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Punch Card
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎03-01-2018
Location: AU
Views: 8,262
Message 1 of 10

Dual boot linux Mint Xfce 18.3 Windows 10 Yoga 520

I've been an ordinary mum and dad ubuntu user since Dapper Drake, 2006. And now Mint. I've installed ubuntu to dual boot with Windows tons of times, no dramas. But now with UEFI instead of BIOS, it's all new and scarry, at least for me.


With lots of false starts, breaking and reinstalling Win 10, googling masses of partial and seemingly conflicting recommendations for different machines, BIOS's and versions of Windows, it took me more than 2 full days. But now, Mint 18.3 and Win 10 are both working.

Obviously I'm no expert, this is what eventually worked for me.

1) Install the latest BIOS update, BiosUpdate-4qcn41ww.

2) Later you're going to destroy Win 10, so download the recovery media from Remember, "this will be available for one time download", so don't loose it. It isn't just Win 10, it is Win 10 / Lenovo / McAfee already registered to your specific computer. Follow instructions and make a recovery USB.

3) In BIOS, Disable Fast Boot. Fast Boot is more like hibernate. It doesn't actually turn off the computer, but leaves leaves Windows alive. So Windows continues to own the wi-fi, disks, whatever. Then, booting linux, linux reports it can't find things and appears broken.

3.5) Later, after re-installing Win 10, do similar in within Win 10. Control Panel, Hardware & Sound, Power Options, Choose what the power buttons do, Change Settings that are currently unavailable, (UnTick) Turn on fast startup.

4) In BIOS, Disable Secure Boot. Secure Boot thinks linux is a virus.

Here's where it all gets a bit scarry, and I didn't find the helps very helpful or reassuring. Lots of info seemed to be written by & for people that already knew it, and the Lenovo stuff seemed to have been written by somebody with english as a second language.

5) In BIOS, set the SATA controller mode to AHCI. I got a warning that all data on the driver would be deleted. Driver? OK, try it. Turned out the 'driver' is the drive, the SSD. So no windows. Glad I've got the recovery stuff now.

6) Set Boot Mode to Legacy Support, and Boot Priority to Legacy First. One of these (which? - can't remember) doesn't appear as a menu choice until you've done the other. So do the one that's available, then the next. The 'help' wasn't reassuring there either, but it turned out OK. Now my Lenovo can see my external hard drive, which it couldn't before, so that's a bit reassuring.

***Remember I mentioned "lots of false starts". Here I think I used a bootable Mint installation USB to change the partition table from GPT to MBR. How? GParted, create new partition table, MSDOS.
Probably not an issue, but see, "Can I dual boot Win7 and Linux on a UEFI capable bios?"

7) Reinstall Windows / Lenovo / McAfee all pre-registered from the recovery USB.

8) Check from 3) to here again, just to make sure Win 10 installation hasn't changed anything back.

9) Use Win 10 partition editor to make space for linux & data again. If you don't get enough space, because of the "immovable files", I used a third party partition manager. But there are reports of problems with these so I'm not recommending yes or no.

10) I installed Mint from it's bootable installation USB. That worked OK.

11) In BIOS, under EFI, you'll see a windows line and a ubuntu line. F5 or F6 to put ubuntu on top, ie the laptop looks at ubuntu (grub), not windows. I've found that when I forget and leave a USB stick in place, and the lappy doesn't boot, it reverts to win first. Not a huge problem to repeat this step 11).

I've just noticed that Secure Boot doesn't appear in the BIOS now. I guess to be expected because of other changes I've made.

12) Go through and it's links, especially ** but see below

So now I've got a lovely dual booting Lenovo Yoga 520. Whew!

Extra thoughts

No dramas with wi-fi. I set up wi-fi at the installation USB stage to do updates during installation, never needed to use ethernet.
Touchpad & touchscreen work OK.
Screen rotation doesn't "just work". So I'll have a fiddle one day.
I haven't tested all the other hardware bits & pieces.

