Manual Install (Mac EFI) & Hidding Volumes

W. Smith
  • W. Smith

    W. Smith - 2013-02-26

    Rod, I have one questtion on Mac EFI and I'm having issues with hidding NTFS partitions.

    Mac EFI:

    - Instead of using "ESP" in command's
    - On Mac made by Apple, why or why not install rEFInd to EFI manually like this:

    $ sudo mkdir /EFI  
    $ sudo mount -t msdos /dev/disk0s1 /EFI    
    $ open /EFI   
    $ sudo mkdir -p /EFI/refind
    $ sudo cp -r refind/* /EFI/refind
    $ sudo rm /EFI/refind/refind_ia32.efi
    $ sudo mv /EFI/refind/refind.conf-sample /EFI/EFI/refind/refind.conf
    $ sudo bless --mount /EFI --setBoot --folder /EFI/refind --file /EFI/refind/refind_x64.efi

    * Would mounted "Volume/EFI" need "EFI/" directory or just use "rEFInd/" ?

        $ EFI/EFI/refind
        $ EFI/refind

    Hidding NTFS partitions:

    I've tried every combination I can think of and find on Google to hide my Micorosoft partitions on GPT

    I only want to see the last 2 Options on right side (Menu Labels: "Boot Menu 5
    " and "Boot Menu 6") of rEFInd Menu with current $diskutil -list.


    * I'm using current version of "refind" and install refine using ./

    * I have not install Windows OS to the "Volume/Bootcamp". The partition has no data.

    * "Volume/Windows-8" has OS installed and using external eSATA enclosure.

    * I have not install "ubuntu", even though I have menuentry for it. I like to get this solve before I install other O.S.'s.

    Screen Shots, Menu Labels and .conf:

    rEFInd Menu, diskutil list, refind.conf, manual.conf

    Boot Menu 1, Boot Menu 2, Boot Menu 3, Boot Menu 4, Boot Menu 5, Boot Menu 6

    Last edit: W. Smith 2013-02-26
  • W. Smith

    W. Smith - 2013-02-26

    Solved part of "Hidding NTFS partitions" problem. By adding the following to refind.conf.

    The following removed 2 options for "Boot Windows from HD":

        dont_scan_volumes HD
        dont_scan_dirs Windows-8:/Windows/Boot/EFI,esp:/EFI/Microsoft/Boot/

    Menu Boot Options look like screen shots below with updated refind.conf

    Almost have it way I want it. Not sure exactly what issue is. Not sure if it's Directories/Path's or Scan Setting. Any help would be appreciated.

    Boot Menu 1, Boot Menu 2, Boot Menu 3, Boot Menu 4

    Last edit: W. Smith 2013-02-26
  • Roderick W. Smith

    I'm not entirely sure what your first question is about. The EFI specification, though, is quite clear that boot loaders should reside inside subdirectories of the EFI directory on the ESP. Thus, you should have EFI/refind/refind_x64.efi or something similar on the ESP (which would have additional leading components for the mount point in OS X). That said, as a practical matter other locations may work fine; they just aren't officially sanctioned by the EFI specification. Certainly Apple uses another location for its own boot loader, which doesn't even go on the ESP!

  • W. Smith

    W. Smith - 2013-03-16

    Sorry for delayed response. Sorry for confusion, does it make difference if "efi" is used instead "esp" in code?

    I guess you answer the other ?. It doesn't matter where directory for refindx64.efi is. Either way (EFI/EFI/refind or EFI/refind) will work , correct?

  • Joe van Tunen

    Joe van Tunen - 2013-04-18

    I've found that using rEFInd from a FAT volume (like the esp volume) takes 30 seconds longer to load than if it was on an HFS volume (using Mac Pro 2008). Using an HFS volume has other benefits. HFS has a place to store the location of the currently blessed system file. This allows the Startup Manager to add rEFInd to it's menu. HFS volumes will be automatically mounted in the Finder so you can edit the rEFInd.conf file more easily.

    The directory on an HFS volume doesn't matter since the path is stored in the HFS file system so the Apple EFI firmware will know where it is. I'm not sure how the EFI works for FAT file systems.

  • Roderick W. Smith

    Placing refind_x64.efi in the EFI/EFI/refind directory of a partition may work, but is not a location that's officially supported by the EFI spec, by Apple, or by me. That said, if you mount the ESP (or some other partition that holds the boot loader) at /EFI on your main filesystem, the ESP's EFI/refind directory would become /EFI/EFI/refind in the main directory tree. I realize this can be confusing, but if you're using a Unix-like system (including OS X), it's critical that you understand the use of mount points and communicate their use clearly when discussing such matters. I usually omit the leading / and refer explicitly to a partition when referring to files on a partition whose mount point is unknown or that might not be mounted at all, such as the ESP.

    The use of "efi" vs. "esp" might or might not matter; it depends on the context. "EFI" means "Extensible Firmware Interface," and that acronym is used as part of the path to boot loaders on the ESP, as in EFI/refind/refind_x64.efi or EFI/Microsoft/Boot/bootmgfw.efi. (Since FAT is case-insensitive, this directory name often appears as efi rather than EFI.) Using esp or ESP in place of EFI as part of that path, as in doubling up on EFI, might work but is not supported. Outside of the context of directory names, "ESP" is an acronym that expands to "EFI System Partition" -- that is, the FAT32 partition in which EFI boot loaders are normally stored. On Macs, though, the OS X boot loader normally resides on the OS X system partition, leaving the ESP empty or nearly empty. As Joe van Tunen says, some users find that putting rEFInd on the ESP (as is nearly universal practice on UEFI-based PCs) can result in a delayed boot process. This delay isn't universal, though; for instance, I've never experienced it on my one Intel-based Mac. Still, it's common enough that I generally recommend installing rEFInd to an HFS+ volume on Macs.


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