On Wed, Jul 27, 2022, at 5:55 AM, Kamil Paral wrote:
I've been to numerous events where we helped students install Fedora into dual boot.
One of the top 5 questions afterwards (maybe even #1) is "how do I make it boot
Windows by default?". In the old days, that consisted of editing the grub config file
and changing the default selected value to match the Windows boot item, or when
"GRUB_DEFAULT=saved" actually worked, I just told them "It will remember
the last selected option". That was easy enough and user friendly.
From the proposed options, only a) satisfies that.
It could be an option with b) as well. Just change bootorder so that Windows is first.
Efibootmgr supports this too.
While all of us here are happy to run Fedora by default, let's not forget about
newcomers and their needs, because our user base will die out otherwise.
This is a good point to underscore. The user experience following a Fedora installation
when Bitlocker is enabled, is the appearance of Windows being broken or inaccessible. We
are probably better off asking Anaconda to refuse to install when Bitlocker is detected.
Or at least a warning dialog.
Or perhaps refuse to install just with Automatic partitioning, i.e. accept a somewhat weak
argument that users of Custom/Advanced-Custom can deal with the ensuing confusion->a
Windows boot option in the GRUB menu that doesn't boot Windows as expected.
If there's not enough will to implement option a) (or some
workaround with the same effect), we'll have to change our release criterion (option
c) - I'd probably propose some changes to the wording).
I just made it match the OS X criterion (which should be renamed macOS, this section is
dating itself :P)
I don't see any benefit in delaying the status quo (option d)).
But we should also clarify the situation to our users. On the Fedora download page, we
should make it clear that users with an encrypted drive will not be able to boot Windows
out of the box anymore, and they'll need to take additional steps to get into Windows.
Yeah, I agree that absent software solutions to the problem, we definitely need better
documentation. Fedora download page, and Ask Fedora.
If there's one thing I'd like to communicate, it's *your data is OK!*
You've previous reported users became convinced installing Fedora broke Windows, and
resulted in data loss. That's how bad the experience is. And it's sad that some
folks just gave up and ended up toasting their own data due to this confusion.
The thing I keep coming back to is this is not just bad for Fedora, it's bad for all
the distros that support dual boot Windows.
That might include a tool in Fedora (option b)), or figuring out how
to get to a one-time boot menu.
I'm not sure how much we can depend on the firmware's built-in boot manager for
anything. I'm pretty sure we can depend on the firmware honoring bootnext and
Windows can show Fedora as a boot option. shift key+restart -> Use A Device ->
Fedora. This sets a bootnext variable in NVRAM for the firmware to follow.
It should also contain instructions on how to switch back to the
Windows bootloader by default (after installation, and ideally also as an option during
installation), and how to boot Fedora then.
A note: Option b) mentions the Windows boot menu would get removed on UEFI systems - it
would be good to do this only if anaconda detects a Bitlocker partition. There's no
need to make it harder for Windows users who do not have their disks encrypted.
GRUB isn't that smart. Bitlocker could be enabled by the user at any time, if it's
not enabled by default.
My inclination is *if* upstream GRUB Is going to abandon this use case, there might as
well be a clean break. Keep it on BIOS, remove it entirely on UEFI.