systemd fails to boot most of the time

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systemd fails to boot most of the time

Teresa e Junior
My current Ubuntu 16.10 system is constantly failing to boot, and it
seems systemd is failing to recognize my fstab partitions. Sometimes,
booting works normally, but most times it does not, and I'm left in
Emergency mode. I have to reboot many many times until it eventually
works. Here are the most relevant lines from the boot log:

$ egrep 'Timed out|Dependency' journalctl-xb.txt | sed 's/.*\[1]: //'
Timed out waiting for device dev-sda5.device.
Dependency failed for Swap Partition.
Timed out waiting for device
dev-disk-by\x2duuid-1aea5e72\x2d3c71\x2d4f17\x2db590\x2d3710088a1b46.device.
Dependency failed for /home.
Dependency failed for Local File Systems.
Dependency failed for File System Check on
/dev/disk/by-uuid/1aea5e72-3c71-4f17-b590-3710088a1b46.
Timed out waiting for device dev-disk-by\x2duuid-5CA4\x2d3896.device.
Dependency failed for File System Check on /dev/disk/by-uuid/5CA4-3896.
Dependency failed for /boot/efi.
Timed out waiting for device
dev-disk-by\x2duuid-419caf7b\x2dd856\x2d4668\x2db02f\x2de8d0a292e768.device.
Dependency failed for
/dev/disk/by-uuid/419caf7b-d856-4668-b02f-e8d0a292e768.
Dependency failed for Swap.

As you can see, "dependencies fail" for both /boot/efi, /home, and swap.

Complete boot log from Emergency mode: http://pastebin.com/620Gvd4b
The contents of my /etc/fstab: http://pastebin.com/Nuw1ia0y
The output from `sudo blkid`: http://pastebin.com/WTdF26kM

Thank you for your attention!

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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Ralf Mardorf-2
On Fri, 24 Feb 2017 02:07:08 -0300, Teresa e Junior wrote:
>My current Ubuntu 16.10 system is constantly failing to boot, and it
>seems systemd is failing to recognize my fstab partitions. Sometimes,
>booting works normally, but most times it does not, and I'm left in
>Emergency mode. I have to reboot many many times until it eventually
>works.

Hi,

maybe the hard disk is broken. Does smartctl show something
obvious? Are you using SATA cables without clips? How old is the CMOS
battery?

  $ sudo smartctl -A /dev/sda

Regards,
Ralf


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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Teresa e Junior
Em 24/02/2017 02:24, Ralf Mardorf escreveu:

> On Fri, 24 Feb 2017 02:07:08 -0300, Teresa e Junior wrote:
>> My current Ubuntu 16.10 system is constantly failing to boot, and it
>> seems systemd is failing to recognize my fstab partitions. Sometimes,
>> booting works normally, but most times it does not, and I'm left in
>> Emergency mode. I have to reboot many many times until it eventually
>> works.
>
> Hi,
>
> maybe the hard disk is broken. Does smartctl show something
> obvious? Are you using SATA cables without clips? How old is the CMOS
> battery?
>
>   $ sudo smartctl -A /dev/sda

The HD seems to be OK: http://pastebin.com/1zu4ajwD . It is a laptop,
and it was purchased 5 months ago!

It seems I am now able to boot (worked twice already) with the fstab
options `noauto,x-systemd.automount` on /boot/efi, /home and swap. I
still don't really know why that would be needed, though, neither it
seems to be a really good idea!

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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Liam Proven
In reply to this post by Teresa e Junior
On 24 February 2017 at 06:07, Teresa e Junior <[hidden email]> wrote:
> My current Ubuntu 16.10 system is constantly failing to boot, and it seems
> systemd is failing to recognize my fstab partitions. Sometimes, booting
> works normally, but most times it does not, and I'm left in Emergency mode.
> I have to reboot many many times until it eventually works.


Yes, I've had this too, on 2 different machines. It's a pain.

The only way around it that I found so far was to mount the
filesystems by hand, continue the boot, and then manually edit
/etc/fstab so it used device names not partition GUIDs. This seemed to
work more reliably, although not 100% of the time.

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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Teresa e Junior
Em 24/02/2017 08:41, Liam Proven escreveu:
> Yes, I've had this too, on 2 different machines. It's a pain.
>
> The only way around it that I found so far was to mount the
> filesystems by hand, continue the boot, and then manually edit
> /etc/fstab so it used device names not partition GUIDs. This seemed to
> work more reliably, although not 100% of the time.

I tried using device names like /dev/sda1 too, but then boot failed even
earlier. Maybe it would have worked if I did not use the device name on
the root partition too, since it seems I can boot normally with
`noauto,x-systemd.automount` on all partitions except root.

