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How to Fix Missing GRUB Boot Menu after a Windows Update

You’ve installed your favorite Linux distro alongside Windows and have been happily enjoying the best of both worlds, without having to delete your Windows installation. This is possible thanks to the incredible bootloader: GRUB.

Isn’t the GRUB boot menu a wonderful piece of software, giving us access to whichever operating system we want to use upon turning on the computer? Until one day you notice that the GRUB boot menu no longer appears, causing your computer to automatically boot on Windows, thereby locking you out of your Linux installation. If you have been plagued by this issue, cursing Linux or GRUB will be of no help. The real culprit here is Windows.

Here is what actually happened. Unlike GRUB which is intelligent by design to detect the presence of other operating systems, the Windows bootloader doesn’t take into account other operating systems that are installed on the computer. Whenever a major Windows update is available, the GRUB bootloader gets replaced by the Windows bootloader. Therefore, in order to bring back the GRUB boot menu, all we need to do is replace the Windows bootloader with GRUB.

How to do that?

Step 1

In Windows, click on the Start Menu and search for “Command Prompt”

Step 2

Right click on the Command Prompt menu option and click “Run as administrator”. Note: It is important to open Command Prompt with Administrator privileges, otherwise the step below will not work.

Step 3

Copy and paste the command below in the Command Prompt window and press ENTER:

bcdedit /set {bootmgr} path \EFI\ubuntu\grubx64.efi

Next, restart your computer and you should see the GRUB boot menu again 🙂

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