No Bootable Device Found / Error While Mounting

Help with issues regarding installation of Debian

No Bootable Device Found / Error While Mounting

Postby Olympiq » 2018-10-12 10:25

Hi there,

I'm attempting to install Debian 9 to an Acer Aspire One Cloudbook. I have used Linux & Unix-like OS extremely little, but have made effort to do what research and troubleshooting I could before posting here.

The laptop uses Intel, and was able to connect to my internet network with no apparent issue (once I obtained the correct driver). From, there, everything appeared to download and install correctly, and I received no errors wiping & partitioning the drive.

The issue I'm facing is, after attempting to perform a net install from USB, I'm receiving a No Bootable Device splash. I checked my boot order and settings in the BIOS, but nothing seems unusual there.

I tried using my installation device to investigate in Rescue Mode, and selected the /dev/sda1 device, which only prompted an Error While Mounting message.

My installation media was created with UNetBootin, which I understand can be responsible for some unusual behavior with Debian... but I was surprised because the installation seemed to otherwise run smoothly. So I thought I would check here for any tips before blaming the installation media. Could it be that GRUB was not installed correctly?

I apologize if this is not enough info to diagnose the issue, but if you've got any ideas, I'd be happy to post images/logs that'd be helpful. Thank you.
Last edited by Olympiq on 2018-10-12 11:23, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: No Bootable Device Found / Error While Mounting

Postby p.H » 2018-10-12 10:32

What is the output of fdisk -l ?
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Re: No Bootable Device Found / Error While Mounting

Postby Olympiq » 2018-10-12 11:01

p.H wrote:What is the output of fdisk -l ?

Sorry, could you please instruct me on where to enter that? I tried the GRUB command line that's accessible from the install menu, but it doesn't accept any of the normal commands it should... would this imply GRUB may not have been installed correctly? Or maybe not at all?
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Re: No Bootable Device Found / Error While Mounting

Postby arochester » 2018-10-12 11:09

could you please instruct me on where to enter that?


In a Terminal
Become Root by inputting
Code: Select all
su

It will ask for your password
Input
Code: Select all
fdisk -l

Try to copy and paste the results here.
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Re: No Bootable Device Found / Error While Mounting

Postby Olympiq » 2018-10-12 11:33

In rescue mode, I was able to execute a shell in the installer environment for /dev/mmcblk0p1 since it would not let me execute the shell normally.

I was able to enter fdisk -l, but I'm unsure of how to copy what it's displaying - is there a way to save the output as some kind of log or txt that can saved to an external USB?
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Re: No Bootable Device Found / Error While Mounting

Postby p.H » 2018-10-12 11:55

You can plug and mount a second FAT-formatted USB drive and write the output on it.

Plug the USB drive
Run "dmesg" to see the sd* device name assigned by the kernel. sda should be the installer drive.
If the second USB drive is sdb and has a FAT partition :
Code: Select all
mount /dev/sdb1 /mnt
fdisk -l > /mnt/fdisk.txt
sync
umount /mnt


Or just write it down by hand. It is not that hard. I don't need the exact sector positions.
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Re: No Bootable Device Found / Error While Mounting

Postby debiman » 2018-10-12 14:54

Olympiq wrote:My installation media was created with UNetBootin, which I understand can be responsible for some unusual behavior with Debian... but I was surprised because the installation seemed to otherwise run smoothly. So I thought I would check here for any tips before blaming the installation media. Could it be that GRUB was not installed correctly?

possible.
it's even possible you installed to the wrong device.
the installer called your internal drive /dev/mmcblk0p1, yes? that would make the usb stick /dev/sda, which i usually associated with the first internal hard drive. to avoid confusion, the installer also mentions hardware names and UUIDs - are you sure you installed everything to the right partition(s)?
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Re: No Bootable Device Found / Error While Mounting

Postby Olympiq » 2018-10-12 22:30

possible.
it's even possible you installed to the wrong device.

Thanks for that idea - I was wondering the same thing, but when I did go back to investigate and attempt another install, I made sure to specify the USB could/would not be an available device.
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Re: No Bootable Device Found / Error While Mounting

Postby Olympiq » 2018-10-12 23:38

You can plug and mount a second FAT-formatted USB drive and write the output on it.

This seems to return a Device or resource busy message, so I'll link an image in a little bit (I tried attaching an image, but the forum is giving me an Internal Error).
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Re: No Bootable Device Found / Error While Mounting

Postby Olympiq » 2018-10-13 01:02

Here are what things look like from my end:

https://imgur.com/fWWaNq4
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Re: No Bootable Device Found / Error While Mounting

Postby p.H » 2018-10-13 07:45

Olympiq wrote:This seems to return a Device or resource busy message

According to the output of fdisk,
- mmcblk0 is the internal 32-GB (that's small !) eMMC SSD drive
- sda is a 8-GB USB drive
- sdb is a 4-GB USB drive

You can see which partititions are mounted with the following command :
Code: Select all
df -hT

As both USB drives are FAT formatted, you can write on the one containing the Debian installer, no need to mount another one. Check which directory it is mounted to with the previous command and write files there.

