Installing Ubuntu Studio alongside Windows 10

I recently installed Ubuntu Studio 17.10 Artful Aardvark on a spare USB disk for my son. His computer had Windows 10, but there was no space inside the case for an extra internal disk. I selected the option during the install process to boot Ubuntu Studio with the Windows Boot Manager. But unfortunately, after the installation completed the computer would only ever boot into Windows – there was no Grub menu.

There was plenty of information online about this problem. As usual with these type of problems, some of the information seemed trust worthy, and some not! I thought I would record here what worked for me, in case I ever get stuck again.

It turned out that I had to go into Windows and use the command  line to point the Windows Boot Manager at the right EFI file.

As I didn’t trust the advice at first, I ran the command with the Windows “help” option (which I had forgotten after not using Windows for many years) to find out what the command did:

C:\Windows\system32>bcdedit /?

This showed me the command to investigate what the current setting was:

C:\Windows\system32>bcdedit /enum

Windows Boot Manager


identifier {bootmgr}

device partition=\Device\HarddiskVolume2

path \EFI\Microsoft\Boot\bootmgfw.efi

description Windows Boot Manager

locale da-DK

inherit {globalsettings}

default {current}

resumeobject {9c35ad51-1f6a-11e7-aeb5-f52aab87eca4}

displayorder {current}

toolsdisplayorder {memdiag}

timeout 30

Windows Boot Loader


identifier {current}

device partition=C:

path \Windows\system32\winload.efi

description Windows 10

locale da-DK

inherit {bootloadersettings}

recoverysequence {9c35ad53-1f6a-11e7-aeb5-f52aab87eca4}

recoveryenabled Yes

isolatedcontext Yes

allowedinmemorysettings 0x15000075

osdevice partition=C:

systemroot \Windows

resumeobject {9c35ad51-1f6a-11e7-aeb5-f52aab87eca4}

nx OptIn

bootmenupolicy Standard

I could then see that Windows Boot Manager was still loading the old EFI file (bootmgfw.efi). This gave me the confidence to run the magic command found on the internet to point Windows Boot Manager at the right EFI file:

C:\Windows\system32>bcdedit /set {bootmgr} path \EFI\ubuntu\shimx64.efi

After a brief panic that maybe that the installer had not installed the EFI file with that exact name, or that it had not installed Grub at all, and that I was about to brick my son’s computer (and never here the end of it), I rebooted.

Voila! Grub appeared, and I could boot into both Windows and Ubuntu Studio. Now all I have to do is buy a USB MIDI/Audio interface so we can hook up the computer to his electronic drum kit, and my old Roland keyboard.


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