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System won't boot after having used an external HDD

I recently had a friend give me a drive (usb3 external) as he had accidentally reformatted it. I recovered the data for him, now my system won't boot. I formatted his drive after recovery with gnome-disks. Everything worked as expected but if I unplug his drive from my system and boot up without it, it fails and hangs after the login screen., I have booted with it plugged in OK and unmounted it, unplugged it and it fails to boot. Is grub looking for the drive and did it get somehow added to my system because I formatted it with gnome disks. Strange thing is my system boots normally with an older kernel. Help would be much appreciated.