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Old 07-18-2014, 12:54 AM   #1
rshel
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Red face Mint 17 Cinnamon install fails at partition screen


I have a running MythBuntu system from a couple of years ago and wanted to erase it with a new install of Mint Cinnamon 17. Burned DVD and started install after boot from the DVD, but the install skipped the screen where I would tell it to erase everything and overwrite -- it went to the GParted screen instead. This showed no partitions at all (even though you could see them in the Ubuntu so they exist). Clicking on "install now" button got error "no root file system defined". I couldn't change the install destination to /dev/sdb even though I think it is treating the DVD as /dev/sda. The installer simply crashes if I click on + or - or change. When I clicked on =, it threw an error, but let me attempt the installation so I carried on. I seemed to proceed through the rest until it tried to use ntp to get a time server but it never succeeded and just kept spinning. Any suggestions? If Mint is this buggy in a long-term release, I'm wondering if I want to go here! LOL. Restore my faith please...
 
Old 07-18-2014, 01:14 AM   #2
syg00
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Phewww - you is a lurker .... First post in over 10 years membership.
This is the second of these in a few days. Can you run this from a terminal - post all the output (uneditted) (DVD or mythbuntu is fine)
Code:
sudo parted -l
 
Old 07-18-2014, 11:13 AM   #3
rshel
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Thanks for the fast reply -- sorry I missed it last night. Yes, I'm really good at finding most of my answers by searching around the web and avoiding posting. This time I was stumped. The ntp process is still trying and failing after 12 hours and the "skip" button is dimmed so I can't kill it from the install screen. What would be the appropriate kill command from the terminal window so the attempted install can continue? The sudo parted list command shows:

Model: ATA ST3500630AS (SCSI)
Desk /dev/sda: 500GB
Sector size (logical/physical): 5128/5128
Partition table: msdos

Number Start End Size Type File system Flags
1 32.3kB 12.0GB 12.0GB primary ext4 boot
2 12.0GB 500GB 488GB extended
5 12.0GB 13.0GB 1020MB logical linux-swap(v1)
6 13.0GB 500GB 487GB logical xfs

Warning: Unable to open /dev/sr0 read-write (Read-only file system). /dev/sr0 has been opened read-only. Error: Can't have a partition outside the disk!
 
Old 07-18-2014, 02:49 PM   #4
yancek
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I haven't tried Mint Cinnamon but installed Mint 17 Mate without problems. I'm surprised you don't get and Installation Type screen where you can select one of the options; Alongside, Erase Disk and Something Else. You did do an md5checksum on the download and burn to the DVD as an image at a low speed?

Your initial post indicates you want to replace Mythbuntu with Mint, is Mythbuntu the only OS now on the computer?
Your last post shows one 500GB hard drive. Where does sdb fit in? /dev/sr0 in the parted output you posted is the DVD.
 
Old 07-18-2014, 04:18 PM   #5
rshel
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You bring up a good possibility on the DVD. I get such consistently good results from burning that I didn't do that this time. I will now go back and checksum it and burn a new copy.

Y'know, it just seems odd that a single screen in the install script is not displayed at all. And that the partition manager on the disk can't see the actual hard disk and you can't even choose which disk to display by typing in the correct one.

Yes, the Mythbuntu is the only OS on the disk. I am unsure of the origin of the sdb and /dev/sr0 entries from parted. The box is pretty standard: a mobo, one HD, and an optical drive plus a couple of cards. I have a SWAG based on some long ago sysadmin experience though..., but maybe someone who is deeper into the arcane mysteries of partitioning can say if these entries would result if when I originally installed the Buntu, there was a second hard disk later removed to use in some other puttering-around project. But that's been long enough ago that I don't remember (I've slept since then).
 
Old 07-18-2014, 08:00 PM   #6
yancek
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sr0 is the standard for a CD/DVD drive. Sometimes the sda and sdb are reversed from what one would expect and I had that happen when I installed Mint but I believe that was because I was installing it from an iso on one of the drives. Don't know why you would be getting that with only one hard drive but if you only have one drive, it shouldn't be a problem.

The default options if another operating system is detected would be "Install Alongside", "Erase Disk", and "Something Else" which is the manual option. Can't think of any other reason for the Installation Type not appearing but I'm sure there are some.
 
Old 07-19-2014, 12:31 AM   #7
rshel
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Oops. When did I d/l that ISO?

The plot thickens. The 64-bit ISO on the download page for Mint Cinnamon is now version 2. My install was from version 1 d/l'ed just a couple of weeks earlier. Wonder if my issue was fixed? I'll report back if the newer version works better for my environment.

