Grub2 with 64bit and only BIOS method

I was not able to have a clean grub2 install with 64bit 3.8.12 until I re installed grub2 on the MBR using this command.

grub-install --target i386-pc /dev/sda

I found this out today 25th of May 2020

Actually here it was 7am on the 26th. Time zones are weird.

There are many meanings of "clean":

  • just works
  • fast
  • looks good
  • wasn't rolling around in the mud
  • etc...

Which one is this?

not clean means grub was looking past hd0 a few times before it was booting the OS.

my fix just works, stable and feels clean

Hi @linux23dragon

Thanks for reporting the issue, and also for enabling the reports on the installer :slight_smile: I have just checked them and there's no grub-related errors of any type, they all installed correctly in your machine, example:

I: Building Initrd's
I: Building Grub configuration
I: GRUB in MBR/BIOS (legacy) mode
Installing for i386-pc platform.
Installation finished. No error reported.
Generating grub configuration file ...
Found background image: /usr/share/images/desktop-base/desktop-grub.png
Found linux image: /boot/vmlinuz-4.19.0-8-amd64
Found initrd image: /boot/initrd.img-4.19.0-8-amd64
done
I: Installing GRUB in /dev/sda
Installing for i386-pc platform.
Installation finished. No error reported.
Installing for i386-pc platform.
Installation finished. No error reported.
Installing for i386-pc platform.
Installation finished. No error reported.
Generating grub configuration file ...
Found background image: /usr/share/images/desktop-base/desktop-grub.png
Found linux image: /boot/vmlinuz-4.19.0-8-amd64
Found initrd image: /boot/initrd.img-4.19.0-8-amd64
done
Generating grub configuration file ...
Found background image: /usr/share/images/desktop-base/desktop-grub.png
Found linux image: /boot/vmlinuz-4.19.0-8-amd64
Found initrd image: /boot/initrd.img-4.19.0-8-amd64
done

DONE

So I think that the issue was simply in your side (no idea why / what exactly happened), maybe a changing of disks or IDK, i have seen a (very few) times grub failing to installed when it reported to have been installed correctly too

Your command is not needed too, so the installer runs a few different grub-install command combinations and one of them is the one you used (without the target 386 part, but as you can see in the previous example it was correctly autodetected)

So... we cannot do much since we cannot confirm that this bug really exists (I have installed multiple times with this combination without issues, my main machine is legacy + 64bit too), but if happens again please let me know, I will need a way to reproduce the issue in order to investigate / fix it

yes. the installer is good. grub installed fine to the MBR. it only fails when I try to boot.

I own a Dell XPS L502X and it has a normal hard drive.

soon I will upgrade to SSD

I noticed that when you install a new drive (in my case SSD), grub will only install if the whole disk is formatted from the beginning to end.

I noticed that the auto partitioning on installing Elive, that it skips formatting the beginning of the drive. I use a Dell XPS L502X.

Manually partitioning the whole drive on install, seemed to fix the issue.