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Installation woes and a GRUB headache - Part 2

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Re: Installation woes and a GRUB headache - Part 2


Post by topcat » Mon Nov 20, 2017 8:19 pm

OK I have a question about the functionality of the installed system on usb.

I went and downloaded MX-17b1 the weekend and using the Live-USB Maker GUI in MX-16.1 created a live usb on a 32 gb Verbatim Store n Go. Then booted up the Live USB and ran the installer to install MX-17b1 to a Nextech 16 gb usb and chose to install grub to the mbr of the Nextech flash drive.

Then tried to boot up with the installed mx-17b1 plugged in. However this time, unlike when I booted up with the live usb in the usb port, the only boot device showing was the internal ssd drive. So I used mx-16.1, which controlled grub2, to run update-grub and on reboot of the ssd drive, mx-17.1 on sdb1 (usb flash drive) booted fine.

So my question is when I booted with the installed MX-17b1 on the Nextech 16 gb usb plugged in, should I have seen it as an option when I hit F8 for boot devices (like I do with a live usb)?
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Re: Installation woes and a GRUB headache - Part 2


Post by jbMacAZ » Mon Nov 20, 2017 9:44 pm

So my question is when I booted with the installed MX-17b1 on the Nextech 16 gb usb plugged in, should I have seen it as an option when I hit F8 for boot devices (like I do with a live usb)?
I just did the same thing today and ran into the same problem. I would expect it to work for the InstalledUSB, it does for the liveUSB.

I used a new mx17b1 liveUSB (unetbootin) to install to a second USB stick. I used manual partitoning, but I hadn't created an ESP partition to host the grub bootstrap. The ESP partition is what gets detected by the boot menu (in UEFI systems.) Grub on one of my other linux installs found MX17 so I was able to boot and run the InstalledUSB. I'll have to redo the InstalledUSB anyway for MX17b2. So I'll try creating a 100MB partition, Fat32, with the boot and esp flags set. I'll update if that succeeds.

EDIT: Re-install adding an ESP partition did not solve this. I'll open another thread if I can't solve it - this grub issue is something else (off-topic.)

I'm glad the SD card install is working for br1anstorm.
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Re: Installation woes and a GRUB headache - Part 2


Post by penguin » Wed Nov 22, 2017 6:01 am

The other comment I offer is perhaps relevant to both the question of space, and the USB angle. I was intrigued by penguin's statement that he had installed, and run, MX-16 from an SD card. I had never done or even thought of that! So last night I tried it. And I successfully installed MX-16 (from the same LiveUSB I have had all along) on to a 16GB SD card.

It works perfectly. It runs MX-16 on my laptop (which has a dedicated SD card slot). I even updated it (some 35 or so updates to the October monthly edition). It takes up just less than half of that 16GB SD card.
I run Mx Linux also Sparky Linux on SD Card, for months. No problem at all.If you find a good/fast Read/Write - SD Card/32 GB or 64 GB you can play with grub and whats ever.Lean now how to practice ddrescue /gdiskdump or lucky_backup and you do not need any more Bootable USB :) ! Do you understand now why Microsoft forced some laptop producers to stop/avoid booting laptops from SD Card on the new models ? Any way if you cannot boot a laptop from SD Card, you can use a 34MM FlashBack Adapter For SDXC/SDHC Card,Support SDXC to 64GB, SD to EXPRESS.
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Re: Installation woes and a GRUB headache - Part 2


Post by br1anstorm » Wed Nov 22, 2017 12:50 pm

I've now become a spectator in this thread, as for the moment I have MX-16.1 on a LiveUSB with persistence, and fully installed on an SD card, and both work, so I'm not trying to do anything else with MX-16 for now.

But I do find it interesting to read the latest posts by TopCat and jbMacAZ. Both have encountered problems in accessing or running MX-16 when it is installed on a USB stick..... so I was not alone!

There do seem however to be two different kinds of problem. One situation (as in my case) is where MX-16 is fully installed on a USB stick with its Grub, the BIOS "sees" it as bootable, and it starts to boot (grey kingfisher), but then fails or times out - possibly because of issues over Grub finding the USB controller and/or accessing the files on the stick which it needs to complete the boot.

The other situation is that described by TopCat - where MX-16 is fully installed with its Grub on a USB stick, but the BIOS does not see it as bootable (=cannot see the Grub) and does not show it at all; so the boot process from the stick can't even be started.

If one happens to be using a computer which already has another Grub already installed (on its main drive), then evidently a workaround is to update that Grub. It then "sees" or incorporates the Grub associated with the MX-16 on the USB stick, and can then boot it up. But in a way, this negates the point of having MX-16 installed with its Grub on a separate USB stick, because that configuration is supposed to be self-contained and able to boot without relying on another bootloader somewhere else on the system. It also is not a solution in the case where the system has no other Linux OS, and no other Grub, installed.

It does seem that there is something here which needs to be researched by those who understand the bootloader process....

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