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Thread: Non-PAE system updating to PAE kernels?

  1. #1
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    Exclamation Non-PAE system updating to PAE kernels?

    Hey guys, I just had a Ubuntu system of mine completely die on me after upgrading it and now I am confused....Basically, it is an older machine (Intel P3, 512MB RAM, etc) that I use as a command line only test bed. It's CPU does NOT support PAE extensions. PAE is mandatory when installing 12.04 LTS so what I basically did was install 11.10 x86 and then updated to 12.04 LTS and that worked fine. It even detected the CPU didn't support PAE, ignored the PAE kernels, and updated all the relevant non-PAE packages correctly (including using non PAE kernels under 12.04 LTS). Fast forward a few months as I hadn't used the thing so I wanted to update it. Did apt-get update and it listed a bunch of packages including a new kernel. At the top, it did say something along the lines of "these packages are being ignored" and then listed several *PAE packages. So I proceeded with the update as everything it was going to do looked OK to me, however, the update failed (see screenshot below) and now the machine won't even boot....



    What is going on? Is it not possible to update 12.04 LTS anymore on non-PAE machines? How come it tried to (seemingly) update to *PAE packages when my CPU can't support them? I feel like this is the root of the problem but if you have any other idea's or suggestions, please mention them!
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  2. #2
    ibjsb4 is offline Ubuntu addict and loving it
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    Re: Non-PAE system updating to PAE kernels?

    What about installing xubuntu 12.04 or lubuntu and then install the ubuntu-desktop (post#39)? I have not tried this, but it looks doable.

    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1959675

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    Re: Non-PAE system updating to PAE kernels?

    Thanks for the reply but this is a server actually so I don't need a desktop...I don't want to install anything other than a default ubuntu image anyway though.
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    Re: Non-PAE system updating to PAE kernels?

    There must be some other problem. P3 CPU's support running PAE. I have 2 running myself. Here is the info on one of them

    Code:
    bab@ventura:~$ uname -r
    3.2.0-23-generic-pae
    
    bab@ventura:~$ sudo lshw -C cpu
    
      *-cpu                   
           description: CPU
           product: Pentium III (Coppermine)
           vendor: Intel Corp.
           physical id: 4
           bus info: cpu@0
           version: 6.8.6
           slot: J4L1
           size: 1GHz
           capacity: 1GHz
           width: 32 bits
           clock: 133MHz
           capabilities: fpu fpu_exception wp vme de pse tsc msr pae mce cx8 mtrr pge mca cmov pse36 mmx fxsr sse up
    Edit: Looking at your attachment a little closer, it appears to be a HDD I/O problem. See the references to "read only file system"? This is a sign that the drive is failing and has been mounted read only. I would start by using fsck on the partition in question first and then check the drive health.
    Last edited by bab1; March 15th, 2013 at 02:24 AM.
    -BAB1

  5. #5
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    Re: Non-PAE system updating to PAE kernels?

    Not all P3's supported PAE, unfortunetly mine doesn't support it and I know this for a fact.
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    Re: Non-PAE system updating to PAE kernels?

    Can you show the your output of this
    Code:
    sudo lshw -C cpu
    ...just my curiosity.
    -BAB1

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    Re: Non-PAE system updating to PAE kernels?

    Nope considering I can't even boot into the machine now

    @Disk I/O and read only errors, couldn't those have been caused by trying to load/install a PAE kernel on a non PAE system?
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    Re: Non-PAE system updating to PAE kernels?

    Quote Originally Posted by d4m1r View Post
    Nope considering I can't even boot into the machine now
    That's too bad. I'd be curious to see if the PAE flag is present of not.

    @Disk I/O and read only errors, couldn't those have been caused by trying to load/install a PAE kernel on a non PAE system?
    Not in my experience. Disk I/O and the remounting of the partition is usually associated with failing hard drives. The remount read only is so that the system doesn't cause further damage while attempting to leave the system up and running.

    If you were to try and load or install the kernel that was inappropriate it should just fail completely.

    I would try a LiveCD or a USB boot and check the CPU for PAE compatability. If you need to revert to an earlier version then do that . You can check the flags with the command I gave you. If the flag is there the CPU is PAE capable.
    Code:
           capabilities: fpu fpu_exception wp vme de pse tsc msr pae mce cx8 mtrr pge mca cmov pse36 mmx fxsr sse up
    Edit: I wonder if the HDD had already failed and was in read only mode when the update was attempted?
    Last edited by bab1; March 15th, 2013 at 05:33 AM.
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    Re: Non-PAE system updating to PAE kernels?

    If read only mode is caused by HDD failure, then it had definitely not failed before the update. Everything looked normal to me and I used the system how I wanted to months back when I first set it up and the day it died (before the update). Because of that, I think the upgrade/install of a PAE kernel triggered this but yes, it could be a random hardware failure as well.
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    Re: Non-PAE system updating to PAE kernels?

    Quote Originally Posted by d4m1r View Post
    If read only mode is caused by HDD failure, then it had definitely not failed before the update. Everything looked normal to me and I used the system how I wanted to months back when I first set it up and the day it died (before the update). Because of that, I think the upgrade/install of a PAE kernel triggered this but yes, it could be a random hardware failure as well.
    I guess we won't know until we test it all. Was the OS on a separate disk or partition from the data?
    Last edited by bab1; March 15th, 2013 at 04:47 PM.
    -BAB1

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