Latest LQ Deal: Complete CCNA, CCNP & Red Hat Certification Training Bundle
Go Back > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Distributions > Slackware
User Name
Slackware This Forum is for the discussion of Slackware Linux.


  Search this Thread
Old 01-03-2009, 07:13 PM   #1
LQ Newbie
Registered: Aug 2008
Posts: 19

Rep: Reputation: 0
installed slackware 12.2 onto a 4gig usb flashdrive. boots then stops

i took my hard drives out, and stuck a 4gig usb flash. Booted the cd. and fdisk the drive. cfdisk it to linux partition. then ran setup. everything went find. during liloconfig, added the mbr to /dev/sda then added sda1 for root.

it booted to the splash screen and then loaded "linux" but it stop at at kernel panic: Cannot open root device "sda1" or unknown-block(0,0). i guess its a renaming thing but i can't figure out how to edit lilo to get it to open the root device. anyone try this or have a suggestion "thanks"
Old 01-03-2009, 09:24 PM   #2
Registered: Sep 2008
Location: Paraguay
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 31

Rep: Reputation: 15
You may have to pass 'rootwait' as a kernel parameter, I had a similar problem when I installed a distro to my usb stick. If I'm correct, the kernel tries to boot from /dev/sdx, which is on an usb disk, but the kernel hasn't probed the usb subsystem yet, so with that option the kernel will wait for the root partition and then mount it.

From the kernel documentation:
rootwait [KNL] Wait (indefinitely) for root device to show up.
Old 01-03-2009, 10:55 PM   #3
Registered: Oct 2004
Location: Norway
Distribution: Slackware, CentOS
Posts: 639

Rep: Reputation: 36
In addition to the advise above, you might also want to check that your kernel either has the USB subsystem compiled in, or that you have the correct kernel modules on an initrd for the sda1 to be found...
Old 01-04-2009, 12:34 AM   #4
LQ Newbie
Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 27

Rep: Reputation: 16
This is how I get slack to boot off the USB, though if the kernel wait option will probably work, and makes more sense...

Create a initrd.gz file with mkinitrd. Remember to add the fstab file in


and point /dev/sda1 ( your partition ) to mount on /mnt.

You may also need to create block devices in


as I had to, but in some cases it is created automatically.

mknod /boot/initrd-tree/dev/sda b 8 0
mknod /boot/initrd-tree/dev/sda1 b 8 1

Change the "wait-for-root" file to something longer than 1.

echo 10 > /boot/initrd-tree/wait-for-root

Once the initrd.gz file has been created, add a line to your lilo.conf file for the initrd.

image = /boot/bzImage-2.6.28
root = /dev/sda1
label = 2.6.28
initrd = /boot/initrd.gz #Add this line

and run lilo and reboot.

Remember to add the "compact" option in lilo.conf to speed up booting off the USB device.
Old 01-04-2009, 03:53 AM   #5
LQ Newbie
Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 27

Rep: Reputation: 16
I've tried appending "rootwait". I was unable to get it to work. I found another person that stated that they used "rootwait" and "scsi_mod.scan=1" in order to get another distribution to load off a USB drive. I also tried that, as "rootwait" by itself would sit there, waiting for a device that was never going to be detected. Unfortunately neither has worked for me and I'm still using initrd to mount the root device.


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
USB 4gig drive Taysider Linux - Newbie 6 12-04-2007 11:28 PM
USB boots but Puppy becomes Attached Scsi rem. dsk SDA and stops wilsonb Puppy 1 10-08-2006 09:08 AM
Laptop keyboard stops responding after usb mouse installed koloth Slackware 2 07-11-2005 07:50 AM
Boot stops writing half way but boots ok araldit Linux - Newbie 3 03-19-2004 09:46 AM > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Distributions > Slackware

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:52 AM.

Main Menu
Write for LQ is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
Facebook: linuxquestions Google+: linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration