-   Mandriva (
-   -   Can't boot anymore "L 9A 9A 9A" (

nadim khemir 08-06-2004 10:02 AM

Can't boot anymore "L 9A 9A 9A"
So I was gently working on a perl module when a gaming fever got me. I could get CS to install on one of my windows box so I thought I'd reboot my linux box (I have a dual booot) to try to install it there. Fatal mistake!

Some details:
A rather moder P4 box with Mandrake10.0 and WinXP.
Never had much problems before.
Thought I had installled GRUB!

The problem:
I can't boot no more.

What I've done so far:
Search the net for hours.
Tryed the rescue mode, reinstalled the boot loader in 10 different ways
mounted the drives, chrooted, ran lilo -v -C /etc/lilo.conf
Tried again and again in different ways.

I simple words, I'm stuck. I first can't understand how this can happend! Second I don't know how to fix it.

Someone knowladgable please help or point at something I can read and do.

Cheers, Nadim.

rossAINTfakin 08-06-2004 11:54 AM

somethoing similar happened to me when i removed my linux drive, and just tried to boot my windows drive, i have it installed on two sepearte hdd's, it was fixed when i reconnected the linux drive. i dont think you removed a drive, but my general attitude, when in doubt with linux, and to get it to a working state, reinstall...

nadim khemir 08-06-2004 12:00 PM


Originally posted by rossAINTfakin
my general attitude, when in doubt with linux, and to get it to a working state, reinstall...
That might work if you have 3 hours to waist for reinstalling the system but I also need another 2 or three days more to reinstall all I need. I've installed the system a week ago. That makes for a very bad Installation-time/usage ratio.

Cheers, Nadim.

rossAINTfakin 08-06-2004 12:49 PM

true, i do hope this gets fixed for you, best of luck.

arvind_sv 08-06-2004 07:50 PM

Did you actually search at Google for "L 9A lilo"? I doubt it. Because, the first link would have interested you.

Also, NEVER reinstall a Linux system. It's not needed, except in the worst circumstances. Try using grub. You're using lilo.

If that does not work, post your lilo.conf here, alongwith your /etc/fstab.


nadim khemir 08-07-2004 02:46 AM

I did that search but the first link didn't make me more inteligent! My situation differs in those point:

I haven't modified anything! I didn't try to add a splashscreen or whatever.

I have installed Mandrake in a very "standard" fashion and I am pretty sure Grub was installed. I usualy get a flashy graphical boot screen. I took me a while to find out it was lilo. This is one of the most bothering parts. How could I go from Grub (if it 's what I had before) to a lilo error? I'm pretty sure the mandrake installation says "installing Grub". Obviously I"m wrong and the data in the lilo.conf seem pretty much those right. This is making me crazy!

I agree with you, re-installing a system that I can obviously boot, mount partitions and access data would be a waist of time specially after taking in to account all the time spend installing other stuff by hand.

Here is a listing of the files you named:

# File generated by DrakX/drakboot
# WARNING: do not forget to run lilo after modifying this file

append="devfs=mount acpi=ht resume=/dev/hda6 splash=silent"
append="devfs=mount acpi=ht resume=/dev/hda6"
append="devfs=mount acpi=ht resume=/dev/hda6 splash=silent"
append="devfs=mount acpi=ht resume=/dev/hda6 splash=silent"
append="failsafe acpi=ht resume=/dev/hda6 devfs=nomount"

/dev/hda5 / ext3 defaults 1 1
/dev/hda3 /data vfat users,owner,umask=0,rw 0 0
/dev/hda4 /data2 vfat users,owner,umask=0,rw 0 0
none /dev/pts devpts mode=0620 0 0
/dev/hdc /mnt/cdrom auto umask=0,user,iocharset=iso8859-1,codepage=850,noauto,ro,exec 0 0
none /mnt/floppy supermount dev=/dev/fd0,fs=ext2:vfat,--,umask=0,iocharset=iso8859-1,sync,codepage=850 0 0
/dev/hda1 /mnt/windows ntfs umask=0,nls=iso8859-1 0 0
none /proc proc defaults 0 0
/dev/hda6 swap swap defaults 0 0

jomen 08-07-2004 03:39 AM

from you first post: if you've ever done "lilo -v" - and it ran - then you have lilo indeed - not grub.

The /etc/lilo.conf looks o.k. - except for the fact, that the first entry says:


that would need to be changed to read:


so lilo gets installed to the mbr of this disk and not to the beginning of /dev/hda5 - where it is now and probably is not found by the looks of it...

How did you do the chroot to reinstall lilo - any errors or warnings?
Was the /dev/hda5 mounted r/w so you could really write to it?

I'd do:

chroot /mnt/mountpoint_of_dev_/hda5

/usr/bin/env -i HOME=/root PATH=/bin:/usr/bin:/sbin:/usr/sbin
--> to chean the environment and set a path

bash --login
--> to read the environment from _your_ system

lilo -v

exit --> log out of bash

exit --> get out of chroot


nadim khemir 08-07-2004 04:04 AM

Hi, I really appreciate your help.

I got "L 9A ...." before I ever run 'lilo -v'; so the Grub/lilo question still stands.

I booted in "rescue" mode and choose the option to mount my partitions. The contents I used to have in '/' are now under 'mnt'. I have /mnt/etc, /mnt/dev ..... I did 'chroot mnt'.

I'll run the commands you proposed and come back with the results ASAP.

Cheers, Nadim.

jomen 08-07-2004 04:19 AM

just to clarify...

I was trying to say about you using lilo or grub:

if you have issued the command: "lilo -v" - and it actually did something - then you have installed lilo _somewhere_ - you have the program and it wrote something to your disk when you where running it - but maybe not the right thing, since you cannot boot...

...english is not my native language - but I try to make it my friend...:D

nadim khemir 08-07-2004 04:21 AM

It worked like a charm. Thanks a lot. I can now boot in linux and mandrake.

Still. How can this happend? That the installation says grub and I get lilo sucks but not a problem. But how can the boot loader stop loading. I _really_ didn't change a thing. I was programming on my build system.

I have two other small problems with this new installation (I'll start new theads). I doubt it is related but one never knows.

Cheers, Nadim.

jomen 08-07-2004 04:39 AM

I KNEW it ! :D ...good !

It _might_ just be that you installed grub to boot and it pointed to lilo, which was installed on /dev/hda5 - this would be really weird, but - who knows?

sorcerer01 08-07-2004 04:32 PM

Mod Edit: Advertising Removed

jomen 08-07-2004 04:51 PM

Hey sorcerer01!

...besides the fact that it's already solved - the link to your site does not work...

XavierP 09-04-2004 04:46 AM

The forum rules do not permit advertising. Please visit for more information on advertising. Feel free to contact the forum admin if you have any questions about this policy.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:55 PM.