Installation of debian on hp elitebook


The pc got 4 primary partition : 300M Win7 boot 220G Win7 C: 40G HP_RESCUE 2G HP_TOOLS for efi stuff :

I want to keep all the partition and install linux, for that :

  • we need to destroy one primary partition to create an extended one
  • we choose HP_TOOLS, that could be in extended one
  • we skrink Win7 C: (using windows tools), but because of an unmovable file we can get only 110G free
  • we don't care getting 2G of delete HP_TOOLS

So we got :

  • 300M Win7 boot
  • 110G Win7 C:
  • extended
    • 106G linux
    • 2G swap
    • 2G HP_TOOLS
  • 2G free

Debian installer (testing) : encryption

I tried to encrypt my system, but this is a mess :

  • the installer want the swap encrypted
  • in order to support suspend to disk, we can't set random to the key and we need special setup
  • in case of error, all the install process need to be restarted

In the end, I created a /, /home and swap partition without encryption. Encryption will be done later.


I don't want that grub mess with mbr.

I told grub to install in the / partition (the install help is wrong : it tells that sda2 is (hd0,2) but it is (hd0,1)

As recommended I used easyBCD :

But it is buggy : it removed the Win7 entry (after some manipulation, I had to restore it by hand).

NOTE : this tools gpl software (grub4dos), without giving credit/source.

NOTE2 : does grub update work ? Does easyBCD copy some part of the bootloader on windows partition ?


  • make the grub partition a bootable one, and hope mbr will use it
    • the syslinux mbr can be used if the default one doesn't work
    • this will make all the chain mbr + grub opensource and don't depend of windows partition

But does windows can be on a partition that it is not bootable ?

  • use a mbr with hardcoded partition


After booting on Linux the touchpad doesn't work with xorg (work with gpm). There is detection failure.


Finally I used the hp "DriveLock" feature.

What is it ?

It use the ATA-3 password feature (in high mode) :

With that specification, a password need to be entered to unlock the drive when it is power-on.

So without the password, the disk should be not usable. But some of them got backdoors or you can dismantle the disk and read the magnetic cylinder.

But this should be enough to prevent robber to access my data.

Note : HP cache the password to not enter it again on suspend to ram.

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