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12 Posts

09-24-2021

Malaysia

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  • Message 11 of 17

Re:Booting Live USB fails and lands on grub prompt

2021-09-26, 11:50 AM

Hi,

Yeah. I think they're different issues. And at this stage I'm really lost.   :-(

One was screen blanking out after installation was successful - to which  MarkRHPearson has responded.

Now, this thread is about not being able to even boot from a USB flash drive. Hope it clarifies.

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1142 Posts

07-22-2021

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

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  • Message 12 of 17

Re:Booting Live USB fails and lands on grub prompt

2021-09-26, 12:05 PM

Hi

 

So LinuxMint will BOOT and INSTALL on a Secure Boot GPT.

 

PCLOS will install as an "MBR" Legacy NON Secure boot.

 

Mint has a problem with the TouchPad in my case, PCLOS does not.

 

OpenSuSE covers both, SECURE BOOT and TouchPad.

 

OpenSuSE wanted a 250 MB partition to install GrUB on, it failed when there was no partition.

 

The partition existed, but I had to mount it as an EFI I believe at install time,

BUT NOT FORMATTED.  Then it worked correctly.

 

So grub wants / needs somewhere to reside.

 

If you vape everything then that may be the problem.

 

I suggest 4 partitions...

250 MB EFI

/

/home

swap

 

My 250 MB area, given a Drive Letter  'A'

 

C:\>dir a:\
 Volume in drive A is SYSTEM_DRV
 Volume Serial Number is 58D6-F4E8

 Directory of a:\

13/09/2021  12:46    <DIR>          EFI
25/07/2021  21:17    <DIR>          BOOT
18/09/2021  11:39    <DIR>          opensuse
               0              0 bytes
               3 Dir(s)     204,308,480 bytes free

C:\>dir A:\efi
 Volume in drive A is SYSTEM_DRV
 Volume Serial Number is 58D6-F4E8

 Directory of A:\efi

25/07/2021  21:17    <DIR>          .
25/07/2021  21:17    <DIR>          ..
25/07/2021  21:17    <DIR>          Microsoft
20/08/2021  13:26    <DIR>          Boot
06/08/2021  11:52    <DIR>          UpdateCapsule
16/08/2021  15:07    <DIR>          Insyde
13/09/2021  12:46    <DIR>          pclinuxos
18/09/2021  13:13    <DIR>          opensuse

 

and had/has assorted BOOT Managers.

 

 

Therefore you need re-appraise your methodology, IMHO.

 

 

 

 


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

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Uniquely Neutral

IdeaPad 3 17ITL6

MTM:- 82H9CTO1WW
OS's W10 & LINUX

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1272 Posts

05-14-2020

United States of America

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  • Message 13 of 17

Re:Booting Live USB fails and lands on grub prompt

2021-09-26, 22:01 PM

Hello,

 

If the problem is "Can not boot from a LiveUSB"

 

Test to see if it will boot from this LiveUSB:  https://support.lenovo.com/us/en/downloads/ds028698-lenovo-diagnostics-bootable-usb-create-it-on-windows-os-desktops-notebooks-workstations {To save frustration I just find a Windows Computer and build the bootable usb according to documention under Windows instance....}

 

IF the Lenovo diagnostic shows upon the appropriate boot order menu, your bootable linux LiveUSB is probably setup for Legacy booting.  Erase it and reburn it to be UEFI bootable.  Also the automated installation programs make it very hard to install into anything but unpartititioned unformatted free disk space.  Even if you really do want to overwrite some partitions already present.  I simply delete the unwanted partitions and don't format them again BEFORE booting the installation LiveUSB.

 

IF the Lenovo diagnostic also does not appear on bootorder screen  (My machine behaves this way with its latest bios update :()  Instead of boot order screen find your bios "Startup" selection screen, and move "boot from USB Disk" to top of the boot order listing.  Then use F10 to save and exit.  It should immediately boot from the LiveUSB.

 

On my AMD based Lenovo, the F12 method for opening bootorder screen refuses to show any inserted bootable LiveUSB as an option.  (I have secure boot active, all other BIOS settings also at factory defaults.)

 

Also read the fine print for your desired Linux distribution installation guide regarding nvidia graphics hardware.  Sometimes you need to disable the nvidia graphics card and use default Intel graphics during initial installation of some kinds of linux.  ubuntu is often picky about this. 

 

Good Luck!
Usedtoberich

 

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12 Posts

09-24-2021

Malaysia

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  • Message 14 of 17

Re:Booting Live USB fails and lands on grub prompt

2021-09-27, 7:48 AM

Hi ann_droid & usedtoberich!

 

Thank you so much for your input.

 

A lot of stuff that you've mentioned just went over my head - no fault of yours of course :-)  

I just realized I know almost nothing about the new ways BIOS and OS bootup configurations are done. All these years I've been installing Linux Mint just blindly following the requirement to turn off secure boot, without really understanding what is it about and what it entails. And I've been lucky for everything to have just worked in the past. (My knowledge was only about MBR, and that too was only at a superficial level). I would always take the default option of wiping clean the disk and installing Linux when prompted during the installation process.  Now I have to take some time to read-up about this stuff.

 

Anyways, just to update what transpired since my last post:

1) I did a Windows restore and somehow after this process, it got the machine back to recognize the Linux USB stick again.

2) I performed an installation of Ubuntu 20.04.3 with the option "nomodeset"

3) Rebooted the machine post-install, and it fell into the blankscreen again

4)  Used the "nomodeset" at the grub boot prompt and it managed to boot up.

