Solved

Install ubuntu without bootloader changing

Posted on 2015-01-11
81
262 Views
Last Modified: 2015-05-04
Is there a way to install ubuntu without it taking over the bootloader and defaulting to ubuntu on startup?
0
Comment
Question by:Mark88
  • 36
  • 20
  • 18
  • +1
81 Comments
 
LVL 76

Expert Comment

by:arnold
Comment Utility
It will have to install the bootloader, but you can change which system is the default modifying the boot to the windows as the default.
Grub.conf there is an entry default=n
Where n is the number in the list that is the default, change the n to the number that corresponds with the windows, I think if n is 1 and the windows is above, n should be 0
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
I don't know if the newer installer of Ubuntu has this option, but many linux distro's allow you to set where you want to install the boot loader. Usually if you select just the partition on which you install the OS, and not the MBR of the disk (/dev/sda would be the MBR, while /dev/sda3 would be the partition), it won't change any setting of your original boot loader. But this will also make it hard to boot into Linux, particularly if your original boot loader is one of Windows...
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Ok this is getting a little confusing.  
Can you guys walk me thru this please?
0
 
LVL 76

Accepted Solution

by:
arnold earned 251 total points
Comment Utility
Which methode?
The standard, install ubuntu with Letting it install the bootloader in the MBR, during the install if memory serves it lets you know that there is a windows system I believe at that time it also lets set which is the default I.e. Boots after the set time 5-10 seconds pass.

If not, after you boot into ubuntu as that is the bootloader, /boot/grub/grub.con can be edited by root and within that you will see a set of entries one of which will be windows 7
Default=1 or 0

There are clearly listed kernel/windows boot directives.

You can always use a windows 7 dvd to restore the BOOTloader using bcdedit, bootrec.
Make sure to not install the UBUNTU OS on your windows 7 partition.

I think the other option uses a boot USB, CD ISO, through which you will edit the median boot to point to the partition where you installed ubuntu.
0
 
LVL 76

Expert Comment

by:arnold
Comment Utility
A link there is also a customized gui that can be used once installed,
You may need to search for it.


https://help.ubuntu.com/community/GrubHowto/ChangeDefaultOS

Use virtualbox or vmware ESXi free server to test install ubuntu.

Make sure you back up your data just in case something goes wrong.
0
 
LVL 87

Assisted Solution

by:rindi
rindi earned 249 total points
Comment Utility
When you install Ubuntu, and at least if you select the "Something else" option when the installer asks you for the "installation type" (other options are "Erase disk and install ubuntu", "Encrypt....", "Use LVM" at that display), at the bottom of the next display where you can create and select disk partitions, you also have the option to select where the boot loader is supposed to be installed. If at that point you select the partition on which your Ubuntu will be installed, nothing will change for the Windows boot loader. But if you select the HD and not the partition, it will overwrite your original bootloader.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Ok Rindi I will take a look at that option.  Thanks.  Stand by..
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Ubuntu install window
Rindi ok so what should I choose then?
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
The one you are installing Ubuntu on. But I see you only have ntfs partitions. For Linux you should use something like EXT4.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Ok.  
Can you explain how to do all this step - by - step?  This is new territory for me.
0
 
LVL 76

Expert Comment

by:arnold
Comment Utility
You do not have empty/unalocated space onto which you would be installing.
you have a single 750 GB drive

100MB "windows boot"
749 GB windows partition.

You need to add another drive into the system before proceeding any further.
0
 
LVL 87

Assisted Solution

by:rindi
rindi earned 249 total points
Comment Utility
Click on the large partition, then select change. Now you get an "Edit Partition" display. Now change the size of your windows partition so it is smaller. The space a fresh install of Ubuntu needs about 5GB, plus a swap partition that is usually the size of your RAM, but if you want to do some work with it you'll want more space. So reduce the size depending on your needs. Once the resize is done, you'll have "free space" available on the disk. Select that free space and click on the "+". A create partition dialog will appear. Now change the size of this partition to be the same size of your RAM, click on "End of this space", and change from "Ext4 journaling file system" to "swap area", then on "OK". After that again click on the "free space" and on the "+". Now leave the defaults as they are, and select "/" at "Mount point", then click on "OK".