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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Tom H-4
In reply to this post by Teresa e Junior
On Fri, Feb 24, 2017 at 12:07 AM, Teresa e Junior
<[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> My current Ubuntu 16.10 system is constantly failing to boot, and it seems
> systemd is failing to recognize my fstab partitions. Sometimes, booting
> works normally, but most times it does not, and I'm left in Emergency mode.
> I have to reboot many many times until it eventually works. Here are the
> most relevant lines from the boot log:
>
> $ egrep 'Timed out|Dependency' journalctl-xb.txt | sed 's/.*\[1]: //'
> Timed out waiting for device dev-sda5.device.
> Dependency failed for Swap Partition.
> Timed out waiting for device
> dev-disk-by\x2duuid-1aea5e72\x2d3c71\x2d4f17\x2db590\x2d3710088a1b46.device.
> Dependency failed for /home.
> Dependency failed for Local File Systems.
> Dependency failed for File System Check on
> /dev/disk/by-uuid/1aea5e72-3c71-4f17-b590-3710088a1b46.
> Timed out waiting for device dev-disk-by\x2duuid-5CA4\x2d3896.device.
> Dependency failed for File System Check on /dev/disk/by-uuid/5CA4-3896.
> Dependency failed for /boot/efi.
> Timed out waiting for device
> dev-disk-by\x2duuid-419caf7b\x2dd856\x2d4668\x2db02f\x2de8d0a292e768.device.
> Dependency failed for
> /dev/disk/by-uuid/419caf7b-d856-4668-b02f-e8d0a292e768.
> Dependency failed for Swap.
>
> As you can see, "dependencies fail" for both /boot/efi, /home, and swap.
>
> Complete boot log from Emergency mode: http://pastebin.com/620Gvd4b
> The contents of my /etc/fstab: http://pastebin.com/Nuw1ia0y
> The output from `sudo blkid`: http://pastebin.com/WTdF26kM

In future, please put short outputs like blkid and fstab in your email.

My first thought is to fsck your filesystems (although this wouldn't
explain the swap failure).

My second thought is to rebuild your current initramfs:

cd /boot
update-initramfs -ut -k $(name -r)

My third thought is to check the GUID types of your partitions ("Code" column):

gdisk -l /dev/sda

In theory (and I've tested it and it worked on my laptop), you can set
(with "t" in "gdisk /dev/sda")

ef00 /boot/efi
8200 swap
8302 /home
8304 / (for amd64)

and they'll all be mounted without an entry in "/etc/fstab"

No fourth thought :(

Except perhaps a question: are the .device, .mount, or .swap units
auto-generated by systemd or are you providing them under /lib or
/etc?

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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Liam Proven
On 24 February 2017 at 14:41, Tom H <[hidden email]> wrote:

> My first thought is to fsck your filesystems (although this wouldn't
> explain the swap failure).

Not speaking for Teresa -- but when I got this, yes, tried this. No
problems, they were all clean and mountable.

> My second thought is to rebuild your current initramfs:
>
> cd /boot
> update-initramfs -ut -k $(name -r)

But boots work, intermittently. As initramfs is RO, it can't be an
error in that, can it?

> My third thought is to check the GUID types of your partitions ("Code" column):
>
> gdisk -l /dev/sda

I checked that the IDs were correct. They were.

> In theory (and I've tested it and it worked on my laptop), you can set
> (with "t" in "gdisk /dev/sda")
>
> ef00 /boot/efi
> 8200 swap
> 8302 /home
> 8304 / (for amd64)
>
> and they'll all be mounted without an entry in "/etc/fstab"


Interesting -- what does this do?

> Except perhaps a question: are the .device, .mount, or .swap units
> auto-generated by systemd or are you providing them under /lib or
> /etc?

I don't know what these units are. Can you explain or point me at an
explanation?


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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Teresa e Junior
Em 24/02/2017 10:56, Liam Proven escreveu:
> On 24 February 2017 at 14:41, Tom H <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>> My first thought is to fsck your filesystems (although this wouldn't
>> explain the swap failure).
>
> Not speaking for Teresa -- but when I got this, yes, tried this. No
> problems, they were all clean and mountable.

Yes, I have run fsck in Emergency mode, it should not be the problem.

>> My second thought is to rebuild your current initramfs:
>>
>> cd /boot
>> update-initramfs -ut -k $(name -r)
>
> But boots work, intermittently. As initramfs is RO, it can't be an
> error in that, can it?

I don't think this is related, either. This problem has been happening
for some time now, and Ubuntu automatically installs a new kernel every
few days, so I think I went through a few different initramfs already.

