On Thu, May 13, 2021 at 09:21:22PM -0000, Bill McGonigle wrote:
> Fast forwarding eight months, this still breaks a fully-updated xubuntu
> LTS 16 to LTS 18 release upgrade

Because you have a misconfigured grub package on your system which is not
writing to the correct MBR.  That is impossible for us to fix from the
package, as the bug is in the package configuration and there is no way to
programmatically determine the correct target for grub-install.

> Mounting the disks on the host (error was in a VM guest), chrooting, and
> running grub-install /dev/sda fixes, so this doesn't seem like a complex
> disk layout issue.  I'm about to see if fully-updated LTS 18 to LTS 20
> also breaks ... yep  'grub_file_filters' is the symbol this time.  Same
> fix.

If 'grub-install /dev/sda' fixes it for you, then you should fix your grub
config to point to /dev/sda using 'sudo dpkg-reconfigure grub-pc'.

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  grub-install failure does not fail package upgrade (and does not roll
  back to matching modules)

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