Now you can select the partition to which Ubuntu is getting installed as the device for the boot loader.

But as I mentioned earlier, Ubuntu won't get added to the Windows boot loader so when you boot the PC, it will load windows. To get to boot to Ubuntu, you'll somehow have to add Ubuntu to the Windows bootloader. I don't know how to do this, but you can use a 3rd party tool, neosmart's easybcd, it should find your ubuntu installation and you can then add it to the menu that way.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
So there's no way to get the computer to boot to a screen where I can choose which OS to log into?
0
 
LVL 76

Expert Comment

by:arnold
Comment Utility
There is, but the boot loader will be that of ubuntu includes with the install not the windows one.

You still need to have a partition/space onto which ubuntu will be installed.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
So there's no way to get a window up like the one that asks if you want to repair your computer, but to choose an OS?
0
 
LVL 76

Expert Comment

by:arnold
Comment Utility
You can, but have to go through getting yet another bootloader that will be installed on your windows system such as easybcd which will be referenced as the boot option for ubuntu which has the correct ubuntu boot directive.
i.e. windows 7 bootloader, boot easybcd which then starts the ubuntu boot process.

The other option is install a second drive while disconnecting the windows drive, install ubuntu on this system at the conclusion of the process reconnect the windows disk in the old case.

The default will boot the first, windows disk.  When you want to boot ubuntu, you have to remember to trigger the Boot menu of the BIOS and select the second drive as to boot device.

The concern you have that seems to stem from issues when the windows 7 system runs into issues.  You can let it repair the boot/boot loader, and then rerun the ubuntu to install its boot loader again.

If this is a practice, use the liveCD portion of ubuntu.

......
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
This is really confusing.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
does the same thing happen if you add Win 7 to ubuntu as adding ubuntu to win 7?
0
 
LVL 76

Expert Comment

by:arnold
Comment Utility
Yes, though I am unsure the windows 7 install which will recognize prior windows Oses would recognize linux and will create an entry for it.

though the same rule, you would need unused partition space for the install of the OS.
0
 
LVL 87

Assisted Solution

by:rindi
rindi earned 249 total points
Comment Utility
I don't know what you mean with "Confusing". You need a boot manager if you want to boot to different installed OS's. The Linux (Ubuntu) Boot loaders will normally automatically find any other OS's and add them to their menu, provided it is installed to the mbr of a disk. But that would of course overwrite the windows boot loader, which you don't want to do, so you would need to install it to a partition.But if it is installed to such a partition, your original boot loader won't know anything about linux, so you will have to add Linux to your original boot loader. This is easily done using the utility I already mentioned, easyBCD.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Ok I need to read the bcd thing again then
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Still working on it.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
I still dont get why we cant have 7 and ubuntu on a computer AND use the windows boot manager.
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
Because m$ boot managers have no idea about any non m$ OS's. M$ just doesn't care about other systems.
0
 
LVL 76

Assisted Solution

by:arnold
arnold earned 251 total points
Comment Utility
So long as you can the correct bootup directive to boot the ubuntu partition (which you currently do not have in order to install Ubuntu)  into the windows BOOTloader, you will have to use external bootup mechanism to access ubuntu, USB stick, Bootup CD.

Or use the easybcd method as the intermediary process between the windows boot loader and the ubuntu bootup.

You have a block with a square and a circular opening.
The straight forward option is to let ubuntu install its bootloader which will automatically configure to include the boot windows option.
Another option using easyBCD is included.

