Installation problems part 1: Unable to boot from USB - mmx64.efi not found - Resolved

fguy

Silver Member
Silver Supporter
Greetings.

This problem is actually solved, I just though I would share my experience, leaving out some of the gory details, as a way of getting started on this site. Hopefully someone will benefit.

I recently purchased a Dell Inspiron 5584 laptop that came preinstalled with Windows 10. This laptop has no CD/DVD drive so all my installation had to be done from bootable USB sticks.

I first tried to install Debian 10.1. I could boot from USB at this point, but the installer game me an error message about missing non-free ath10k (Wireless) firmware files that were not included with the distribution. So I had to abort the install.

I then tried to install Ubuntu 18.04.3, but I had to abort that install because the installer wouldn't detect my Solid State Drive (SSD). More on that problem later.

I decided to go back to Debian, but this time I created a bootable USB from an a special iso file that contained non-free firmware files. However, when I tried to boot from this USB I immediately received the following message in text mode, before the installer even loaded...

Failed to open \EFI\BOOT\mmx64.efi - Not Found
Failed to load image \EFI\BOOT\mmx64.efi: Not Found
Failed to start MokManager: Not Found
Something has gone seriously wrong: import_mok_state() failed


So I went back to Ubuntu but the exact same error happened. Not good.

This is what I think happened. When I first tried to install Ubuntu, when I came to the "Updates and other software" screen, under "Other options" I selected "Install third party software. I got that info from post 11 at this page.

My first task was to obtain a copy of the file mmx64.efi. I found that by downloading, using apt download shim, the package shim in a working copy of Ubuntu I have on a second laptop. This package contains mmx64.efi. I then extracted the mmx64.efi file from the package.

The next task is to copy the file mmx64.efi to the \efi\boot directory on my bootable USB stick. One problem, a bootable USB created by burning an iso image file is read only. So I had to create a special bootable USB called a UEFI-only bootable USB live media. The instructions for that are found at this page. The USB is not read only, so I can copy mmx64.efi to the \efi\boot directory no problem. I now have a bootable USB stick. This trick worked for both Ubuntu and Debian.

However I still have the problem that neither Ubuntu or Debian would recognize the Solid State Drive in my laptop. More on that problem in this thread

https://linux.org/threads/installation-problems-part-2-linux-installers-wont-recognize-my-solid-state-drive.25568/
 


captain-sensible

Active Member
basically if you buy a new laptop with Windows 10 on it its likely to have uefi boot system.

if you intend to wipe off Windows 10 its best to have a look at partitions and prepare partitions before you go ahead and install linux. Its very easy to wipe off the partition that has the efi boot info on it, if you just wipe everything. One way is to boot knoppix from a usb and use gparted.

The attached is what my slackware setup looks like from gparted.So if you were to install slackware you would leave efi alone. Wipe the other stuff and create 2 new partitions , one for swap and the other main install. At the point where the install wants to put in bootup stuff it would recognize the efi partition and overwrite it .

if as i did and you wipe everything install will complain that there is no efi
 

fguy

Silver Member
Silver Supporter
basically if you buy a new laptop with Windows 10 on it its likely to have uefi boot system.

if you intend to wipe off Windows 10 its best to have a look at partitions and prepare partitions before you go ahead and install linux.
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.
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I just used the Ubuntu or Debian installer to handle whatever partitioning or formatting, or erasing, was necessary, as I have done a few times. Never had a problem.
 

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