5) Edited the "/etc/default/grub" file: 

    - set the option GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT to "nomodeset", instead of "quiet splash"

    - set the GRUB_GFXMODE to 1920x1080 because it was originally set at "3840x2160" - had a migraine working at this screen resolution :-)

6) Ran "update-grub"

7) Rebooted and everything came up beautifully.

8) Noticed the graphics driver in effect was the opensource version "X.Org - Nouveau". Switched to nvidia's proprietary driver version 460, as mentioned by MarkRHPearson in https://forums.lenovo.com/t5/Ubuntu/Linux-on-Thinkpad-P14s-Gen-2/m-p/5100910?page=1#5440587 . Rebooted and got the same blankscreen again.

9) Not knowing how to revert the graphics driver to the X.Org version, I reinstalled the OS followed by steps (5) & (6) again. 

 

I'm not going to attempt to switch to the Nivida proprietary drivers until they release a new version of the driver. So I'm a happy man now that I'm able to go back to teaching and was finally able to take a shower after two days :-))

 

However,  in the chaos of troubleshooting and attempting to install Linux in the past three days, I could have messed up my BIOS.

If I could just clarify whether my bios configuration is alright, I'd be grateful.

 

Do these (3 images below) look alright or did I mess up anything in my bios? 

In the desperate attempt to try everything possible out, I had attempted an OEM install of Ubuntu earlier which didn't really complete for reasons I can't remember now.  This was when live-usb boot was working.  Could it have messed up the  "keys" shown below? They look suspect -  I'm worried about Ubuntu being in the "Forbidden Signature Database". I don't know what this is. Is this bad?  Many, many thanks.

 

 

 

Boot Sequence configuration: 

 

 

 

Secure Boot configuration: 

 

 

 

 

 

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12 Posts

09-24-2021

Malaysia

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  • Posts: 12
  • Registered: ‎09-24-2021
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  • Message 15 of 17

Re:Booting Live USB fails and lands on grub prompt

2021-09-27, 8:08 AM
Sorry I missed replying to this; yes my BIOS version is 1.42.
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1142 Posts

07-22-2021

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

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  • Message 16 of 17

Re:Booting Live USB fails and lands on grub prompt

2021-09-27, 10:23 AM

Hi

Now that is real progress.

 

https://download.lenovo.com/pccbbs/mobiles_pdf/t14_gen2_t15_gen2_p14s_gen2_p15s_gen2_ug_linux_ug_en.pdf?linkTrack=PSP:ProductInfo:UserGuide

 

You now have a methodology that will work, and stand the test of time.

 

 


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

Forum, Agin 'em?
Uniquely Neutral

IdeaPad 3 17ITL6

MTM:- 82H9CTO1WW
OS's W10 & LINUX

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1272 Posts

05-14-2020

United States of America

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  • Message 17 of 17

Re:Booting Live USB fails and lands on grub prompt

2021-09-27, 14:42 PM

Hello,

 

To answer your questions as a somewhat naive experienced user:

 

BIOS toggles for my computer:  At first try factory defaults.   (I assume the factory design engineers know more about details than I do.)

Legacy BIOS was invented before laptops were invented.  So certain features of laptops may not be supported well, such as battery management.   Also Compatibility/Legacy mode BIOS program only functions for a few seconds, then remains dormant until the next bootup.

Modern computers have UEFI bios and modern operating systems lean on it heavily to support operations continuously, especially certain low level security enhancements.

mbr partition tables "only" address 2TB disk space and a few tens of partitions.   gpt partition tables support somewhat more than 4,000 TB and hundreds of partitions.

The mere presence of an installed but unused mbr can cripple some important basic features of operating systems and application software.  These often manifest in obscure ways, perhaps your screen blanking issue, and you will spend a LOT of time NOT FIXING the issue.   When in doubt, obliterate the MBR with zeros, set UEFI booting, and completely reinstall ALL operating systems after deleting all partitions.  (NOTE, if you want to learn a lot about how computers work, or teach someone the same knowledge base, spending a lot of time researching and not fixing the problem is a good thing??)

 

Corporate IT managers worry a lot about unauthorized access.  See the latest headlines about ransomware.  To provide some amount of protection from someone changing the operating system "kernel" off line to provide a backdoor way to obtain illicit entry, the "Secure Boot" method was invented.  With secure boot enabled, before blindly loading the first operating system found on the first few sectors/cylinders/heads of the system disk like Legacy Bios does, UEFI bios first examines the system image, perhaps calculating some kind of check sum, finds a complicated set of security keys (pgp 3,000 bit encryption??) embedded within the operating system files and then compares that to master images of the keys stored somewhere else on the motherboard.  (The firmware chip and other hardware....)

 

The system owner can "self certify" a bootable image. By loading keys shipped within the firmware on the computer into the self certified image.  The system owner can replace the standard keys shipped with the   And the system owner can restore the originally shipped keyset.

 

With the modern security risks present upon the internet, if I disable secure boot, I would never expose that machine to a network beyond my ownership and control.  If the linux liveUSB is prevented from booting by secure boot, I find a different distribution, or different liveUSB that will boot under secure boot mode.  Linux Mint should boot with secure boot enable now, Ubuntu should, I know Fedora does.  Commercial version of "Linux" exist, such as IBM AIX, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Oracle Solaris, Oracle OpenSource Linux, and the child distributions  from University Of California Berkely Unix.  (UCBLinux.)  Are a few I happen to remember existing.  Ask the salesman!

 

Good Luck!

Usedtoberich

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