Trying to fix my apt-get upgrade, it always stopped at setting up grub-pc... I read somewhere that I should purge remove my grub2 and then reinstall it.

I did that and after lots of paying around i was able to remove it(wasn't such a smart move). Now i can't get it to install again.

I am trying sudo apt-get install grub-pc and it just stops at "Setting up grub-pc.." and does nothing and because of this it isn't allowing me to do any kind of upgrade or install.. It asks me to sudo dpkg --configure -a which again stops at setting up grub-pc

I think I need help and real soon. Thanks, I really appreciate any inputs here to get my system in place before the next reboot.

  • "does nothing" means it stops and gives a prompt or it hangs and you have to stop it manually? Do you see any messages in /var/log/syslog when this happens? – arrange Feb 9 '11 at 21:04
  • Assuming that you have only one hard drive and it is /dev/sda, could you post the output of sudo grub-install /dev/sda? If it hangs without any output then try sudo grub-install --debug /dev/sda and post the complete output. – Jordan Uggla Mar 10 '11 at 20:18
  • What version of Ubuntu do you have? What is the output of cat /etc/issue? – djeikyb Mar 21 '11 at 0:18

do you have SuperGrubDisk (http://www.supergrubdisk.org/)? This could help troubleshout. If it's more aptitude-related, have you tried stuff like apt-get update or apt-get clean?

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I could recover grub many times by following these instructions at: https://wiki.ubuntu.com/Grub2#Recover

First of all, you must start your system from a live cd. Then


This method of installation uses the chroot command to gain access to the broken system's files. Once the chroot command is issued, the LiveCD treats the broken system's / as its own. Commands run in a chroot environment will affect the broken systems filesystems and not those of the LiveCD.

1) Boot to the LiveCD Desktop (Ubuntu 9.10 or later). Please note that the Live CD must be the same as the system you are fixing - either 32-bit or 64-bit (if not then the chroot will fail).

2) Open a terminal - Applications, Accessories, Terminal. 3) Determine your normal system partition - (the switch is a lowercase "L")

sudo fdisk -l

If you aren't sure, run

df -Th 
Look for the correct disk size and ext3 or ext4 format.

4) Mount your normal system partition:

Substitute the correct partition: sda1, sdb5, etc.

sudo mount /dev/sdXX /mnt  
# Example: sudo mount /dev/sda1 /mnt

5) Only if you have a separate boot partition: sdYY is the /boot partition designation (for example sdb3)

sudo mount /dev/sdYY /mnt/boot 

6) Mount the critical virtual filesystems:

sudo mount --bind /dev  /mnt/dev
sudo mount --bind /dev/pts  /mnt/dev/pts
sudo mount --bind /proc /mnt/proc
sudo mount --bind /sys  /mnt/sys 

7) Chroot into your normal system device:

sudo chroot /mnt 

8) If there is no /boot/grub/grub.cfg or it's not correct, create one using


9) Reinstall GRUB 2:

Substitute the correct device - sda, sdb, etc. Do not specify a partition number.

grub-install /dev/sdX 

10) Verify the install (use the correct device, for example sda. Do not specify a partition):

sudo grub-install --recheck /dev/sdX 
11) Exit chroot: CTRL-D on keyboard 12) Unmount virtual filesystems:

sudo umount /mnt/dev/pts
sudo umount /mnt/dev
sudo umount /mnt/proc
sudo umount /mnt/sys 

13) If you mounted a separate /boot partition:

sudo umount /mnt/boot 

14) Unmount the LiveCD's /usr directory:

sudo umount /mnt/usr 

15) Unmount last device:

sudo umount /mnt 

16) Reboot.

sudo reboot 

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chmod -x /etc/grub.d/README

Then try the upgrade again.

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This question is quite old, but I just ran into this and had a different issue: looks like my partition UUIDs changed around, so I had to run

sudo update-grub

This prompted me to select partitions to install GRUB, and it updated the GRUB installs on the selected partitions (I guess detecting the appropriate UUIDs in the process). Following that

sudo dpkg --configure -a

successfully ran to completion.

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