[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: "Waiting for root file system..." hang solved


> [This message has also been posted to linux.debian.user.]
> In article <9l0Hy-3FQ-5@gated-at.bofh.it>, Johannes Wiedersich wrote:
> > Cameron L. Spitzer wrote:
> > [snip upgrade instructions]
> >
> > Thanks for posting your experience! I am sure it will be useful to
> > others.
> >
> >> You could have a debate about whether this is an installer
> >> bug, a kernel package bug, a udev bug, or operator error.
> >
> > If I understand correctly, you upgraded the kernel and the new kernel
> > would not boot. Then it would be a kernel bug.
> That was my initial conclusion.  But then I spent some time
> googling for the error messages.  A lot of people have had this
> same hang, and most of them got there by some other path than I did.
> So I think it may be a more general problem than that.
Yes, and I is one of them who just experienced it. Just installed Etch but on 
first boot after installation I got the "Waiting for root file system..."

My (old) mainbord (BE6) have two IDE hardisk controlles onboard. One generic 
IDE controller (piix) and a hpt366 controller.

It seems that in default kernel in Etch that all IDE drivers are loaded as 
modules. If you then have multiple IDE controllers you are in trouble because 
the IDE kernel modules will be loaded in random order. In my case, if the 
hpt366 kernel module is loaded first, the disks attached to it will be named 
hda, hdb, hdc and hdd. It the piix kernel module is loaded first, then those 
disks will be named hda, hdb, hdc and hdd (the hpt366 disks will then be 
named hde, hdf, hdg and hdh) .

This was never a problem with Sarge kernel images because there the generic 
IDE controller drivers was compiled into the kernel (thus loaded before any 
modules) while other IDE drivers (like hpt366) was compiled as modules.
I guess everyone with multiple IDE controllers will end up with the same 
problem and the debian installer doesn't warn you about this. 

I was going to report this as bug report but not sure in which package the bug 
report should be assigned to. I guess relevant packages are kernel, debian 
installer, mkinitrd?
Not sure how this should be fixed either. Using ext2/ext3 labels in fstab and 
grub config is one way I guess. Using UUID ( 
http://michael-prokop.at/blog/2006/08/11/stable-root-device-aka-uuid/  ) in 
fstab and grub config is probably another way.
A 3rd solution would be to enforce that that one kernel module (piix in my 
case) is loaded before an other (hpt366 in my case) but that is not possible 
AFAIK. Or is it ?
Not sure if it is possible to fix this with udev rules. I suspect the IDE 
kernel modules are loaded before udev daemon is started though......

Please CC me on any reply as I am not subscribed to the list. 
Sorry for also messing up the threading but had to cut&past from the archive ( 
http://lists.debian.org/debian-user/2007/11/msg00215.html ) and had no idea 
how to set the message-id correctly when replying...

Best regards,
Vidar L

vl@ez.no | eZ systems | ez.no

Reply to: