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Do you want to install Linux Mint or Ubuntu next to Windows 10 or 11, in order to create a dual boot computer? Then first you have to change some settings in Windows, and when you have a pre-installed Windows 10 or 11, also in the UEFI ("BIOS") of your computer. As follows:
Contents of this page:
- 1. Disable Fast Startup (no loss, it's misleading anyway)
- 2. Change some UEFI settings
- 3. In case of emergencies: perform a one-time boot priority change
Disable Fast Startup (no loss, it's misleading anyway)1. In Windows 10 and 11, you first have to disable Fast Startup. Fast Startup is essentially an advanced hibernation: shutdown doesn't really shut your computer down, but puts it in a sleep condition.
By disabling Fast Startup a shutdown becomes a real shutdown again, which makes the Windows partition on your hard disk, accessible and resizable by Ubuntu or Linux Mint.
Disable Fast Startup like this:
a. Control Panel - Power Options - Choose what the power buttons do
b. Now click on Change settings that are currently unavailable. See the screenshot below:
c. Now remove the tick for Turn on fast startup (recommended), even though this bothersome feature is supposedly "recommended". See the screenshot below:
d. Click on Save changes.
e. Reboot your computer. Don't shut it down! It has to be a reboot, in order to make this settings change permanent.
If you have an old computer which was originally sold with a pre-installed Windows 7, Vista or XP (which means old-fashioned BIOS): you're done! You can continue with the actual installation of Linux Mint.
But if your computer was sold with a pre-installed Windows 8, 10 or 11 (which means modern UEFI), please read on.
Change some UEFI settings2. If you have a modern computer that was sold with a pre-installed Windows 8, 10 or 11, you now need to open the configuration of your UEFI. If you don't know how to do that, see the manual of your computer. Don't you have the manual anymore? You should always be able to find a copy in the support section of the website of the manufacturer.
For an Acer, you have to press the F2 key a couple of times, directly after turning on the computer.
Can't you succeed in accessing the UEFI configuration? Then you can also evoke it from within Windows 10 or 11, in an annoyingly cumbersome way:
Click on the magnifier icon in the panel of Windows 10 or 11 - let it search your system ("Type here to search") with the term settings
Click on the first (preselected) result, namely the app Settings
Then scroll down in the Settings window and select: Recovery - Advanced Startup: click on Restart now
Then: Troubleshoot - Advanced options - UEFI Firmware Settings: click on Restart
Finally, at very long last (sigh....) you should be able to access the UEFI configuration.
Disable Secure Boot2.1. Now disable Secure Boot in the UEFI. For Ubuntu this is often no longer necessary, because Ubuntu (unlike Linux Mint) contains a digital signature for Secure Boot. However, sometimes it still causes problems even for Ubuntu. So when your UEFI allows for it, I advise to disable Secure Boot in all cases.
No worries: although Secure Boot is a fairly reasonable idea in theory, it provides little real-life security anyway. So disabling it is no loss. In practice, Secure Boot is primarily an obstacle for using another operating system than Microsoft Windows. Which might or might not be an intended side effect.
Note: in some cases, you need to set an administrator password in the UEFI before you can disable Secure Boot.
See the screenshot below, of the UEFI of an Acer TravelMate laptop (click on the picture to enlarge it):
Put Windows Boot Manager at the bottom of the boot priority order2.2. Then you put the Windows Boot Manager permanently at the bottom of the boot priority order. Sometimes it's hidden in something called OS Boot Manager (OS = Operating System), in which case you'll have a job to do after installing Linux: you'll need to expand OS Boot Manager and put Windows Boot Manager at the bottom of the list within the OS Boot Manager section.
See the screenshot below of the UEFI of an Acer Travelmate laptop (click on it to enlarge it):
If possible: enable the key for one-time boot priority changes2.3. Finally, enable the key for temporary one-time changes in the boot priority order (if your BIOS has that option in its settings). For an Acer that's usually F12, but this varies among manufacturers). See the screenshot below (click on it to enlarge it):
Save and exit.
Sometimes necessary: enable CSM (in some cases: Legacy)2.4. In some cases it's necessary to enable CSM (Compatibility Support Module). In some cases this is called "Legacy". This provides legacy BIOS compatibility, by emulating an old-fashioned BIOS environment.
You should find this option in each UEFI, usually in the Boot section. ASUS calls it "Launch CSM".
First try it without CSM, because in a few cases CSM creates problems of its own. So only do this when necessary.
In case of emergencies: perform a one-time boot priority change3. Note: after installation of Ubuntu, Windows 10 or 11 might not appear in the Grub bootloader menu. Or the boot entry for Windows 10 or 11 in the Grub menu, might not work.
In those cases, you can still boot Windows 10 or 11 by using the key for one-time changes in the boot priority order (for Acer: F12). That way, you bypass Grub entirely and you can boot Windows 10 or 11 directly from the UEFI.
In that one-time UEFI boot menu, select Windows Boot manager. See the screenshot below of an Acer laptop (click on the picture to enlarge it):
Now Windows 10 or 11 should boot normally.
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