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Installation woes and a GRUB headache - Part 2

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richb
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Re: Installation woes and a GRUB headache - Part 2

#51

Post by richb » Fri Nov 17, 2017 10:45 am

I do not find that characterization accurate. Someone who spends that amount of time and effort does not fit that label. However, at this point I would reinforce Paul's advice, use live persistence or one of the distros where you have had success, I would point our that two of us have successfully installed to a USB stick. So I do not feel it is an inherent problem with MX and it is an unusual usage.
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Jim205
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Re: Installation woes and a GRUB headache - Part 2

#52

Post by Jim205 » Fri Nov 17, 2017 6:22 pm

There is no problem with the MX-16 installer. It will install the OP any place you tell it to. Please post the output of inxi -Fxxx, on your running copy of MX-16. This will explain a lot. Jim205 Registered Linux User 423183

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Re: Installation woes and a GRUB headache - Part 2

#53

Post by br1anstorm » Fri Nov 17, 2017 7:52 pm

Hello Jim 205....

Thanks for engaging again. I appreciate your ongoing interest. But I don't want to push my luck or take too much of your or others' time.

As of now, I only have a LiveUSB of MX-16.1. It works absolutely fine on any of the computers I have. I am using it now, plugged into my (current) Samsung laptop. I do not have MX-16 installed anywhere (yet). I normally use Mint, sometimes PCLinuxOS, and occasionally for specific tasks, Win7 (all of which are installed under EasyBCD) on this Samsung laptop.

As requested, I have run that command in the terminal. Here's the result:

Code: Select all

System:    Host: mx1 Kernel: 3.16.0-4-686-pae i686 bits: 32 gcc: 4.8.4
           Desktop: Xfce 4.12.2 (Gtk 2.24.25) info: xfce4-panel dm: lightdm
           Distro: MX-16.1_386 Metamorphosis 8 June 2017
Machine:   Device: laptop System: SAMSUNG product: RF511/RF411/RF711 v: 14HX serial: N/A
           Mobo: SAMSUNG model: RF511/RF411/RF711 v: 14HX serial: N/A
           BIOS: American Megatrends v: 14HX.M040.20111020.SSH date: 10/20/2011
           Chassis: type: 9 serial: N/A
Battery    BAT1: charge: 43.3 Wh 78.0% condition: 55.5/57.7 Wh (96%) volts: 11.9/11.1
           model: SAMSUNG Li-ion serial: N/A status: N/A cycles: 0
CPU:       Dual core Intel Core i5-2450M (-HT-MCP-) arch: Sandy Bridge rev.7 cache: 3072 KB
           flags: (lm nx pae sse sse2 sse3 sse4_1 sse4_2 ssse3 vmx) bmips: 9976
           clock speeds: min/max: 800/3100 MHz 1: 1524 MHz 2: 1926 MHz 3: 1192 MHz 4: 876 MHz
Graphics:  Card: Intel 2nd Generation Core Integrated Graphics Controller
           bus-ID: 00:02.0 chip-ID: 8086:0126
           Display Server: X.Org 1.16.4 drivers: intel (unloaded: modesetting,fbdev,vesa)
           Resolution: 1366x768@60.07hz
           OpenGL: renderer: Mesa DRI Intel Sandybridge Mobile x86/MMX/SSE2
           version: 3.3 Mesa 12.0.3 (compat-v: 3.0) Direct Render: Yes
Audio:     Card Intel 6 Series/C200 Series Family High Def. Audio Controller
           driver: snd_hda_intel bus-ID: 00:1b.0 chip-ID: 8086:1c20
           Sound: Advanced Linux Sound Architecture v: k3.16.0-4-686-pae
Network:   Card-1: Broadcom BCM4313 802.11bgn Wireless Network Adapter
           driver: wl bus-ID: 01:00.0 chip-ID: 14e4:4727
           IF: wlan0 state: up mac: 30:14:4a:1b:09:58
           Card-2: Realtek RTL8111/8168/8411 PCIE Gigabit Ethernet Controller
           driver: r8169 v: 2.3LK-NAPI port: c000 bus-ID: 02:00.0 chip-ID: 10ec:8168
           IF: eth0 state: down mac: e8:03:9a:06:d7:a7
Drives:    HDD Total Size: 1781.5GB (0.8% used)
           ID-1: /dev/sda model: Hitachi_HTS54757 size: 750.2GB serial: J2140054FL6UVA
           ID-2: USB /dev/sdb model: Expansion size: 1000.2GB serial: S35TJ9EGA11374
           ID-3: USB /dev/sdc model: Ultra size: 31.1GB serial: 4C530123171116101013-0:0
Partition: ID-1: /home size: 3.8G used: 44M (2%) fs: ext4 dev: /dev/loop2
           ID-2: swap-1 size: 8.59GB used: 0.00GB (0%) fs: swap dev: /dev/sda5
Sensors:   System Temperatures: cpu: 41.0C mobo: 41.0C
           Fan Speeds (in rpm): cpu: N/A
Info:      Processes: 196 Uptime: 1 min Memory: 362.9/8025.9MB
           Init: SysVinit v: 2.88 runlevel: 5 default: 5 Gcc sys: 4.9.2 alt: 4.8
           Client: Shell (bash 4.3.301 running in xfce4-terminal) inxi: 2.3.43 
demo@mx1:~
I hope that gives you useful info.