The current limitation on your setup is that you do not have empty space (unallocated partition space of about 20GB) onto which ubuntu can be installed.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Ok Arnold, step by step, one two three, what do I do here please and thank you!
0
 
LVL 76

Assisted Solution

by:arnold
arnold earned 251 total points
Comment Utility
If the system is as it was when you initially posted.
Step number 1 is you need a disk that has unallocated space for the purpose of creating a partition onto which ubuntu will be installed.  It can not be installed onto a free space available on your existing windows drive as though it was a program.
Step 2 would be to boot the system using the Ubuntu Install Media, and direct the installation to the unallocated space on a drive which will be referenced as /dev/sdax (do not try to install on /dev/sda.  I think it will warn that there is a system there already.  But under no circumstances should you install on /dev/sda) or /dev/sdb and a partition layout will be offered (since you are testing, you should accept the disk layout suggestion.
I do not remember whether during the initial setup it gives you the option to set which system to boot from by default. If it does, make sure you select windows. If it does not, let the system boot into ubuntu.
open a terminal (command looking interface)

Here is a reference on getting to the change with pictures and more detailed instructions.
http://ubuntuhandbook.org/index.php/2013/08/change-boot-order-in-ubuntu-13-10-13-04/
The version is not a significant issue. I.e. when you get a new car, you only learn the new options.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Ok great.  Now can you break #1 down as to how to do that?
0
 
LVL 76

Expert Comment

by:arnold
Comment Utility
You eighter need to shrink the space used by windows, third party software, or if you are adventurous, boot the system using A windows disk, and use diskpart to resize it.
My suggestion given the cost of HD is to get a separate drive and add it to the system and install ubuntu on it.250GB will do just as well.
Once you have either, insert the ubuntu media, and depending on your system it will boot from the media if so configured, or you would need to hit a boot selector key, esc on some, F11/12 on others, etc.

At this point from my recollection, you do not have the space onto which ubuntu can be installed.  you can use the Ubuntu Media to run ubuntu in live/demo mode to see whether it is what you are looking for.
You can take this opportunity to explore the various linux systems available to see which you prefer.  Try linux Mint, Knoppix, I.e. download the iso and run the live-CD version. no install needed. No changes to the bootup process of your windows OS.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
The current hdd has hardly any used space
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
If you use two separate physical disks, you can install Linux to the 2nd disk and allow it to install grub to sdx of that disk. To be on the safe side, remove your Windows disk during the installation so nothing can go wrong. When finished, you can tell your PC which disk to boot from via the boot priority in the BIOS.
0
 
LVL 76

Expert Comment

by:arnold
Comment Utility
While the current HD has free space, when ubuntu looks at this disk it sees two or three partitions occupying the entire DISK.
104MB boot partition
750 GB windows partiontion

Run the following command: diskmgmt.msc
(disk manager in windows.)
You should see disk 0 Do you see UnAllocated space there where you can create a new partition??


ubuntu can not be installed onto a windows partition as though it is a windows program going to c:\program files\ubuntu.

hope this makes it clearer.

When installing ubuntu you need a DISK that has space that is unused.
[                                                                                                             ] Entire disk space 500GB when new
With windows installed and an unallocated space
[ 104 mb boot][  windows partition 400GB][100GB unallocated ]

You are missing the unallocated space in your example.
The options available to you is to shrink the existing 750 GB windows partition. (third party tool/ or using a windows boot and using diskpart) while it is possible to resize online using diskpart, issues can happen that ..........
The addition of a second drive to the computer, make this rather simple.

We are running in circles covering the same thing. Your system currently does not have the required disk space (not free space in windows) to perform the installation.
Please look at the screen shot you posted and note that ubuntu is asking you on which partition of the ones listed do you want it to install itself.  If you choose, it will erase your windows and will install itself in its place.

While Rindi and I said it before, the amount of data in a post could ... so let me separate everything else out.

The first thing you need is a NEW and additional HardDrive in the existing System.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
But then dont you have to go into the case and plug/unplug stuff?
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
What's the problem with that?
0
 
LVL 76

Expert Comment

by:arnold
Comment Utility
You only plug, no unplug needed if you attach the second drive into a higher numbered sata port.

