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When trying to install Pop!_OS, the installer gives on error about halfway through the process. It says I can find what went wrong in the tmp folder but there is nothing in there.

I have also tried to install normal Ubuntu 19.04 but that also didn't work. That installer said that grub2 couldn't install, but when rebooting to try again, grup2 appeared to have been installed, still the installer did not work. I have found other people asking questions about the installation of Ubuntu on this laptop, but couldn't find anything that helped.

I'm new to Ubuntu and Linux in general so if you have any ideas that might resolve my problems please do help me.

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    "again grup2 appeared to have been installed, still the installer did not work". Did the GRUB menu show then? Commented Aug 23, 2019 at 14:38
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    Acer Spin 5 Ubuntu 17.04 Needs Acer password & trust askubuntu.com/questions/908854/… Most Acer need UEFI update & "trust" setting on ubuntu UEFI boot entry. You do need to be installing in UEFI boot mode & have ESP - efi system partition. askubuntu.com/questions/627416/…
    – oldfred
    Commented Aug 23, 2019 at 18:28

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The issue seems to be due to a buggy Bios that was shipped with these laptops. I also have an Acer Spin 1 (sp111-31) and have always had issues getting Ubuntu installed or doing grub updates for new kernels.

The issue along with workarounds are described here: https://gist.github.com/volcanoauthors/c7c9480dc78f1ba55d589d2125db4832

I tried updating my Spin 1 SP111-31's bios from the version that was shipped with the laptop (v1.02) with the latest from acer.com (v1.11). I used the feature where they ask for your laptop's serial number and got directed to https://www.acer.com/za-en/support/product-support/SP111-31/NX.GL5EA.004/downloads. You probably want to do the same (insert your serial number) to avoid getting a potentially incompatible BIOS.

The bad news is that the solutions for flashing BIOS without Windows all looked complicated and scary, so I gave in, and did a sacrificial Windows 10 install just to flash the bios. That went off without a hitch, simply unzipped the downloaded file and ran the executable. I did use the WoeUSB tool from the webupd8 ppa to create bootable windows install media in linux using the ISO I downloaded from Microsoft. Remember, you can install Win10 without creating a MS account if your system is not connected to the internet while installing.

The good news is that the new BIOS seems to fix the problem -- I can now install Ubuntu using the default installer with no further manual hacks, and grub updates normally when I install new kernels.

NB!!

Obviously installing windows will or may trash your system, so make backups and be sure that you know how to restore them. Or physically put a different drive into the laptop for windows, which is what I did.

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