Just to summarise what has been a long thread, I've made two attempts to install MX-16 on to a 32gb USB stick (I know that's not normal practice, but still.... I've done it with various other distros). First attempt was running the installer from the LiveUSB session. Second attempt was running the installer from a LiveDVD of MX16. Both installs completed - with the Grub on the USB stick as well.

But when I then tried to boot up from that stick, on any computer (this one or my older ones), I got the grey kingfisher screen, then the long string of text which I've quoted in earlier posts, and no bootup (so I have to hard shutdown by powering off).

The general consensus seems to be that I should be content with having a LiveUSB of MX-16 with persistence, and shouldn't try to install on a USB stick (nor, I suppose, on an external HDD......?). If that is the view, then so be it. But I'm ready to continue experimenting (within the limits of my own understanding) if this is interesting or useful to anyone.
Last edited by br1anstorm on Sat Nov 18, 2017 12:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Jim205
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Re: Installation woes and a GRUB headache - Part 2

#54

Post by Jim205 » Fri Nov 17, 2017 9:02 pm

Your inxi -Fxxx post indicates you only boot MX-16 as necessary to run commands. Please scroll up to the top of the page and on the right side at the top you will find Manuals. Click on Manuals on the page, click on MX-16 PDF or HTML. Scroll down to section 3.2. After you read this section, go to section 6.6. Here you will find the necessary information to do what you want. On this page you will see video cameras on subjects that go into greater detail. Jim205

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Re: Installation woes and a GRUB headache - Part 2

#55

Post by br1anstorm » Sat Nov 18, 2017 10:11 am

Thanks again Jim205...

The manual - which I had in fact previously read through in some detail - is a very comprehensive guide. And dolphin_oracle's videos are extremely helpful.

Section 6.6 (and related videos) are however essentially all about creating, or re-creating, LiveUSBs. By definition, this is not, and is not the same as, a full install.

My challenge, from the beginning, has been with Installation (Section 2.5 of the Manual). In essence, my experience has been that while it is evidently possible to install MX-16 and its Grub on a main hard drive (typically dev/sda) as shown in the manual, there does seem to be some difficulty about installing MX16, and its Grub, on an external drive (USB stick or external HDD). Some have apparently managed to do so. Some - including me - have not. The install process completes, but the resulting drive or stick is unbootable (as described in detail in my posts).

Disappointing but not a disaster. People have said "why bother, just use a LiveUSB with persistence" - which is fair enough. I aim to play a bit more with such a LiveUSB. But maybe, just maybe, someone will think it worth investigating why a full install of MX-16 on a separate external stick or drive seems to be problematic.

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Re: Installation woes and a GRUB headache - Part 2

#56

Post by anticapitalista » Sat Nov 18, 2017 10:28 am

Have you started from the beginning since your posts?
I mean, start again by installing a fresh iso file to the usb stick and making sure you install grub to the mbr of said stick.
If you have already done this since posting and receiving advice, then ignore this post.
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Re: Installation woes and a GRUB headache - Part 2

#57

Post by br1anstorm » Sat Nov 18, 2017 1:26 pm

The answer, anticapitalista, is "yes" (or almost yes!).

