1

My setup

Dell Chromebook 13 with Windows 10 and Ubuntu 18.10 on dual boot, using MrChromebox UEFI Firmware (4.9).

What happened

I wanted to install Ubuntu on an external usb drive. I took two drives, installed the live version of ubuntu 18.10 on the first, booted into it, and then used the installer to install ubuntu on the second usb.

When the installation finished, I removed the drive and rebooted – just to find out that the laptop boots into GRUB 2.2 (with “Minimal BASH-like editing supported”) rather than into Ubuntu.

I can still boot into Windows by selecting it in the boot manager but if I do nothing the computer goes into GRUB.

What I tried

1) I tried boot repair but the problem persists. This is the output of the repair process.

2) parted

sudo parted /dev/sda unit s print
Model: ATA ADATA SP600NS34 (scsi)
Disk /dev/sda: 500118192s
Sector size (logical/physical): 512B/512B
Partition Table: gpt
Disk Flags: 

Number  Start     End        Size       File system  Name                          Flags
 1      2048s     1023999s   1021952s   ntfs         Basic data partition          hidden, diag
 2      1024000s  1228799s   204800s    fat32        EFI system partition          boot, esp
 3      1228800s  1261567s   32768s                  Microsoft reserved partition  msftres
 4      1261568s  89327144s  88065577s  ntfs         Basic data partition          msftdata

Parted could not see the partition with my ubuntu installation so I tried to rescue starting from +1 sector after the fourth partition but to no result:

sudo parted
GNU Parted 3.2
Using /dev/sda
Welcome to GNU Parted! Type 'help' to view a list of commands.
(parted) rescue                                                           
Start? 89327145
End? 500118191                                                            
(parted)

3) testdisk: first level analysis could not find any partition, so I did the deeper search. Here is the result

TestDisk 7.0, Data Recovery Utility, April 2015
Christophe GRENIER <grenier@cgsecurity.org>
http://www.cgsecurity.org

Disk /dev/sda - 256 GB / 238 GiB - CHS 31130 255 63

The harddisk (256 GB / 238 GiB) seems too small! (< 12 TB / 11 TiB)
Check the harddisk size: HD jumpers settings, BIOS detection...

The following partitions can't be recovered:
   Partition               Start        End    Size in sectors
  Linux Swap              89606136 25289942743 25200336608
   MS Data                257078856  656388551  399309696
   MS Data                257079752  656389447  399309696
   MS Data                257082240  656391935  399309696
   MS Data                257082400  656392095  399309696
   MS Data                257083096  656392791  399309696
   MS Data                257084352  656394047  399309696
   MS Data                257085056  656394751  399309696
   MS Data                257086456  656396151  399309696
   MS Data                257086592  656396287  399309696

[ Continue ]
SWAP2 version 2674814663, pagesize=8192, 12 TB / 11 TiB

In the following screen I get a list of partitions (or at least I think they are). I checked some of them with P, which allows me to see the files contained in each. I think I identified my root partition

 D MS Data                     2048    1023999    1021952
 D MS Data                  1023999    2045950    1021952
 D MS Data                  1024000    1228799     204800 [NO NAME]
 D MS Data                  1024006    1228805     204800 [NO NAME]
 D MS Data                  1261568   89327144   88065577
 D MS Data                  6173667    6179840       6174
 D MS Data                  6179840    6186013       6174 [Boot]
 D MS Data                  6179859    6186032       6174
 D MS Data                  6186032    6192205       6174 [Boot]
 D MS Data                  6186051    6192224       6174
 D MS Data                  6192224    6198397       6174 [Boot]
 D MS Data                  6192243    6198416       6174
 D MS Data                  6198416    6204589       6174 [Boot]
 D MS Data                  6204624    6207503       2880 [EFISECTOR]
 D MS Data                  6207504    6210383       2880 [EFISECTOR]
 D MS Data                 17739774  417049469  399309696
 D MS Data                 17739776  417049471  399309696
 D MS Data                 22864947   22871120       6174
 D MS Data                 22871120   22877293       6174 [Boot]
 D MS Data                 78493568   78496447       2880 [EFISECTOR]
 D MS Data                 81325576   81328455       2880 [EFISECTOR]
 D MS Data                 81328456   81331335       2880 [EFISECTOR]
 D MS Data                 86914272   86917151       2880 [EFISECTOR]
 D MS Data                 89327144  177392720   88065577
 D MS Data                 89327614  500117501  410789888
 D MS Data                 89327616  500117503  410789888    // this is where my root folder is
 D Linux Swap              89606144   93800431    4194288
 D MS Data                154662036  154666963       4928 [NO NAME]
 D MS Data                222556160  305313791   82757632
 D MS Data                237681520  237684399       2880 [EFISECTOR]
 D MS Data                299342267  299345146       2880 [NO NAME]
 D MS Data                305313791  388071422   82757632
 D MS Data                316486379  316489258       2880 [NO NAME]
 D MS Data                316486403  316489282       2880 [NO NAME]
 D MS Data                332211579  332214458       2880 [NO NAME]
 D MS Data                395771312  395774191       2880 [EFISECTOR]
 D MS Data                395774192  395777071       2880 [EFISECTOR]
 D MS Data                417052670  500117501   83064832
 D MS Data                417052672  500117503   83064832
 D MS Data                468003251  468006130       2880 [NO NAME]
 D MS Data                468004147  468007026       2880 [NO NAME]
 D MS Data                471783563  471786442       2880 [NO NAME]

Here is the full log (note that I ran the deep search twice).

Should I just try to change that partition characteristics from D=deleted to P=primary?

Are there any other partitions I should recover? When I try to visualize file in many of them (like the preceding one) I only get this message: Can't open filesystem. Filesystem seems damaged.

Or should I just give up and reinstall everything or is there still some hope?

  • What you're seeing indicates that GRUB could not load its config file. – Daniel B Feb 19 at 10:03
  • Any idea how to address that? Is the config file in my / partiiton? If yes, should I recover that first? – Fede9390 Feb 19 at 10:25

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