MX Linux 19.1 GRUB Bootloader Unable to install on hard drive

Castle Robin

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David hi, i've edited the above with carriage entries (enter 2 - 3 times) as it was hard to understand the picture was 4 pics, also labelled them. you could do that in future?

1. during my morning i will put together a short video on how to prepare the stick for use.

i'll likely use an 8 GB stick, and i'll have material on it first and then clean that off to prepare it

2. with screenshot 4 if that still applies, what shows if anything as being at /dev/sdb?

wiz
I uploaded the 4 attachments and clicked on the "All" option which grouped them together without line spaces.

Other than a fractional difference in GB size, screenshot 4 is now sdb - "Unallocated" Partition and File System at 57.30 GB.

sdc has vanished, replaced by the original sdb, but no sign of fat32 which turned into "Unallocated" and no detection of the USB stick in Thunar, which was previously detected. I look forward to viewing your video:

sdc now sdb again.png
 


Castle Robin

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Thought I'd achieved the desired result, but although MX's own Live-USB Maker was accessible a few minutes ago, I discovered that, for some unknown reason, it was installing the February 15 2020 ISO image of MX Linux 19.1, which has a faulty GRUB bootloader.

Why is the Live-USB Maker installing an old image?, as I clicked on the April 2020 ISO image of MX Linux 19.1, which it should have been installing.

How can I erase the faulty download so that the Live-USB Maker can install the 1 May 2020 ISO image?

MX Linux February 15 2020 Download still in memory.png
 

Castle Robin

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david, hi

1. have you tried dd from terminal, to burn? if not, do not use it until i get info from you to give you the exact command/s

2. no, on the boot flags in the above pics.

with the stick, just format it to FAT-32, using gparted in your existing install using the following steps:
- if the stick is not empty, delete anything on it and confirm
- go to Device in menu at top and choose create partition table, you may have choices which include MSDOS & GPT, choose MSDOS and confirm, it will run itself
- when that finishes, choose Partition -new or format to , and choose fat32 and apply changes
- that will leave you with a stick with one only partition, /dev/sdb1 as FAT-32, probably shows as about 59 GiB

CLOSE GPARTED, wait a few seconds until activity ceases, eject the stick, wait a few seconds and insert the stick.

if that does not automatically mount the stick, look in thunar file manager for the stick, and see it shows as empty with eg 60 GB spare.

confirm back here, and i'll rustle up the dd command for you

don't put any flags on anything

cheers

wiz
I have successfully got Fat32 retained, which previously vanished.

However, I'll await your update on DD including what now looks to be increasingly very promising, to soon be a successful outcome of doing a Live USB stick of MX 19.1. :)

The appearance of the USB stick (61 GB) in Thunar is intermittent, but it now always appears in Gparted, so hopefully this won't deter MX 19.1 from being installed, provided it's listed in Gparted.

If DD is used in conjunction with the MX Live USB Creator, the erroneous "February 15 2020" ISO image (that the Live USB Creator has retained for some reason) will need to be eliminated first, as it should be the 1 May 2020 ISO image of MX 19.1 that is transferred to the USB stick, which will most likely install the GRUB Bootloader correctly.

fat32 - USB Disk Boot

Gparted 3 May 2020 Update - back to sdc1.png
 
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wizardfromoz

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david, there is only one mx-19.1 iso, released around 15/16 February.

you are looking at date-timestamps or something that indicates perhaps the day you downloaded them?

wiz
 

wizardfromoz

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forget about the MX Live USB Creator, we achieve that with dd.

i am providing 2 videos, with 2 associated text docs, in 2 posts (may use this again)

the video seems to pause for a few seconds, that is while i am removing and inserting a stick, don't stop, it will continue

Video 1 is on preparing the stick (prepping)


wizard
 

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wizardfromoz

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DO NOT FOLLOW THE FOLLOWING until you have successfully completed the above and reported back.

Here's the dd vid and attachment



Cheers

Wiz
 

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Castle Robin

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david, there is only one mx-19.1 iso, released around 15/16 February.

you are looking at date-timestamps or something that indicates perhaps the day you downloaded them?

wiz
Maybe. 15 February is the exact date that I attempted to install MX 19.1 to my hard drive, but the GRUB bootloader fault allowed me to run 19.1 from my USB stick, but not to my hard drive.

