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Old 12-13-2009, 06:21 AM   #1
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 142

Rep: Reputation: 24
CentOS - woes of multibooting Kernel Panic

After a few years of amateur playing with Debian & Ubuntu (which I solidly adore) I felt it was time to look at some kind of RedHat variant. So I picked Cent, but on my multiboot testbox it plain old refuses to boot.

The box concerned already has Win2k3 and Ubuntu 9.10 booting with Grub2. I added Cent from a cover disc (5.2) as it's only 'too look at' and installed it to /dev/sdb4. When I was offered the chance to add a bootloader, I did *not* as I already have Grub2 booting what's on the first drive.

The basic relevent disc layout is like this
/dev/sda1 - windows 2k3
/dev/sda5 - Ubuntu 9.10
/dev/sdb4 - Cent 5.2

Contents of the interesting parts of /dev/sdb4:
PLUS subdir: /grub {contains just splash.xpm.gz}

Grub2 'helpfully' added an entry for Cent 5.2, but on booting it STB's with a Kernel Panic, so I adopted to do it by hand from the Grub CLI. Here is what I did:

root (hd1,4)
linux /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.18-92.el5 ro root=/dev/sdb4
initrd /boot/initrd-2.6.18-92.el5.img

Initially it starts to boot but sticks at fairly quickly at:
Switchroot: Mount Failed: No such file or directory.
Kernel Panic - not syncing: Attempted to kill init

I could really use some pointers as to what I need to change/fix to get this to work. My limited knowledge of Linux tells me Kernel panic = bad, but I can't help but think this is probably a remarkably simple problem to fix and it's staring me in the face :-)

Any help appreciated.

Last edited by Dave_Devnull; 12-14-2009 at 02:26 AM. Reason: Corrected missing ro root=/dev/sdb4 chunk
Old 12-13-2009, 05:34 PM   #2
Registered: Sep 2006
Posts: 105

Rep: Reputation: 18
hi dave,
you'll need to tell grub where the root partition is
root (hd1,4)
kernel /vmlinuz-2.6.18-92.el5 ro root=/dev/(wherever this is) rhgb
initrd /initrd-2.6.18-92.el5.img
Old 12-14-2009, 02:28 AM   #3
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 142

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 24
Thanks Adam, but I'd already done that and missed it off my post - apologies for that :-O Also the kernel command does not appear in grub2, it has been replaced by 'linux'. But thanks for the suggestions.

My logic thinks there is something missing when control is handed over to /sdb4


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