I recently installed Ubuntu alongside Windows 10 on my Thinkpad. However, some idiot (who didn't know my password) accessed my computer while I was gone and must have messed with something because when I got back and opened my laptop, I had to type in my Bitlocker recovery key.

Now, instead of showing me an option to boot Ubuntu or Windows, it just goes directly to Windows (after the Thinkpad BIOS screen, of course)

This is really weird considering that all the guides on the Internet for uninstalling Ubuntu (that I could find) required a Windows Recovery disc. How can I get back the Ubuntu bootloader?

2 Answers 2


The bootloader used in Linux and Ubuntu specifically is Grub

Boot from Ubuntu live USB , and follow the instructions for live recovery on failed update . It will allow you making changes to the system while booting from live USB. Essential steps are:

  1. Boot the Ubuntu Live CD.
  2. Press Ctrl-Alt-F1
  3. sudo mount /dev/sda1 /mnt
  4. sudo mount --bind /dev /mnt/dev
  5. sudo mount --bind /proc /mnt/proc
  6. sudo mount --bind /sys /mnt/sys
  7. sudo chroot /mnt

Finally , you should be able to run sudo grub-install /dev/sdX where /dev/sdX is your hard drive. If you are not sure which one it is sda or sdb , run the df or lsblk command and check which disk size corresponds to which device.

Sidenote: consider also changing your passwords, just in case someone did break into your OS

  • Any idea on how the person was able to disable the bootloader in the first place? Jun 20, 2016 at 6:02
  • @genealogyxie no idea there, haven't done so myself. I would guess they used Microsoft recovery disk, but that's a blind guess and probably incorrect Jun 20, 2016 at 6:15

You just need to make a bootable USB device. After that choose try ubuntu option. Then download boot repair & do the boot repair.visit this question

After above steps, reboot your system. You will get your boot menu back.


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