I recently bought a shiny new Lenovo Yoga 2 Pro and I want to dual boot it with Ubuntu for studying purposes. Its built-in OS is Windows 8.1 and it has a 256GB SSD.

I've made a separate 90GB partition just for Ubuntu and a live USB to install it.

The first time everything seemed to work great, I solved the wifi issued by blacklisting ideapad_laptop, the installation went flawlessly and Ubuntu worked fine.

When I got up the next morning and turned on my laptop it booted into Windows right away without ever showing the GRUB menu. So I tried to reset, and checked my partitions with the Disk Manager and everything looked fine. Since I couldn't find a solution online I went ahead and formatted the partition to try and install again. This time and every time since, the installation was aborted and I got a fatal error saying:

Unable to install GRUB in /dev/sda
Executing `grub-install /dev/sda` failed.
This is a fatal error.

Can anyone please suggest a solution to this problem? If any further information is needed I would be happy to provide it. Thanks.

When installing I get the following in details:

ubuntu kernel: [ 1946.372741] FAT-fs (sda2): error, fat_get_cluster: invalid cluster chain (i_pos 0).
ubuntu grub-installer: error: Running 'grub-install --force failed.
  • possible duplicate of Ubuntu on Lenovo Yoga 2 Pro
    – rubo77
    May 26, 2014 at 9:31
  • 1
    In addition the the answers below, what ended up finally getting the grub partition to install correctly again for me was, when manually formatting partitions, creating a partition formatted as UEFI and selecting that as the destination for grub. I was otherwise following the instructions on this answer.
    – Milo P
    May 6, 2015 at 20:18
  • I solved it on HP probook x360 using: sudo add-apt-repository ppa:yannubuntu/boot-repair sudo apt-get update sudo apt-get install -y boot-repair && boot-repair Jul 28, 2022 at 14:28

13 Answers 13


I just had this problem installing Ubuntu 14.04 from a USB stick to a hard drive.

The problem was the USB stick was /dev/sda, installing to the hard drive /dev/sdb

Even though the installer knew to install to /dev/sdb, it then tried to install grub to the MBR on /dev/sda, and failed. The workaround was to go back to the menu, try again, say NO to automatically install to MBR of first hard drive and manually tell it /dev/sdb.

Then everything worked.

  • Can you explain what you mean by "the USB stick was dev/sda"? Jan 12, 2016 at 23:07
  • 2
    Different drives can be mounted to any /dev/sd? directory. It is possible for a flash drive to be mounted under /dev/sda. Jan 14, 2016 at 3:01
  • 12
    how did you manually tell it /dev/sdb ?
    – AaA
    Dec 12, 2018 at 17:42
  • 2
    what AaA says, HOW DO YOU DO THAT
    – Hobbamok
    Jul 14, 2020 at 14:25
  • 1
    @Hobbamok I just ran sudo grub-install /dev/sdb
    – mchid
    Jan 5, 2022 at 20:28

I finally got it working, not sure which of the following did the trick but I:

  1. Disabled Lenovo Fast Boot in BIOS.
  2. Disabled Secure Boot in BIOS.
  3. Booted from Live USB.
  4. In boot menu Added backlight=vendor in Try Ubuntu configuration text just before quiet splash.
  5. Chose Try Ubuntu.
  6. In terminal ran sudo rmmod ideapad_laptop to enable wifi.
  7. Ran installation and chose to install updates during installation.
  8. EFI partition was selected automatically so I assigned 9700MB for swap space and 80GB for Ubuntu.
  9. After installation completed added backlight=vendor to /etc/default/grub before quiet splash and then ran sudo update-grub.
  10. Blacklisted ideapad_laptop to enable wifi.
  11. Works fine so far. Thanks to everyone for the help!
  • There doesn't seem to be an option for adding anything to any configuration these days (step 4). But then again this answer is nine years old...
    – OZ1SEJ
    Dec 8, 2023 at 9:56

I got the same error while installing Ubuntu 20.04. Turned out that I had created "logical" instead of "primary" partitions during the installation process for both my EFI and root partition. I ran the installation again, this time configuring both partitions as a "primary" partition, and the error was gone this time.

  • Same, although no option for logical. I selected "Install over 19.04" May 3, 2020 at 23:02
  • 1
    If you select "Do something else" (or something like that) instead of "Install over 19.04 during the setup process you get to a screen where you can configure your partitions. Here you can remove the partition that is currently used for 19.04 and create a new root partition. I also had to create an EFI partition (I used 256MB). May 5, 2020 at 8:09
  • Thanks; that worked. May 6, 2020 at 11:39

I had a similar problem. What I did was to leave the installation as it was, then I made sure my drive was in UEFI mode and booted from a live CD and installed boot-repair.

To do this I had to add the yannubuntu repository and then download it with apt-get. This was done the following way:

sudo apt-add-repository ppa:yannubuntu/boot-repair
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install boot-repair

Then, when the program was launched, I checked all the options in Advanced Options > Main Options and clicked Apply.

