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#1 2011-11-14 09:22:42

Harey
Member
From: Bavaria, Germany
Registered: 2007-03-24
Posts: 292

Installing on a Fujitsu lifebook E751 with SSD

Hello all,

I am a little confused now, maybe someone can help me out. I'm trying to install Archlinux on a new Fujitsu lifebook E751 with an Intel Core i7-2. I have replaced the stock harddisk with a new SSD (never used before). I have done this before on other occasions/laptops but this time I am stuck.

From what I found out by now the laptop has a Phoenix SecureCore Tiano BIOS (V1.15). From what I read this is an UEFI BIOS. So I followed the SSD wiki and partitoned with gdisk (GPT) and used grub2 as a bootloader. But the system won't even load the bootloader. It's just like there is no bootable partition. So I started to make some tests.

First I tried to install windows 7 pro which came as the original OS with this laptop. It installs and runs from the SSD. While looking at the partions after win7 install I see one small partition of about 150 MiB. This seems to be the UEFI system partiton. Its content are the uefi boot files. But it is ntfs formatted, not fat32 as stated in the wiki! The rest of the system is one big ntfs partition for win7. This seems to be an UEFI setup.

Next I tried to install Ubunut 11.10 letting it erase the complete disk and partition it again. This works too, but... The system uses no UEFI system partition at all. Only a boot partition and a big root partition are on the SSD now. It uses grub2 as the booloader.

Now I tried a plain Archlinux install. No fancies just install with auto preparing harddisk and grub (not grub2) as the booloader. Guess what? This runs!

So despite the fact that there is an UEFI BIOS in this system and it runs from SSD good old grub does the job? I have gone through the BIOS setup several times but I never found an option to change between BIOS and UEFI modes. I did not set any of the fancies like using the TPM chip or harddisk encryption.

Are there any causes why I should not use grub and complete my setup? (I plan to use luks encryption on the SSD in the end)

Harvey

Last edited by Harey (2011-11-14 10:11:12)


Linux is like a wigwam: No Gates, no Windows and an Apache inside

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#2 2011-11-14 13:41:44

Harey
Member
From: Bavaria, Germany
Registered: 2007-03-24
Posts: 292

Re: Installing on a Fujitsu lifebook E751 with SSD

Having read a lot more I fear that just using grub is not enough. The normal installation routine is not using gdisk and thus does not worry about partition alignment on a SSD. For a further test I took a SSD out of another laptop that is running BIOS boot and grub2 as a bootmanager. When istalling this disk into the lifebook grub2 won't even show up. It's just as if the disk was empty.
This is driving me nuts yikes


Linux is like a wigwam: No Gates, no Windows and an Apache inside

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#3 2013-01-18 19:51:08

lifanov
Member
Registered: 2009-03-16
Posts: 44

Re: Installing on a Fujitsu lifebook E751 with SSD

This might be a bit of thread necromancy, but this info needs to be visible.
I am using a Lifebook E751 and I confirm that it can not boot from GPT.
You can't make it boot from GPT by embedding clever MBR metadata either.

Your best option is to create a single-partition MBR, mark it active, and write a GPT table to it.

I'm not sure if you need it, but you can place a simple bootcode in MBR itself (sda or some such; boot0 from FreeBSD is great for this),
and place your actual grub inside the first slice (sda1 or something instead of sda).

MBR:
1 -> GPT : 1 -> ?
                  2 -> ?
                  ...
2 -> none
3 -> none
4 -> none

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