I have two partitions on my hard-didk , I have installed ubuntu on my 1st partition and windows 8 later on another partition.Now i can only boot into windows 8 because it doesn't recognize Ubuntu.

How would i dual boot my PC without using grub . I would like using Windows 8 boot manager as its pretty neat.

This is what i have tried :

I tried using easyBCD but it doesn't work.It causes the boot manager to switch to windows 7 Boot Manager .

EasyBCD creates a C:/NST/AutoNeoGrub0.mbr file .

As EasyBCD was causing the boot manager to switch i created a manual entry to the BCD store uisng windows bcdedit command and point it to the C:/NST/AutoNeoGrub0.mbr file created by EasyBCD. This gave me the Windows 8 Boot-Manager with Ubuntu Entry,but grub is unable to find the root partition.

Is there any other work around or solution for this ?

Any help would be appreciated.

Note: The windows 8 boot Manager is sky blue color interactive menu with mouse and other options and windows 7 boot manager is the normal black and white one where you can only use your keyboard

I don't want to install grub because it would prevent my windows 8 from updating as its a genuine MSDN version and various other reasons

  • whay you want to do that? even if you do it, after selected ubuntu from windows menu, GRUB will reappear again. So you have to do two steps to boot to ubuntu
    – Web-E
    Dec 20, 2012 at 4:13
  • Its fine .. i can set the time out option for grub as 0 so it boots into the default ubuntu kernel
    – Mevin Babu
    Dec 20, 2012 at 5:05
  • It seems the graphical boot menu is some sort of pre bootloader environment. Once you select os, it reboots the system and skip this environment. That is why bcdedit can't do anything. I will try it out. :)
    – Web-E
    Dec 20, 2012 at 5:50
  • @Web-E Thanks mate for taking up interest.Yeah once you select an OS it reboots directly to that OS.Im wondering if i should make a custom mbr file for this?
    – Mevin Babu
    Dec 20, 2012 at 6:01
  • @MevinBabu - this is new to me, that grub obviously prevents Windows 8 from updating itself ?! - I think, after you logged in into Windows 8 - then Windows 8 is still able to check for updates and updates itself after logging out before shutdown - when you end working with your PC/Laptop ?! Apr 10, 2014 at 8:47

3 Answers 3


I just did it in VMPlayer using EasyBCD 2.2. What I did

  1. I installed windows 8 normally using a 20GB parition. Windows also created a system reserved partition.

  2. Boot with ubuntu, created two partition. One for SWAP and one for /. Most important, choose the GRUB location same as the / partition. See pic below (I think I took wrong screenshot, bootloader location should be sda6 in picture),

    ubuntu from windows 8 loader

  3. Now after installation, open up EasyBCD. Goto Add new menu entry, select Linux tab, choose GRUB2 from dropdown and the disk name where we put the GRUb in step 2. Click on Add Entry

    ubuntu from windows 8 loader

  4. Goto BCD deployment, and write MBR ubuntu from windows 8 loader

  5. Now boot and you should get the screen. I restarted several times, every time I got the GUI boot screen. And ubuntu works also.(I forget to change the name step3) ubuntu from windows 8 loader

  • why did u do write MBR ?
    – Mevin Babu
    Dec 20, 2012 at 15:59
  • ok, that step wasn't required I think. Just used information from internet & just be to on safe side.:) bcd edit deployment
    – Web-E
    Dec 20, 2012 at 16:12
  • I tried this without that MBR part but i couldn't boot into ubuntu :| .Grub was unable to find the root disk.
    – Mevin Babu
    Dec 20, 2012 at 16:39
  • you are on uefi? that may be the problem
    – Web-E
    Dec 20, 2012 at 18:35
  • 1
    When you install both boot bootloader and / to same partition, after the last steps, the OS does not load. Even the partition manager suggests to do otherwise.
    – Arda
    Jan 29, 2014 at 22:29