BTW, why keep Win 10? Just a few things I can't do with linux:-
-Garmin Mapsource in wine works as a GPX editor with a GPSmap 64. But it won't talk to my older GPSmap 60 without "Garmin USB drivers", which want .net framework, which won't install ......
-Some other Windows map stuff I paid for in 1995 (and still use) works ok with wine for quick jobs, but for bigger jobs it's a bit easier in real Win.
-ArcGIS totally won't work in linux.
-- So it's just easier to use Win 10 for that, keep the wi-fi turned off.

**For the SSD page, I found the instructions about Check whether the scheduler is set to deadline didn't result in any change to sys/block/nvme0n1/queue/scheduler. says "This step is not necessary for SSDs using the NVMe..." I don't understand the implicationsof this but I'm guessing it's ok.

Fanfold Paper
Posts: 11
Registered: ‎03-10-2018
Location: BE
Views: 8,206
Message 2 of 10

Re: Dual boot linux Mint Xfce 18.3 Windows 10 Yoga 520

If I understand your instructions correctly you actually ditch UEFI and enable Legacy BIOS mode to be able to boot Linux. However every recent distro nowadays supports UEFI boot and some even support secure UEFI boot.. Also GPT should not be a problem for a recent distro. So I don't realy understand all the trouble you went through..
Punch Card
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎03-01-2018
Location: AU
Views: 8,179
Message 3 of 10

Re: Dual boot linux Mint Xfce 18.3 Windows 10 Yoga 520

Thanks for the critique.

1) re: Changing GTP to MBR Yes that was an error on my part. I read somewhere it is necessary, and I did it on one of my first attempts, but turns out I didn't have to. Right now GParted shows I have 6 partitions and none of them are extended or logical partitions, so GPT it is.
I can't find any way to edit the original posting, so... DO NOT CHANGE FROM GPT TO MBR. The *** between 6) and 7) above was wrong.

2) UEFI. Maybe as you say, UEFI would have worked. But I couldn't make it work. I've written what worked for me. I _could_ destroy my working system to experiment with better options, but I won't.

3) As I said I'm not any sort of expert. I would have loved a step-by-step guide, but there isn't one. Dr Google has something for this BIOS, something for this distro & version, something for this combination of options - not always transferrable to my computer, BIOS, distro & version, and nothing comprehensive for my needs. I found it terribly confusing, and where I thought I _did_ understand, sometimes one piece of advice conflicted with another. Whinge! Anyway, my intention was to say, for this combination of hard, firm and software, this is what did work. I'd be totally happy if somebody competent knows a better way, and writes it up.

regards Garry

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Posts: 11
Registered: ‎03-10-2018
Location: BE
Views: 8,159
Message 4 of 10

Re: Dual boot linux Mint Xfce 18.3 Windows 10 Yoga 520

I too have been struggeling to have dualboot on a Lenovo machine. Mine is an Ideapad MIIX 720 12IKB and also after a lot of searching around (during which I also found your thread which I initially thought and hoped was the solution to my problem until I figured out that you actually enabled legacy boot, hence I was a bit dissapointed :-)) However I have now been able to finally install Linux in UEFI mode next to the existing Windows.


The main problem seems to be that recent Lenovo devices are no longer able to UEFI boot from MBR formatted media and require "pure UEFI" GPT bootable media. However most bootable media (linux installers but even the Lenovo tools) seem to use the fact that until now, most BIOS implementations supported booting UEFI from MBR formatted USB sticks which also gives the posibility to have so-called 'hybrid' media than can be booted in UEFI mode AND in Legacy mode (which requires MBR).

On these recent Lenovo devices it now seems that UEFI boot is only possible from GPT and Legacy boot is only possible from MBR. Making those 'hybrid' start-up media legacy-bootable only.


