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My machine was running Mint 15 KDE 64-bit (GPT partitioning, EFI bootloader without 'secure boot'), and I wanted to try Mint 16 before committing to it. So I installed it into another partition and told it to put GRUB into /dev/sda6 instead of /dev/sda.

I then ran the Ubuntu boot-repair tool on my Mint 15 setup, which detected and added Mint 16 to 15's GRUB menu. So far, so good. I can boot 16 by selecting 15's GRUB from my EFI boot menu (I'm using rEFInd for that), and having that boot 16 for me. But now I want to make 16 directly bootable from rEFInd - so it won't rely on keeping 15 around.

Is boot-repair still the tool for the job?

Mint 16 seems to know how to handle EFI booting directly, so I would expect it to have its own tools for managing the boot process. There's a KDE GRUB2 bootloader tool, but that just seems to manage the grub menu entries in my partition. It does have an option on its 'Advanced' tab to 'Install/Recover Bootloader', but that tool just lists out my partitions - and doesn't show my EFI partition. I guess, because I didn't set up EFI booting at install time, I also don't have /boot/efi mounted.

Any advice on how to proceed?

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1 Answer 1

You're advised to read EFI bootloader principles -- this should help you understand that installing a bootloader into MBR or a partition's boot sector is not going to do anything when booting in EFI mode. You basically want to establish or reuse an existing ESP (EFI System Partition) on a GPT partitioned disk and to store all of your bootloaders in its subdirectories.

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My purpose in installing grub in the partition was specifically to avoid EFI naming conflicts with the old Linuxmint and ubuntu bootloaders I already had there. This was a 'try before you buy' installation. I didn't intend to actually use the grub bootloader in the partition - that was just the only other choice given. Again, I'm using Mint 15's grub to boot Mint 16 now. But now that I'm satisfied Mint 16 works, I'd like to install an EFI bootloader for it. I would've thought there was a tool in Mint to do that, but I can't find one that looks like it will do the job right. –  littlenoodles Feb 18 at 19:04
    
By the way, I had read in a Mint 16 review that installing its EFI bootloader would overwrite the /boot/EFI/ubuntu. If installing grub in the partition doesn't work at all, it would be better if the installer gave you a chance to pick an efi subdirectory to install into. In that case, I'd have just called it efi/mint16, and been fine. rEFInd would've found that and offered to use it. –  littlenoodles Feb 18 at 19:11

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