>> My third thought is to check the GUID types of your partitions ("Code" column):
>>
>> gdisk -l /dev/sda
>
> I checked that the IDs were correct. They were.
>
>> In theory (and I've tested it and it worked on my laptop), you can set
>> (with "t" in "gdisk /dev/sda")
>>
>> ef00 /boot/efi
>> 8200 swap
>> 8302 /home
>> 8304 / (for amd64)
>>
>> and they'll all be mounted without an entry in "/etc/fstab"

I have just checked, and the partition types are all set appropriately.
Are you sure the fstab entries can just be discarded like that? From
what I know, partition types are set during system installation already.

>> Except perhaps a question: are the .device, .mount, or .swap units
>> auto-generated by systemd or are you providing them under /lib or
>> /etc?

How could I know this, please? My system is mostly the default, except
that I had deleted my swap partition, and then later recreated it. Maybe
the problem is related? But just commenting the swap entry in /etc/fstab
did not change the problem.

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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Gene Heskett-2
In reply to this post by Teresa e Junior
On Friday 24 February 2017 06:58:26 Teresa e Junior wrote:

> Em 24/02/2017 08:41, Liam Proven escreveu:
> > Yes, I've had this too, on 2 different machines. It's a pain.
> >
> > The only way around it that I found so far was to mount the
> > filesystems by hand, continue the boot, and then manually edit
> > /etc/fstab so it used device names not partition GUIDs. This seemed
> > to work more reliably, although not 100% of the time.
>
> I tried using device names like /dev/sda1 too, but then boot failed
> even earlier. Maybe it would have worked if I did not use the device
> name on the root partition too, since it seems I can boot normally
> with `noauto,x-systemd.automount` on all partitions except root.

Wrong... naming... Use (see man tun2fs) 'label' and pick something quasi
unique. My drive for amanda's use as virtual tapes is labeled rather
unimaginatively as

amandatapes

Its worked flawlessly now for in excess of a decade and 3 drives on the
end of that cable. And I can do such things as:

gene@coyote:~/linuxcnc$ du -h /amandatapes
du: cannot read directory `/amandatapes/lost+found': Permission denied
16K /amandatapes/lost+found
19G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot12
19G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot20
30G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot23
31G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot30
20G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot1
20G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot13
23G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot4
20G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot14
19G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot26
30G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot9
18G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot10
19G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot8
19G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot21
19G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot28
23G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot18
19G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot29
20G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot5
19G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot27
21G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot15
23G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot3
30G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot2
19G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot22
19G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot19
31G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot16
19G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot7
19G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot17
23G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot25
19G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot6
27G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot11
19G /amandatapes/Dailys/slot24
644G /amandatapes/Dailys

Its a terabyte drive, with north of 64,000 spinning hours on it now.
Using blkid's may be ok, but its too volatile if something is changed.

When one needs to swap in a new drive, and do it with a simple act of
commenting out that line in you fstab so it will boot. Shutdown, change
drives, configure the new one to the same name, re-enable that line in
fstab and do a hot reboot. amanda will have a tummy ache but can deal
with it, or hang the old drive on another cable and copy as much as you
can to the new drive. I've not had to do that for several years, 7.4
according to my ti-30xIIs so my 82 yo wet ram is fuzzy.  Point being is
that it Just Works(TM)

Over that time frame, differences in how udev works have had that drive
at 3 different /dev sdb|c|d addresses which did not effect the function
in the least. AIR, its plugged into the sata4 jack on the motherboard.

Cheers, Gene Heskett
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Genes Web page <http://geneslinuxbox.net:6309/gene>

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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Teresa e Junior
In reply to this post by Teresa e Junior
>>> Except perhaps a question: are the .device, .mount, or .swap units
>>> auto-generated by systemd or are you providing them under /lib or
>>> /etc?
>
> How could I know this, please? My system is mostly the default, except
> that I had deleted my swap partition, and then later recreated it. Maybe
> the problem is related? But just commenting the swap entry in /etc/fstab
> did not change the problem.

OK, the problem is here indeed. The only fstab entry that really needs
`noauto,x-systemd.automount` to boot is swap. Maybe when I deleted and
recreated the swap I have done something wrong in the process, or
systemd left something like obsolete unit files hanging around...

I can boot now with:
UUID=419caf7b-d856-4668-b02f-e8d0a292e768   none   swap
sw,noauto,x-systemd.automount   0   0

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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Ralf Mardorf-2
In reply to this post by Gene Heskett-2
Hi,

I'm using Ubuntu 16.04.2 LTS as well as Arch Linux with fstab and
systemd and never experienced such an issue. Neither with my old,
nor with my new mobo.

