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clarenc3
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Posts: 11
Registered: ‎06-28-2013
Location: United Kingdom
Views: 1,419
Message 1 of 10

Y400 trouble booting from mSATA, dual OS on separate disks

Hiya,

 

My Y400 is currently installed with Win7 on the 2.5" space and I've installed Ubuntu on the 16GB mSATA. I install Ubuntu from USB and all works fine but when booting the system to Ubuntu drive (mSATA), it doesn't seem to find the Linux Bootloader (in this case GRUB2).

 

The strange thing is that when I unplug the 2.5", it works fine and BIOS finds GRUB that finds Ubuntu. When the 2.5" with Win7 is plugged in, I get the typical blank screen when no bootloader is found, the fan goes into highest mode and nothing happens. 

 

Has Lenovo somehow disabled booting from mSATA if there's a Windows bootloader present? Can anyone confirm that running separate OS on separate disks works?

 

Other info:

-I'm pointing the BIOS to the correct disks (tried both changing boot order and selecting boot drive with F12).

-System boots fine if I plug a 2.5" storage drive instead of the Win7 disk, having mSATA unix and SATA storage (i.e. no Win7 bootloader present)

 

Thanks

ishaan
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Location: India
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Message 2 of 10

Re: Y400 trouble booting from mSATA, dual OS on separate disks


@clarenc3 wrote:

Hiya,

 

My Y400 is currently installed with Win7 on the 2.5" space and I've installed Ubuntu on the 16GB mSATA. I install Ubuntu from USB and all works fine but when booting the system to Ubuntu drive (mSATA), it doesn't seem to find the Linux Bootloader (in this case GRUB2).

 

The strange thing is that when I unplug the 2.5", it works fine and BIOS finds GRUB that finds Ubuntu. When the 2.5" with Win7 is plugged in, I get the typical blank screen when no bootloader is found, the fan goes into highest mode and nothing happens. 

 

Has Lenovo somehow disabled booting from mSATA if there's a Windows bootloader present? Can anyone confirm that running separate OS on separate disks works?

 

Other info:

-I'm pointing the BIOS to the correct disks (tried both changing boot order and selecting boot drive with F12).

-System boots fine if I plug a 2.5" storage drive instead of the Win7 disk, having mSATA unix and SATA storage (i.e. no Win7 bootloader present)

 

Thanks


Hi

The problem you are facing is common one. This is mainly because the bios sees the hdd as the primary disk and the msata as a secondary disk and hence whenever it is attached, the bios irrespective of your choice looks in to the primary hdd sata port first.

The further complication in your case is that there are two different bootloaders, which might be the main problem since installing a same kind of os(i mean unix with unix and linux with linux) generally creates a boot entry in the main bootloader.

The potential solution could be linking both the os with a same bootloader preferably both linked with the windows bootloader.

Firstly i would like to confirm that are you able to boot to windows 7 anyhow with the msata ssd installed?

If yes, then it might be easier for us to change the bootloaders.

You can use easy bcd, which can edit the Boot Configuration Data of your windows 7 boot manager and add various kinds of os in it's list.

You can have a look at this link

EasyBCD

And it's

donwload link ( Please do read the documentation before doing anything.

You can have a look at this tutorial too if you dont use easy bcd.

Lastly, i would like to mention that the one key recovery feature might be at risk after this so please if you want to keep it, you might  use windows on hdd only.

Hope this information helps!!

Regards

 

 

 

Ishaan Ideapad Y560(i3 330m), Hp Elitebook 8460p!(i5-2520M) Hp Pavilion n208tx(i5-4200u)
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clarenc3
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Posts: 11
Registered: ‎06-28-2013
Location: United Kingdom
Views: 1,375
Message 3 of 10

Re: Y400 trouble booting from mSATA, dual OS on separate disks

Hi and thanks for your response.

 

First of all, the Win7 is on a SSD and I've completely unplugged the Win8 drive that came along with the computer (1TB HDD). 

 

EasyBCD is a last resort, I just don't like the chainloading options. It makes the boot process a massive black box imho, but thanks for the suggestion.

 

An even stranger thing I noticed is that everything boots fine when I plug the win7 disk in the DVD SATA port (Port2) and there's no problem whatsoever. I can boot to mSATA to GRUB2 and it sees both Ubuntu on mSATA and Win7 on Port2 SATA.

 

I guess the above indicates that whenever a drive is plugged in to SATA Port1 (which is the standard sata port for HDD/SDD), it automatically looks to SATA Port0 for SSD Caching or similar because this is the factory default (the computer ships with a 1TB HDD and 16GB mSATA, preset to caching Win8).

 

Also, a setup with Win7 on Port1 and Win8 on Port2 and mSATA empty works fine too. There seems to be no bootloader problems at all; I think this is related purely to the BIOS settings which are unaccessible to the end user.

 

I've disabled all of the Intel SSD options (Smart Response, Rapid Start) in BIOS so this shouldn't be a problem. I've also dug out the Win8 drive, gone through the Intel programs and made sure to disable Smart Response and Rapid Start on an OS level. This way I should be able to rest assured that they are truly disabled.

