Can't chroot - can't repair grub - can't boot - messed up big time BTRFSonLUKS timeshift dual boot

i’ll just have to rtfm and learn how to do that then.

i can’t agree more… i set it up like that for the (bad?) reason that it was (and still is) my very first time using btrfs file system and i followed @2000 guide, by laziness and lack of time… I realize i had done it from scratch it might actually have saved me some time in the long run as i would have known a bit more where i stood. (and i still don’t ^^)

when i first set it up (if i’m correct) it should have been sda2 > /boot/efi, sda5 > /boot, both unencrypted, and sda6 > / encrypted

Also, I might have rebuild the initrams in sda5 by mistake when i started to “investigate” the resume: no device specified for hibernation error… but i think it might even be a separate “problem” than the restoration of those snapshots that where pointing to different point in time than they should’ve (i dunno, again, the result of $ cat /proc/cmdline BOOT_IMAGE= was pointing to a snapshot before i started all this, kind of like that)

Most of my data looks fine, even the ones after the date of the snapshot we restored (which was one of the point of @2000 tutorial i guess). My last programs (thunderbird :’( ) are gone, and all the tweaks i did before messing up (i created one of my only manual snapshot at that occasion cause i was so happy with my perfect config… so long…)
Well, i think it is probably the best idea to reinstall, it would have save me (and you!!) some time i think. On the bright side, i do learn a lot and comprehend a little bit more as @ricklinux and yoda pointed out.

Wel… reinstalling the way might be…

I don’t think it is bad. Many people do it that way. It just isn’t my personal preference.

If you want to use an unencrypted /boot, I would recommend formatting it as ext4.

It is worth noting that it isn’t required to have an unencrypted /boot

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i should start a new topic if i reinstall, to see how to flag partitions in gparted and calamares (i.e. only one partition is supposed to be flagged boot if you read the manual, in gparted it is the case, and it even flag it esp at the same time.

But in calamares one can flag several partion with boot, if one use the existing windows efi partition (sda2 in my case) (mounted to /boot/efi) is it the one supposed to be flagged boot in calamares? or would it the /boot one (sda5 in this case)? or both?
What about ‘legacy_boot’ and ‘bls_boot’ flags? (in gparted)

Is all that relevant for grub or refind. I don’t recall how i flagged it (only how i mounted it) but that was working fine with grub and refind.

I maybe should install arch without the installer… at least i would have to set more bits myself (i.e. fstab, grub…) and comprehend more… or not !!!

is the only benefit not having to decrypt twice when you dual-boot w/ windows i.e. ?

If you are using UEFI than only your EFI partition needs to be flagged. Depending on what you are using to configure it, it should be flagged as esp and/or boot. No other partitions should need any flags and no other flags should be needed on the EFI partition.

It doesn’t matter which bootloader or boot manager you are using.

Why not try it in a VM first?

The benefits of an unencrypted /boot are:

  • Faster decryption
  • Ability to use alternate keyboard layouts for luks password
  • You can use plymouth to have an aesthetically pleasing decryption prompt
  • When you fail to enter your luks password properly you will get a better error message and the ability to try again

The benefits of an encrypted /boot are:

  • Slightly increased security since your initds will be encrypted

My personal opinion is that the benefits on either side are relatively small so it comes down to personal preference.

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Many thanks.

well, indeed…

Shall i just get rid of that separate /boot partition, just keeping the windows one to /boot/efi, and everything else encrypted in / ?
But then @ricklinux pointed out it might be too small (100MB) (and the Arch manual seems to point that the only way to make it bigger is to create it first and install windows AFTER linux, which ain’t my case)

Or am i just confused and creating the separate /boot doesn’t influence that fact?

EDIT: i guess i am

There is no right answer here. There are many ways to handle this but the way you are proposing is fine.

If you are using grub then it will probably fit in a 100MB efi partition with Windows.

The /boot partition is not your boot partition. It is the partition where /boot is stored. It is understandable that this would be confusing.

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many thanks again.

Do you know if refind seats in efi too?

Yes, on an EFI system refind installs components into the EFI partition(ESP).

I don’t know how big those are and if they would fit into a 100MB partition with windows and grub.

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i dunno i just installed it before and it worked (so w/ windows and grub)… so i guess it should

It was installed in your other, larger EFI partition last time.

You can tell that from this output:

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so was my /boot/efi in there the whole time or is it when i eventually messed up and mounted sda5 in /boot/efi the last time i chrooted… i’ll have to see how refind works :confused:

i’m trying to install on another machine (a real virtual one :p), i kind of follow this tuto (i did separate /boot unencryted though), pointed the alreday there windows efi to /boot/efi, and when i’m at point #08 i can’t

$ sudo mount /dev/nvme0n1p1 /mnt/chroot/boot/efi
mount: /mnt/chroot/boot/efi: mount point does not exist.

Which tutorial are you following?

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sorry just edited the link (spoiler… @2000 indeed ^^)

Shall i just

sudo mkdir /mnt/chroot/boot/efi

Edit: I guess… if so, @2000 should edit too :stuck_out_tongue:

That is your problem, if you change something, you can’t continue to cut & paste commands.

You first have to mount your /boot partition at /mnt/chroot/boot, then you can mount the efi partition.

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of course :sweat: sorry

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My knowledge is limited on Btrfs setup . I used the quick copy and paste method by @2000. I have only ever had one issue with my set up and that was some update to Btrfs or grub or something some time ago. I thought i was going to lose mine and have to reinstall but @dalto helped me get it back working. This was a different issue. I haven’t had any other issues other then that time.

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I had none either… until i wanted to address the no device for hibernation error… (even if i never ever use hibernation…)

but then i wonder if my timeshift was indeed working as it should have (was i always bootlooping in the same snapshot or smthg?), and was is /boot/efi partition the windows one (as i intended to set it at the install, on arch wiki recommendations) or had i 2 (like you) but on the same drive (which then didn’t cause problems…)

That should have been fairly easy to accomplish from what little i know. But when things go wrong they go wrong in a bad way. It happens to the best of us. So don’t beat yourself up over it. I’m not a big saver of anything so for me it doesn’t matter so much. I just learn from it and if i can’t fix it or don’t feel i want to invest the time i just reinstall and I’m over it. :laughing:

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