Unable to install grub in dummy


Thread Starter
Sep 26, 2020
After previously installing my debian os, when I try to install it now (after having reinstalled windows over it, thus erasing debian), I am getting "GRUB" failure, error messages. How do I fix?

"Unable to install grub in dummy" - "executing grub-install dummy failed"

I am trying to install debian gnome 9 and getting
--- unable to install grub in dummy
--- executing grub-install dummy failed
--- fatal error

I have tried to reinstall debian gnome three times and the same message appears each time. I also tried to install debian cinnamon 9 and got the same message. I've read about other people having the same problem, but of no help.

I am not trying to have a dual boot, rather reinstall debian over windows.

When I boot into the computer, I only have 3 options:
  1. enter setup​
  2. livedvd​
  3. debian​
Whether I choose debian, or livedvd and reinstall, I end up with the same black screen with the following... At the top of the page it states:

"minimal bash......."

And underneath the only thing there is
Looks like I am supposed to type something after grub>.

I have no linux os installed.

Appreciate any help as I am at a standstill.
Last edited:


Trusted Advisor
Spam Fighter
May 24, 2003
Run Debian livedvd and use Gparted to delete all the partitions on the drive then try the install again.


Apr 1, 2016
I have to concur with Allan.

If you've tried multiple re-installs, one over the top of each other, you will by now have made a complete, total hash of your MBR.

The only solution to this will be a thorough wipe/erase/ re-format, followed by a clean re-install. Otherwise, you are going to have left-over remnants of Windoze getting in the way of a functioning boot-loader.

Download the gParted LiveCD from here:-


(That's a direct download link, BTW.) Burn this to a clean optical disc, if you have an optical drive. If not, use something like Rufus to 'burn' it to a flash-drive.

Then, you boot into it, since this is a small, self-contained OS, specifically set-up for working with disks & file-systems. From here, you can erase & re-format your HDD, prior to a clean re-install of Debian. gParted allows a wipe/re-build of your MBR during the re-format process; I would recommend making use of this option while you're at it.

Mike. ;)

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