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Thread: emergency boot mode

  1. #1
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    Aug 2013
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    emergency boot mode

    So I've messed with my pc latest Ubuntu and added a internal HDD. It was not being recognised so I've followed some script to make it work - apparently! Trouble is I've buggered it all up. Now I can't boot at all. As far as I am aware I've only changed the fstab.
    Obviously I do not know what I'm doing!! I only tend to use terminal in nessesity
    Can you help me revert back to working?
    Urgent help required. Thanks

  2. #2
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    Re: emergency boot mode

    Boot Repair -Also handles LVM, GPT, separate /boot and UEFI dual boot, only use ppa download into Ubuntu live installer.
    May be best to see details, use ppa version with your live installer or any working install, not older Boot-Repair ISO:
    Please copy & paste link to the Boot-info summary report ( do not post report), the auto fix sometimes can create more issues.
    https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Boot-Repair &
    https://sourceforge.net/p/boot-repair/home/Home/
    For more info on UEFI boot install & repair - Regularly Updated :
    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2147295
    Please use Thread Tools above first post to change to [Solved] when/if answered completely.

  3. #3
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    Re: emergency boot mode

    I have tried boot repair but cannot obtain it.
    I have 14.04 on cd but no other versions!

    Can I re-repair the fstab from emergency boot?

  4. #4
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    Re: emergency boot mode

    If running 14.04 then that is your problem. It has reached EOL - end of life.
    https://wiki.ubuntu.com/Releases
    Repositories are closed, so you do not get updates.

    Best just to install 18.04 or maybe 16.04.

    If fstab is issue, you may be able to mount it can edit it in live installer. Or you may have to chroot into it, but best to use current versions.
    For more info on UEFI boot install & repair - Regularly Updated :
    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2147295
    Please use Thread Tools above first post to change to [Solved] when/if answered completely.

  5. #5
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    Re: emergency boot mode

    Quote Originally Posted by oldfred View Post
    If fstab is issue, you may be able to mount it can edit it in live installer. Or you may have to chroot into it, but best to use current versions.
    I'm sure it is just etc/fstab that I inadvertently changed. Can I revert back? Could I disconnect the new drive? I have no other pc to obtain a live usb.

  6. #6
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    Re: emergency boot mode

    Can you boot to terminal using recovery mode?
    Then:
    sudo nano /etc/fstab
    Arrow down and put # (comment) at beginning of error.
    Any time you edit fstab, you always run this to make sure no errors. If it just returns then ok. If not you have to fix error before rebooting.
    sudo mount -a
    That remounts per updated fstab.
    For more info on UEFI boot install & repair - Regularly Updated :
    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2147295
    Please use Thread Tools above first post to change to [Solved] when/if answered completely.

  7. #7
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    Ubuntu 18.04 Bionic Beaver

    Re: emergency boot mode

    Quote Originally Posted by d_t_s2 View Post
    …I have 14.04 on cd but no other versions!…
    Quote Originally Posted by d_t_s2 View Post
    I'm sure it is just etc/fstab that I inadvertently changed. Can I revert back? Could I disconnect the new drive? I have no other pc to obtain a live usb.
    1. Although past EoL, your CD of 14.04 should be able to start in LiveCD mode.
    2. From there, mount your main HDD.
    3. You should be able to navigate into your root /etc/fstab and edit it.
    4. Don't make things worse by changing things willy-nilly. Go in with a written plan of what changes you wish to make, and record all of your steps.
    5. This time, make a backup of fstab first before working on it, so you can at least get back to the same starting point to try again if things don't work out.
    6. In addition to oldfred's advice, do not make changes to fstab unless you first:
      1. backup all of your important data, and
      2. have a current LiveUSB or other means with which to recover.

  8. #8
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    Aug 2013
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    Re: emergency boot mode

    I've tried all the above. Thanks. No joy. Partly because I do not know my error. I cannot boot into 14.04
    However I have disconnected both new drives leaving original I still have emergency boot mode and can load into grub. Recovery mode overwritten by emergency mode. I get all 'ok' apart from Failed to mound Drive3- which is the root of the problem.
    If the can obtain an utd live cd usb would this be able to determine the cause and repair without losing my documents etc. Not worried about system settings and apps etc.?

    I'm Not very good here at command line!
    Thanks

  9. #9
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    Ubuntu Development Release

    Re: emergency boot mode

    /etc/fstab needs to match 'sudo blkid' output

  10. #10
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    Ubuntu 18.04 Bionic Beaver

    Re: emergency boot mode

    You've put yourself in a bad place, but I'm just stating the obvious.

    • I still don't understand why you cannot boot a LiveCD session with your CD of 14.04. It should be as simple as changing the boot order in your BIOS so that it boots from CD as the first device. But you say for some odd reason that you can't do this, so that's out.
    • You state that you have no access to any other computer, not even a friend's, so can't download and spin a LiveUSB either, so apparently, that's also out.
    • You're not well-versed with the command line, and yet are stuck with the very primitive environment of GRUB busybox. So it is almost impossible for you to fix anything from there.

    You are basically stating that there is no way out for yourself.

    Following are instructions for a last-gasp try, failing which, I can only suggest that you take your box into a shop that knows something about Linux and pay them to fix things for you. While they are at it, they should first copy off all of your important data to an external storage device so that you have a proper data backup.

    Instructions for last try:

    1. Make sure all other HDDs are disconnected. The only one that should (and it must) be connected is the one with your original OS.
    2. This assumes you have no other OS on this HDD, it boots from the first partition of the first drive and you don't have the boot partition separate from your root partition—in other words, it is a standard install. If this is not the case, then do not use the following instructions.
    3. When you are confronted with the busybox shell, type in the following, taking care to type exactly:
    4. Code:
      set root=(hd0,1)
    5. Code:
      linux /vmlinuz root=/dev/sda1
    6. Code:
      initrd /initrd.img
    7. Code:
      boot
    8. If you can now boot into your OS, hurrah. But before celebrating too much, fix your fstab properly, following advice already given in prior posts.

    I know this is an awful time to remind you of good computing habits but others also read these threads, so:

    1. Never change system files without having a proven alternate way of booting up and recovering if something goes wrong.
    2. Do not change critical system files without first making a backup copy.
    3. Have a good backup strategy for your data so that any system crash is at most an annoyance.

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