Installation (computer programs)

How to Repair GRUB2 When Ubuntu Won’t Boot

Ubuntu and many other Linux distributions use the GRUB2 boot loader. If GRUB2 breaks—for example, if you install Windows after installing Ubuntu, or overwrite your MBR—you won’t be able to boot into Ubuntu.

You can easily restore GRUB2 from a Ubuntu live CD or USB drive. This process is different from restoring the legacy GRUB boot loader on older Linux distributions.

This process should work on all versions of Ubuntu. It’s been tested on Ubuntu 16.04 and Ubuntu 14.04.

The Graphical Method: Boot Repair

Boot Repair is a graphical tool that can repair GRUB2 with a single click. This is the ideal solution to boot problems for most users.

If you have the media you installed Ubuntu from, insert it into your computer, restart, and boot from the removable drive. If you don’t, download a Ubuntu live CD and burn it to a disc or create a bootable USB flash drive.

When Ubuntu boots, click “Try Ubuntu” to get a usable desktop environment.

Ensure you have an Internet connection before continuing. You may need to choose a Wi-Fi network and enter its passphrase.

Open a Terminal window from the Dash and run the following commands to install and launch Boot Repair:

sudo apt-add-repository ppa:yannubuntu/boot-repair sudo apt-get update sudo apt-get install -y boot-repair boot-repair

The Boot Repair window will automatically scan your system after you run the boot-repair command. After it scans your system, click the “Recommended repair” button to repair GRUB2 with a single click.

You can choose to use the advanced options here, but Ubuntu’s wiki recommends you not use the advanced options unless you know what you’re doing. The recommended repair option can fix most…

How to Control When macOS Updates Are Installed

Updates are necessary, but annoying. Which is why your Mac, by default, installs them automatically.

System updates protect your Mac from malware and other threats, and occasionally add new features. The same goes for software updates, so it’s important to keep all your apps up to date. But popups asking users whether they want to install updates have a way of being ignored, even when the user knows that updates are important. So automatic updates make sense for most people.

…But not all people. Some of you prefer having control over what is installed when. Happily, there’s a way to take control, and it’s in System Preferences.

Click the “App Store” button and you’ll see the automatic update settings right at the top of the window.

The first two options are about checking for and downloading updates—not installing them.

  • The top option, “Automatically check for updates,” controls whether your Mac regularly checks for new versions or not. There’s no good reason to turn this off: it’s important to know about updates when they’re ready.
  • The next option, “Download newly available updates in the background,” controls whether or not you need to tell the system to download updates. The only reason to disable this feature is the need to manage bandwidth usage. If you don’t have that need, it’s best to leave this enabled.

Again, neither of these options installs updates automatically: they just set whether the system should look for updates regularly, and whether the system should download those updates when available. If you check the above two options, and only those options,…

How to Upgrade Firefox from 32-bit to 64-bit in Windows Without Reinstalling

Most web browsers are installed in Windows as 64-bit versions by default, Firefox being the exception. If you installed the default download of Firefox, you have the 32-bit version, not the 64-bit version, even if you’re running a 64-bit version of Windows.

Say you recently got a new Windows computer. After installing the 32-bit version of Firefox from the main page, you installed your favorite add-ons, restored your backed up bookmarks, and even set up multiple profiles for personal and work purposes. But, now you want to upgrade to the 64-bit version of Firefox for better performance. You could uninstall the 32-bit version and then install the 64-bit version, but doing so will remove your Firefox user data, such as saved passwords, bookmarks, settings, extensions, and themes.

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You could back up your profile folders from the 32-bit version of Firefox and then restore them after uninstalling Firefox and installing the 64-bit version. But that’s a bit of a hassle, and there is an easier way.

NOTE: Firefox 64-bit can only be installed on 64-bit Windows. If you’re not sure which version of Windows you’re running, you can easily check. If you’re running 32-bit Windows, you cannot upgrade Firefox to 64-bit.

If you’re not sure if you’re running 32-bit or 64-bit Firefox,…