Restore EasyBCD backup from Linux or Windows recovery command line?

#1
Hi - I'm at my wits end, and hoping someone can assist.

Almost a year ago, I upgraded my Lenovo U410 to Win 8.1, and it screwed up my dual boot setup with Ubuntu (actually Ubuntu Studio). As I was swamped at the time with work, I put it off and didn't deal with it. Now, I'm trying to fix it, and I don't even recall how it got screwed up. I believe, the Windows boot manager wasn't able to find linux, etc. Windows would boot fine, but Ubuntu wouldn't.

Then I did something dumb - I reformatted the partition that Ubuntu was originally on and tried to install Ubuntu on a newly formatted SSD drive. Still nothing. I tried to use EasyBCD and then Linux Boot-Repair. Boot-Repair got me to be able to boot into Linux, but now I can't boot into Windows at all.

When I boot up, the GRUB menu comes up. When I select the Windows entry, it just reloads GRUB. If I go into the Windows Boot Manager and select Windows, it gives me two entries for UbuntuStudio. when I select either of them, it says that it cannot find an .efi file or an .mbr file.

However, I did make a backup through EasyBCD before I started this whole process. But, without Windows, I can't restore it! Is there any way to restore the backup via any Linux or windows recovery command-line tools?

If it helps at all, here's the results of the boot-info: http://paste.ubuntu.com/7111769/

Any help would be greatly appreciated - I have windows applications that I desperately need for a project, and I'm a bit stressed out! I'm ready to wipe the whole thing and re-install Windows, but I want to try one more avenue first.

Thanks,

Nipper
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#2
Your W8 Upgrade DVD should be bootable and contain "Repair my Computer" option.
 
#3
Your W8 Upgrade DVD should be bootable and contain "Repair my Computer" option.
Well, it's gone from bad to worse. I created a bootable USB stick from my Windows 8 download, however, before I rant the Repair, I followed some guidance, and now I'm in a worse situation. Here's what I did:

This also may be part of the issue as Windows and UEFI copy between themselves.
Remove Duplicate Firmware Objects in BCD and NVRAM
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/l...=ws.10%29.aspx

I followed the directions outlined above, and now I can't do anything. When I start it up, it boots into Windows Boot Manager with a single entry for Ubuntu. When I selected that, it gives me the usual warning that it can't find the .efi file or .mbr file. The (really) bad part is that I can't get to the UEFI Firmware Setup (i.e., the old BIOS menu), so I can't boot from a USB - I'm stuck. When I boot it up, it does flash for a split second, almost like it goes to another screen (the UEFI menu?), but then goes into the Win Boot Mgr.

Does anyone have any ideas as to how to get out of this jam?

Thanks,

Nipper
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#5
Several people have reported bricking a W8 UEFI system by "cleaning up" the stuff they don't understand in the BCD.
The lesson seems to be, forget everything you thought you knew about booting when you move from a BIOS/MBR to a UEFI/GPT system and don't try second guessing what it's all for.
The W8 "fast boot" throws a spanner in the works because, whilst it may be fast, it isn't really a boot. W8 pretends to shut down when you tell it to do so, and then pretends to boot when you start it up again.
In reality it does neither, just entering and resuming a disguised hibernation. You can see this when, during the "boot", you ask it to select a dual-boot option of W7 (or anything other than W8), and it is forced to end the hibernated state of W8, shut it down for real and kick-off a "real" boot process, so that instead of just entering the W7 startup animation, you are thrown back to the BIOS and a cold boot happens from scratch, bringing up the boot menu all over again.
That's the reason for all the strange BCD entries, and removing any or altering the default status can put you into a permanent pseudo-boot loop.
All I can suggest ( this has never happened to me, I (a) turned off fast boot (it doesn't mix well with a dual-boot) and (b) left the contents of the BCD exactly as MS and UEFI created them) is that you reset the CMOS memory of your motherboard so that the PC is obliged to start again with a default set of BIOS options. That should enable you to boot the USB stick and let it repair the BCD for you.
 
#6
All I can suggest ( this has never happened to me, I (a) turned off fast boot (it doesn't mix well with a dual-boot) and (b) left the contents of the BCD exactly as MS and UEFI created them) is that you reset the CMOS memory of your motherboard so that the PC is obliged to start again with a default set of BIOS options. That should enable you to boot the USB stick and let it repair the BCD for you.
Thanks, Terry. I will do some research and see if I can reset the CMOS memory.

And, yes, I can attest that in regard to BIOS vs. UEFI, we're not ain't Kansas anymore, Toto. I had done several dual-boot installs on Win 7 and XP, without much fuss - even making some GRUB changes, etc. But this isn't' much fun.

Thanks for your help.
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#7
Depending on your hardware, you might also have an option (like on my latest ASUS mobo) of a "go to BIOS" button.