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Re: lilo-22.3.2-3 trashed my SCSI disk

Maybe a hardware fault happened, in this case unfortunately at the
same time as a rewrite of the lilo boot information. I was just about
to file a bug report... Still there are some open issues remaining.

Russell Coker writes:
 > On Tue, 3 Sep 2002 08:44, Svante Signell wrote:
 > > After upgrade of lilo in unstable my whole SCSI disk got trashed. It
 > > could only be recovered with the use of the IBM drive fitness test
 > > tool, and a complete erase disk was necessary :-( What happened?
 > If you need to run an IBM diagnostics program to get your disk working then 
 > it's a hardware issue and nothing to do with LILO.
 > LILO like all Linux programs does not get to talk to the hardware directly and 
 > only gets to write data to the block device (/dev/sda or /dev/sda1).  If 
 > writing to such a device can require special IBM utilities to recover then 
 > it's a hardware or device driver issue (but most likely hardware).
 > > A reinstall of Woody showed that it can only boot from the MBR
 > > partition, not the root partition, i.e.
 > >
 > > boot=/dev/sda, works!
 > > boot=/dev/sda1, does not work!
 > Strange, /dev/hda1 in the form of /dev/md1 works for me.
As seen from the original posting, the boot sector information was
and it did work before, but not after the crash. Explanation?
When running lilo before and after the same information is displayed:
Reading boot sector from /dev/sda1

After the crash (with 22.3.3-2):
Reading boot sector from /dev/sda
Using MENU secondary loader
Calling map_insert_data

Can someone explain (or give a pointer to) the different behaviour of
writing to the MBR vs the root partition?

 > > What has changed for newer versions of lilo?  I have been running
 > > Debian stable/testing/unstable for several years now without any
 > > problems before.
 > 22.3 was one of the biggest changes to LILO in recent times that did have 
 > potential to cause breakage.  The versions after that were minor changes.
The version upgrade was from 22.3.2-1 to 22.3.2-3. The main difference is the removal of the /boot/boot.b link.
 > > Note also that I have a dual disk system, SCSI and IDE, therefore the
 > > disk=, bios= statements in lilo.conf. The disk partitioning tools, such as
 > > cfdisk requires both the SCSI disk and the IDE disk to have at least
 > > one partition with the boot flag set. Is this really necessary?
 > No.  You don't really need any boot flags to be set.
Then why can't I write the partiton table in cfdisk without setting
the boot flag on one of the partitions of the IDE disk?
 > > Does the install=menu stuff have anything to do with the crash?
 > No.  It's the default action anyway...
 > > Maybe grub is better with respect to error recovery?
 > If your hardware fails to badly that Linux programs can't fix it then grub vs 
 > LILO is not an issue.
 > Russell Coker
 > PS  Let's move this to debian-user.

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