The most recent date I attempted to install MX 19.1 to my hard drive was 1 May. I deleted the erroneous GRUB bootloader fault download of 19.1 in April on the first stick, as it served no purpose, then used a different USB stick for my 1 May attempt to get MX 19.1 working firstly to a USB stick then my hard drive, before which I hadn't realized it needed to be in fat32 format.

Before discovering that I needed to format my by now blank USB stick (different stick to the one with the since wiped GRUB bootloader fault) to fat32, 1 May was the first time I used the new stick, only with the 1 May ISO image.

It was due to the MX Live USB Creator only quoting "February 15 2020" (as by then, my USB stick was/still is blank, but in fat32 format) that I was reluctant to complete the process as I got the impression it was going to download my 15 February USB stick version with GRUB errors. I suppose I could have followed it through with MX's Live USB Creator, Balena Etcher or an equivalent, and it might have been the 1 May ISO Image (as by 1 May, and since during April, my other USB stick with the GRUB faults has been formatted).

However, now that you've written instructions on/have done 2 videos on how to install MX 19.1 to my stick in fat32 format using the DD command line method, I'll proceed with your instructions, but only proceeding with the second and final steps after I've reported back to you about the first steps, as suggested by you. :)

In between, I decided to use MX 17 as a temporary stopgap (which is the only distro on my hard drive at present) in preparation to overwrite the hard drive and replace MX 17 with MX 19.1.

I like MX 17, but as it's an outdated version and Libre Office doesn't work in it, and MX 19.1 is the most current version, I'm keen to switch to 19.1 asap in which Libre Office worked in the USB stick version with GRUB bootloader errors, so the office suite should still work once MX 19.1 is on my hard drive.

My formatted USB stick has fat32 installed on it, as confirmed in Gparted, but your information and equally invaluable video links, one uploaded which I'll study in a moment, will help me get MX 19.1 installed onto this USB stick (as Thunar now always displays the now fat32 stick whenever it's inserted into my computer), which in turn will enable me to reach the stage of clicking on "Install" on the Desktop and follow the MX 19.1 instructions to wipe MX 17 from my hard drive and replace it with MX 19.1.

I will study your first video then report back to you later today.

Once I then reach the second and final stage of the process, MX 19.1 should be free of GRUB bootloader errors, and provided my computer doesn't malfunction like on 15 February where the installation process was interrupted due to my computer suddenly turning off automatically (most likely why the GRUB errors occurred as the installation was disrupted by my computer unexpectedly), everything should work fine.

If the automatic shut down recurs due to hardware issues, I'll have to reformat the stick and follow the instructions from scratch with a replacement conversion to fat32 as part of them, as my computer can vary from working for up to a minute to working up to several hours (albeit with the monitor screen turning off then on again intermittently, which must be a hardware fault. I'd upgrade my hardware if that were possible, but don't know the Linux process or costs involved, or otherwise I'll have to wait until computer engineers reopen their businesses post-Lockdown).

Still, I'm not here to gripe about technical faults! lol My aim is to have the Joy of following your instructions and hoping my computer will be active long enough to allow me to eventually reach the penultimate stage of clicking on "Install" on the Desktop then follow the MX steps including a manual restart with a hopeful positive ending that allows me to run MX 19.1 on my hard drive. :) I keep my fingers crossed.
 
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Castle Robin

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Hi Wizard

An MX equivalent of the various files quoted in your Kali Linux directory must only appear once MX is on my hard drive, but the 1 May MX 19.1 ISO image downloaded from an MX web site UK Mirror (London) is in my Downloads folder which is 1.6 GB (not "0 bytes" as in a previous case where 1.5 (not 1.6) GB was displayed then after the download stated 0 bytes).

I'm not sure why 1.5 GB (April download) was replaced by 1.6 GB for the same UK Mirror (London) source, but it doesn't matter. Provided MX 19.1 works, an extra GB in the 1 May download is immaterial.

I also have "MX-19.1_x64.iso.md5" in my Downloads folder whose checksum correctly matches the 1 May ISO image, so when the final process is complete, I'll have peace of mind the download is safe to install.

The fat32 partition is still successfully listed in relation to my USB stick in preparation to install MX 19.1 to my stick, but there is no means to delete it (as some drop down menus options including deleting are greyed out) so this must be because the stick is mounted.

The only difference I have is that fat32 has a "Boot" flag whereas yours is blank.

If the "Boot" flag isn't meant to be indexed to the far right of the sdc1 partition, I'll unmount my USB stick and restart from scratch all of your first video's steps.

