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Re: Bug#852323: debian-installer: grub-installer not convert root= entry to UUID

On 01/23/2017 10:03 AM, Steve McIntyre wrote:
On Mon, Jan 23, 2017 at 06:43:27PM +0300, Andrey Jr. Melnikov wrote:
Package: debian-installer
Severity: important
Tags: d-i

Installation procedure of grub2 dont't transform root= entry from /dev/sd?? to UUID notation.
This lead to unbootable system after install.

Hmmm. It normally does this reliably in my experience. What version of
d-i did you use, and did you follow through the menus as normal? Is
there anything special about your setup?

I suspect I have a symptom of the same, or very similar, bug.

My environment is unusual:
  1. I'm interested in extremely minimal installs.
  2. I have minimal internet connectivity thus I purchase DVD sets.

While waiting for the latest DVD set to arrive, I decided to download debian-9.1.0-i386-netinst.iso and write it to a USB flash drive. I then used it to install a very minimal system to another USB flash drive plugged into the *SAME USB expander*. I specified that Grub be installed to the MBR of the destination flash drive.

My hardware, on power on, will repeatably recognize multiple devices attached to the expander in a specific order {based on the physical location}. The install went normally and it would boot as expected *as long as* the source drive was present -- independent of the bios seeing the primary hard drive or the flash drive as the boot device. [1]

If only the destination device was present at boot time there were multiple scenarios.

If the bios saw the flash device as the boot device *and only if* its grub.cfg had had all references to /dev/sdd changed to /dev/sdb, it would boot successfully. [2]

The situation is more complicated if the active grub is in the MBR of the permanently installed HDD (/dev/sda). I had noticed that running update-grub did not always yield a workable menu entry. It's a pathological corner case and I did not record the circumstances.

I see the need to perform multiple installs to document exactly what factors trigger a failure. Before I run them I need to know what log files I should preserve for each case.

I also suspect that Bug#876866 is related.

[1] What happens is dependent on whether or not my WiFi hub is attached to the USB3 port having priority over the USB2 port into which the port expander was attached.

[2]  My WiFi was plugged into the USB3 port during install.

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