Resetting rEFInd Boot Manager

M-Low
2013-01-10
2013-01-10
  • M-Low

    M-Low - 2013-01-10

    Hi - I was previously using rEFIt and then rEFInd to dual boot a MacBook in OS X and Win8. I've subsequently completely uninstalled Win8 from the harddrive and even deleted that portion of the partition. The problem is, whenever I power-on into the rEFInd boot menu, Win8 still appears... I know that you can configure the file to hide this. HOWEVER, I've tried reinstalling Win8 and I have to choose between two Win8 OS's AFTER I select Win8 from the rEFInd menu. One errors-out every time, while the other has conflicts because something wasn't re-set...
    I've subsequently uninstalled and reinstalled rEFInd >> no fix there either. The problem has to lie in resetting some sort of instructions in the boot manager itself... I have no idea how to do this. Hopefully somebody else has seen this issue and can help.

     
  • Roderick W. Smith

    If you're selecting between two Windows installations after you pick Windows in rEFInd, then that second selection is being done in the Windows boot loader, meaning that the solution will be found there. I don't know a lot about the Windows boot loader, so I can't offer much advice on that score, although a lot of people seem to like EasyBCD for managing the Windows boot options. Alternatively, you could try a Web search on "Windows BCD editing" or a similar term.

     
  • M-Low

    M-Low - 2013-01-10

    that's interesting. I'll have to look into this.

    I've uninstalled Windows again, just to see... Don't you think it's odd that I have no Windows OS on my system, but I can still see it in rEFInd boot menu? That leads me to think it's something, possibly, in the boot.efi file in "core services"...? (i'm not an expert at all... but a guess)

    Is there a way to reset this file?

     
  • Roderick W. Smith

    No, it's not in the boot.efi file; that's the OS X boot loader, nothing more. rEFInd shows it as the OS X boot option, and it's not involved in booting Windows.

    rEFInd scans for two types of boot loaders:

    • Files on any readable filesystem that reside in certain locations and that have .efi filename extensions. These are EFI boot loaders.
    • Partitions' boot sectors and the disk's Master Boot Record (MBR), which can contain BIOS-style boot loaders. This is where the Windows boot loader resides, and it's what creates the Windows boot entry in most Windows/OS X dual-boot configurations on Macs.

    In your case, after you uninstall Windows, if you still see a Windows entry, that's just because the Windows BIOS boot loader is still present, either in the MBR or in a partition. If you've permanently removed Windows and you want to get rid of its boot entry, you can do so by uncommenting the scanfor line in refind.conf and ensuring that the hdbios option is not present on that line. Alternatively, you can try to figure out where the Windows boot loader is installed and erase it, but that's a little riskier, since a mistake could damage your partition table. If you plan to re-install Windows, of course, there's no point in trying to eliminate the rEFInd entry for Windows; just re-install the OS and then deal with its own boot loader to eliminate any duplicate entry it might present.

     

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