Getting and Installing Linux – Part 3

UEFI and booting Linux on Win 8.1 & 10 machines

by James Stephens

Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) is intended to be a modern alternative to BIOS. Ideally UEFI-(Secure Boot) blocks malware from being loaded when the computer is booted by using digital keys which software must possess in order to be booted onto the computer. UEFI supplants the traditional BIOS and it’s post screen, appreciably shortening boot times but sometimes adding a few more steps to set up a computer to boot into Linux. If necessary UEFI-(Secure Boot) may be disabled to allow access to the BIOS and the booting of non-UEFI complaint operating systems, such as 32 bit Linux or legacy Windows, and set up the computer to boot into Linux as I described in the previous post. But I recommend using UEFI if at all possible.

Hold shift key while clicking restart
Easiest way to get to boot options menu:
Hold shift key while clicking restart

Because hardware and UEFI configurations vary widely I can only cite general guidelines. I would rely on your computer’s manufacturer’s instructions for specific details of UEFI management and restore or boot from device.

Load your Linux system disk into the drive before proceeding.

I find the easiest way to get to the boot options menu within Windows menu is to hold down the “Shift” key while clicking Restart.

Boot options
Select “Use a device”

The computer will restart, displaying the blue boot options screen. Select “Use a device” and pick from the options displayed, presumably DVD, and exit. When the computer restarts you should be in Linux.

Advanced Options Screen
Select “UEFI Firmware Settings” on the
“Advanced Options Screen.”

Disable “Secure Boot Option.”

Failing that, you need to disable UEFI-(Secure Boot) and use the BIOS, then from the boot options screen select “Troubleshoot” then “Advanced Options”, then select UEFI “Firmware Settings.” Ignore the warning. You will see a black screen with four or five choices, one of them being “Secure Boot Control.” Disable this and exit. When the computer restarts you should be able to access the BIOS and boot any operating system via the BIOS.

I hope I have been of help to those who of you would like to try Linux and I hope you enjoy using it as much as Bob and I do. I like to think of Linux as a more civilized way of computing.

Next post: A world of software at your fingertips – The Software Center.

Further reading:

How to Boot and Install Linux on a UEFI PC With Secure Boot


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