View Full Version : [ubuntu] 9.10: problematic start-up with encrypted /home

April 11th, 2010, 10:55 PM

CONTEXT: I have been using a LUKS-encrypted home partition with Ubuntu since 8.04 with no complaints. I do not use a keyfile; I enter a passphrase at boot. However, Ubuntu 9.10 has had problems with my encrypted partition. No matter what I try in fstab/crypttab, I often run into the following dead-end at boot time that goes as follows (or something like the following):

1. The white Ubuntu logo shows up for a few seconds
2. The screen turns black and displays only a blinking cursor.
3. I see output from fsck
4. The prompt to enter the passphrase for my encrypted home partition shows up (or not) right after the output from fsck
5. The screen with the output from fsck disappears, and the screen with the Ubuntu logo comes back, but with no prompt to enter a passphrase, only the message

One or more of the mounts listed in /etc/fstab cannot be mounted:
/home: waiting for /dev/mapper/home
Press esc to enter a recovery shell
6. I'll wait for as little as ten seconds or as long as five mintues, but the prompt to enter a passphrase to unlock my encrypted partition never shows up again; it's just stuck in some kind of alternate stdout where I can't put my passphrase in it.
7. I then try to enter the recovery shell (Enter root password for maintenance, or press Ctrl-D to continue) and I put my root password in, but it doesn't accept the password. I'll press Ctrl-D to retry the boot process, but it will run into the same dead-end.
8. I reboot, and sometimes (it often takes two or three reboots) I'll get the passphrase prompt in the same screen as the white Ubuntu logo, and I'll be able to unlock my home partition and boot normally.

So my question is this: what do I need to do to make sure that Karmic Koala will be happy with my encrypted home partition? I'm willing to try anything, even if it's changing something trivial in fstab/crypttab. If there's something more I need to do so that Ubuntu's pad-everything-with-convenience configuration system recognizes my encrypted home partition and boots more smoothly, I'd really like to know.

The relevant parts of my /etc/fstab:

# <file system> <mount point> <type> <options> <dump> <pass>
UUID=df4ca819-9888-4070-b37f-79c1a1609998 / jfs defaults,iocharset=utf8 0 1
UUID=aea1a760-5484-4110-871d-1632cf420ff9 /boot ext2 relatime 0 1
/dev/mapper/home /home jfs defaults,iocharset=utf8 0 2
My /etc/crypttab:

# <target name> <source device> <key file> <options>
home /dev/sdb2 none luks,timeout=30

May 6th, 2010, 12:12 AM
Did you find a way to solve the problem?
I've just upgraded from 9.04 to 9.10 and I'm unable to use my system!