If it makes no difference, I'll retain the "Boot" flag, but will await your update before I'm ready to proceed to the second and final series of steps in advance of installing MX 19.1 to my USB stick then finally to my hard drive. :)

And once I reach that stage of having MX 19.1 on my hard drive, I'll look into studying and creating a separate Home folder, as highly recommended so, if anything ever goes wrong, my Home folder doesn't have to be reinstalled, but one step at a time, as I've come this far, and it looks like I'll have MX 19.1 up and running on my hard drive soon, once you've confirmed everything else is correctly set up. :)

sda1 - 5 May
Gparted sda1 - 5 May.png


sdc1 - 5 May
Gparted sdc1 - 5 May.png
 
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wizardfromoz

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hi david, i still find that usb stick curious, but provided you perform

sudo umount /dev/sdc1

on it, then dd should be able to erase the entire stick and do its voodoo.

let us know how you go

wizard
 

Castle Robin

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hi david, i still find that usb stick curious, but provided you perform

sudo umount /dev/sdc1

on it, then dd should be able to erase the entire stick and do its voodoo.

let us know how you go

wizard
I followed your instructions slowly and carefully to make absolutely sure I conducted the steps fully and accurately, which I did (exactly as listed bar "David" and "sdb" instead of sdc, but after two attempts, I have still got nowhere.

The second time I thought that I had a success, but I can confirm with 100% certainty that I haven't imagined my original 15 February installation to a USB stick (via Windows 7) with the GRUB Bootloader errors still existing, even though the USB stick it's appeared on (the one I used in conjunction with your instructions) is completely different from the original USB stick (since wiped), as the new USB stick (which I dragged to the Terminal) is 1 May (not 15 February).

I erased the 15 February installation with the GRUB errors during April, but it is clearly still on my hard drive.

After completing your instructions, I restarted my computer then clicked on "F12" (the Boot menu on My computer), expecting to see MX 19.1 (as downloaded on 1 May, as that is a brand new download of the ISO image).

Instead, MX 19.1 showed up, but started loading the "February 15, 2020" USB stick installation with GRUB errors.

I don't understand why an installation that I erased from another USB stick has ended up on a new stick that never even had the February installation on it, until today (not out of choice, as it shouldn't be there).

How do I permanently get rid of this persistent "February 15, 2020" erroneous MX 19.1 installation from my computer?

Why is it there?

Once the February USB stick installation is completely erased so it can't return, the process you quoted in notes and demonstrated on the videos should work, but until this February installation is cleared, I'm never going to be free of this problem.

This is what came up prior to what seemed a promising outcome:

DD - David - 8 May 2020.png
 
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wizardfromoz

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Have you tried booting from that stick yet? The burn looks good.

Wiz
 

Castle Robin

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Have you tried booting from that stick yet? The burn looks good.

Wiz
I have, but unfortunately the outcome is still the same. :(

I know the following sounds imaginary, but unfortunately it's not -

After repeated attempts with DD, Balena Etcher and the MX Live USB Maker (as I couldn't fathom Unetbootin with the type of file system they use), I can definitely confirm that the 15 February download (with GRUB Bootloader errors on the USB stick preventing me from installing 19.1 to my hard drive) onto what I'll call USB Stick 1 (the only stick I downloaded the 15 February download onto) is what is being transferred to newer USB sticks.

The only explanation I can think of is that traces of the 15 February download (created in Windows 7 with Rufus) are in Catfish's "File System" directory which has numerous listings of MX, but none from 15 February.

Due to such a vast amount of MX files, I daren't delete any unless I know exactly what I'm doing, as otherwise the MX 17 Hard Drive installation (which I can't access again due to some obstructions that I'll highlight in the other topic) might end up being deleted by mistake, and if possible, I'd like to regain access to my Hard Drive copy of MX 17, as otherwise I'll be forever overwriting MX 17 from my USB stick to my Hard Drive.

USB Sticks 2 and 3 are newer (bought in April), yet, despite me dragging the 1 May MX 19.1 ISO Image to the Terminal as part of your instructions and following your instructions very carefully to ensure I copy them correctly (just amending to "David" and "sdb" to relate to my name and computer partition letter, but everything else exactly as you quoted), it doesn't matter which USB stick I use, the February download (with GRUB Bootloader errors) - which I deleted from my Downloads directory in April, still goes onto my USB sticks.

It's due to the February download with GRUB errors (not the correct 1 May download) of MX 19.1 ending up on Newer sticks that makes me believe traces of the February download must be somewhere on my computer, but I don't know how to trace them so they can be erased.

