i'm a new ubuntu user,and i could use some pointers and some help with some problems i have stumbled across,but first my configuration:

Intel core 2 duo 2.41 ghz; 2 gb Ram ddr2 800 mhz; Nvidia 9600 GT 1gb 128 bit; 3 HDD - 160 Gb Western Digital ; 320 Gb Western Digital ; 1 Tb Western Digital; Asus p5kpl-vm motherboard; (it's a rather old computer i know but this is my desktop)

After having win8 installed and setting up a ubuntu 12.04 LTS install i ran into a couple of problems and it resulted in me deleting everything on the harddrives and trying a fresh ubuntu install, and here is where some of my questions appear:

1.how do i setup all the partitions for all the drives, the only pointers i found after alot of searching on the web were for setting up partitions for only 1 HDD,and that didn't work either...i followed these steps ( http://athurion.hubpages.com/hub/Installing-Ubuntu-1204-LTS-with-customize-partition ) and after installing and reboot i get a black screen that says "error : no such partition grub rescue>" and thats it, i tried installing and running boot repair, but nothing changes,i still get that error and ubuntu doesn't boot (following the steps above i have only partitioned 1 HDD, the 160 Gb one, with 4 Gb partition for swap area and the rest of the available memory for ext4 partition, for my ubuntu install, the other hard drives remaining intact, seen as free space).If someone could help me to a guide on how to partition all my drives and install ubuntu corectly i would be forever grateful.

On the first install i have stumbled upon some other problems as follows: 1. my motherboard has a integrated soundcard (the only one i have available) Realtek Ac97, but after install only my front 2 speakers work (i have a 5.1 sound system that is connected in my 3 jack ports, rear speakers plugged in the aux jack port, mid/subwoofer plugged in the microphone port), i followed another guide that said i should change the alsamixer channels from 2 to 6 (for 5.1), but i don't know if this works as my ubuntu crashed beacuse of my next problem. (any info about this would be very appreciated)

2.Ubuntu asked me to update my Nvidia driver... it gave me a list of possible updates, and being the noob that i am i choose the one that had "(Recommended)" at the end of the line, it asked me for a reboot and after the reboot i got to a screen full of loading commands with one faulty line (Starting load fallback graphics devices [fail]).

These 2 problems can wait a little as for the moment i can't run anything on my desktop. I hope i was explicit enough about my problems and if anyone needs any additional info to help me please respond and i will post any info i can gather from the little that i know, and excuse me if i have any grammatical errors, i'm not a native english speaker and i am still developing my skills, thank you in advance and i sure hope i can fix everything cause i really wanna use and learn more about ubuntu.

With Respects, Isty

Edit: i installed ubuntu from a usb flash i made and it doesn't seem to be any problems with it. (just in case this info helps)


Was Win8 completely erased and are you gonna reinstall it? I'd suggest splitting the smallest HDD evenly between the two and using the other for both as media (like I do).

NVidia + Ubuntu = Bad There's probably a better way, but I'd suggest using a Live CD/USB to back up your files and do yet another fresh install. Make sure you have wired internet plugged up during installation.

  • i erased everything on every hdd... i have a liveUSB, nothing to backup... and i wanna install only ubuntu... internet connection is plugged... i just need like a stept-by-step guide on how to partition my drives from the install menu and to actually make ubuntu boot right... that nasty error is killing me – user238117 Jan 21 '14 at 4:29

So it seems like you killed your nvidia drivers. I assume that after boot, you have a blank screen (and maybe hear the drum sounds).

As this answer may help new linux users during their first install (since failing Nvidia is a common problem), I will be very descriptive in the following explanations.

We'll first go in a shell. What you usually use in Ubuntu is X (or desktop environnement). That's just a nice and sleek graphical interface to interact with your computer. Other than that, you can interact with the computer through a text interface

What to do (paritions)

Installing Ubuntu Alongside a Pre-Installed Windows with UEFI

It treats the issue with pre-installed windows on which you slap over Ubuntu. This direction (windows first, linux second), is usually the easiest get things to work out.

What to do (fix grub)

You will want to install the grub from one of your linux partition, since sometimes, boot-repair fails. Let me explain.