In detail, and for the avoidance of doubt, this is what I've done:

First attempt at full install on USB stick - failed

1. I downloaded and checked SHA of the MX16.1 iso. At the time the latest monthly edition was the October one. I chose the 32-bit version because I expected to run it on both older 32-bit/386 laptops, and my current 64-bit computer;

2. Using Win7 on my current computer, I used Rufus to create a LiveUSB (on a small Kingston 8gb stick) from that iso. That LiveUSB works fine in all of my computers. I am still using it. So presumably the downloaded iso was clean and uncorrupt;

3. From a Live session of MX-16 using that same LiveUSB stick, I attempted to install MX-16, and its Grub, onto a new, empty and larger capacity 32GB Sandisk USB stick (which showed as /dev/sdc). The installation process completed, apparently successfully. But I could not boot from that stick. I got as far as the grey-kingfisher bootloader splash screen, then the lengthy screenful of text and no further. That's when I started seeking help and advice.

Second attempt at full install on that stick - failed

4. Some days later, after a lot of discussion and in particular a post from Gaer Boy describing what he did, I wiped, deleted and reformatted that non-booting Sandisk USB stick and tried again;

5. This time, I burned a LiveDVD (using IMGBurn) from the same iso [Note: I did not download a fresh new iso....]. I then ran a Live session from that DVD and again, ran the installer, putting MX-16 and its Grub on the Sandisk USB stick. The installation again completed, apparently successfully.

6. And again..... that Sandisk USB stick, supposedly with MX-16 installed on it, would not boot. Grey kingfisher, "loading initial ramdisk", then a screenful of text as before.

Third step - make another LiveUSB on that stick - succeeded

7. So - in the light of forum advice that I should just rely on LiveUSB with persistence and not bother to install, I wiped that pesky non-booting Sandisk 32gb stick again, and this time, I thought I'd use the MXTools LiveUSB-maker. So I did so, making a new LiveUSB - on that Sandisk 32gb stick - from the same original iso. And it works perfectly!

So..... I now have two USB sticks, the original Kingston 8gb and the Sandisk 32gb, each as LiveUSBs of MX-16.1.

In theory I could go through it all again after downloading a new (November) iso. Or I could try the whole process using the 64-bit iso of MX-16 instead - though this would be less useful to me. But I'd need to burn another DVD, and find one, or two, more new USB sticks.

To be honest, I wonder if the gain is worth the pain. I had thought that the problem of non-booting might be evident (to the experts) from the lengthy string of text which come up on screen, and which I have already posted up and described. I confess I can't now muster much enthusiasm for launching a further, and different experiment with another iso and another USB stick......!

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Re: Installation woes and a GRUB headache - Part 2

#58

Post by anticapitalista » Sat Nov 18, 2017 1:47 pm

Lets go back to editing the grub.cfg file. The ones that work on Zorin and Mint, use

Code: Select all

set root='(hd1,msdos5)'
d_o made some suggestions

Code: Select all

set root='(hd1,msdos1)'
, but did not mention using the same as Mint and Zorin. Have you tried that? ie

Code: Select all

set root='(hd1,msdos5)'
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Re: Installation woes and a GRUB headache - Part 2

#59

Post by i_ri » Sat Nov 18, 2017 1:48 pm

hello br1anstorm
is drive : ID-2 dev/sdb something that that can be unplugged while the install is trialed? exclude peripheral variables.

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Re: Installation woes and a GRUB headache - Part 2

#60

Post by jbMacAZ » Sat Nov 18, 2017 2:10 pm

What I infer from the reported errors is
The BIOS finds and runs the grub bootstrap, which loads the rest of grub and grub.cfg from the InstalledUSB
Grub starts running as evidenced by the Kingfisher background and the grub menu
Once a grub menu option was selected, Grub loads the kernel and then the kernel starts initializing the system. (inferred from the scrolling boot text)

Exactly what goes wrong next is not clear, but the reported errors indicate that kernel is having trouble accessing the USB controller(s) (on two different systems.)
Without the USB controller, the kernel can no longer access the InstalledUSB or its partitions. That is causing the kernel panic.

This USB controller problem would not stop an internal drive installation from booting. Often the kernel will retry failed initializations later in the startup process. In this case, though, the kernel needs the file system that is on the InstalledUSB to continue start-up, so there is a root partition timeout.

It was worth trying to build the installedUSB again as suggested. But this looks like a real issue IMO, if uncommon.
Last edited by jbMacAZ on Sat Nov 18, 2017 5:10 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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