Friday, February 4, 2011

Anticipating Natty Alpha 2 with Wubi

So, it's Alpha 2 week and what better time to check out Wubi again. But the news isn't good. In fact, things have gone from bad to worse. Before you could install Natty Wubi by replacing the buggy wubildr with a working Maverick copy to kick-start the installation. Now it just results in a loop in the installler (ubiquity) saying "No root filesystem has been defined".

So much for that... Let's try the upgrade option instead.

And the silver lining is... that the upgrade from Wubi Maverick to Natty was very smooth. No errors. No strange popups. No Afghanistan keyboard. In fact, the only thing I noticed was an "error: file not found" as grub booted into kernel 2.6.38-1.

So upgrading a Maverick install is still the preferred way to go if you want to test Natty on Wubi.

PS I didn't expect the fresh Natty Wubi install to work because the Natty wubi.exe hadn't been updated (since early December). And the new installer bug isn't too surprising either - it's Alpha after all and you need to expect these things. However, I do think it's fair to expect that sometime between December 2nd and February 2nd that the developer would have done one or two unit tests on Wubi.exe and discovered the problem  (or at least noticed the bug report).

To be honest, I'd prefer they stopped messing with Wubi Natty and fixed the far more important Lucid Grub issues... but I know that's not likely to happen.

Just today there was someone on who had their computer completely wiped (Factory restored) by some lousy 'tech support' due to the Wubi grub rescue issue. These are real, live, normal people trying out Ubuntu and it'd be nice if the devs took that a little more seriously.


  1. Hi, I was wondering if you could help me with an issue regarding wubi. After installation I get the hd0,0 ext2 error when I try to boot Ubuntu. I've read some of your other posts and you sound really knowledgeable on the subject. I'm a total Linux noob and not sure what to do. Thanks!

  2. Chris, see my post "WUBILDR, WUBILDR.MBR and GRLDR" - if you have an ext4 partition prior to the windows partition, then it won't boot. If you need Wubi support go to or (mention that it's a Wubi install)

  3. The "no root files system defined" seems to be a never ending story with no solution in sight. I've been trying to install Ubuntu since 2008 and with every release my hope would be that this nasty issue would be resolved but hélas. Installing windows is pure bliss in comparison.

  4. I'm in the process of putting together some common install issues. The "no root file system defined" is not common, but I've seen a number of these. Check out this link