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#1 2012-10-05 16:14:05

ancestralelf
Member
Registered: 2010-06-05
Posts: 12

MBR+EFI Arch installing

Hello everybody, after buying new desktop I got completely stuck at installing Arch, since the installer has changed a little it seems, but most of all I couldn't manage how to make boot loader work on my machine: I got a Asrock z77 motherboard with EFI on. The problem is I actually installed Win on MBR mode, not aware of the issues around a MBR+EFI+Linux configuration. If anybody can give a help, that would be appreciated... Online I could find only about GPT+EFI but nothing about old win partitioning table (or whatever it is).
Thank you

ps: please forgive my bad english it's not my first language

EDIT: further information: I've got an SSD with Win on and a HD for the storage which I would actually use for linux installation

Last edited by ancestralelf (2012-10-05 16:17:03)

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#2 2012-10-05 16:21:08

WonderWoofy
Member
From: Los Gatos, CA
Registered: 2012-05-19
Posts: 8,412

Re: MBR+EFI Arch installing

I am not aware of issues with mbr and uefi.  From what I have read, grub should work fine with uefi while still having the mbr take care of windows.  The MBR uses the first 440 bytes of the hdd to boot, whereas uefi uses a EFI System Partition.  So you just have to make one and mark is as bootable I think.  I have never done this personally, as I simply use GPT, but I am fairly certain that I have read that it doesn't matter what format your disk is partitioned with.  Only windows demands gpt+uefi or mbr+bios.

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#3 2012-10-05 16:26:35

ancestralelf
Member
Registered: 2010-06-05
Posts: 12

Re: MBR+EFI Arch installing

WonderWoofy wrote:

I am not aware of issues with mbr and uefi.  From what I have read, grub should work fine with uefi while still having the mbr take care of windows.  The MBR uses the first 440 bytes of the hdd to boot, whereas uefi uses a EFI System Partition.  So you just have to make one and mark is as bootable I think.  I have never done this personally, as I simply use GPT, but I am fairly certain that I have read that it doesn't matter what format your disk is partitioned with.  Only windows demands gpt+uefi or mbr+bios.

Thank for the quick answer.. So I've got MBR+UEFI.. that's a problem right?
I tried to install Arch few days ago, and couldn't adjust GRUB2 to work.. I wonder now if the problem could have been the fact I tried on 2 different hard disks, is that possible?

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#4 2012-10-05 16:42:30

WonderWoofy
Member
From: Los Gatos, CA
Registered: 2012-05-19
Posts: 8,412

Re: MBR+EFI Arch installing

Do you have an efi system partition?  I really don't think that it is an issue to have your disk partitioned with fdisk and your bootloader uefi.  Why are you so dead set on using uefi anyway?  Why not simply use syslinux and then chainload windows with the 100MB funky partition it creates.  It is super easy.

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#5 2012-10-05 16:52:12

ancestralelf
Member
Registered: 2010-06-05
Posts: 12

Re: MBR+EFI Arch installing

WonderWoofy wrote:

Do you have an efi system partition?  I really don't think that it is an issue to have your disk partitioned with fdisk and your bootloader uefi.  Why are you so dead set on using uefi anyway?  Why not simply use syslinux and then chainload windows with the 100MB funky partition it creates.  It is super easy.

Erm.. I think I should have posted this in the newbie corner since I don't really now what you're talking about tongue
Sorry, I will try to answer you anyway. I do have an EFI motherboard, and Installed Windows on MBR. After that I tried to install Arch without success on my other hard disk previously partitioned, right now I deleted those partitions and have only one partition each drive (except for the windows system recovery one).
thank you for the help

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#6 2012-10-05 16:56:55

WonderWoofy
Member
From: Los Gatos, CA
Registered: 2012-05-19
Posts: 8,412

Re: MBR+EFI Arch installing

Maybe you should start here and see where it takes you.

https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/UEFI

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#7 2012-10-05 17:13:33

ancestralelf
Member
Registered: 2010-06-05
Posts: 12

Re: MBR+EFI Arch installing

https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/UE … using_UEFI
That's where I got the first signal that maybe my configuration would have been "difficult".. I can't find anything about multibooting on UEFI and MBR.. Is just the same as GPT or I should look somewhere else?

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#8 2012-10-05 17:28:58

the.ridikulus.rat
Member
From: Indiana, USA
Registered: 2011-10-04
Posts: 765

Re: MBR+EFI Arch installing

You have 2 ways:

1. Either convert your disk to GPT and make Windows boot via UEFI (reinstall its bootloader) - https://gitorious.org/tianocore_uefi_du … OS_to_UEFI

2. Or create a UEFISYS partition in your current MBR based disk (512 MiB FAT32 0xef fdisk type code), mount it to /boot/efi (or use it as your /boot itself if you prefer) and install the bootloader (and the kernel/initramfs if you are using efistub) - https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Un … oned_disks

As @WonderWoofy indirectly said, you may have to change boot mode to UEFI or BIOS everytime you want to boot into linux after booting windows or vice-versa. So I suggest sticking to one boot mode for both the OS.

