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#1 2019-11-07 13:51:19

robin_m
Member
Registered: 2013-12-11
Posts: 14

Cannot install bootloader

Hello,
Something like 2 years ago, I installed an arch on a laptop for a friend. At that time, I already had some difficulties to install the bootloader. Recently, an update broke the boot process. No big deal in theory, but I can't manage to fix it. I read multiple time the arch wiki, but I obviously did something wrong, and I cannot manage to fix it, no matter witch bootloader I try, neither grub, nor systemd-boot works. In both cases, arch cannot start. When `arch-chrooting` from an usb key, everything seems to works fine. I even tried to un-install grub, format the uefi partition, and then install `bootctl`.

Could a kind stranger give me some advices on how to install a boot manager, on the most simple way possible.

Her config is a thinkpad laptop with an intel cpu. There is no lvm, no encryption, no btrfs, no nothing special. Except for UEFI (bios just worked, uefi was always a pain to set-up in my experience, I don't know what I'm doing wrong).

I created 2 partitions, the first for `/` (no separate partition for `/` and `/home`) in `ext4`, and the second for the efi in fat32. Is it the simplest choice? What is the most basic setup for single boot, single user? Having a separate partition for `efi`, or a single partition for everything? If `efi` need to be in another place, where should I mount it? In `/boot/EFI` or just `/boot`?

What bootmanager is the closest to 0 config? What is the minimal steps to have that kind of computer. Is there anything to do about microcode (and if yes, why? She don't have an exotic cpu architecture).

Basically what I tried (excluding non-bootloader stuff) was

mkfs.ext4 /dev/sda2 # the / partition
mkfs.fat -F32 /dev/sda1 # the efi partition

mount /dev/sda2 /mnt
mount /dev/sda1 /mnt/boot

pacstrap /mnt base linux linux-firmware intel-ucode

arch-chroot /mnt
bootctl install
exit

reboot

I will probably install manjaro instead, but I would have liked to understand the right procedure.

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#2 2019-11-07 13:56:48

Scimmia
Bug Wrangler
Registered: 2012-09-01
Posts: 7,317

Re: Cannot install bootloader

Looks like you missed configuring it.

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#3 2019-11-07 14:42:02

Trilby
Inspector Parrot
Registered: 2011-11-29
Posts: 22,284
Website

Re: Cannot install bootloader

robin_m wrote:

I don't know what I'm doing wrong

Other than installing an arch system for someone else who doesn't know how it works while you yourself don't seem to really know how it works?  Well, that's the biggest problem.

robin_m wrote:

What is the minimal steps to have that kind of computer.

Follow the installation guide and linked pages.  There are no shortcuts (that work).

robin_m wrote:

Is there anything to do about microcode (and if yes, why? She don't have an exotic cpu architecture).

Yes.  Because.  "Exotic" architectures have nothing to do with it.

robin_m wrote:

I will probably install manjaro instead, but I would have liked to understand the right procedure.

The right procedure for arch is thoroughly documented in the wiki.  Read it.  Ask specific follow up questions is needed, but don't expect anyone here to read it to you.  As for manjaro, we can't tell you anything about that here; ask on their forums.


"UNIX is simple and coherent..." - Dennis Ritchie, "GNU's Not UNIX" -  Richard Stallman

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#4 2019-11-07 15:12:04

robin_m
Member
Registered: 2013-12-11
Posts: 14

Re: Cannot install bootloader

> The right procedure for arch is thoroughly documented in the wiki.  Read it.

I know I either missread something in either grub or systemd-boot wiki's pages. I successfully installed arch on 5 different pc since 2011 for myself. I successfully helped a friend two install arch on 2 of his machine, and 2 times for another friend. Arch is my daily driver. I never had any issue, except installing the bootloader (and only since uefi exists, I didn't had any issue with bios). There is no way I could have installed successfully arch 9 times without reading and understanding the arch wiki. However, bootloading is still dark magic for me. I didn't wanted to say that in the OP, since it really look that "I'm the kind of guy that think he knows everything, but in fact he doesn't".

> Ask specific follow up questions is needed, but don't expect anyone here to read it to you.

My issue isn't that "I don't know how to do something" (you can ask a question for that), but that "I don't know what I don't do" (you can't ask a question for that). It's why I posted the codeblock at the end of my post to describe what I did. If something obvious is missing, then please tell me.

> As for manjaro, we can't tell you anything about that here; ask on their forums.

I should not have mentioned manjaro. It's just that I'm really frustrated to have to switch OS, just because I can't install a bootloader. I also know that if I install a dual boot with ubuntu, only to have grub installed (from ubuntu), just to be able to boot arch it will work, but it's anything but ideal. Oh, and by "right procedure", I meant "right procedure [to install a bootloader with archlinux]".

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#5 2019-11-07 15:29:05

V1del
Forum Moderator
Registered: 2012-10-16
Posts: 7,798

Re: Cannot install bootloader

As mentioned by Scimmia, the obvious thing that is missing that you didn't add a configuration for systemd boot. https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Sy … figuration

You need at least a entry file specifiying the loading parameters for the kernel you intend to start and will for completeness sake have to specify a loader.conf to define the default and a selection timeout.

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#6 2019-11-07 16:16:58

robin_m
Member
Registered: 2013-12-11
Posts: 14

Re: Cannot install bootloader

Thanks a lot, I will check that.

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