Once all traces of the February download are erased, the correct 1 May ISO image should install onto my USB stick so I can then get MX 19.1 installed onto my hard drive, as from your feedback, I have clearly correctly followed your two sets of instructions from the videos and notes exactly as you've shown/written them.
 
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Castle Robin

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@Castle Robin did you try downloading the .iso image again? I too had a similar issue with MX 19.1 and that solved it. Also, download from here https://sourceforge.net/projects/mx-linux/files/Final/MX-19.1_x64.iso/download
I've so far not tried to download the ISO image again since 1 May.

I'd be happy to re-download the ISO image as a brand new May download, this time via upon your recommendation of Sourceforge instead of MX Linux's Mirrors link (UK, London).

The problems I'm having are that my computer is acting erratic with varying technical faults affecting its stability with hardware faults, including screen freezes, the monitor screen going off then back on again (with everything still intact on the screen), automatic restarts and shut downs), etc, and today my computer blocked out my access to the hard drive so I had to use my USB stick to run MX 17 (the same stick I'm using now).

If there is a way for me to re-access my hard drive, I could download MX 19.1 via Sourceforge from my MX 17 hard drive installation and not lose the contents of what's on my hard drive.

As a last resort, I could overwrite my MX 17 hard drive with a new installation of MX 17 on my hard drive, but this would lose the contents of what's already there. Even then, I would have to swiftly get Knoppix downloaded and installed onto a USB stick in order to regain access to my computer, should this happen again, but I think I'm better off downloading Knoppix, System Rescue and MX 19.1 once I can re-access my hard drive with MX 17.

In addition to the above, for some reason, despite me repeatedly trying to get MX 19.1 to install the 1 May ISO image onto new USB sticks bought in April, every time I copy the 1 May ISO image to any USB sticks, the 15 February download with GRUB Bootloader errors always appears.

This is very puzzling, as I have never copied the 15 February download ISO Image to my new USB sticks, so the only explanation I can think of is that traces of MX 19.1 (with the GRUB errors) remain somewhere on my hard drive, but locating them so I can delete them is the challenge.
 

Tolkem

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As a last resort, I could overwrite my MX 17 hard drive with a new installation of MX 17 on my hard drive, but this would lose the contents of what's already there. Even then, I would have to swiftly get Knoppix downloaded and installed onto a USB stick in order to regain access to my computer, should this happen again, but I think I'm better off downloading Knoppix, System Rescue and MX 19.1 once I can re-access my hard drive with MX 17.
You can do that with MX 17; install it to a USB or run live with persistence enabled, meaning any changes you do will persist across reboots like installed packages and customizations. It's quite easy, just boot up your Live MX 17 USB stick and follow the instructions on this video
It takes no more than 10 mins or so and with it you could access your drive, rescue your data, download MX 19.1 again ... you might even use it that way if it works fine for you. I've got a laptop few months ago as a payment for a job, it has no hdd and I've been playing with some distros running from USB, either installed or with persistence, one of those is antiX, which is the base for MX and they both share that feature among many others, that's why I'm suggesting you to do that; it's easy, it works and it's quite an interesting learning experience. Once you've rescued your data and done anything else, you can proceed to reinstall MX on your drive. Also, it might be a good idea to keep that live-persistence MX 17 USB around, just in case you needed or simply just, you know, because you can :)
 

wizardfromoz

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I would go first with what The Green Hornet has suggested, he is always good value
:)

Meanwhile, I will put together a couple of steps to check for these errant (& ghosts of) .isos and also to check the integrity of whatever is on stick/s.

Wizard
 

Castle Robin

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You can do that with MX 17; install it to a USB or run live with persistence enabled, meaning any changes you do will persist across reboots like installed packages and customizations. It's quite easy, just boot up your Live MX 17 USB stick and follow the instructions on this video
It takes no more than 10 mins or so and with it you could access your drive, rescue your data, download MX 19.1 again ... you might even use it that way if it works fine for you. I've got a laptop few months ago as a payment for a job, it has no hdd and I've been playing with some distros running from USB, either installed or with persistence, one of those is antiX, which is the base for MX and they both share that feature among many others, that's why I'm suggesting you to do that; it's easy, it works and it's quite an interesting learning experience. Once you've rescued your data and done anything else, you can proceed to reinstall MX on your drive. Also, it might be a good idea to keep that live-persistence MX 17 USB around, just in case you needed or simply just, you know, because you can :)
Thanks for the video link which I shall watch shortly. :)

I'm not sure which Live mode I have MX 17 in, but wherever the options are, as I'm sure I've seen them at some point, I'll retain or switch to "Persistence" mode.

