I am new to Linux and this is my first time trying to install Ubuntu. Six hours in, and I have not yet succeeded. Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.

I am trying to install Ubuntu on a partition on my Lenovo Thinkpad, which is already running Windows 7 on a separate partition. I have a liveCD which I burnt using the ISO supplied from Ubuntu. Everything seems to start off smoothly, but about 20 minutes into the installation, I get the message:

executing 'grub-install/dev/mmcblk0' failed. This is a fatal error.

The installer gives me no choice but to exit.

I read that some people had luck changing some options in their BIOS, such as turning off quick boot. Unfortunately my BIOS doesn't give me any options like that. When I got to the boot section, it only offers that I change the priority order.

I've read through many answers online, but they all seem to be for people trying to dual-boot off Windows 8, or for people trying to install Ubuntu fresh with no other OS.

I've also tried using sudo grub-install from the Ubuntu Live Desktop, hoping to manually install grub, but I got this message:

failed to get canonical path of /cow.

I tried using chroot:

sudo mount /dev/sda /mnt
sudo chroot /mnt
sudo update-grub2

But I get the same message still.

I also tried reading the dual-boot guide, as recommended in this answer:


However I did not read anything in that guide that helped me with this problem.

I've heard that some folks had some luck formatting and re-creating the target partition so I am going to do that now, but only because I don't know what else to do.

Is there a way to complete the installation without GRUB and then manually install it later?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.


I found the solution.

When first installing Linux, I am asked where I want to install the BootLoader (on the partition screen), and the default selection is the live disk itself. I changed that to the drive (SDA), and that did the trick. Looks like it was trying to temporarily write files from the disk to the disk, instead of the hard drive.

Hope this is helpful to others.

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