I'm not sure, but I assume a similar method as what I did to perform this should also work with the Yoga 520:

So here are the instructions that I had to perform to make my Ideapad dualboot using UEFI only :

- Make sure you have the latest BIOS or at least a version that allows to change the SATA controler to AHCI mode

- For safety: make sure you have the recovery media at hand as you will need recovery once in this procedure.

- Enter Bios:

  - Disable Fast Boot

  - Disable Secure boot (optionally; not nesecary if the linux distro you choose supports Secure boot, as does openSUSE. My advise: first try with Secure boot turned on, and if the installation media fails to load with an explicit error about Secure boot, then disable Secure boot)

  - SATA controler mode: set to AHCI and not RAID

  - Enable Boot from USB

  - Verify that Boot mode is set to  UEFI only

- Try to boot Windows -> this probably now fails with a inaccessible boot device STOP screen due to the change RAID -> AHCI

- Recover Windows using built in Recovery (which worked perfectly for me: start into boot menu en choose System Recovery) or Recovery media (which didn't work for me as the Lenovo recovery media also didn't want to boot in UEFI mode)

- Restart into the recovered Windows which should now work again and start diskpart or Device mananager -> Disk management and shrink the Windows partition (CSmiley Happy to make space for Linux. If there is a secondary partition (D:?) you may also have to delete or shrink that one. Make sure to  leave EFI and Recovery partitions as is.

- Create a Linux installation Live-USB for your favourite distro. I used openSUSE Leap 42.3.

  - Check if the created Live-USB has a GPT formatted partition table and NOT MBR. (Using diskpart, run list disk and check if there is a "*" in the Gpt column for that disk)

  - If the Live-USB is in MBR format, as was the case with the openSUSE installation media, you need to convert it to GPT. (Usually this can't be done without re-formatting the disk, but I was then unable to recreate the openSUSE installation media using Windows in a way that the installer actually recognised the media. So I had to find a way without losing the data on the usb stick.)

    -> I found a commercial windows tool called Minitool Partition Wizard which luckily also has a free version that allows me to convert MBR media to GPT without losing data just as simple as right-clicking on the drive, and selecting Convert to GPT.. After that you should be able to boot the USB stick in UEFI mode (ofcourse only if the Linux distro of your choice also provided the UEFI boot files/partition on the USB-stick).

- Boot from the USB stick (in my case, to have functional WiFi in the Ideapad, I had to add "modprobe.blacklist=ideapad_laptop" to the linux parameters by pressing "e" (edit) on the "Install" grub-option)

- Install Linux, making sure not to destroy any of the existing partitions (EFI, Windows, Recovery)

- Now the laptop/pad should boot into grub automatically with the options to boot Linux or to go to the Windows boot manager which should boot Windows.


Hope this clarifies all the UEFI / legacy mistery and provides a solution to everyone struggeling to have UEFI (dual)boot working.



Punch Card
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎03-01-2018
Location: AU
Views: 8,128
Message 5 of 10

Re: Dual boot linux Mint Xfce 18.3 Windows 10 Yoga 520

re: On these recent Lenovo devices it now seems ... Legacy boot is only possible from MBR.
Well mine is legacy boot, but from GPT. Perhaps you're wrong, but also perhaps it's an example of different machines behaving differently. Or, perhaps it's something I read about, a GPT but with one partition pretending to be a MBR.


re: Lenovo recovery media also didn't want to boot in UEFI mode
Did you mean "didn't want to boot in AHCI mode"? I thought UEFI was the default when it was born.


re: Make sure to leave EFI and Recovery partitions as is.
GParted shows my partition table is /dev/nvme0n1p
....1 = EFI system partition, FAT32, mount point = /boot/efi, 260MB
....2 = Microsoft Reserved Partition 16MB
....3 = Windows (couldn't make it any smaller, so) 75GB
....8 = /
....6 = the lenovo drivers, in case it matters.
....4 = data, NTFS
unallocated 10GB
....7 = linux-swap
....5 = WINRE_DRV 1GB
so I guess the last one is the recovery partition. I think I broke it very early in my experimenting, so it never worked for me, thus the recovery stuff I downloaded.


re:Hope this clarifies all the UEFI / legacy mistery and provides a solution to everyone struggeling to have UEFI (dual)boot working.
It might provide a solution, but it doesn't clarify anything for me :-)
But thanks for the step-by-step - if my lappy blows up and I have to do it all over again, I'll try your way.

