Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have a Dual-Boot HP laptop, with Windows 7 Home Premium and Ubuntu 12.04 installed. I messed up a little with Windows and I had to restore my system to factory configurations by using a backup disc I created using the manager.

But when the Recovery Manager finishes copying all the files to the HD, it tells me that it has to reboot the machine SEVERAL TIMES in order to get the default OS and drivers installed. But when it first reboots, it automatically boots into the GRUB manager and tells me to select an OS to boot from, AND WINDOWS DOESN'T APPEAR.

So, my question is: Is there any way to disable Ubuntu from booting first so that it lets the Recovery Manager to reinstall the files? Or do I have to uninstall Ubuntu completely? If it is the last option, will I still be able to start the Recovery Manager WITHOUT any OS? Or is my machine perpetually doomed?

Any explanation or links to tutorials will be really appreciated.

BTW, Ubuntu starts without any problem, it seems that re-formatting the hard drive doesn't affect it -.-

share|improve this question

Hmm. This is odd. Technically, GRUB should have been overwritten with the Windows Boot loader. Anyway, GRUB is probably confused because of your OS restore. Um, the best thing I can offer is to try this:

If Windows has a proper presence on your hard drive(s), using this tool should allow GRUB to fix itself and add it back to the boot menu. Otherwise, you will need to do a clean (read: install windows from scratch, NOT FROM A RESTORE DISC), make sure you partition enough space for both Win and Ubuntu, and then install Ubuntu once your windows install is complete.

*Not sure If I can put this here, so remove if it violates rules (which it might, sorry)

If you only have Windows restore discs, like the ones that come with the computer, you can obtain a new retail disc image using bit-torrent. As far as I know, as long as you download the same version of windows for which you have a product key for, It's technically not illegal. Anyway, I have a feeling this is violating rules. if it is, my bad, and please edit,

share|improve this answer

Just to add to Ryan's answer, if after restoring or reinstalling Windows you lose your GRUB2 for Linux (which is usually what happens), you don't need to reinstall Ubuntu. Instead, type the following in terminal (using your Live CD):

sudo fdisk -l (to check what partition Linux is in)
sudo mount /dev/sdax /mnt (sdax is your Linux partition - replace x for whatever is appropriate in your case)
sudo grub-install --root-directory=/mnt/ / dev/sda (sda contains all your partitions)
share|improve this answer
Isn't this what Boot-Repair does, only using a GUI? – Gothic_Day May 20 '12 at 18:48
It might be. I don't know for sure. I was addressing the situation in which you have to reinstall Windows anew. – Robert Smith May 21 '12 at 3:35

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.