I replaced the CMOS battery of my brand new mobo, without testing if
the included battery is ok. In the past I experienced all kinds of
Voodoo, when the battery was weak, while nothing informs about a weak
battery. If I would be the OP I would clear the BIOS. This requires to
remove the battery and short circuit a jumper and then I would replace
it by a new brand-name product battery. How to clear the BIOS is
explained by the hardware manual.

I'm experiencing another issue with my new hardware. Since the OP
also does use new hardware, I recommend to contact the support of the
hardware vendors. In regards to support I have to admit, that they are
allergic to Linux. Intel support asked me, if I could test in Windows,
https://communities.intel.com/message/456207 .

Regards,
Ralf


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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Ralf Mardorf-2
In reply to this post by Teresa e Junior
On Fri, 24 Feb 2017 13:13:52 -0300, Teresa e Junior wrote:
>I can boot now with:
>UUID=419caf7b-d856-4668-b02f-e8d0a292e768   none   swap sw,noauto,x-systemd.automount   0   0

That's strange.

Related to the G-Sense_Error_Rate of the SMART information you posted,
is there any chance that booting failed due to vibrations? Did you try
to boot while travelling with a bus or something like this?

It should work with averaged fstab entries:

[root@archlinux moonstudio]# grep PRETTY /etc/os-release
PRETTY_NAME="Arch Linux"
[root@archlinux moonstudio]# cat /etc/fstab
#<file system> <dir>           <type> <options>      <dump> <pass>
/dev/sda9       /               ext4  rw,relatime,data=ordered 0 1
/dev/sda10      none            swap  defaults                 0 0
# .............................  not  noatime,defaults
/dev/sda11      /mnt/music      ext4  defaults,noatime         0 2
/dev/sdb12      /home/music     ext4  defaults,noatime         0 2
/dev/sda5       /home/s1.music  ext4  defaults,noatime         0 2
#tmpfs          /tmp            tmpfs nodev,nosuid,size=3G     0 0
[root@archlinux moonstudio]# systemd-nspawn -q
[root@moonstudio ~]# lsb_release -d
Description: Ubuntu 16.04.2 LTS
[root@moonstudio ~]# cat /etc/fstab
#<file system>                             <mount point>  <type> <options>  <dump pass>
/dev/sdb11                                  /              ext4   rw,relatime       0 1
/dev/sda10                                  none           swap   sw                0 0
/dev/sdb7                                   none           swap   sw                0 0
/dev/sda9                                   /mnt/archlinux ext4   defaults,relatime 0 2
/dev/sdb15                                  /mnt/winos7    ext4   defaults,relatime 0 2
/mnt/archlinux/.boot/ubuntu_moonstudio/boot /boot          none   bind              0 0


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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Teresa e Junior
Em 24/02/2017 13:38, Ralf Mardorf escreveu:
> Related to the G-Sense_Error_Rate of the SMART information you posted,
> is there any chance that booting failed due to vibrations? Did you try
> to boot while travelling with a bus or something like this?

No, just as usual!

> It should work with averaged fstab entries:

When I installed Ubuntu, I decided I did not want a swap partition. I
later created a swap partition and put it in /etc/fstab. I have either
done something wrong in the process, or this created some conflict with
systemd. I think the best I can do for now is to report a bug against
systemd, although I don't believe such a individual case will get any
attention!

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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Tom H-4
In reply to this post by Liam Proven
On Fri, Feb 24, 2017 at 8:56 AM, Liam Proven <[hidden email]> wrote:
> On 24 February 2017 at 14:41, Tom H <[hidden email]> wrote:


>> My first thought is to fsck your filesystems (although this wouldn't
>> explain the swap failure).
>
> Not speaking for Teresa -- but when I got this, yes, tried this. No
> problems, they were all clean and mountable.

OK.


>> My second thought is to rebuild your current initramfs:
>>
>> cd /boot
>> update-initramfs -ut -k $(name -r)
>
> But boots work, intermittently. As initramfs is RO, it can't be an
> error in that, can it?

The intermittnent success/failure is weird (and Ralph might be correct
in wonderting whather it's hardware-related) but I was thining that
the initramfs might have an incorrect fstab.


>> My third thought is to check the GUID types of your partitions ("Code" column):
>>
>> gdisk -l /dev/sda
>
> I checked that the IDs were correct. They were.

OK.


