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I recently accidentally deleted my Ubuntu partition. When I rebooted the computer, I got the dreaded grub rescue> prompt. I thought, "simple fix, boot an ubuntu CD and add a new MBR". However, my BIOS will somehow not let me access any menus with any keys specified by my PC manufacturer (MSI). I think this is something to do with a fast boot mode or something, because I don't see a MSI logo on boot, so it may be skipping POST.

I need a way to boot an Ubuntu LiveCD from grub or to boot the Windows partition. Nothing I have tried have worked. I tried listing the contents of all the drives provided by "ls", but GRUB can't read any of them.

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Did you try the del key, immediately on powerup? – To Do Nov 25 '12 at 21:21
Yes, many times. I tried loads of keys. Holding, mashing, single press, nothing worked. – Matt Randell Nov 25 '12 at 21:39
Worst case scenario, I may have to buy a USB hdd enclosure and replace the MBR with another computer. – Matt Randell Nov 25 '12 at 22:06
When I had a Windows XP disk in the drive but did not press anything, it would find the Windows installation. – Martin Ueding Nov 26 '12 at 13:18

There are different combinations on different BIOS versions:

  • AMI [DEL]-Key after boot
  • Award [CTRL][ALT][ESC] or [DEL].
  • Phoenix [CTRL][ALT][ESC] or [CTRL][ALT][S] or [CTRL][ALT][Insert]
  • Or [F2]

Maybe you try these combinations to start your bios.

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I'm not seeing any MSI logo or BIOS info prompt on startup; as I said maybe it is locked into some strange fast boot that doesn't check for keypresses properly? I tried you suggestions and many more. – Matt Randell Nov 26 '12 at 18:31
Maybe I should open it up and remove the CMOS battery for a bit; would that help? It would reset the BIOS settings, so maybe it would allow me in. – Matt Randell Nov 26 '12 at 18:47

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