In a quite natural and steady way, all my relatives (wife, kids, mother, aunt...) have adopted openSUSE in their computers. There is only one resistance spot. My father's computer (HP+Windows8) implements all kind of mechanisms to avoid dual boot.

I plan to use the spare cycles of my Hack Week to get a dual Windows/openSUSE system on that haunted computer. Killing Windows would be a feasible last resort.

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This project is part of:

Hack Week 15


  • about 7 years ago: lyan liked this project.
  • about 7 years ago: ancorgs started this project.
  • about 7 years ago: ancorgs originated this project.

  • Comments

    • ancorgs
      about 7 years ago by ancorgs | Reply

      Finally I managed to make it work despite the HP attempts to avoid it.

      The problem

      No matter which settings you select in the BIOS (legacy mode, secure boot, etc.) or how do you configure your EFI bootloader using efibootmgr or any other tool. HP BIOS will always ignore all the EFI settings and directly boot /EFI/Microsoft/Boot/bootmgfw.efi (the Win8 bootloader).

      The workaround

      I copied /EFI/Microsoft/Boot/bootmgfw.efi to /EFI/Microsoft/Boot/bootmgfw-HPBadDecision.efi (well, maybe I used a name slightly more offensive for HP). Then I copied /EFI/debian/grubx64.efi to /EFI/Microsoft/Boot/bootmgfw.efi.

      Last but not least, I modified the windows boot entry in grub2 to point to /EFI/Microsoft/Boot/bootmgfw-HPBadDecision.efi

      So that evil HP BIOS believes it's booting Windows when it's really starting Grub2. Grub2 is the only one who knows where the real Windows boot file is.


      To make everything more fun, Windows 8 includes some dishonest behavior. If it detects other system in the EFI bootmanager, it "repairs" the situation ensuring Windows is the first (when not the only) option. Fortunately the workaround seems to effectively cheat both the BIOS and Windows, so both of them consider than everything looks fine from their point of view.

    • lslezak
      about 7 years ago by lslezak | Reply

      It still boots that hardcoded MS EFI boot manager also in the legacy mode? Oh, that's really nasty, I wouldn't expect that...

      Thanks for sharing this tricky workaround!

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