HostOnNet Blog

grub-install: warning: this GPT partition label contains no BIOS Boot Partition; embedding won’t be possible.

When installing Ubuntu on 2 TB HDD i got following error.

root@fwhlin:/mnt# grub-install /dev/sdb
Installing for i386-pc platform.
grub-install: warning: this GPT partition label contains no BIOS Boot Partition; embedding won't be possible.
grub-install: error: embedding is not possible, but this is required for cross-disk install.


This is fixed by creating a 2 MB partition on the 2 TB hard disk and setting its flag to “bios_grub”

parted /dev/sdb set 1 bios_grub on

Here “1” is the partition number for the 2 MB partition.

root@fwhlin:~# parted /dev/sdb set 1 bios_grub on
Information: You may need to update /etc/fstab.                           

root@fwhlin:~# parted /dev/sdb print
Model: ATA WDC WD20EZRX-00D (scsi)
Disk /dev/sdb: 2000GB
Sector size (logical/physical): 512B/4096B
Partition Table: gpt

Number  Start   End     Size    File system  Name  Flags
 1      17.4kB  3049kB  3032kB  ext4               bios_grub


Now grub-install worked properly.

root@fwhlin:~# grub-install /dev/sdb
Installing for i386-pc platform.
Installation finished. No error reported.

I set /dev/sdb as first boot device in BIOS and it booted perfectly.

Posted in Ubuntu

  • Tomas Garcia

    wow. thanks for the super simple solution. I cloned a partition and couldn’t get it to boot – this fixed it!

  • Sadaf Noor

    That worked! Thats all I needed! Thanks!

  • Reahlyn Quiamco

    I did this instruction in both /dev/sda & /dev/sdb.
    parted /dev/sda set 1 bios_grub on
    grub-install /dev/sda

    parted /dev/sdb set 1 bios_grub on
    grub-install /dev/sdb

    It works fine. But When I reboot the server, I can’t log in to it now. It just continuously on and off.. Is there any solution for it?
    Thanks for the reply.

  • CryMoarPlz

    Perfect, thanks much!

  • Thanks, worked like a charm!

  • Jeff Dearmin

    Many, many hours spent trying to solve this – set the bios_grub flag and worked. Many, many thanks!

  • Lorenz Leitner

    Thanks man, this did the trick!

  • Caio Vitor

    Man, you have saved all my digital content, I REALLY thank you SO MUCH. God Bless You. 8) 8) 8) 8) 8) 8)

  • Kat Ro

    Can I revert this process ? I killed boot windows 10

  • You will need to use windows 10 CD to rescue, maybe this helps

    I don’t use windows now, so have not tried this. On win 7, i did boot with win CD, then rescue, run some commands like fixboot, fixmbr, don’t know exact. Once that is done, you get windows back, to get Linux back, you need some program to update boot entry. I used

    Hope this still work with Windows 10.

  • icangnggakalaytapicayangmamah

    the best. mfw “Installation finished. No error reported.”

  • Jerther

    Yeah it killed my windows boot too. I can see “Windows boot manager” in the boot device selection, but selecting it does nothing. Looks like it messes UEFI some boot stuff…

  • Gabor

    Debian 8 (jessie) with Dell PERC H700 … thanks, its is killed the boot, I need chroot 🙁
    4TB partition was the problem in my system.

  • Elvis Nobrega

    Ty, it worked

  • Dule

    Thanks a lot bud for this info!

    It did the work for me!

    One thing to mention is for all of you guys recovering these from the rescue system is not to forget to mount the proper partition to /some-folder and then chroot it :

    # mount /dev/sda2 /mount-point
    # mount /dev/sda1 /mount-point/boot

    # chroot-prepare /mount-point

    (if the thing complains , you will need to remove /mount-point/boot/lock )