To check firmware for UEFI run this and compare on vendor's site what is latest.
    sudo lshw | grep -m 1 -A 5 "*-firmware"

    And for SSDa & compare to vendor's site.
    udisksctl status
    UEFI boot install & repair info - Regularly Updated :
    https://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2147295
    Please use Thread Tools above first post to change to [Solved] when/if answered completely.

  5. #5
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    Re: Can I install Ubuntu 22.04 on a Bios Legacy disk?

    Quote Originally Posted by oldfred View Post
    To check firmware for UEFI run this and compare on vendor's site what is latest.
    sudo lshw | grep -m 1 -A 5 "*-firmware"

    And for SSDa & compare to vendor's site.
    udisksctl status
    lshw | grep -m 1 -A 5 "*-firmware"

    *-firmware
    description: BIOS
    vendor: American Megatrends International, LLC.
    physical id: 0
    version: 1.30
    date: 05/18/2022

    I have a newer SSD update than the update available at https://www.samsung.com/nl/support/m...0BW/#downloads

    disksctl status

    MODEL REVISION SERIAL DEVICE
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Samsung SSD 840 EVO 1TB EXT0DB6Q S1D9NSAF748568T sda
    Last edited by jkaltes; September 10th, 2022 at 07:44 PM.

  6. #6
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    Re: Can I install Ubuntu 22.04 on a Bios Legacy disk?

    Is there anything to prevent the re-installation of Windows 10 in UEFI mode?

  7. #7
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    Re: Can I install Ubuntu 22.04 on a Bios Legacy disk?

    Quote Originally Posted by tea for one View Post
    Is there anything to prevent the re-installation of Windows 10 in UEFI mode?
    The problem isn't Windows. I can't boot Ubuntu from that old SSD after the re-installation of Ubuntu.
    Last edited by jkaltes; September 10th, 2022 at 08:03 PM.

  8. #8
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    Re: Can I install Ubuntu 22.04 on a Bios Legacy disk?

    I understand that you cannot boot Ubuntu.
    However, there are few forum members who successfully dual boot Windows 10 and Ubuntu 22.04 in Legacy mode, therefore it is difficult to reproduce your situation and offer advice.
    UEFI and GPT offer distinct advantages over Legacy/MBR especially partition management.

    Why not run the boot-repair report and see if anyone can offer advice?
    Second option from https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Boot-Repair

  9. #9
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    Re: Can I install Ubuntu 22.04 on a Bios Legacy disk?

    Quote Originally Posted by tea for one View Post
    I understand that you cannot boot Ubuntu.
    However, there are few forum members who successfully dual boot Windows 10 and Ubuntu 22.04 in Legacy mode, therefore it is difficult to reproduce your situation and offer advice.
    Before I re-installed Ubuntu I could boot Ubuntu 22.04 from the legacy SSD, but the re-installation failed and required a EFI partition I didn't need beforehand.
    Last edited by jkaltes; September 10th, 2022 at 08:19 PM.

  10. #10
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    Re: Can I install Ubuntu 22.04 on a Bios Legacy disk?

    I think that it is of importance that I didn't reformat the Ubuntu partition; I re-installed Ubuntu in the old filesystem, keeping the files not belonging to the system.

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