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Old 02-19-2011, 07:30 PM   #1
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GRUB command to change kernel

I just got a laptop (DELL PP06S) from a friend set up on kubuntu. He told me to download and run the updates packages if I had time. So so did I and now the computer stops on an error at boot and I can't log in at all to type any command.
The error message coming up is:

ata1.00: exeption Emask 0x0 SAct 0x0 action 0x6
ata1.00: BMDMA stat 0x24
ata1.00: failed command: WRITE DMA
ata1.00: cmd ca/00:38:e7:14c/00:00:00:00/e0 tag 0 dma 28672 out
ata1.00: res 51/84:00:1e:15:7c/00:00:00:00/e0 Emask 0x10 (ATA bus error)
ata1.00: status: { DRDY ERR }
ata1.00: error: { ICRC ABRT }

And it seems to try that action over and over but I never get to log in and type any command.
I got told to check the drive cables connections, which I did but it made no difference.
I also got told that I could try to start with an older kernel, I tried all the different kernels available in the GNU GRUB but no success.
The different options availables are:

Ubuntu, with Linux 2.6.32-26-generic
Ubuntu, with Linux 2.6.32-26-generic (recovery mode)
Ubuntu, with Linux 2.6.32-25-generic
Ubuntu, with Linux 2.6.32-25-generic (recovery mode)
Ubuntu, with Linux 2.6.32-24-lowlatency
Ubuntu, with Linux 2.6.32-26-lowlatency (recovery mode)
Memory test (memtest86+)
Memory test (memtest86+, serial console 115200)

From my understanding these are the new and older kernels, is that right?
I had to do the updates in 3 times so I guess the kernel from before then isn't in the list anymore.

Every one of them shows the same error message and no way to get a console.
So I can't type any command.
Though, I found out that I can type commands in the GRUB, is there any way to change the kernel from the GRUB?
If so what would be the commands?



Last edited by Tib-Tib; 02-19-2011 at 08:04 PM.
Old 02-19-2011, 08:54 PM   #2
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The first thing to do is to try to determine if this is a hardware or software error. If this is a software error the problem could be either in Grub or the kernel. Try booting a rescue CD or rescue DVD which uses a different kernel and grub version than your Ubuntu system. Then mount your hard drive on the rescue system and try to list the /boot directory. If you cannot mount and list the /boot directory then the problem is hardware. If you can mount and list /boot then the problem is in Grub or your Ubuntu kernel.

Steve Stites
Old 02-19-2011, 09:04 PM   #3
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My laptop does not have a CD player, could I make up a rescue USB stick?
If so where could I download it? And what would be the procedures?

This direction sound very helpful but I am not sure on which are the commands to proceed.
Could you please tell me which are the different commands of each step?

Old 02-24-2011, 12:27 AM   #4
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after hours and hours of unsuccessful trials from different suggestions from different members of different forums, I decided to reinstall the whole thing.
Really that's what I should have done from the start!

Though the same error message seems to still show up at the start very quickly but everything runs perferctly.

And my hard drive seems to work perfectly fine.

Thanks everyone for your help!



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