Last edited by rshel; 07-19-2014 at 12:32 AM. Reason: corrected "days" to "weeks"
 
Old 07-19-2014, 12:42 AM   #8
syg00
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And thickens some more.
I just tested on a Fedora 19 laptop - similar to the above, it occupied the entire disk. But it is a btrfs install, and Mint17 couldn't find a installed system, but did give me the option to erase the disk and install. Which it did (using a Mint17 I've have for weeks) ...
 
Old 07-19-2014, 01:13 AM   #9
rshel
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Burned the new version 2 ISO at slow speed and md5 checked out. Started the install and got to the window titled "Install" and sub-titled "Installation type". Still no list of alternative forms of installation (especially the elusive "Overwrite everything"). This window is 4 green squares in the progress bar (at the bottom of the window). One visible change: the field called "Device for boot loader installation" (which I interpret as the destination for the install) is now shown as /dev/sda instead of /dev/sdb. However, it still has a drop-down arrow at the right side which does nothing, so destination can't be modified although I would want a target of /dev/sda I believe. The "change" or "=" buttons still result in an immediate crash of the installer. Finally, clicking "Install Now" results in an error of "No root file system. Please correct from the partitioning menu" but doesn't let me even attempt to continue. Oh yes, you devs must be referring to that blank subwindow in the middle where partitioning information should be displayed! And running parted -l in a term window is different because it now shows /dev/sr0 correctly as the LITE-ON DVDRW LH-20AIL optical drive. I'm less sure why it shows two partitions on it in mac format. Well, that might be closer considering last time it wasn't able to detect the DVD at all.

He's dead, Jim.
 
Old 07-19-2014, 09:29 AM   #10
yancek
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Quote:
One visible change: the field called "Device for boot loader installation" (which I interpret as the destination for the install)
Not necessarily going to install the filesystem there. It means on an mbr system that it will install the Grub bootloader code to the master boot record of what it sees as the primary drive, sda. You could install Mint to another drive and still leave this. The drop down arrow here usually shows a number of options including the various partitions on the drive(s).

One would expect to see the various partitions in the main window above the Device for bootloader installation. If that isn't showing, I'm not sure what the problem would be.
 
Old 07-19-2014, 11:52 AM   #11
rshel
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Updated

It feels to me like we are coming the end of our string on this without getting some dev input. Does anyone have an email or other way to contact the install-team devs with a transcript of this conversation? I'm guessing they would be interested in how their install script hadn't anticipated and properly handled this particular case for a future rev. Also, is there a log written during install that I can access and post that would provide some clues as to why parted isn't seeing the partition table?

Just found the contact email: root@linuxmint.com. I'm going to look at the Mint forums and post a link back to this thread if I can.

Last edited by rshel; 07-19-2014 at 12:09 PM. Reason: Update
 
Old 07-19-2014, 12:33 PM   #12
rshel
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Looking through the distro Mint forums, I found a similar installer fail (blank partition window). It was suggested that the submitter try fixparts. This utility seems relatively benign so I'm going to try it after booting up the existing Mythbuntu (yes, still a working installation although out-of-date). Then I'll re=try the Mint install, see if that helps, and report back. I've decided my fall back is the nuclear option: to use fdisk from a bootable repair disk and blow away the entire disk together with its partition table. But temporarily I'm still having fun trying to work through the parted issue, so this can wait a little while.
 
Old 07-19-2014, 02:41 PM   #13
rshel
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Had entirely too much trouble installing fixparts from binaries (architecture incompatibilities and dependencies due to an old, old Ubuntu distro), so I tried Plan B (which is iffy as to its likelihood IMHO): do a Distribution Upgrade to Ubuntu 12.04 and test the limits of the installer! LOL. I've read so many horror stories about in-place distro upgrades, but if it doesn't work, then I've still got the nuclear option. It's a shame, because reading about fixparts and its ability to clean up an mbr part table gave me so much hope that it could fix my issues. I'll update this thread (briefly) after the upgrade to see if Mint 17 still exhibits the same behavior. Update: The upgrade borked (pretty much as expected). This is my last post for this thread -- I'm going nuclear and wiping the disk and rewriting the table. Goodbye cruel world.
 
Old 07-20-2014, 08:57 AM   #14
austintx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rshel View Post
the field called "Device for boot loader installation" (which I interpret as the destination for the install) is now shown as /dev/sda instead of /dev/sdb. However, it still has a drop-down arrow at the right side which does nothing, so destination can't be modified although I would want a target of /dev/sda I believe. The "change" or "=" buttons still result in an immediate crash of the installer. Finally, clicking "Install Now" results in an error of "No root file system. Please correct from the partitioning menu" but doesn't let me even attempt to continue.
When the installer crashes upon clicking the "change" button, that means that you are trying to install to a partition that is mounted. I experienced that once.
 
  


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