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Old 06-14-2006, 10:05 PM   #1
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Changed Motherboard: System Won't boot - Kernel Panic


I recently replaced a dying motherboard in a small redhat 9 box. The processor is the same and the specs of the system are:

AMD Athlon XP 2000

I have several drives in the system, but the OS is installed on the first drive, /dev/hda and has the following partition info:

fdisk -l /dev/hda

Disk /dev/hda: 40.0 GB, 40020664320 bytes
16 heads, 63 sectors/track, 77545 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 1008 * 512 = 516096 bytes

Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
/dev/hda1 * 1 75175 37888168+ 83 Linux
/dev/hda2 75176 77545 1194480 82 Linux swap / Solaris

I have 2 RAID1 containers in the system as well.

When I replaced the motherboard, the system gives me the following Kernel panic error:

"kernel panic: no init found. Try passing init= option to kernel"

Here is a printout of my /etc/grub.conf file:

# grub.conf generated by anaconda
# Note that you do not have to rerun grub after making changes to this file
# NOTICE: You do not have a /boot partition. This means that
# all kernel and initrd paths are relative to /, eg.
# root (hd0,0)
# kernel /boot/vmlinuz-version ro root=/dev/hda1
# initrd /boot/initrd-version.img
title Red Hat Linux (2.4.20-31.9)
root (hd0,0)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.4.20-31.9 ro root=/dev/hda1
initrd /boot/initrd-2.4.20-31.9.img
title Red Hat Linux (2.4.20-8)
root (hd0,0)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.4.20-8 ro root=/dev/hda1
initrd /boot/initrd-2.4.20-8.img

Here is the directory listing contents of my /boot directory on /dev/hda1:

root@3[boot]# ls -l
total 9962
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 19 Dec 14 2005 ->
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 520812 Apr 13 2004
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 518322 Mar 13 2003
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 5824 Jan 25 2003 boot.b
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 612 Jan 25 2003 chain.b
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 44705 Apr 13 2004 config-2.4.20-31.9
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 44252 Mar 13 2003 config-2.4.20-8
drwxr-xr-x 2 root root 480 Jan 23 2005 grub
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 194729 Jan 23 2005 initrd-2.4.20-31.9.img
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 185153 Jan 23 2005 initrd-2.4.20-8.img
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 479 Jan 23 2005 kernel.h
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 23108 Feb 24 2003 message
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 21282 Feb 24 2003 message.ja
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 23 Jan 23 2005 module-info -> module-info-2.4.20-31.9
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 15438 Apr 13 2004 module-info-2.4.20-31.9
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 15436 Mar 13 2003 module-info-2.4.20-8
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 640 Jan 25 2003 os2_d.b
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 3180550 Apr 13 2004 vmlinux-2.4.20-31.9
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 3149072 Mar 13 2003 vmlinux-2.4.20-8
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 19 Jan 23 2005 vmlinuz -> vmlinuz-2.4.20-31.9
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 1117511 Apr 13 2004 vmlinuz-2.4.20-31.9
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 1117254 Mar 13 2003 vmlinuz-2.4.20-8

What I don't understand is why the system won't boot, the initrd*.*.img files are there.

Is there any way i can save this system?

I would appreciate any help that can be provided. If you need more info on the system, please let me know. Hopefully I've provided enough info for someone to help with a possible solution.

Thanks in advance.

Old 06-16-2006, 09:45 AM   #2
Registered: Jun 2006
Location: Birmingham, AL
Distribution: Slackware64-13.1, 12.1
Posts: 119

Rep: Reputation: 20
You didn't specify anything about the motherboards, but if they are different enough there may be key components (like the IDE controller) that isn't supported in your kernel or initrd. If you made a custom kernel for your previous hardware, your kernel may not be generic enough to include support for a different motherboard. The kernel panic may be due to a module necessary for booting not being available in your initrd, not just that it can't find the file.

More speculation, but if GRUB is in your master boot record, I think the BIOS could get as far as running GRUB and starting the boot. At some point, GRUB has to go get the kernel from /boot, and if the IDE controller isn't supported, the hard drive won't be available.

If that's the case, I don't have a good solution. You would have to get a generic kernel back onto the hard drive via a rescue disk, or compile a new one and install it from there. Have you tried a liveCD like Knoppix to make sure the hardware is working?


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