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Old 02-24-2011, 03:47 PM   #1
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new kernel won't boot

I've been trying to build and install a 2.6.37 kernel on a RedHat Enterprise 5.4 system. The build completes with no errors and I get the bzImage file as expected. I used /sbin/installkernel to install the new kernel on my system.

When I attempt to boot the new kernel it fails. RedHat nash starts and a few seconds later it panics with the message

mount: could not find filesystem '/dev/root'

I checked the file that /sbin/installkernel named /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.37 and it shows that it is a "Linux kernel x86 boot executable".

The 2.6.18 kernel I'm trying to replace shows its filetype as "ELF 64-bit shared object"

There is a file in my build tree arch/x86/boot/compressed/vmlinux that is filetype "ELF 64-bit executable" which is closer. I test-installed this but GRUB said that this was an unsupported filetype.

I know I'm missing some small detail but can't figure out what it is.
Old 02-24-2011, 03:50 PM   #2
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How did you configure the kernel? Errors about not being able to mount root are usually due to lack of filesystem or hardware support in the kernel.
Old 02-24-2011, 05:20 PM   #3
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Take a look in "/boot" and see if you have the file "initrd-2.6.37.img". This is required to configure RAMdisk support which the kernel needs during the boot process. If you don't have this file, you can run the following commands as root:

# update-initramfs -k 2.6.37 -c
# update-grub
-- MC --
Old 02-24-2011, 07:21 PM   #4
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I checked my initrd file and verified that all the required kernel objects were there. I compared the list against the older version and saw that all were present.

The problem seems to be when the init script is running the function mkblkdevs or later. I edited init to remove setquiet and a redundant call for dm-region_hash.ko

I watched all the drivers load then had the kernel panic.

It appears that the Makefile is building the wrong filetype and that is the problem. I'm not familiar enough with make or gcc to know where the problem can be located.
Old 02-24-2011, 07:56 PM   #5
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I'm not sure if this is a problem in RHEL, but I just upgraded my Debian box from Lenny to Squeeze and one of the release notes mentioned an incompatibility between the Lenny version of udev and kernels newer than 2.6.26.


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