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Thread: Weirdest Issue: Installing Kali Linux On An External Harddrive

  1. #1
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    Weirdest Issue: Installing Kali Linux On An External Harddrive

    Hey there!
    So I am new here but very much a computer enthusiast. I have been dealing with the upcoming issue for more than 6 days now and I am starting to claw my eyes out. I am becoming ever confused, desperate and most of all annoyed because every time I get something right, it's broken down again. Alright, onto the issue.

    I am running windows 10 on an MSI laptop and I have gotten sick of windows which I reluctantly use for some windows only applications that I need in live. I decided I wanted to start using Linux more because it appeals more to me. I started experimenting with Kali Linux since most of my books use Kali as a distro for pentesting. So I got a sandisk 16 GB 3.0 usb and used diskpart to convert it to GPT, format it to FAT32 and then used 7zip to extract the most recent Kali Linux ISO to the USB. I got into BIOS, turned off fast boot and secure boot, set the boot settings so that it would boot from usb first and then the windows disks. So far so good. I grab my external Seagate 1TB HDD and plug it in. Then I boot my USB in with the extracted ISO. Restart computer and press F11 to go into boot settings. I select my UEFI USB with the ISO and boot into it. The Kali menu shows up and asks me to boot into live, install the system etc. Cool! So far so good. I go into advanced settings to do the graphical install. Selecting all necessary options. Then comes the hard drive partitioning. My seagate shows up. Nice. I select it and want to have a seperate /home, /var and /temp partition. ERROR: /var partition is offset by 3584 bytes and how this can screw your performance up. But it shows instructions on how to fix it so I follow those. However the instructions are fruitless and I am clueless on how to fix it. But whatever I decide to throw all in one single partition and it shows no errors now. Ok. So the system is getting installed on the hard disk. Once done I reboot, press F11 again and boot into the available kali seagate option! Awesome! I have actually gotten kali to work from an external hard drive on my laptop! It isnt slow it runs smooth and everything works!

    Now this is where things get f*cking weird....

    I turn my laptop off.... boot into windows one last time..... shutdown the computer.... take out the external usb hdd after the light switched off. Next day I wanted to start my new lovely kali linux... I put in the external hard drive, and turn on the system. I press F11 and..... there is no option to select the hard drive. The option I had the day before is gone. Diskmgmt on Windows 10 shows the partitions and all that but I cant boot into it. HOW COME?! How come that I could boot into that harddrive right after installation finished and even download wallpapers and then after SAFELY unplugging it, it is not to be found in the boot manager?! Please help me! Even the local computer store people dont know what happened and changing from UEFI to Legacy in BIOS doesn't change it!

  2. #2
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    When you press F11, do you see an option Boot from EFI just below the Windows Boot Manager?

  3. #3
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    Nope. The option isnt there. But it gets worse now! Read on.

    After all this nonsense with the external hard drive i said screw it i cant fix it. So i installed it on my internal hard drive and works like a charm. Now here is the big BUT(t)!

    I had to clean my laptop from the inside. I disconnected the hard drive and plugged it in again. I restart my computer and the grub boot loader is missing again! I cant boot into linux and grub doesnt show up. I can mount the partitions but I cant start up kali linux since the bootloader is gone. Any help would be great.
    Last edited by maiki; 2017-09-06 at 08:28 AM. Reason: Foul Language

  4. #4
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    Your original issue with external HDD wouldn't have been a problem if you had continued with conversation in this thread. In UEFI settings you can manually add entries of bootloaders.

  5. #5
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    Well since this problem is exactly the other than the fact its an internal hard drive ill see what I can do. Reason I didnt continue conversation was because I didn't check often nor did i receive any notifications. But ill try your suggestion out see what happens.

  6. #6
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    In UEFI settings>Boot order>Add>Select interface>EFI>kali>grubx64.efi


    Settings can be different in your device but they are similar. If you get stuck, post a screenshot from that point where you don't know how to proceed.

  7. #7
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    Will do! (Sorry for the profanities... )

  8. #8
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    Last edited by maiki; 2017-09-11 at 10:00 AM. Reason: Merge posts

  9. #9
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    When you power ON press F9, it will take you to boot menu options. Select Boot from EFI>Select interface>EFI>kali>grubx64.efi. Once you boot kali run sudo grub-install /dev/sda && sudo update-grub

  10. #10
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    Untitled.jpg
    here are the partitions on both drives. According to windows they are all " Healthy" however I see that the EFI partition doesn't have the (Boot) flag. Could this be my problem?

    On MSI its actually F11. Ill post pics in a bit.

    This is what I am shown/

    WhatsApp Image 2017-09-09 at 15.43.02.jpg
    (sorry... didnt upload properly)

    I am actually prepared to transfer 40$ to the first person that knows how to fix this problem because I do not know where to go anymore.
    Last edited by maiki; 2017-09-11 at 10:01 AM. Reason: Merge posts

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