  • 1
    Installing Ubuntu 20, the first command listed here responds with "Cannot add PPA: 'ppa:~yannubuntu/ubuntu/boot-repair'. ERROR '~yannubuntu' user or team does not exist.
    – Curtis
    Aug 4, 2020 at 18:40

I had this issue when installing Ubuntu (not dual-boot) in my new build. None of the boot options described above would work for me.

I had to disconnect my SSD and all USB devices so that Ubuntu would only recognize the 1T HDD for installation.

  • This worked for me on a dual boot system. Not much of an explanation, but as far as solutions go, yours worked for me and is very simple. May 11, 2018 at 22:57

I don't have a Lenovo Yoga but I had the same issue on my desktop. It has SSD and HDD drivers, it was listed like this:

SATA#1 HDD /dev/sda
SATA#2 SSD /dev/sdb

As always I'm trying to install the OS on my SSD. The installer is installing Ubuntu (or Linux Mint) on /dev/sdb but then is trying to install GRUB on /dev/sda. That is a problem.

The solution was to swap the SATA connections, like this:

SATA#1 SSD /dev/sda
SATA#2 HDD /dev/sdb
  1. Check installation media for corruption
  2. Check BIOS and disable Secure boot
  3. Disable Lenovo fast boot

I assume you are installing in UEFI mode, so it might be nescessary to unlock System lock in BIOS. If neither works, I would assume that problem lies in dual boot. I myself am running Ubuntu on Y2P as I type without any problems.

As for blacklisting ideapad_laptop module, you may want to check github.com/pfps/yoga-laptop, as there are some Y2P specific drivers. Still work in progres tho.

  • Thanks for your reply, What do you mean by unlocking system lock in BIOS?
    – vicban3d
    May 3, 2014 at 10:05

Ran into this very issue while installing on a Poweredge with scsi raid. I found that pulling out the USB drive prior to installing GRUB did the trick.

  • Trying to do this crashed the installer for me.
    – B T
    Nov 29, 2021 at 1:23

I have the same laptop and for me everything works fine - but I installed the grub loader into the already existing EFI partition, which had the index 2 at the end of its name - it certainly wasn't the sda partition though, which was chosen by default. (So I chose my partition for installation above and below, there was the possibility to change the partition for grub installation.) I used an SD card for installation and started it in UEFI mode, because Windows 8.1 was pre-installed that way, too. (I'm sorry if I'm expressing this in a wrong way, but I only know about all this from reading in different forums before installing Ubuntu 14.04 about three days ago.) Anyway, everything works fine if you do it this way. Start installation medium in UEFI mode, choose the partition freed for the installation, install grub into the existing EFI partition.

Oh, and also, I didn't really have to change anything in the BIOS, I had disabled fast boot before and left it that way. It automatically changed something else, I can look that up again, if you want to know.


I had a plethora of devices on a bare install and got this on 12.04 (last alternate manual install). Rather than track down where you specify to GRUB, I just acquiesced and moved the boot SSD to the sata-0 port so it would show up as sda.

  • Someone should clarify whether Lenovo Yoga 2 Pro has actually two SATA slots for swapping the storage disk's position. I searched Yoga 2 Pro has only one SATA slots, so this answer is unlikely?
    – user37165
    Dec 1, 2015 at 10:37

This problem occured when i tried to give new life to my VERY old hp pavilion dm4. It said it couldn't install grub and none of the buttons to do anything worked. I freaked out, and force shutdown my computer in the MIDDLE of installation. Luckily, I was able to boot on to the pen drive again. I later figured out that the pen drive had been pulled out a little bit, causing the installer to go nuts. It turned out for me it was a really simple little solution.


I had the same problem when installing Ubuntu 15.10 desktop (dual boot on separate partition in Lenovo G40-45 laptop where Windows 10 is already installed and activated).

I had already disabled secure boot (as per my earlier experiences with dual boot - Linux and Windows).

Finally I decided that I would try with secure boot enabled (as I expected things to have improved since 14.xx). AND IT WORKED!!! -- without any other adjustments (and without internet connection).

(I installed Windows 10 while secure boot was disabled and then installed Ubuntu with secure boot enabled).

  • 1
    Use LVM option, everything works fine... Sep 27, 2017 at 14:50

It can't be /dev/sda itself, it have to be some partiton of it. As usual windows make one NTFS, one recovery and one UEFI for boot parition. We have to first identify this UEFI boot partition as to get dual boot working.

My bios is of ASRock. This is how I was able to make it grub install for dual booting.

I think issue was I was trying to use just usb as bootable in the bootable drive options. Once I chose usb uefi as bootable, I saw immediate change in partitions seen on parition layout GUI.

I was able to see uefi windows boot manager partition at /dev/sda2, (which I identified from windows disk partitons as the one with EFI layout), this was not shown when I was choosing usb without uefi option as bootable drive. I chose this uefi partition as boot partition for my install.

After that grub installed on windows boot manager partition and it and dual boot started working.

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