If you are insisting on staying with the single drive, you need a third party tool partition magic, or ...
Which you would use to boot up your system, and then resize your windows partition from the 750GB that it currently uses to something smaller allowing for at least 20GB of space unallocated.

Note that a mixup here will result in corruption of your windows partition and might prevent it from booting, so make sure you have all your important files backed up just in case.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Doesnt linux have a free partition tool?  I thought I saw that once
0
 
LVL 76

Expert Comment

by:arnold
Comment Utility
You can use ubuntu liveCD with gparted resize the existing windows partition.

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/HowtoResizeWindowsPartitions
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
That's what I explained way up in http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Windows/Q_28594600.html#a40549275

With Windows 7 you can also use diskmanagement to shrink your partitions. You don't need any 3rd party tools.

But if you want to install Linux to the same disk as Windows 7, you will have to either use Grub as bootloader, or add Ubuntu to the Windows loader using EasyBCD.

The other option you have, as I just explained, is to temporarily remove your Windows disk, install a 2nd disk and install Linux to that. When finished, add your Windows disk again, and use your BIOS to change the HD's boot priority to select the OS you want to boot to.

A 3rd option would be to install Linux to a USB stick or SD Card (if your PC has a card reader). Then you wouldn't have to add a 2nd disk and open the PC (although that is no problem at all). Here again just select the correct boot order when you want to boot to the stick, and during the OS installation make sure you select the stick for the location where Grub should be installed
0
Want to promote your upcoming event?

Are you going to an event? Are you going to be exhibiting at a tradeshow? Talking at a conference? Using a promotional banner in your email signature ensures that your organization’s most important contacts stay in the know and can potentially spread the word about the event.

 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
wow thats wild.  you can run ubuntu off an sd card?
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
Sure. It may just take longer to boot. And personally I wouldn't recommend Ubuntu, but rather most other distro's.
0
 
LVL 76

Expert Comment

by:arnold
Comment Utility
Any storage including, sd, usb, etc.
Virtualization vmware, virtualbox will ley you run any and as many as you have space to accommodate will let you run ...............
Try linux mint.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
I will try Mint, standby
0
 
LVL 59

Expert Comment

by:LeeTutor
Comment Utility
I've requested that this question be deleted for the following reason:

Not enough information to confirm an answer.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
please keep open for a few more days.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
What's the best site to get Mint from?
Theres a lot to choose from and I dont need a virus.
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
Directly from the Linux Mint Webpage, or via the distrowatch page, which also directs to the official mint download page, but here you have the advantage that most distro's are listed with a short description, and you can find others to try out easily.

http://distrowatch.com/
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Working to get that downloaded now.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Ok I burned Mint to a dvd.  
Is there anything I need to know before I install it regarding how to make Windows the default OS?
0
 
LVL 76

Expert Comment

by:arnold
Comment Utility
review all the notices.  I.e. After several the tendency is to just continue hitting next/yes. No matter, the default os can be changed it is not carved  in stone..

The issue remains that you have to have space on an unused/allocated partition in a drive.

It will however, replace the windows bootloader.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Is it possible to make the bootloader choose Windows as the default in the list instead of Linux?
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
Check the /boot/grub/grub.conf file. There you have the different menuentries, with the OS's listed when you boot up the system.

You can then edit the /etc/default/grub file and change the value of "GRUB_DEAFULT=..." to the entry that is for Windoze (the menuentries start from 0). When done run "sudo update-grub".

