I've recently discovered Ubuntu and decided to give it a try. I am using a Samsung Series 5 p530u3c-ad1 which comes with a 24gb SSD and a ~500gb HDD, My intention is to set the system files to the ssd and the rest to the HDD. The system works fine if I do a direct install using only the HDD, but if I try using the SSD for the system files the computer doesn't boot-up, I do not know if the SSD is being recognized by the computer, I think so because I could install Ubuntu on it, but it doesn't appear on the boot order or the boot menu. I read some posts and tried using boot-repair which pointed me not to forget to set my system to boot from my SSD, unfortunately I cannot because of the issues mentioned above.

Thanks for your time.

  • you installed / on the SSD drive right? – Anwar Oct 11 '12 at 14:23
  • 2gb swap on SDD, 20gb / on the SSD and /home on the HDD. – Caetano Oct 11 '12 at 14:28

What you could try, is to install the bootloader GRUB2 on the conventional HDD, while having the root (/) partition on the SSD. You probably need to partition your hard drives manually to be able to change this setting (see this screenshot I found here - "Device for Bootloader-Installation"). By having GRUB installed on the HDD, you should be able to tell your BIOS to boot Ubuntu from the HDD, while all system files are loaded from the SSD (More accurately: You'll load approximately 440 Bytes from the HDD before everything else is loaded from the SSD).

It might nevertheless happen, that a driver is required for the SSD, and that GRUB therefore can not access the files on it. In that case, I'm afraid that you might have to put the /boot directory on a separate partition on the HDD (I'd say at least 200 MB in size - Ubuntu keeps some outdated kernels there in case an update goes wrong). This can be easily done by manually partitioning your hard drives using the normal ubuntu installer. By this, still most system data will be loaded from the SSD, only the kernel (approx 5 MB) and the initial ram disk (approx 15 MB) will be loaded from the HDD.

  • As you pointed out, the ssd is connected to the motherboard through PCI-E SATA, and it seems that the motherboard doesn't support direct boot, I am using a similar solution, except that the boot partion is on a pendrive. I am sorry for the late response, just want to keep the solution archived if more people have the same problem. – Caetano Oct 23 '12 at 6:59

Since you have more than one disk, you need to select the boot disk from BIOS menu. Because if the grub bootloader was installed on the second disk and your BIOS boot order is to boot from 1st disk, the OS in 2nd disk won't be recognized.

To select the boot device order, Press F12 (on most motherboard) or F2 or some other key. Look for a message like "Press X (or something) key to enter Boot menu". I think you should permanently change the boot device priority by changing BIOS boot order. change the SSD as first device.

  • I don't think the bios is recognizing the SSD, one thing that I've forgot to mention, I've also tried installing ubuntu only at the SSD and it didn't work. The devices that appear are: SATA CD, USB CD, USB FDD, USB HDD, NETWORK AND SATA HDD: Hitachi hts545050a7e380. – Caetano Oct 11 '12 at 14:41
  • that is what i was saying. You need to change the order – Anwar Oct 11 '12 at 14:42
  • The BIOS must be recognizing the SSD; otherwise you would have a hard time installing Ubuntu onto it, surely? :) – nfirvine Oct 11 '12 at 17:09
  • Not necessarily. It depends on the way the SSD is connected. If it's SATA, then it should work of course. Nevertheless, there are other types of SSDs, for instance such that are plugged into a PCI express slot. These usually show up as both, a PCI-E SATA controller and a harddrive connected to it. Thing is, that many mainboards can not boot from PCI-Express. On the other hand, the SSD is visible to any operating system that comes with an appropriate driver. – soulsource Oct 11 '12 at 18:48

In my experience, BIOSes usually have a boot order that goes something like this:

  • DVD
  • USB
  • Hard drive

There's generally a second section to adjust the order of the hard drives, which is probably by default the SATA port order. So two solutions: reorder the drives physically, or look around more in your BIOS. If you can find out who makes it and a manual, I'd be happy to help find it.

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