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Can't mkinitrd on chroot system

I have been (mostly) following the instructions in section 3.7 of the
woody installation manual to bootstrap a Debian system from a RH one.

However, I have run into a problem.  I tried to install a kernel
(2.4.18-k7) and it needed an initrd.  The mkinitrd fails with a
complaint that it can't determine the root filesystem.  Immediately
before this awk complains "cannot open /proc/filesystems (no such file
or directory).

I think what's going on is that, because I'm running chroot, /proc is
not accessible.

I mention this first, in case it might be relevant to the new
installation procedures.  Second, what can I do to get around this

I can not boot into the system without chroot because I can't run lilo
successfully because the initrd file is empty (I think).  So I'm stuck. 
I suppose I could try a non initrd kernel, but I'm not exactly sure how
far back I need to go.

Note that I did depart from the woody procedure by updating my
sources.list to testing shortly after the initial base system install. 
This is why I'm seeing newer kernels.  I also edited fstab and did mount
-a (several times getting it right).

Ross Boylan                                      wk: (415) 502-4031
530 Parnassus Avenue (Library) rm 115-4          ross@biostat.ucsf.edu
Dept of Epidemiology and Biostatistics           hm: (415) 550-1062
University of California, San Francisco
San Francisco, CA 94143-0840

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