Now the default should be for Windows.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Is that after Linux is installed?
0
 
LVL 76

Expert Comment

by:arnold
Comment Utility
I believe during the install it asks which or whether you want one as the primary. But do not recall whether it is a affirmative question or needing a negative response not to set linux as the default..
In either case, when the system boots it will show which is the default, if it is not windows, let it boot into linux and adjust the grub.conf settings pointing to the windows as the default.
And that all it would take.
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
It's after Linux was installed and when you have booted into the new installation.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
I wonder if I can speak to Arnold or rindi on the phone whilst I install this.  So many things have been given on this thread.  I am confused.
0
 
LVL 76

Expert Comment

by:arnold
Comment Utility
How about you take the non impacting to your system approach and use either vmware's free option or use virtualbox to install in a Virtual environment..
This way you can test/repeat.
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
I don't have a phone. Besides, the EE rules forbid direct communications like that.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Arnold so what's the difference using VMware and install creating a partition?
0
 
LVL 76

Expert Comment

by:arnold
Comment Utility
VMWare or virtualbox will be running within windows as the host and will not impact your bootup process. Virtual system within your windows setup.
i.e. will function similar to a word document where you will have to open word to access the data within the document.  Depending on which you will pick, you would need to open a player (vmware or virtualbox) and within it start the linux "virtual" system.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
I think I know what that is now.  Win 7 has a built in vm XP
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
What's the best place to get the free vmware?  I dont want to download a virus
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
VMware Player is available directly from the VMware site, and VirtualBox from the Oracle Virtualbox site. In my point of view VirtualBox is the better option as it is OpenSource and most distro's already include the driver modules, and some even have VirtualBox available via their repositories. Besides, the free version of VMware Player can only be used in a private environment, not in a Business.

https://www.virtualbox.org/

http://www.vmware.com/
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Rindi, it says, "Here, you will find links to VirtualBox binaries and its source code. VirtualBox binaries".

This sounds like a site for web dev guys.  Is this what you were talking about?
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
Just download and install the binaries for your platform (windows).
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
What does "install a 'binary'" mean anyhow.  That's odd language to me.
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
Binaries are executable files (exe files when used in Windows).
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Who talks like that today??????????
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Hard to believe that vmware's just going to give away a free player, too.
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
They use the word "binary" because it runs under different OS platforms. Exe's (executionals) is an m$ Windows thing.

VMware has always had free products. If I'm not mistaken, they started up with free products only. Just remember that the free player is for personal use only. For business use you need at least the player Pro, which isn't free, but not as expensive as VMware Workstation. Even VMware ESXi is free if you only need that.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
oh I see.  VMW makes you put in ur email address for marketing before you start.
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
That is only since the newest version. Before that it wasn't necessary.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Ok.  Well, Im still thinking about which way I want to install this. Im leaning towards dual boot.  I might do a test run and make sure I understand all the questions with non intuitive negatives
0
 
LVL 59

Expert Comment

by:LeeTutor
Comment Utility
I've requested that this question be deleted for the following reason:

Not enough information to confirm an answer.
0
 
LVL 87

Expert Comment

by:rindi
Comment Utility
We gave all possible ways to get this done.
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
Ok I will review this as soon as I am able
0
 

Author Comment

by:Mark88
Comment Utility
bear with me.  will try soon and get back
0

Featured Post

How your wiki can always stay up-to-date

Quip doubles as a “living” wiki and a project management tool that evolves with your organization. As you finish projects in Quip, the work remains, easily accessible to all team members, new and old.
- Increase transparency
- Onboard new hires faster
- Access from mobile/offline

Join & Write a Comment

Today, still in the boom of Apple, PC's and products, nearly 50% of the computer users use Windows as graphical operating systems. If you are among those users who love windows, but are grappling to keep the system's hard drive optimized, then you s…
Join Greg Farro and Ethan Banks from Packet Pushers (http://packetpushers.net/podcast/podcasts/pq-show-93-smart-network-monitoring-paessler-sponsored/) and Greg Ross from Paessler (https://www.paessler.com/prtg) for a discussion about smart network …
Windows 8 came with a dramatically different user interface known as Metro. Notably missing from that interface was a Start button and Start Menu. Microsoft responded to negative user feedback of the Metro interface, bringing back the Start button a…
Get a first impression of how PRTG looks and learn how it works.   This video is a short introduction to PRTG, as an initial overview or as a quick start for new PRTG users.

763 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question

Need Help in Real-Time?

Connect with top rated Experts

8 Experts available now in Live!

Get 1:1 Help Now