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Unable to open an initial console, reboot ad infinitum
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phong
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Joined: 16 Jul 2002
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 16, 2002 7:15 pm    Post subject: Unable to open an initial console, reboot ad infinitum Reply with quote

Ok, I had gentoo booting fine, but then I did something to screw it all up and I can't get it working again. Here's the basic story...

I can't boot off the gentoo CD (though most any other bootable CD works just fine), but I had an existing mandrake installation that worked, so I installed from stage1 from that onto a second spare hard drive. Everything worked fine and I had it booting and talking to the network and everything. I was planning on blowing out the Mandrake installation on the other (larger) HD and moving my root gentoo partition over there so I would have space.

So, I went ahead and did a mkfs.xfs on the bigger drive and copied everything over, edited the /etc/fstab and /boot/grub/menu.lst, redid grub and rebooted. Everything seemed to go hunky dory. So I was going to then toast the smaller partition I had initially installed on and use that for my /home... After I did that, I discovered that I had made a grevious error somewhere and was still booting off that smaller partition (which I just toasted).

I booted off my old mandrake CD to try to rescue things. I found the error I made in /etc/fstab and reparied it and tried to redo everything. It started to boot but got the error:
Unable to open an initial console
and promptly rebooted. It is possible there are errors before that one, but it goes to fast for me to read then reboots, and I can't seem to stop it with pause or scroll lock or anything like that. Then I tried copying everything back to where I had installed it originally, and restore the original settings (which I had written down as I installed it). Same problem. Unable to open inital console (reboot) ad infinitum.

Any tips? I'd rather not start a reinstall from scratch, as the computer is quite slow and takes days to compile everything, not to mention that I wouldn't be able to boot off the old Mandrake installation (it's not there anymore), so I'd have to use a boot disk which would mean I couldn't use XFS cause no boot disk in the entire world seems to support it.

Searching previous threads, I'd seen the same problem, but only in relation to the way devfs was compiled in, and that's not the problem in my case.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 16, 2002 9:31 pm    Post subject: Re: Unable to open an initial console, reboot ad infinitum Reply with quote

Hi
I think i know what your problem is.
The problem is that u have empty /dev directory. You need to populate it somehow. Maybe it is in Stage1 tarball.

I hope it helps
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phong
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Joined: 16 Jul 2002
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 17, 2002 3:24 pm    Post subject: Thanks! Reply with quote

Thanks, I'm certain that was the problem.
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heriophant
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Joined: 16 Dec 2003
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2004 6:15 am    Post subject: re Reply with quote

Hi im a bit new here and just realized after reading through all the posts with similiar problems that this is exactly what is going on with my system. The question now is how do i fix it?


I have to mount -o bind /dev /mnt/gentoo/dev in order for my stage 2 portion of the system build to go through without errors, so now im guessing i have a empty directory. How do i /what do i fill it with in order for the system to boot properly and not go into the enternel reboot mode?
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Trejkaz
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 11, 2004 9:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wouldn't mind knowing this either, so I'll bump this message up a bit.
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smiley
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Joined: 03 Dec 2003
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 14, 2004 10:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are you guys trying to use udev (or perhaps forgot devfs support in the kernel)? I have this same problem on a new install. I've been using udev just fine on an old install, but for some reason, it doesn't work with this new install. After compiling devfs support, it works fine. The next thing I'm going to try is reinstalling udev while using a devfs kernel.
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Trejkaz
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 15, 2004 8:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My problem was I had mounted /dev during the install process so when it got populated it didn't really get populated.
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W0D0!CLiff0rd
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 15, 2004 12:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

woups, same question as mine, sorry for the new thread then.

But I have exactly the same problem, but HAVE devfs compiled in the kernel...

CLiff
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Bill Cosby
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 01, 2006 8:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Strange, I see it's been a while but I have the very same problem, I searche for the devfs support in the 2.6.17 kernel, and couldn't find it.
I am on an AMD64, and I did mount the /dev during installation, so do I have to do it all again?
Or is there any hint on how I could solve this?
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keola
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 11:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have this same issue... I have recovered from a full backup, but obviously something is missing :)

I was able to boot a livecd, restore the backup to the boot drive (sda1 - 19gb scsi). Chrooted and installed grub and reinstalled udev later. As far as I know everything should be in order, I checked my fstab and such, and everything works in a chroot, but I get "unable to open initial console" :(

Looking at the current install guide it did mention something about the /boot partition and using a single partition, but I couldn't really understand what they are saying. Any ideas?

Thanks!

--
SOLVED:

Needed a /sys directory :D

I also ran MAKEDEV after manually creating null and console...
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