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Old 08-18-2006, 08:33 AM   #1
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booting fails and goes to runlevel 0

I have been running Suse 10.0 on a dual-boot (WinXp and Suse) 64-bit Dell Precision workstation (defaults to Suse @ boot) for the past few months without any problems (OK, just the regular newbie problems...). However, when I started it up this morning, the machine wouldn't go to Gnome login screen, and instead went to the command line interface, where it asks for the root password and then it funtions only in the command line mode.

After logging in as root, I can get to the normal Gnome login screen after resetting the runlevel to 5 with "init 5" and then everything runs fine through Gnome from then on.

There are many lines of text that go by during the boot process, and near the very end (which is what remains on screen) I see the following:
fsck.reiserfs /dev/sda6 failed (status 0 x 10) Run manually

fsck failed for at least one filesystem (not /)
please repair manually and reboot
the root filesystem is already mounted read-write


Running fsck to look at /dev/sda6 gives the following:

reiserfsck --check started at Thu Aug 17 05:15:05 2006
Partition /dev/sda6 is mounted with write permissions, cannot check it
fsck.reiserfs /dev/sda6 failed (status 0x10). Run manually!

the disk structure is as follows (from fdisk):

Disk /dev/sda: 160.0 GB, 160000000000 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 19452 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes

Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
/dev/sda1 1 5 40131 de Dell Utility
/dev/sda2 * 6 7746 62171550+ 7 HPFS/NTFS
/dev/sda3 7746 19452 94036477 f W95 Ext'd (LBA)
/dev/sda5 7746 7876 1052226 82 Linux swap / Solaris
/dev/sda6 7877 19452 92984188+ 83 Linux

in WinXP, it sees the partitions as
39 MB (boot, Dell Utility?)
59.29 GB NTFS (Windows C
1GB unknown partition (Linux swap?)
88.6 GB unknown partition (Linux)

from the addresses, it looks like there may be some overlap between sda3 and sda5+sda6, but I don't know if this is the problem, nor do I know what sda3 is supposed to be. sda2 should be the Windows partition. And of course I didn't save the disk configuration that I originally set the computer up with.....

Examination of boot.msg showed that after loading and checking lots of things, the system went from runlevel 5 to runlevel 0, which is where I ended up in the command line asking for root login.

The last part of boot.msg is as follows:
Master Resource Control: runlevel 5 has been reached
Skipped services in runlevel 5: irq_balancer smbfs nfs
<notice> killproc:kill(5503,3)

Boot log started in /dev/tty1 (/dev/console) @ Mon Aug 14 11:02:29 2006

Master Resource Control: previous runlevel 5, switch to runlevel 0
and then lots of shutdowns

While I can get around this issue with resetting the runlevel with init after it drops to the command line, there is clearly something wrong, and I like to fix it. Any insights or ideas?

Old 08-18-2006, 09:31 AM   #2
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It appears that /dev/sda3 is an extended partition, which is basically a container for the logical partition within the extended partition. The extended partition begins at 7746 and ends at 19452. Sda5 begins at 7746; sda6 ends at 19452; therefore the extended partition is fully used by the two partitions. There is no overlap problem in that.

You can't run fsck on a mounted partition and get the result you want. Try running it from the installation cd, or from a live cd such as knoppix while sda5 and sda6 are not mounted.

Last edited by bigrigdriver; 08-18-2006 at 09:32 AM.
Old 08-18-2006, 09:36 AM   #3
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Dear friend,
I suggest you have a look at /etc/inittab file.
in that file you may see a line like this:
or something.
try changing the number (here 3) to 5(at your absolute own risk!!) to change your initial runlevel to 5.(if it isn't already set to 5!)

Sorry for not helping enough since I'm still a

Good luck.

Last edited by j_pooria; 08-18-2006 at 09:41 AM.
Old 08-18-2006, 09:38 AM   #4
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First, the "overlap" is an artifact od the "extended partition" structure. If a drive has more than 4 partitions, it is usually configured with an "extended" partition containing the additional partitions. So, what you see there is expected, and not a problem.

Second, to run fsck on your partition, you need to umount /dev/sda6 first, since fsck may need to make changes in the drive to fix your problem, and it can't do that if the drive contents can be changed by other programs. (All right, it can make the changes, but the partition is usually destroyed in the process, so it really much safer just to unmount the partition before running the repair program.)
Old 08-22-2006, 10:47 AM   #5
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not working yet

Hello-thanks for the replies. Unfortunately, things are still the same

I ran fsck on the unmounted /dev/sda6 volume, and it reported no problems with the files. I tried it on the unmounted /dev/sda5 and it returned an error that no swap file was found (sda5 is supposed to be the swap file).

inittab has runlevel 5 as the default, so that's not the problem.

Is there some way to recover the entire listing if what's going on during booting? Lot's of stuff flies by, and only the last few lines remain on the screen. It may be that there is some error detected early on that is causing the problems, and if I can find it identified in the text that whizzes by, it might give some hints as to what's realy wrong.

Of course, I guess plan B would be to do a complete reinstallation of Linux- would this over-write my existing non-system files (like data, installed programs, etc.)?



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