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Re: can't log in after converting root filesystem



On Sat, Jan 03, 2009 at 10:34:24AM -0800, Alan Evans wrote:
> Hello, Friendly Fedora Folks:

Alan:

I discovered (on my eeepc 901) that adding "relatime" to /etc/fstab causes
subsequent kernel installs to go bad in that they create  bad initrd file
and causing boot to fail with complaints about relatime being an unknown option.

did you try booting the previous kernel to see if it will work for you? If it
does,  you could then remove the noatime from /etc/fstab, recreate the 
initrd for the new kernel, the re-add the noatime and try booting the new
kernel. (see man initrd for guidance.)

Fred

> 
> My problem seems possibly related to some recently reported issues,
> but I'm unable to fit suggested solutions to my issue. Anyway, here
> goes:
> 
> I have an Asus EeePC 900A. It predictably took me about 2.5 minutes to
> figure out that I wanted nothing at all to do with the crummy Linux
> distro that came with it. I wanted Fedora and thought I'd try out the
> Omega spin that Rahul announced recently.
> 
> Now the 900A has only a 4GB flash chip for internal storage, so I
> started thinking of ways to reduce writes to the filesystem. It seemed
> to me that ext2 was a better fit than ext3 because there would be no
> need to write the journal data. During the install from LiveCD, I
> chose to format the entire 4GB as ext2 and mount it on /. No separate
> /boot partition, no swap partition.
> 
> After install, I discovered that the root filesystem was ext3 despite
> my explicit instruction to format it as ext2. I consider that a bug,
> which I might pursue if I can get past my current predicament.
> 
> I figured that "downgrading" to ext2 would not be difficult. So I
> changed ext3 to ext2 in fstab and added noatime to the options.
> Everything seems good at this point. I reboot, and mount tells me that
> the root filesystem is, indeed, ext2. After running through the
> installed packages and removing several that I thought would never be
> relevant to my limited hardware, I rebooted again and found everything
> good.
> 
> Well, almost everything. It turns out that now I can yum update
> everything except for the kernel. After kernel update, I can't log in
> at all. I get to the gdm screen, enter username and password, and it
> just returns immediately to a fresh gdm screen. If I boot to runlevel
> 3, I have a similar symptom in text -- entering username and password
> just returns to the login prompt.
> 
> At this point, I'm stuck. I've tried everything I know (not much) and
> I can't log in. I did take a snapshot of the system with dd just
> before upgrading the kernel, so I can always bring that back. But then
> I can never apply any kernel updates.
> 
> Help!
> 
> -Alan
> 
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-- 
---- Fred Smith -- fredex fcshome stoneham ma us -----------------------------
    "Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of
     heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven."
------------------------------ Matthew 7:21 (niv) -----------------------------

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