But gee whiz, they don't make it easy do they?

What's DOS?
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎03-26-2018
Location: NL
Views: 7,826
Message 6 of 10

Re: Dual boot linux Mint Xfce 18.3 Windows 10 Yoga 520

Hi Chojin, thanks for your guidelines. I can confirm from recent experience that the steps you describe do work for a Yoga 520. Mine has a 256 Gb SSD plus a 1 TB Harddisk and today I succeeded in installing Linux Mint 18.3 Sylvia with the dual boot option (i.e. I can still use Windows 10 too when I like). Just a couple of comments that may be of help to others: I followed the steps described in Chojin's post of 12 March, starting from Update the BIOS to the latest version. I made all the changes in the BIOS. When changing the SATA to AHCI mode, there was a warning message that this would erase all drivers (i.e. the Windows system) which I accepted. Like Chojin I was able to use the built-in System Recovery, for which I had to use a small device to push the Novo button (r/h side of laptop) while starting up again.

I did not have to bother with the MBR/GPT issue, for it appeared I just could install Mint 18.3 from the USB stick I prepared earlier. After installation it appears that at least some Linux partitions were made on the 1 Tb Harddisk (i.e. the D drive, not the C drive where my Windows system is). The extra space I created on the C drive could be reassigned to the Windows partition, for it wasn't used at all during the installation of Mint 18.3.

I do hope this will encourage others to try and obtain a dual boot option on the Yoga 520!

Punch Card
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎03-01-2018
Location: AU
Views: 7,809
Message 7 of 10

Re: Dual boot linux Mint Xfce 18.3 Windows 10 Yoga 520

Hi BertR

So if I understand, you installed linux on the hard disk, making it way slower than if you'd put it on the SSD. The whole point of my excercise was to get linux on the super fast SSD.

Re: space allocation for windows, I hardly use windows, and my /data partition is used by both linux and win, so shrinking windows to allow for linux and /data was a given.

Anyway, thanks. If I had to do it all over again, this thread would make it all much smoother, get it right first time.

What's DOS?
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎06-11-2018
Location: CO
Views: 6,410
Message 8 of 10

Re: Dual boot linux Mint Xfce 18.3 Windows 10 Yoga 520

Hi Chojin

Thanks for the advice.


I have a lenovo yoga 3 14, I updated the BIOS (current version BACNA0WW 7/15/2016) and installed the latest windows. I always have had dual boot and now I am not able to restore that. Reading your suggestions I can't find the conversion of  SATA to AHCI. Is this configuration available depending on the hardware  (my specification: ? 



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Posts: 11
Registered: ‎03-10-2018
Location: BE
Views: 6,395
Message 9 of 10

Re: Dual boot linux Mint Xfce 18.3 Windows 10 Yoga 520

@nikoroseReading your suggestions I can't find the conversion of  SATA to AHCI.

The option is to set your SATA controler from RAID mode to AHCI mode as the RAID is some kind of software-raid that, if they exists for Linux, would require extra drivers for Linux to be able to see your disk(s). But in AHCI-mode the disk(s) should be seen without the need for any extra drivers.

I don't have a Yoga device, so I don't know if that option is available in your BIOS. On my device also that option initially was not available until a recent BIOS upgrade. Maybe your Yoga device also requires a BIOS update to reveal that option?

What's DOS?
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎01-05-2019
Location: LK
Views: 419
Message 10 of 10

Re: Dual boot linux Mint Xfce 18.3 Windows 10 Yoga 520

I have done that with mac os, you can try that out. If you need the source please leave a comment below. thank you

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