I expect there are several reasons this could be problematic. I could only come up with one: incompatible grub-mkconfig. It kind of feels like compiling on one OS for use on a different OS. However, in this case, it could work since I believe the output is a text .cfg file. I don't know if the different versions of grub-mkconfig would produce incompatible results (Ubuntu provides version 2.02~beta2-36ubuntu3.20 whereas SystemRescueCD provides version 2.02).

I would like to not have to reinstall GRUB and I would like to be able to run grub-mkconfig from SystemRescueCD. It would be a bonus to be able to run it on Ubuntu as well but it is not necessary.


I have installed Ubuntu 16.04 in a VM with GRUB installed in a separate partition mounted as /boot. I have also installed SystemRescueCD in yet another partition. I modified /etc/grub.d/40_custom to create a menu entry per the instructions found at Installing SystemRescueCd on the disk, ran grub-mkconfig -o /boot/grub/grub.cfg. I can switch between the two installs and everything runs as expected.

To accomplish this, I moved /etc/grub.d and /etc/default/grub to /boot/grub while booted in Ubuntu (I made a small change in /etc/default/grub I want to keep -- I'm willing to abandon this change). Then I did a bind mount from both of these to their original locations and made those bind mounts persistent in /etc/fstab.

In installed SystemRescueCD on a third partion. I also did a backing store so I can modify SystemRescueCD following these instructions. I mounted /boot over the /boot mounted by default in SystemRescueCD (is this problematic because of the squashfs mount of the SystemRescueCD compressed image? It seems to work since I accomplished the mount after SystemRescueCD was fully launched). Then I bind-mounted the two grub locations described in the previous paragraph. All of this was made persistent in /etc/fstab

At this point everything is still working. But when I run grub-mkconfig on SystemRescueCD I get the error "failed to get canonical path of none" as described in this post. (I thought this post was my answer but we diverge in that I only have one /boot mounted). I also tried mounting the root file system for Ubuntu and ran its grub-mkconfig (scares me but I tried anyway) with the same result.

Does anyone know how I can get this approach working? If not, what is the smallest divergence from what I'm doing to get set up so I can have Ubuntu installed and rescue partition installed on a separate partition from which I can also modify GRUB?

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