The partition table on mmcblk0 suggests that you did an EFI installation. Not the easiest to debug. Can you explore the contents of the EFI system partition /dev/mmcblk0p1 ?
Code: Select all
mount -r /dev/mmcblk0p1 /mnt
ls -R /mnt >/usb_drive_mount_path/efipart.txt
umount /mnt

(replace "usb_drive_mount_path" with the actual USB drive mount path shown by df)

The next step is to launch a shell on the installed system environment, using root partition /dev/mmcblk0p2.
The installer should suggest to mount the EFI partition too.
Once in the shell, run the following command to get the EFI boot variable list :
Code: Select all
efibootmgr -v >/usb_drive_mount_path/efiboot.txt
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Re: No Bootable Device Found / Error While Mounting

Postby Olympiq » 2018-10-14 09:29

The hard drive is definitely laughably small...


For this command:

Code: Select all
df -hT


Could I ask what 'T' is supposed to denote? I see that 'h' changes the unit of measurement, but 'T' wasn't recognized as a valid command.


I was able to able to view my partitions none the less, but I'm experiencing a different kind of issue now...

When attempting to copy the text to the installation device, I received an error saying the device is a read only file system. Analyzing the device in Windows, using DiskPart, the device did not seem to be marked as 'read only'.

I also attached and mounted another USB device, but received the same error. I guess I should specify I'm running a shell in the installation environment without using a root file system, because when I try to run it through /dev/mmcblk0p1, it won't accept '-R' as valid, and when I try to mount my other USB to write to, it gives invalid argument.
Last edited by Olympiq on 2018-10-14 09:41, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: No Bootable Device Found / Error While Mounting

Postby p.H » 2018-10-14 09:41

df -T is supposed to print the filesystem types.
You can also use "mount" to print the currently mounted filesystems, types and mount options.
If you cannot get to write the output on a USB drive, just write it down by hand. You won't spend more time than trying to figure out how to write files on a USB drive.

Also, post the exact commands that you run and their full result, error message... No vague description.
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Re: No Bootable Device Found / Error While Mounting

Postby Olympiq » 2018-10-14 10:19

Good point about writing it down - I'll try to be more thorough with what I'm entering.

Code: Select all
# mount -r /dev/mmcblk0p1 /mnt
# mount

/dev/sdb1 on /cdrom type vfat (ro,relatime,fmask=0022,codepage=437,iocharset=ascii,shortname=mixed,utf8,errors=remount-ro)
/dev/mmcblk0p1 on /mnt type vfat (ro,relatime,fmask=022,dmask=0022,codepage=437,iocharset=ascii,shortname=mixed,utf8,errors=remount-ro)

# umount /mnt
# exit


Am I assuming correctly that 'ro' refers to read only here?


After mounting to the EFI partition and launching the shell on the installer environment (using root partition /dev/mmcblk0p2):
Code: Select all
# efibootmgr
/bin/sh: efibootmgr: not found
# efiboot
/bin/sh: efiboot: not found
# bootmgr
/bin/sh: bootmgr: not found


Sorry if I didn't understand this last part - I thought the command might work the same way that fdisk also correlates to an fdisk.txt (where removing the .txt makes a valid command).
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Re: No Bootable Device Found / Error While Mounting

Postby p.H » 2018-10-14 14:04

Olympiq wrote:guess I should specify I'm running a shell in the installation environment without using a root file system, because when I try to run it through /dev/mmcblk0p1, it won't accept '-R' as valid

I am surprised that the "ls" command in the installer environment does not support -R (for recursive). Then use ls and use it again on any subdirectory (should be EFI, EFI/BOOT, EFI/debian).

Olympiq wrote:Am I assuming correctly that 'ro' refers to read only here?

Yes. It is not surprising that the FAT partition on the installation media is mounted read only by the installer, as the installer does not need to write on it (and originally it was intended to be on a read-only CD-ROM). The EFI partition on the internal eMMC drive is read-only because of the -r option given to "mount", as we only need to read it and don't want to write accidentally to it.

You should be able to remount the installation media read-write with the following command :
Code: Select all
mount -o remount,rw /cdrom


So to write a the output of a command to a file on the installation media, you should run :
Code: Select all
some_command some_arguments > /media/some_file.txt


IIRC, the df command in the installer environment (from busybox) does not support the -T option. Only the df command in the installed system environment does.

Olympiq wrote:After mounting to the EFI partition and launching the shell on the installer environment (using root partition /dev/mmcblk0p2):

I don't understand. Either you launch a shell in the installer environment and don't select a root partition, or you launch a shell in the installed system environmement and select a root partition. What exactly did you do ?
If you don't know, run "df". If it shows that /dev/mmcblk0p2 is mounted as /, then it means that you are in the installed system environment. Otherwise you are still in the installer environment.

efibootmgr is available only in the installed system environment.

Note that when you are in the installed system environment, you cannot access the installer media through /cdrom. If you want to access it from the installed system environment, you must mount it again on some mount point, say /mnt.
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