Re: The sad demise of an etch.
> I run a dual-boot Debian system -- one partition is sarge; the other is
> etch. The idea was that users would have a stable platform available if
> they wished, for mission-critical work, but have access to (relatively)
> recent software for the proce of a reboot.
> This etch had been ailing for quite a long while now. The xfree ->
> xorg upgrade went flawlessly, but a few weeks after that, after a
> routine general upgrade (which upgraded xorg) X ceased to function
> properly. It would crash when switching virtual consoles,
> unpredictably. Everything fine as long as no one switched virtual
> consoles, of course. Switching to a text console would work (before the
> crash) but switching between X consoles or from text to an X console was
> fraught with peril. There was a suspicion that the problem was set
> up by logging out from X and switching to another console before the
> original one had manages to present a new login screen -- then switching
> back to the original X later would present you with a dead machine.
> This suspicion, however, was nevre tested consistently.
> The system was still somewhat usable. I occasionally upgraded it in
> case this was a bug that would be fixed. IN any case, we still had
> sarge as a fall-back in case of real trouble.
> sometime later, etch could no longer start X successfully -- it ould
> fail, unable to access the AGP device. The X log made it look as if
> it was the actual AGP interface on the motherboard that was
> inaccessible, not the ATI card I had plugged into it.
> Upgradein udev seemed to cure this problem, but now X would
> crash during startup.
> Last Friday I performed another upgrade. Now etch won't boot at
> RAMDISK: Conplressed image found at block 0
> input: AT Translated Set 2 keyboard as /calss/input/input0
> invalid argument format (err=1)
> VFS: Cannot open root device "304" or unknown-block(3, 4)
> Pleas append a correct "root=" boot option
> Kernel panic - not syncing: VFS: Unable to mount root fs on
> unknown-block(3, 4)
what is your boot manager? did its configuration get corrupted? or maybe
you've got a bad block? I've seen this before on my system and can't
remember what it was.
does it hang there or drop you to busybox?
> I am tempted to pronounce this etch installation dead and reinstall from
> scratch. I'm also reluctant to do this, becase of Debian's reputation
> as being the system that never needs to be reinstalled. Sarge, of
> course, continues to soldier on without any problems at all (except for
> application obsolescence -- but that's spec)
> Or should I do something radical to get current software, such as
> installing gentoo on the former etch partition?
ack! bite your tongue! ;-0