Even if you use EasyBCD to write the option to boot Ubuntu into the Windows Boot Manager, when you try to press the button for Ubuntu (most people anyway) you will get a "Windows Failed to Load" error. In most cases, the only way you can get into Ubuntu after you install it, is to follow these steps:

This assumes that you have Windows 8 installed, and you installed Ubuntu alongside it. It also assumes you are unable to boot Ubuntu after installation and are booted directly into Windows 8. IF YOU MADE A BACKUP OF YOUR BOOT SETTINGS WITH EasyBCD (which you should have) BEFORE YOU CHANGED ANYTHING, RESTORE THE BACKUP BEFORE YOU BEGIN.

  1. Insert the live DVD or live USB, and reboot your computer.

  2. Select Try Ubuntu without installing from the menu that appears.

  3. When Ubuntu loads, open the terminal.

  4. In the terminal type the following commands:

    sudo apt-add-repository yannubuntu/boot-repair  
    sudo apt-get update  
    sudo apt-get install boot-repair  
  5. Once Boot Repair opens, it may or may not alert you that EFI is detected, select OK.

  6. Select Recommended Repair.

  7. You should receive an error that a "Buggy Kernel is Detected" and that you should backup and delete the Windows boot files. Select YES.

  8. Once Boot Repair finishes (it will reinstall and update GRUB) type the following into the Terminal:

    sudo reboot

Now, when you computer reboots, it will probably boot right into GRUB with absolutely no option to boot Windows 8. You can try two things to fix this. The easiest way to get back into Windows is to reboot again, and as soon as you see the OEM splash screen (like on my computer, the Gateway splash screen) press whatever key you must press to enter the Boot Menu (mine was F12). You should see a couple of entries in the Boot Menu. The top one should be Windows Boot Manager. Select it, and you will be directed to Windows. Any of the other options should open GRUB and allow you to boot into Ubuntu. Whenever you want to enter Ubuntu press the key to enter the boot menu while your computer is rebooting, and select the appropriate item from the list depending on what OS you want to use. Thus, your dual boot is fixed. Sometimes you have to go into the UEFI or BIOS settings, and enable an option for the boot menu key press, I did, and a lot of newer computers require it.

Alternatively, there should be an option somewhere in the GRUB menu when it opens called Windows UEFI Manager or Windows EFI Manager, or something to that effect. Selecting that item from the list should boot Windows without any issues.

EasyBCD is pretty much useless in a lot of these newer machines, as it can not really handle UEFI and should not be used until it plays a little nicer with the situation.

This is the only 100% working way to ensure you can dual boot. Opening the boot menu and launching Ubuntu or Windows from there. I tried for 5 days to get my Ubuntu/Windows 8 dual boot working, and this is the only thing that worked 100%.

  • I'm not looking for a solution to boot into ubuntu from grub.I want to boot to ubuntu from windows 8 boot manager.I would suggest you to read the Question or the thread fully.
    – Mevin Babu
    Oct 21, 2013 at 7:40
  • 3
    Wheaton's rule I'm unsure why you downvoted this response as it is nevertheless helpful for anyone in a similar situation. Presumably, you care a lot about the pretty baby blue background, otherwise, there is no need to get so uptight. I, for one, found this response helpful nevertheless.
    – nicefinly
    Jun 15, 2014 at 18:36

For a clean boot of Ubuntu over Windows boot manager on MBR style disks you can chain load either

a) grub boot record or

b) "boot.img" file from grub folder

using a so called "boot sector loader" in Windows 7 or Windows 8.

For detailed steps see Dual-boot Windows 7 and Linux/Unix.

On UEFI and GPT disks chain loading Linux from Windows boot manager seems impossible as boot sectors are not used on UEFI.

Going the other way:

Grub can chain load Windows 7/8 as well as on MBR/BIOS as on GPT/UEFI.

Here we have the problem of Windows updates which can write MBR and destroying Grub boot code there or write to NVRAM and changing UEFI boot order.

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