I suggest going with (1) rather than (2) as in the long term UEFI-GPT booting is much better than BIOS-MBR booting, especially if you want to dual/multi-boot OSes. For (2) when you come to efibootmgr step, you SHOULD NOT use "--gpt" or "-g" option in it as your disk will be MBR (not GPT) based.

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#9 2012-10-05 17:57:06

ancestralelf
Member
Registered: 2010-06-05
Posts: 12

Re: MBR+EFI Arch installing

Thank you for the advice.. I'll try that and post again if I encounter any kind of issue

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#10 2012-10-05 18:08:27

Inxsible
Forum Fellow
From: Chicago
Registered: 2008-06-09
Posts: 9,073

Re: MBR+EFI Arch installing

just be sure that your Windows is a 64 bit version (XP or above) before you convert everything to GPT. 32 bit Windows doesnt work with UEFI and without UEFI, Windows cannot work with GPT.


Forum Rules

There's no such thing as a stupid question, but there sure are a lot of inquisitive idiots !

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#11 2012-10-05 18:13:02

the.ridikulus.rat
Member
From: Indiana, USA
Registered: 2011-10-04
Posts: 765

Re: MBR+EFI Arch installing

Inxsible wrote:

just be sure that your Windows is a 64 bit version (XP or above) before you convert everything to GPT. 32 bit Windows doesnt work with UEFI and without UEFI, Windows cannot work with GPT.

Thank you @Inxsible for reminding me about this but it should be more specific. Only 64-bit (x86_64, not IA64) Windows Vista (SP1 or above, not RTM), 7 or 8 support UEFI-GPT support. 32-bit versions of Vista (any SP), Windows 7, 8, and Windows XP (both 32-bit and x64 versions) do not support UEFI-GPT boot.

Last edited by the.ridikulus.rat (2012-10-05 18:13:51)

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#12 2012-10-05 18:16:01

Inxsible
Forum Fellow
From: Chicago
Registered: 2008-06-09
Posts: 9,073

Re: MBR+EFI Arch installing

hmmm... I think I had read somewhere that 64 bit XP does work. Then again I no longer have the link to it so don't quote me on it.


Forum Rules

There's no such thing as a stupid question, but there sure are a lot of inquisitive idiots !

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#13 2012-10-05 18:25:46

the.ridikulus.rat
Member
From: Indiana, USA
Registered: 2011-10-04
Posts: 765

Re: MBR+EFI Arch installing

Inxsible wrote:

hmmm... I think I had read somewhere that 64 bit XP does work. Then again I no longer have the link to it so don't quote me on it.

That was XP for Itanium (IA64, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_X … it_Edition ) which required EFI (and thus GPT) since Itanium used only EFI (without BIOS compatibility) (EFI was created by Intel "for" Itanium). There was another XP edition for x86_64 systems ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_X … 64_Edition ) that supports non-boot GPT HDD (no EFI support). 32-bit XP (currently in use) totally does not support GPT. Even Vista RTM iso did not contain UEFI bootloader files. They were added only in Vista SP1 iso.

PS: I feel the thread is drifting from the original topic.

Last edited by the.ridikulus.rat (2012-10-05 18:27:12)

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#14 2012-10-05 19:08:51

ancestralelf
Member
Registered: 2010-06-05
Posts: 12

Re: MBR+EFI Arch installing

I run Win7 64bit i can proceed right?

EDIT:
@the.ridikulus.rat
I cannot understand few passages.. Don't know if the things I intend to do are required for what I need or are referred to another purpose the guide explains. Would you be so gentle to guide me through the guide? I need to be guided big_smile
Thanks

Last edited by ancestralelf (2012-10-05 19:38:25)

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#15 2012-10-05 23:35:59

cfr
Member
From: Cymru
Registered: 2011-11-27
Posts: 5,662

Re: MBR+EFI Arch installing

Nobody here will "guide you" but if you have specific questions about parts of the guide, people will try to answer them. Ask about the particular passages - not the whole thing. (Why should somebody spend time explaining the rest of the guide which you do understand?)

If you need to be guided through the guide in general, Arch is probably not the right distro for you or, at least, not the right one for you right now.

Last edited by cfr (2012-10-05 23:37:21)


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#16 2012-10-09 10:50:31

dobie2564
Member
Registered: 2011-09-05
Posts: 13

Re: MBR+EFI Arch installing

I have an Asrock z77 Mobo and had good success using the rEFind bootloader instead of grub2.     I did use a gpt partitioned disk, but I believe it should work with a mbr disk as well.   I recommend looking at instructions for installing it.

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