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Old 07-01-2009, 05:56 PM   #1
Melhisedek
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Executing 'grub-install /dev/sda' failed. This is a fatal error.


Been trying and trying for a while but can't get it to work at all I'm trying to install Ubuntu (tried all versions from 7.10-9.04). It all goes fine and hits dead end at 94%, where I get this horrible message. I just use "Use largest continuous free space" option in the installer. I believe it formats 94 Gigs as ext3 and 3-4 gigs as swap. It tries to install GRUB to /dev/sda

Here is fdisk -l

Code:
ubuntu@ubuntu:~$ sudo fdisk -l

Disk /dev/sda: 1500.3 GB, 1500301910016 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 182401 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
Disk identifier: 0x01940193

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sda1   *           1       12748   102398278+   7  HPFS/NTFS
/dev/sda2           12749      182401  1362737722+   f  W95 Ext'd (LBA)
/dev/sda5           12749       88911   611779266    7  HPFS/NTFS
/dev/sda6           89238      168377   635691764    7  HPFS/NTFS
/dev/sda7          168378      181826   108029061   83  Linux
/dev/sda8          181827      182401     4618656   82  Linux swap / Solaris

Disk /dev/sdb: 320.0 GB, 320072933376 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 38913 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
Disk identifier: 0xed42928a

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sdb1               1        6902    55440283+   5  Extended
/dev/sdb2   *        6903       13914    56323890    7  HPFS/NTFS
/dev/sdb3           13915       38913   200804467+   7  HPFS/NTFS
/dev/sdb5               1        6902    55440252    7  HPFS/NTFS
here is what var/log/messages says:

Code:
Jul  1 22:06:30 ubuntu grub-installer: info: Installing grub on '/dev/sda'
Jul  1 22:06:30 ubuntu grub-installer: info: grub-install supports --no-floppy
Jul  1 22:06:30 ubuntu grub-installer: info: Running chroot /target grub-install  --no-floppy  "/dev/sda"
Jul  1 22:06:30 ubuntu grub-installer: Probing devices to guess BIOS drives. This may take a long time.
Jul  1 22:06:30 ubuntu grub-installer: Searching for GRUB installation directory ... found: /boot/grub
Jul  1 22:06:36 ubuntu grub-installer: The file /boot/grub/stage1 not read correctly.
Jul  1 22:06:36 ubuntu grub-installer: error: Running 'grub-install  --no-floppy  "/dev/sda"' failed.

Any ideas on how to fix this?
Thank you for your time!
 
Old 07-02-2009, 02:48 AM   #2
Melhisedek
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bump
 
Old 07-02-2009, 03:07 AM   #3
malekmustaq
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Melhisedek:

there is no problem installing ubuntu on big hard disks. Just be sure you have installed Grub properly to the /boot folder. If not sure you may reinstall it first, in ubuntu it is very easy. Having it installed properly you can issue "grub-install /dev/sda". Remember this command does not carry out if grub was not properly installed yet. You may need root privilege for the MBR to get modified by that command. Check back how it goes.

good luck.
 
Old 07-02-2009, 03:32 AM   #4
shahz
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while booting you get an error message can you paste the exect boot error.

this can help to solve the problem.

thanks
shahz
 
Old 07-02-2009, 03:50 AM   #5
michapma
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You might also review this article if you don't get any further:

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Re...tallingWindows
 
Old 07-02-2009, 04:03 AM   #6
Melhisedek
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Well I never get so far as booting.

I boot from Ubuntu LiveCD and while installing Ubuntu I get this exact error which you see in thread name. So Ubuntu installs up to 94%, and than it should install GRUB but it fails, so I have no way of booting to Linux afterwards.

@malek
Problem is that I can't install it in the first place
I'll try installing it some other way first and see if it works, like supergrubdisk
 
Old 07-02-2009, 04:05 AM   #7
micxz
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During the install process is there a check box or option to "install to MBR"?
 
