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Tzuriel
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Joined: 01 Jun 2004
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2015 5:28 am    Post subject: BIOS boot using GPT Reply with quote

I have an SSD drive w/ a new install on it. I have partitioned it almost like the handbook for the first two partitions. My partitions are setup as:

/dev/sda1 - bootloader, 2M, BIOS boot partition
/dev/sda2 - vfat, 128M, Boot partition
/dev/sda3 - LUKS/LVM, Rest of disk, Root partition

The problem is, the machine I currently have (about 6 yrs old) does not support GPT. But I've been building this install to support GPT because I will move the drive to a new machine w/ GPT support in 1 month.

Should I be able to get this machine w/ a regular BIOS to boot this drive which is setup for GPT? Or make it work w/ minor changes?
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Keruskerfuerst
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2015 12:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You should inform about MSDOS partition table.
You can install your system without GPT, when you create less than 8 partitions.
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Buffoon
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2015 1:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You can boot your GPT disk using BIOS, some crappy BIOS'es require MBR boot flag though, you can have that with GPT, too. There can be protective MBR even on GPT disks.
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frostschutz
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2015 2:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

some old bioses expect a bootable flag in the partition table

Code:
parted /dev/disk disk_set pmbr_boot on


Quote:

/dev/sda1 - bootloader, 2M, BIOS boot partition
/dev/sda2 - vfat, 128M, Boot partition


vfat is normally used only for EFI / ESP boot - if you designated sda2 to be esp, that won't work with old bios, you need regular grub with bios boot partition.

if your sda2 is a regular /boot partition that's fine, if you thought you could use esp, that's your problem
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Logicien
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 21, 2015 6:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you don't want to touch your Gpt partionned disk, you can create an independant media like a Usb key, an Sd card or a Cd/Dvd with a bootloader in for Bios mode. Than your Bios will be able to boot that media and the bootloader to load Linux and his initramfs. The rest is done by Linux who can deal with your Gpt disk.

Of course, your Bios must be able to boot one of those medias.
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