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Re: unable to open initial console (was: rescue grub -- help!)

On 3/24/06, David Liontooth <liontooth@cogweb.net> wrote:
> Hi Török,
> Thank you, that's very helpful. I ended up just installing a new Debian
> on a different partition; once that was done, the installer agreed to
> rewrite the MBR, and my old installation showed up in grub. I would much
> prefer being allowed to rewrite the MBR without first having to install
> another OS.
> Once I got that far, I could boot into the OS I'm trying to rescue;
> however, I now ran into the dreaded "warning: unable to open initial
> console". This is also /dev/ related, and this suggests I have a general
> dev problem with the partition I cloned. Now that I have a parallel
> partition that is fully operational, is there a way I can repopulate my
> /dev directory from chroot, or through a script?
Yes, boot from the CD, and copy /dev from the working installation to
the one you are trying to rescue.
You have a tmpfs mounted on /dev, that is handled by udev. You can try
to copy the needed devices from there, but I never tried doing that.

Try doing this inside the chroot:
# mknod /dev/null c 1 3
# mknod /dev/console c 5 1

Can you tell me how do you boot your kernel? Do you use initrd?
If not, you should, since that should solve this /dev problem you are having.

Which Debian distro are you using? Sarge, etch?

> Using "mount -o bind /dev /root2/dev", I can now chroot into /root2 and
> see I have a complete /dev directory, so that for instance I can mount
> /dev/hda1 on a chrooted /boot. How do I make this happen when I boot
> directly into that partition?
Please provide the output of these commands:
ls -l /root2/dev
cat /boot/grub/menu.lst

Make sure your initrd is ok (i.e. is not corrupt), make sure your udev
installation is ok.
Try reinstalling udev, and regenerating the initrd, and see if that helps.


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