I'm trying to install 64-bit Debian stable on a Lenovo Thinkpad. When I get to the installation step that installs the bootloader, I get this message:
An installation step failed. You can try running the failing item again from the menu, or skip it and choose something else. The failing step is: Install the GRUB boot loader on a hard disk
Going back to the menu and selecting LILO gives me the same error. The installation log says
May 1 13:24:23 main-menu: WARNING **: Configuring 'grub-installer' failed with error code 1 May 1 13:24:23 main-menu: WARNING **: Menu item 'grub-installer' failed. May 1 13:24:28 main-menu: INFO: Menu item 'lilo-installer' selected May 1 13:24:28 main-menu: WARNING **: Unable to set title for fdisk-udeb. May 1 13:24:28 main-menu: WARNING **: Configuring 'lilo-installer' failed with error code 1 May 1 13:24:28 main-menu: WARNING **: Menu item 'lilo-installer' failed.
I'm not using LVM or RAID. So far, I've tried
Disabling UEFI boot and using legacy boot instead. The error still occurs, with both GRUB and LILO.
Following the instructions on this question and running
parted /dev/nvme01 set 1 bios_grub on
from TTY2, but I get an error that says
parted not found. On my system
/dev/nvme01is the only hard disk
Check for hardware errors. When I first purchased the system I ran all the available hardware tests, both from within the BIOS and from within Windows, and it passed all of them. I'm assuming that means the hardware isn't malfunctioning.
Per this thread that had a similar error, albeit with LVM, I tried redoing the partitioning with a small
/bootpartition at the beginning, formatted with
ext2. Same error.
Switching to TTY4 to look at the installation output, I also see the error
chroot: can't execute 'grub-probe': No such file or directory
Searching for information on that turns up this thread and this bug report related to GRUB, but a) those are old, and b) I've run through the installation up to this point over a dozen times now and I get the error every time, so it doesn't seem like a one-off thing.
I've used Gparted to check that the hard disk is completely empty.
Secure boot is disabled in the BIOS.
I've run the installation using the full DVD and the netinstall CD; both are booted from USB, but the problem persists.
I was able to successfully create an
msdos partition table and three partitions (for
swap) on the drive in the previous installation step, so I don't know why GRUB suddenly can't write to the drive.
How do I fix this and get Debian installed? As of now, the (brand new!) system is completely unusable because I can't get an OS on it.
Could part of the problem be that Debian/parted recognizes the disk incorrectly? It says the disk is 512.1 GB, which is true in the sense that the specs say 512 GB and that's what is advertised, and it will let me allocate all 512 GB to various partitions. However, if I load it in Gparted, the actual disk space is closer to 476 GB, but I assumed that's just the usual 1024 vs 1000 stuff.
(I also posted a version of this question on the Debian forums, so I'll update my question with anything important from that thread and vice versa.)