Linux Mint

2014/07/29

For a while I’ve been running Ubuntu, but now I want to try out Linux Mint. Installation is performed by creating a Live USB, booting from the stick and following the instructions on the Mint website. The USB stick was created using

sudo dd if=path/to/linuxmint.iso of=/dev/sdX oflag=direct bs=1048576

Note that it is only sdX and not sdXY.

Unfortunately, when booting from the harddisk my computer writes

Invalid Partition Table!

and nothing happens then. The following solution is compiled from various forum posts that together did the trick. Part of the problem seems to come from the Grub boot loader who expects to find things the way they were when Ubuntu was in charge. To fix this, boot from the Live USB and type the following commands:

sudo mount /dev/sdXY /mnt

The appropriate device can be found with sudo fdisk -l or Gparted. If the expected directory structure or commands are not available after chroot’ing, it is probably another XY in “sdXY”.

mount --bind /dev/ /mnt/dev/
mount --bind /proc/ /mnt/proc/
mount --bind /sys/ /mnt/sys/
sudo chroot /mnt
update-grub

However, Grub should not take all the blame for this trouble. It turns out the Dell laptop that is supposed to act as host is also guilty: The UEFI boot order was starting up the wrong thing.

Remapping F1 in terminal

On some keyboards I run into problems when trying to hit Escape (as I do a lot in Vim). In the terminal in Linux Mint this starts up the help window.

To resolve the problem I disable the shortcut in the terminal:

To further reduce the annoyance of having to locate the escape button twice I remap the F1 button to Escape in Vim.