Ubuntu’s Buggy Support for non-ext3fs Partitions

For the past several months, our support forums have been plagued on and off with a number of weird and inexplicable failed attempts at installing Ubuntu by many users. We’ve finally pinned down the cause of the problem, and it isn’t pretty. Ubuntu (ever since version 5.04 Hoary Hedgehog) will not install properly on a filesystem other than ext2fs or ext3fs.

Unfortunately if you attempt to install Ubuntu with the “/” partition formatted as ReiserFS, JFS, XFS or any other non-standard filesystem, Ubuntu installation will begin like normal and tick merrily along its way until it attempts to install GRUB. At that point, you’ll get a fairly inexplicable and non-verbose “fatal error” message about “grub-install()” failing.

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