reFind and FreeDOS

  • Satish

    Satish - 2013-11-02

    I own a Fujitsu laptop and learned the hard way about its buggy firmware. My first Ubuntu EFI installation wiped out access to firmware and I had to open the case and short some pins to reset it. Later I installed Win 8.1 Preview through which I could restore the BIOS/UEFI firmware via the manufacturer's BIOS flash tool.
    However since the Win 8.1 preview ends in Jan, I have been looking at alternatives and found FreeDOS to be easy enough since Fujitsu delivers the BIOS flash utility for FreeDOS as well.

    Meanwhile I stumbled upon reFind while trying to learn about EFI and have since relied on it to manage my multi-boot configuration. I think it's a great piece of work by Rod Smith.
    I have created a FreeDOS USB disk for resetting my firmware but have been unable to boot into it via reFind. I have set the 'scanfor' attribute as shown below

    scanfor internal,hdbios,external,biosexternal,optical,cd,manual

    But alas, the reFind menu doesn't show me the USB. Forcing scan by 'ESC' doesn't help either. My hard disk has GPT and I created a partition for the FreeDOS image but still no choice in reFind.
    Ubuntu's grub-efi shows me the partition but throws the error 'can't find command drivemap' and 'invalid EFI file path'.

    Given my lack of understanding of the concepts, I do not know what to try/change. Hoping someone would chip in with suggestions/comments.

    Thanks for reading

  • Roderick W. Smith

    Unfortunately, at this point rEFInd relies on the firmware to identify BIOS/CSM/legacy-bootable media. If a device doesn't appear in the firmware's list, rEFInd won't show it. You may be able to overcome the problem by fiddling with your firmware settings. In particular, look for anything relating to "fast boot" or similar terms, to USB initialization, and to support for BIOS/CSM/legacy booting of external devices. (Details of what options are available vary greatly from one computer to another.)


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