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Thread: "Gave up waiting for root device"

  1. #1
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    Talking "Gave up waiting for root device"

    I'm trying to get an old server to run Kubuntu at the moment, an Acer Altos G510. Dual Xeon SL6VN processors, booting off of a Fujitsu Limited 73Gb SCSI-Ultra320 15k drive through an onboard LSI controller.

    I can't get it to boot without it going into the BusyBox and saying the following:

    Gave up waiting for root device. Common problems:
    ...
    ...
    ALERT! dev/disk/by-uuid/<string> does not exist. Dropping to a shell!

    I see that this has been asked before, but nothing I've found talks about what to do with a SCSI drive, nor can I understand a lot of people saying "go here and add this and it will work". I'm brand new to Ubuntu and Linux.
    I'm trying to install Kubuntu 12.10 using an IDE HDD formatted into a 2GB FAT partition, loaded with PenDriveLinux. Installation works fine, but it won't boot off of the main SCSI drive.

    Any ideas? I've gotta say, that the curve for getting into Linux is like a brick wall... I have no problem with that myself; I love this stuff, but for the average every-day computer user, it has to be seriously daunting to even get Ubuntu installed.
    Last edited by TheAdmiralty; March 2nd, 2013 at 01:07 AM.

  2. #2
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    Re: "Gave up waiting for root device"

    Hi

    Quote Originally Posted by TheAdmiralty View Post
    I'm trying to get an old server to run Kubuntu at the moment, an Acer Altos G510. Dual Xeon SL6VN processors, booting off of a Fujitsu Limited 73Gb SCSI-Ultra320 15k drive through an onboard LSI controller.

    <snip>

    Any ideas? I've gotta say, that the curve for getting into Linux is like a brick wall...

    <snip>

    for the average every-day computer user, it has to be seriously daunting to even get Ubuntu installed.
    I have to say that i have never met many "average every-day computer users" that try to install Ubuntu on an old server

    What you are trying to do is not what the average user would do so you must expect some issues.

    Also the average user does not generally have these problems.

    There may be a problem with the UUIDs but as this is an older server, i suspect something else may be going on.

    Reboot your PC and immediately press shift key to display at the grub menu, if it is not already displayed.

    When it displays a kernel to boot, press the 'e' key to edit that kernels command line.

    Scroll to the end of the kernel command line.

    At the end of the kernel line, hit the space bar and then add this text

    Code:
    rootdelay=90
    Press the two keys 'ctrl' and 'x' at the same to continue booting.

    This will increase the time the kernel will wait for your discs to spin up and for the root partition to become ready.

    Does this boot into Kubuntu. If it does then this fix needs to be made permenant as it is not at the moment.

    If it does not fix it then the issue is something else.

    EDIT: I just thought i would add that i think Kubuntu may not be the best option for such and old server.

    Kind regards
    Last edited by matt_symes; March 2nd, 2013 at 02:34 AM.
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  3. #3
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    Re: "Gave up waiting for root device"

    Yep... I certainly expect it. Maybe even look forward to it... it's never fun to just install an operating system and have it fire right up.

    I'll go fire it up and see see how it works. I have two Seagate Cheetah 10k's alongside what I have now as a boot drive... I might try installing to one of them while I'm at it, just for good measure. Will be sure to report back with how it goes.

    Much appreciated!

  4. #4
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    Re: "Gave up waiting for root device"

    Hi

    Just to let you know that i edited my post so you may want to read it, as i tried to make it clearer.

    Kind regards
    Join us on irc at #ubuntuforums. For web chat see here

    If you believe everything you read, you better not read. ~ Japanese Proverb

    Do not read newspapers on an empty stomach ~ Russian Proverb ~ BrunoLotse

  5. #5
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    Re: "Gave up waiting for root device"

    Alright. First, I went into the LSI controller configuration, and disabled all initial disk spinup delays, and then tried booting with the bootdelay=90 parameter, but it didn't do much; still drops off at the same error. Definitely not a matter of waiting for the hardware to be ready.

    I did reformat and reinstall onto the same hard drive in the same way I installed it the first time, and it ended up stopping and dumping me into the BusyBox shell, but with no error... I'm not really sure if this is progress or not. It would be nice if it would at least have the same problems, and consistently.

    On your other note, I believe that Redhat Linux was officially supported by the G510 at one time, but I'd like something... well... a little nicer to work with and look at. Kubuntu might not be the 'best' option, but I'm willing to keep trying until I get something to work on this. It's really just a project/excuse for me to have an absurdly overbuilt desktop humming beside me. It might be worth trying to use a base Ubuntu install and replace Unity with KDE of that, but I really don't think it would solve any of my boot issues.

