Ubuntu 13.04 Desktop RAID

The live disk does not support installing on fakeraid (i.e. one with a motherboard chipset based RAID controller) or mdraid (direct multi device access). You can however, install on fakeraid with a little extra work. Mdraid remains problematic.


When installing Ubuntu on a fakeraid system (i.e. one with the Intel or other BIOS based RAID setup), the final step of installing the boot loader (grub2) will fail or it will appear to work but upon reboot will hang. In this case;
  1. Continue on without a boot loader or Reboot into the live install and 'try ubuntu'
  2. Open a terminal window and
    1. Mount the new installation's root partition and virtual file systems 
      1. sudo mount /dev/mapper/isw_someLongString_p1 /mnt
      2. for i in /dev /dev/pts /proc /sys /run; do sudo mount -B $i /mnt$i; done
    2. Change root, install and update grub (note that you are installing grub to the root volume, not a partition)
      1. sudo chroot /mnt
      2. grub-install /dev/mapper/isw_someLongString
      3. update-grub
    3. (You should see the message "Installation finished. No error reported" for the grub-install. The update-grub command should see several images, but may list some errors around dm-* files. This is OK)
  3. Reboot


Note: does not work for me...

The alternate installer previously supported installation on dmraid, however that installer has been done away with for 13.04. You can install on a md-raid disk system however, by following these steps.

Step 1: Set Up md-raid and perform the install.

Boot from the live disk
Select 'Try Ubuntu'
Start a terminal window and install mdadm

sudo apt-get install mdadm
# you will also get postfix, but you can select 'no configuration' when prompted

Review your disks, remove any previous bootloaders, partitions and arrays.

sudo parted -l
# Remove any GPT tables. Repeat for other disks
sudo parted /dev/sda mklabel msdos

# Remove any boot loader and current partition. Repeat for other disks
sudo dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sda bs=512 count=1

sudo mdadm --remove /dev/md0
sudo mdadm --zero-superblocks /dev/sda   #not sure these two are effective

Create the array

mdadm --create --verbose /dev/md0 --level=mirror --raid-devices=2 /dev/sda /dev/sdb

Start the installer from the menu, select 'Something else' when you get to the 'Installation type' screen and create at least a / and a swap partition.
Proceed with the install. Eventually you will see:

Executing 'grub-install /dev/md0' failed.

Select to 'Continue without a bootloader', and then 'Continue Testing'

Step 2: Install the boot loader

Mount the new array's / filesystem, map in the current live system's critical virtual filesystems, and chroot over to it

sudo mount /dev/md0p1 /mnt
for i in /dev /dev/pts /proc /sys /run; do sudo mount -B $i /mnt$i; done
sudo chroot /mnt

Now, install mdadm again (this time to the new filesystem. Last time was to the live filesystem)

apt-get install mdadm

Scan and save your array information so that GRUB can read it later. (otherwise, GRUB will not assemble your array to load your initramfs)

mdadm --detail --scan >> /etc/mdadm/mdadm.conf

Some issue here with prior space install and the mdadm preserving space or some such


(It's possible you must start gparted and flag the partition as bootable)
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2036730 <-- best source