Old 07-02-2009, 04:26 AM   #8
Melhisedek
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michapma View Post
You might also review this article if you don't get any further:

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Re...tallingWindows
Been all over that one sadly it only works if GRUB was installed correctly one time before. In my case I can't get it to install at all

@ micxz

Not that I know of... no option to install to mbr. I can chose what partition I want to install on like /dev/sda, /, /boot and so on

(tried all of them) but no go
 
Old 07-02-2009, 08:06 AM   #9
michapma
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Melhisedek View Post
@ micxz

Not that I know of... no option to install to mbr. I can chose what partition I want to install on like /dev/sda, /, /boot and so on

(tried all of them) but no go
Choosing the drive, such as /dev/sda, is the same as choosing the MBR. I just installed Jaunty recently, and the graphical installer gives you a little button after installation is finished that says "Advanced," in which you can select where to put the bootloader. I actually redid the whole installation, about 15 min, just so I install it to the root partition (not what you want), it was faster than mucking about trying to chroot and so forth. I like Jaunty, but on the live CD I couldn't find several useful options, such as loading to RAM or using a non-graphical approach.

As shahz says, try posting the exact error given during installation. Of course, it's possible that the subject title is all the more you see due to the graphical installer. That's a definite disadvantage to offset the nice feeling the graphics give of having a super modern distro.

If during installation (I assume you selected the "Install" option on the live-CD Desktop) you get to "94%" and it gives an error about Grub not installing, then in fact you have installed Ubuntu, even if you don't have the boot loader installed in the MBR. (Have a google at super grub disk, it's a bootable CD and might help you to work with your already installed system.)

Is it possible that the BIOS has disabled writing to the MBR?
 
Old 07-02-2009, 08:22 AM   #10
Melhisedek
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michapma View Post

Is it possible that the BIOS has disabled writing to the MBR?
I have been thinking about the same thing... I've checked around in BIOS and there isn't anything that mentions mbr or write protect or such. But in that case wouldn't it prevent Windows from writing to mbr as well? (Have installed Windows 7 just few days ago)
Will check super grub thingie and report back
 
Old 07-02-2009, 08:31 AM   #11
tarasin
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Try this website its dedicated to using Ubuntu and other operating systems. "The Illustrated Dual Boot Site"

http://members.iinet.net/~herman546/index.html
 
Old 07-02-2009, 08:36 AM   #12
michapma
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Melhisedek View Post
I have been thinking about the same thing... I've checked around in BIOS and there isn't anything that mentions mbr or write protect or such. But in that case wouldn't it prevent Windows from writing to mbr as well? (Have installed Windows 7 just few days ago)
I wouldn't put it past Windows or some bloatware in Windows to change the status during/after installation. Refer to your mainboard's BIOS manual for the option, if you can find a PDF online you could even do a search.
 
Old 07-02-2009, 10:47 AM   #13
malekmustaq
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&
QUOTE YOU: "I boot from Ubuntu LiveCD and while installing Ubuntu I get this exact error which you see in thread name. So Ubuntu installs up to 94%, and than it should install GRUB but it fails, so I have no way of booting to Linux afterwards."

Melhisedek, before we proceed are we assured that your copy of installer CD is healthy? Please try check the md5, (never mind if you have already) It is puzzling me (or us) why it cannot install fully. Anyway you can download again a sure iso image, md5 check it, if okay then burn. Let's see if the problem persists.

goodluck.
 
Old 07-02-2009, 11:02 AM   #14
fpmurphy
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I agree with Malekmustaq. Check your install media!
 
Old 07-02-2009, 11:57 AM   #15
Melhisedek
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Checked media and even tried installing from USB stick... still the same. Than I've been trying to fool around with Super Grub Disk but all I get is

Error 15: File not found

no matter what I pick, at the end I tried all the options but got the exact same answer every time
 
  


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