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Old 11-08-2004, 01:20 PM   #1
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Registered: Nov 2004
Location: san diego, ca
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GRUB invalid root device problem

I installed Gentoo 2.4.26 over the weekend and the installation completed without any problems (as far as i could tell). I used the genkernel, ext2 on the boot partition and ext3 everywhere else.

The problems I encountered appeared when trying to boot into gentoo through grub. The error I received is
Block device /dev/sda6 is not a valid root device

my drive is set up in the following fashion
/dev/sda1 ... some 32M partition dell puts on new machines (i didn't buy it)
/dev/sda2 windows xp
/dev/sda3 boot
/dev/sda4 extended
/dev/sda5 swap
/dev/sda6 /
/dev/sda7 /home
/dev/sda8 /usr

and my grub file looks like this:
default 0
timeout 30
splashimage = (hd0,2)/grub/splash.xpm.gz

root (hd0,2)
kernel /kernel-2.4.26-gentoo-r6 root=/dev/ram0 init=/initrc ramdisk=8192 real_root=/dev/sda6
initrd /initrd-2.4.26-gentoo-r6

title=Windows XP
root (hd0,1)
chainloader +1

windows boots with no troubles at all. i've looked around via google but haven't found anything helpful.

also, a semi-unrelated problem is that my usb keyboard will not work at the grub prompt after this error appears, and the power/reset button on the pc also doesn't work so the only way i can reboot is to cut the power to the pc.

anyway, i'm very new to the linux thing so if there's any other information that i can provide to get solution let me know. thanks -- jake.
Old 11-08-2004, 02:14 PM   #2
Registered: Jul 2004
Location: Milpitas, California
Distribution: 1/2 Debian 1/2 my own
Posts: 189

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I bet the message sda6 is not a valid device is because grub uses a different notation for devices than unix. Just replace /dev/shda6 with (hd0,5) (I think).

Grub doesn't have builtin USB keyboard support as far as I know. Other boot managers and Grub 2 might have it.
Old 11-08-2004, 03:14 PM   #3
LQ Newbie
Registered: Sep 2004
Location: PA
Distribution: Mandrake 10.1
Posts: 12

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This is of interest to me, because I have a problem a bit different from the previous but Grub bootloader messed up my pc or sumthin'. When I try to boot, all I get is
I can't type in anything, all I see is grub and a flashing line ( _ ).
Hope someone has an answer to this or a suggestion.
PEACE to all.
Old 11-08-2004, 03:33 PM   #4
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Registered: Nov 2004
Location: san diego, ca
Posts: 2

Original Poster
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the real_root option has to be /dev/sda6 (i tried it with (hd0,5) which was unsuccessful).

i fixed this problem by manually compiling a kernel as opposed to using genkernel, so i don't exactly know what the problem was. the only two options i can think of which might have had an impact are sata and ext3 support, which i would have expected to come with genkernel but maybe they aren't.

so, now gentoo will begin booting but it hangs partway through, immediately after the "mounting local filesystems..." step. this gives an [ok] but then nothing happens afterwards. it just sits there. on the livecd the next step was mounting usb filesystems, so it may have something to do with this but i don't have an idea of how to fix it. i might try recompiling the kernel without usb filesystem support, but i would like to have it supported eventually so i have to figure this out at some point (if that is the culprit).

any other ideas? -- jake.


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