Although I first used Linux (on a small scale) in 2016, it's only since March that I've become a regular user, initially only on my Desktop, but eventually also my laptop (as I haven't yet had chance to convert Windows 7 to MX Linux on the laptop due to being very busy, but will do asap once I've gone through the rest of the files including photos and backed them up to USB sticks, so I'll add extra sticks to the ones I referred to in response to Captain Sensible, so that I'm not short of sticks), so Linux is very much a learning curve to me, but invaluable means of computing, which I'll eventually be able to do second nature, but at present, besides my ongoing desktop hardware error faults, I'm learning how everything works including from you, Captain Sensible and Wizard From Oz among other members. :)

I suspect that my desktop hardware will have to be repaired or replaced once the Lockdown ends (as all computer engineers are in limbo due to the Corona virus pandemic), but until then, if there are any ways of reducing the number of errors in my hardware (depending on if this can be done, and what's causing the errors), this will increase my scope of using my desktop with less distractions.

Most importantly of all, regaining access to my hard drive and determining the source/solution of the puzzling outdated MX 19.1 download with GRUB errors appearing on unrelated USB sticks are my top priority, although anything that helps me in the right direction in any/all three of my topics will move me forward towards my goals of maximum possible usage of my desktop. I will also use my Laptop (whose hardware is not faulty), but I mainly use my Desktop.

As you're recommending me to try out AntiX, I'll also do that, as I'm more than happy to take up any relevant suggestions you, Wizard, Captain, anyone recommends to me. I'll work my way through your/their/other members' suggestions asap as and when time permits during the weekend and beyond. :)

To accommodate the above, I'll buy more USB sticks than I'd originally intended, which will be a good thing, as I'll have more sticks to hand for increased flexibility of different programs per stick.

Among my USB sticks, I'll use a brand new one for a further attempt to install MX 19.1 (a future new May ISO image download) onto a stick, once Wizard posts what I think will be some means of eliminating whatever is causing the February download with GRUB errors from ever appearing again, as the 1 May download should have gone to the stick (different from the February one).

Another option that comes to mind is that, as my Laptop's hardware isn't faulty, I could place my MX 17 USB stick (free from GRUB errors) which I'm using to reply to you into the Laptop, download MX 19.1 from Sourceforge (instead of the MX Mirror page - London, UK option I chose before) onto a brand new USB stick.

If this option works, being a different computer, it won't have any old traces of the February downloaded with GRUB errors, and being a brand new stick, its first use will be on the Laptop, thus no GRUB errors.

If all goes well, I could then return the MX 17 USB stick I'm using now back to This computer, together with a hopefully correctly installed MX 19.1 new USB stick (created on the Laptop) which will then lead me to click on "Install" to overwrite MX 17 with MX 19.1 on this hard drive.

How long my computer runs without shutting down or restarting automatically in the middle of the process could impact or not the outcome, but at least the USB stick would be intact so I could simply re-insert the stick.

It's all hope, but a likelihood one of the above options will get the MX 19.1 issue resolved.

If this does work, I'll keep MX 17 to hand, just in case anything drastic goes wrong again, but all going well, I'll have MX 19.1 (without GRUB errors) up and running very soon. :)
 

Castle Robin

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I would go first with what The Green Hornet has suggested, he is always good value
:)

Meanwhile, I will put together a couple of steps to check for these errant (& ghosts of) .isos and also to check the integrity of whatever is on stick/s.

Wizard
I'll be very happy to go first with The Green Hornet upon your suggestion. :)

I'll also view your forthcoming steps to resolve the MX 19.1 with GRUB errors dilemma. Once that download's traces are eliminated, the correct 1 May version (or better still a newer download via Sourceforge, via this Desktop or the Laptop then back to the Desktop) without GRUB errors should transfer correctly, which I'll do after I regain access to my hard drive.

As I'm learning the ins and outs of Linux, it might take me a few days to study, run and check the outcomes of the excellent advice/videos you, Tolkem, Captain Sensible and other members have recommended/recommend, but well worth the wait and effort, as there has to be a happy ending to all of this. :)
 

jglen490

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My only question is to "where" are you telling the installer to install the Grub boot files?
 


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