FIX: Windows 10 Bootloader from Linux [Quick Guide]

Aleksandar Ognjanovic
by Aleksandar Ognjanovic
Troubleshooting Expert
Aleksandar's main passion is technology. With a solid writing background, he is determined to bring the bleeding edge to the common user. With a keen eye, he always spots the next big thing surrounding... Read more
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  • You can quickly fix the Windows bootloader from Linux if it doesn't work due to Windows updates.
  • Use the boot repair utility which comes with Ubuntu to repair Windows boot from Linux.
  • If you're looking for a fast Ubuntu boot repair on Windows 10, you can do it within the terminal.
  • The Linux loader is also a great way to fix the Windows boot from Linux in no time.
windows bootloader fix with linux
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Due to the aggressive and territorial nature of Windows 10, problems like this will emerge quite often. That’s why it’s advised to install Windows 10 first before installing Linux in a dual-boot mode.

Linux is much less intrusive and won’t damage Windows 10 bootloader. Despite that, things still can go wrong after major updates. If that happens, you can fix it with Linux (Ubuntu) and we offered 3 methods below.

How to repair Windows 10 bootloader errors from Linux

  1. Use the Boot Repair utility on Ubuntu
  2. Fix Windows 10 bootloader within the Terminal
  3. Try with LILO

1. Use the Boot Repair utility on Ubuntu

  1. Download Ubuntu live distro version.
  2. Mount it to your USB.
    • You can do it with the Universal USB Installer (preferably) tool. It’s important to use this application or the drive won’t be bootable.
  3. Plug-in the drive and boot from it.
  4. Go for the Try Ubuntu without installing option.
    • In case this fails, open BIOS/UEFI settings, disable Secure Boot option, and try again.
  5. Once Ubuntu boots, press Ctrl+Alt+T to open the Terminal.
  6. In the command line, run the following string and press Enter after each:
    • sudo add-apt-repository ppa:yannubuntu/boot-repair
    • sudo apt update
    • sudo apt install boot-loader
  7. This should install Boot Repair application and you can now find it among the Application menu.
  8. Open it and choose Recommended repair and wait until it’s done.

Let’s start with the simplest method. Probably knowingly, Ubuntu comes with the small utility called Boot Repair which fixes Windows 10 bootloader corruption upon running.

What you’ll need to have is the latest version of bootable Ubuntu mounted on your USB drive. After that, you’ll need to install the utility and, without the meddling in the Terminal, repair the Windows 10 bootloader.


2. Fix Windows 10 bootloader within the Terminal

  1. Boot again with the bootable USB drive.
  2. Open Terminal.
  3. In the command line, type the following string and press Enter after each:
    • sudo apt-get install syslinux
    • sudo dd if=/usr/lib/syslinux/mbr.bin of=/dev/sda
    • sudo apt-get install mbr
    • sudo install-mbr -i n -p D -t 0 /dev/sda
  4. Don’t forget to replace sda with the Windows 10 system drive.
  5. Reboot after that and Windows 10 should boot without any issues.

The second method relies on the Syslinux run through the Terminal. There’s a batch of commands you’ll need to run in order to install and utilize Syslinux to fix the Windows 10 bootloader.

If you’re not familiar with the way these work, we advise you to stick to the first method. Otherwise, the steps are rather easy and you just need to replace the sda input to your Windows 10 system drive letter.


3. Try fixing it with LILO

  1. Boot again with the bootable USB drive.
  2. Open Terminal.
  3. In the command line, type the following string and press Enter after each:
    • sudo apt-get install lilo
    • sudo lilo - M/dev/sda mbr
  4. Reboot and you’re good to go. The Windows 10 bootloader is fixed.

The final method utilizes LILO (Linux Loader) which is a small program responsible for managing dual boot. The procedure is similar to the previous one, at least for the unaccustomed eye.

Either way, if the previous two steps weren’t working for you (the first one should resolve bootloader issues), LILO is certainly a handy alternative.

If you’re still having trouble after going through all of the solutions above, we recommend using a third-party tool that can repair your PC and keep it healthy.


With that said, we can conclude this article. Hopefully, you managed to resolve the issue with the Windows 10 bootloader. We encourage you to tell us in the comment section below.


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