    Not every day you find all the hardware needed to turn something into a desktop pc; had to gut an old Gateway for an audio card, and it's running on an ATI Rage 128 right now that can't even play videos over the internet... amazing how hard PCI video cards are getting to find. Another 2x512Mb of ECC Reg memory in the mail... at least old enterprise class parts are dirt cheap.
    Last edited by TheAdmiralty; March 2nd, 2013 at 03:58 AM.

  6. #6
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    Re: "Gave up waiting for root device"

    Hi

    Shame about the rootdelay. That would have been a nice easy fix. I must work on my hunches

    dumping me into the BusyBox shell, but with no error...
    That is progress. what happens when you type exit at that prompt, as there is no error ?

    You should be able able to view dmesg in busybox as well and see what the kernel has done.

    Try to find out at what point initramfs dropped you to busybox.

    Please keep me posted as i'm off to sleep in a moment and it sounds like a good project.

    Kind regards
    Join us on irc at #ubuntuforums. For web chat see here

    If you believe everything you read, you better not read. ~ Japanese Proverb

    Do not read newspapers on an empty stomach ~ Russian Proverb ~ BrunoLotse

  7. #7
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    Re: "Gave up waiting for root device"

    Just learned that it will only do that once, on the first boot immediately after installation. First boot will always have the graphical splash screen, and drop into BusyBox with no error; anything after that will run in ascii and end with the "Gave up waiting" error.

    Trying to exit the BusyBox page results in the BusyBox message being repeated; only way it seems to get out of that page is to use the reboot command.

    "dmesg" replies with about ten pages of text, but the most I could make out of it was that it looped on "scsi 2:0:1:1 >CDB / test unit ready: 00 00 00 00 00 00" and then would fail several test and repeat itself. I can take a picture of the final page if needed... is there a parameter that displays one page at a time? I know DOS has that option, but I'm still finding my way around Linux's subsystems.

    The last four lines are as follows:
    sdc: unknown partition table
    sd 2:0:1:0 >[sdc] attached scsi disk
    sdb: sdb1 sdb2 < sdb5 >
    sd 2:0:0:0 >[sdb] attached scsi disk
    Not sure if that's helpful or not, but i figure it's worth putting up.

    On a random side note, one of the Cheetah drives is showing up on the LiveOS as being 964MiB, although I'm almost positive this is because of my constantly reformatting things and/or breaking RAID arrays.

    Appreciate the help, by the way.
    Last edited by TheAdmiralty; March 2nd, 2013 at 05:40 PM.

  8. #8
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    Re: "Gave up waiting for root device"

    Hi

    A picture of the final page of the dmesg log would be most useful.

    EDIT:

    To display 1 page at a time use the command

    Code:
    most
    so you would be looking at

    Code:
    dmesg | most
    Use the spacebar to get the next page and q to exit.

    I believe most is part of busybox.

    You can also get the initramfs log by editing the kernel command line as you did before but adding

    Code:
    debug
    to the end.

    I believe the initramfs log is stored in the directory

    /tmp

    Kind regards
    Last edited by matt_symes; March 2nd, 2013 at 05:46 PM. Reason: extra info
    Join us on irc at #ubuntuforums. For web chat see here

    If you believe everything you read, you better not read. ~ Japanese Proverb

    Do not read newspapers on an empty stomach ~ Russian Proverb ~ BrunoLotse

  9. #9
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    Re: "Gave up waiting for root device"

    Well, you can grep the output of dmesg for scsi and/or sd:
    Code:
    dmesg|grep 'scsi\|sd'
    This will probably still spit out too much data. But more should be part of initramfs BusyBox, so
    Code:
    dmesg|grep 'scsi\|sd'|more

  10. #10
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    Re: "Gave up waiting for root device"

    That should work, thanks. I was trying to use |less instead of |most; I'll get a picture up here ASAP.

    UPDATE:

    I have a picture of the last page of dmesg output, along with a video of dmesg running. I don't have much experience with this, but it seems to be spitting out an awful lot. I did try | most, but it must not be included in the BusyBox shell. Wasn't found.

    Last page:
    http://i579.photobucket.com/albums/s...ps71ee41bb.jpg

    Video:
    http://s579.beta.photobucket.com/use...04435.mp4.html
    ^Sorry for the quality... photobucket absolutely killed it during upload.
    Last edited by TheAdmiralty; March 2nd, 2013 at 07:07 PM. Reason: Updated Information

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