We will first boot from a live-cd, then chroot in your linux partition, then call update-grub. To "chroot" means to make the shell think the root directory is in a different place. It allows terminal access to a partition as if you booted from if. You can use that method to run an apt-get update, too.

  1. Boot from live-usb.

  2. In a terminal (or shell: ctrl+alt+F1), call sudo fdisk -l

  3. Find your linux partition. I will assume your partition is /dev/sda1 from now on, but it may be sdb2 or else

  4. Call sudo mount /dev/sda1 /mnt.

  5. Mount the filesystems too. This allows you to call the partition’s commands while chrooted.:

    mount -t proc none /mnt/proc

    mount -o bind /dev /mnt/dev

    mount -o bind /sys /mnt/sys

Now, just call sudo chroot/mnt, and you're in your partition. We'll install, check and update the grub:

sudo grub-install /dev/sda
sudo grub-install --recheck /dev/sda
sudo update-grub

Note that you only call the drive name (sda) and not the partition name (sda1).

What to do (graphic card)

Once your computer is fully booted, press ctrl+alt+f1 until you see the shell appear. you should see:

Ubuntu 12.04.4 LTS <computer> tty1

<computer> login:

For reference, "tty1" just means you're using shell #1. By default, you have access to 6 independent shells through ctrl+alt+F1-6.

First let's clear all nvidia drivers installed. Call the following commands:

sudo service light-dm stop
sudo apt-get purge nvidia*

The first line stops the graphical interface, in case it was active but failing. The second removes anything Nvidia related, as the asterisk can be anything. Finally, the "sudo" part that precedes the commands just means "superuser do". It allows you do anything to your computer, including irremediably corrupting it. Whenever possible, try not to use sudo, but this case requires it.

Next, we'll install nvidia drivers:

sudo apt-add-repository ppa:ubuntu-x-swat/x-updates
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install nvidia-current nvidia-settings

First line adds a repository where packages can be fetched from. We need to get the drivers from there.

The second line triggers an update: your package list will be checked, and if any discrepancies between available versions and installed versions, they will be downloaded. Note that it only downloads "minor" updates such as bug fixes. Usually, little to no new functionalities are installed by running apt-get update.

The third line installs both the nvidia-current package and the nvidia-settings packages.

From there, call sudo shutdown -r now to trigger a restart.

If it doesn't work

We'll try different versions of the drivers.

sudo apt-get purge nvidia*
sudo apt-get install nvidia-XXX nvidia-settings

Again, remove all nvidia packages and install the new one. From personal experience, XXX can be any of the following: 331, 325, 319, 304. Older versions (like 304 on certain Nvidia models) will not support things like 3D acceleration, so I would recommend trying 331, 325, 319, 304, in that order

If it doesn't work (bis)

Then it means the current drivers don't mix well with your system. We'll trigger a dist-upgrade, then install the drivers again.

sudo apt-get purge nvidia*
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get instal nvidia-current nvidia-settings

The dist-upgrade line will upgrade your whole install to the newest versions of all packages.

  • For now my first problem is this... i have nothing on my computer (empty HDDs) except for a fresh install of Ubuntu 12.04 LTS, nothing more... and i can't boot ir because of an error i get after the first reboot "error : no such partition grub rescue>" ... i booted from the liveUSB and installed and ran boot repair but it doesn't cut it... i still get this error... so my first problem would be partitioning all my HDDs...which have nothing on them... all empty... and making ubuntu boot – user238117 Jan 21 '14 at 3:45
  • after that i'll see if my nvidia drivers work... at the previous install it worked untill i made the driver updates... i don't want to creat a dual boot for now... i just wanna run ubuntu on my desktop... i repeat... i have no data on any HDD... – user238117 Jan 21 '14 at 3:45
  • Edited answer to fix your grub – morphheus Jan 21 '14 at 4:40
  • morpheus... is there any chance u could give me a skype or facebook or any ID that could make it easier for us to chat? – user238117 Jan 21 '14 at 16:20
  • Check my user profile :) But it would be better if we discuss here, in case somebody could use the pointers I'd give you – morphheus Jan 21 '14 at 16:53

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