 

Can anyone from Lenovo confirm that BIOS/UEFI looks to mSATA port when booting Port1? Feels like there should be a BIOS update for this... Means you can't run dual OS on separate drives. I'm running BIOS v2.02

 

clarenc3
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Location: United Kingdom
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Message 4 of 10

Re: Y400 trouble booting from mSATA, dual OS on separate disks

I just tried EasyBCD to see if there was any change but the same still holds. If there is a disk plugged into SATA Port1 I can't boot directly from BIOS to Port0 and screen goes blank. If I boot to Port1 which is my Windows Drive loaded with EasyBCD, I get the menu of Win7 and Ubuntu (last which I added manually). Win7 boot works fine as you'd expect, but selecting booting Ubuntu doesn't and just gives a EasyBCD chainloader screen (i.e. GRUB can't be initialised). 

 

If I unplug the Port1 drive and plug it into Port2 instead with Port1 empty, the chainloading works fine (just as booting off the mSATA from BIOS does too). It seems that Port1 just can't be used for booting because there's some hardware/BIOS block, as I earlier guessed?

 

Again, Lenovo admins?

darkomano
What's DOS?
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎06-30-2013
Location: Bulgaria
Views: 1,343
Message 5 of 10

Re: Y400 trouble booting from mSATA, dual OS on separate disks

New Windows 8 installations are usually on GPT disks and rely on UEFI firmware to boot.

 

If this is the case with your Windows 8 (64bit) installation:

 

1. Chainloading is NOT supported by Windows 8 UEFI boot loader.

You cannot boot any "foreign" non-Microsoft OS. You can boot Windows 7 using Windows 8 boot manager

but Window 7 installation must be also 64 bit to a GPT disk.

 

2. You can boot Linux/Ubuntu/Fedora through UEFI firmware boot manager.

 

UEFI has a prescribed device ordering (device scanning) during firmware initialization.

 

Usually there is a UEFI firmware boot manager boot menu where you can select device and/or installed OS to boot.

There is also a key (F12 or ESC or DEL ....) which enters forcefully UEFI boot selection.

 

3. There is a special UEFI system partition which holds boot files (boot manager for Windows 8, Grub2 for Ubuntu/Fedora )

 

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

On BIOS firmware (and MBR disks) chainloading is supported.

 

You can use Windows 8 boot manager as "base" and chainload Linux/UNIX descendants.

Dual-boot Linux/UNIX with Windows 7/8 boot manager describes how to use either GRUB boot sector from partition or the file "boot.img" from \boot\grub folder for Ubuntu/Fedora.

 

 

clarenc3
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Registered: ‎06-28-2013
Location: United Kingdom
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Message 6 of 10

Re: Y400 trouble booting from mSATA, dual OS on separate disks

Yupp, I know.

 

All is installed "old school" with MBR and running BIOS in Legacy Supported/First. Besides, it doesn't explain why booting from mSATA without Port1 works, but when a disk with or without MBR/GPT is in Port1 it doesn't.

 

Thanks though

clarenc3
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Registered: ‎06-28-2013
Location: United Kingdom
Views: 1,305
Message 7 of 10

Y400 can't boot from mSATA with 2.5" inserted

Hi,

 

Some background info:

I've loaded Ubuntu 12.04 onto my mSATA drive which was formerly used for HDD caching. I installed Ubuntu through USB (and have tried CD too), using Linux Live on my default system with all drives attached.

 

Other than Ubuntu on the mSATA, I've installed Win7 on an SSD placed in the standard 2.5" hard disk bay, replacing the 1TB Win8 drive. Both Ubuntu and Windows 7 are NOT UEFI, so I am booting in Legacy Mode with Secure Boot disabled.

 

The problem:

After completing the installation and setting the mSATA as first boot device, the bootloader for Linux will not load and I am stuck at a black screen.

 

If I disconnect the 2.5" drive (with Win7 on it) and just have the mSATA connected, it boots GRUB2 fine and it happily proceeds to boot Ubuntu. There is also an entry for Windows 7 chainloading (which of course won't work as the drive is disconnected when GRUB2 starts fine).

 

If I set 2.5" Win7 drive as first boot devices, it works every time with successful start of Windows Bootloader. I've loaded EasyBCD to the 2.5" Win7 disk to detect the Ubuntu mSATA, but that again fails to load the Linux Bootloader (GRUB2).

 

It almost seems like booting off mSATA is disabled when a disk is detected in the HDD slot; possibly for its intended use as a caching drive? I've also tried putting the Win7 drive in the CD/DVD slot using a caddy, which works absolutely fine. Hence the problem seems to be limited to the primary HDD slot.

 

Can anyone please help out on this one? Would be greatly appreciated.

LenBlazer
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Posts: 5,332
Registered: ‎05-09-2013
Location: US
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Message 8 of 10

Re: Y400 can't boot from mSATA with 2.5" inserted

I think your issue can better be answered in the Special Interest Discussion section under Linux Discussion?

clarenc3
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Posts: 11
Registered: ‎06-28-2013
Location: United Kingdom
Views: 1,252
Message 9 of 10

Re: Y400 can't boot from mSATA with 2.5" inserted

Thanks LenBlazer, I'll try that too.
clarenc3
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Posts: 11
Registered: ‎06-28-2013
Location: United Kingdom
Views: 1,249
Message 10 of 10

Re: Y400 can't boot from mSATA with 2.5" inserted

In case anyone else has similar problems, I just spoke to a chap at Lenovo UK customer services who seemed equally confused by this odd issue.

According to him, service centers just check for mSATA read/write, IOPS readings and so on, so there's no point in sending it to a service center (just run similar software at home...).

If you're having similar problems (which it seems like no one is?), there seems to be no way to resolve this at all. I'll be moving my 2.5" to the CD/DVD caddy and using it there instead, leaving the 2.5" hard disk slot empty and losing my storage HDD.

Anyone from official support to give a final say? :/

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