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I have a laptop which had a broken installation of Windows 7 installed on it.

I created a Ubuntu live USB and tried installing Ubuntu over that Windows 7. After a few minutes, I got an error message, so I needed to restart the computer. Now the laptop says that there is no bootable device - reasonable message given that there was an error during Linux installation. However:

  1. BIOS can see my hard drive,
  2. When I start Ubuntu in live mode, and try either sudo fdisk -l or gparted, it doesn't show any hard disk drives.

I am 90% sure that the hard drive is broken, but it is weird that BIOS can see it, and Ubuntu doesn't. How can I be 100% sure about that hard drive? Is there any additional way of detecting my hard drive from Ubuntu?

  • Try typing dmesg | less and peruse the output for any references to disk devices (including the string sda, assuming you've got just the one disk). This might show you an error message or some other clue about what's going wrong. – Rod Smith Nov 2 '13 at 17:34
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Go into your bios and try disabling/enabling AHCI. Reboot, and see if anything changes for you. Don't forget to re-enable/disable it if it doesn't solve your problem though. :)

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