>> In theory (and I've tested it and it worked on my laptop), you can set
>> (with "t" in "gdisk /dev/sda")
>>
>> ef00 /boot/efi
>> 8200 swap
>> 8302 /home
>> 8304 / (for amd64)
>>
>> and they'll all be mounted without an entry in "/etc/fstab"
>
> Interesting -- what does this do?

I've forgotten what the exact rationale was but, IIRC, it was intended
to make "/etc/fstab" optional, especially for use-cases like a vm
manager or container manager. You can simply feed them a disk and its
partitions'll be mounted properly without you're having to maintain an
fstab.


>> Except perhaps a question: are the .device, .mount, or .swap units
>> auto-generated by systemd or are you providing them under /lib or
>> /etc?
>
> I don't know what these units are. Can you explain or point me at an
> explanation?

Run

find /run/systemd/ -name "*mount"
find /run/systemd/ -name "*swap"

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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Tom H-4
In reply to this post by Teresa e Junior
On Fri, Feb 24, 2017 at 9:29 AM, Teresa e Junior
<[hidden email]> wrote:

> Em 24/02/2017 10:56, Liam Proven escreveu:
>> On 24 February 2017 at 14:41, Tom H <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>>
>>> Except perhaps a question: are the .device, .mount, or .swap units
>>> auto-generated by systemd or are you providing them under /lib or
>>> /etc?
>
> How could I know this, please? My system is mostly the default, except
> that I had deleted my swap partition, and then later recreated it.
> Maybe the problem is related? But just commenting the swap entry in
> /etc/fstab did not change the problem.

I've just replied to Liam to check under "/run/systemd/" for .mount
and .swap units.

You can also display their contents with "systemctl cat ...".

Rather than the "noauto" and other options, you could try
"x-systemd.device-timeout=VALUE_IN_SECONDS" in "/etc/fstab". Maybe the
boot won't time out and boot'll succeed.

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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Oliver Grawert
In reply to this post by Tom H-4
hi,
On Fr, 2017-02-24 at 13:28 -0500, Tom H wrote:


> > > My second thought is to rebuild your current initramfs:
> > >
> > > cd /boot
> > > update-initramfs -ut -k $(name -r)
> >
> > But boots work, intermittently. As initramfs is RO, it can't be an
> > error in that, can it?
>
> The intermittnent success/failure is weird (and Ralph might be
> correct
> in wonderting whather it's hardware-related) but I was thining that
> the initramfs might have an incorrect fstab.
>
there is no fstab in the initrd :)

the initrd reads the root= arg from the kernel cmdline, mounts that
readonly and and jumps into the rootfs (with potentially asking for a
pass phrase in case rootfs encryption is used) ... 

all the rest is done by systemd ...

ciao
        oli
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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

compdoc
In reply to this post by Teresa e Junior

On 02/24/2017 04:58 AM, Teresa e Junior wrote:

and then manually edit
/etc/fstab so it used device names not partition GUIDs. This seemed to
work more reliably, although not 100% of the time.

I tried using device names like /dev/sda1 too, but then boot failed even earlier.

Doesnt ubuntu default to using UUID in fstab, instead of GUID?

sudo blkid



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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Tom H-4
In reply to this post by Oliver Grawert
On Fri, Feb 24, 2017 at 1:59 PM, Oliver Grawert <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Fr, 2017-02-24 at 13:28 -0500, Tom H wrote:
>>>>
>>>> My second thought is to rebuild your current initramfs:
>>>>
>>>> cd /boot
>>>> update-initramfs -ut -k $(name -r)
>>>
>>> But boots work, intermittently. As initramfs is RO, it can't be an
>>> error in that, can it?
>>
>> The intermittnent success/failure is weird (and Ralph might be
>> correct in wonderting whather it's hardware-related) but I was
>> thinking that the initramfs might have an incorrect fstab.
>
> there is no fstab in the initrd :)

I remember doing an lsinitramfs and seeing an fstab; perhaps not.

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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Oliver Grawert
hi,
Am Montag, den 27.02.2017, 18:57 -0500 schrieb Tom H:

> On Fri, Feb 24, 2017 at 1:59 PM, Oliver Grawert <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
> >
> > On Fr, 2017-02-24 at 13:28 -0500, Tom H wrote:
> > >
> > > >
> > > > >
> > > > >
> > > > > My second thought is to rebuild your current initramfs:
> > > > >
> > > > > cd /boot
> > > > > update-initramfs -ut -k $(name -r)
> > > > But boots work, intermittently. As initramfs is RO, it can't be
> > > > an
> > > > error in that, can it?
> > > The intermittnent success/failure is weird (and Ralph might be
> > > correct in wonderting whather it's hardware-related) but I was
> > > thinking that the initramfs might have an incorrect fstab.
> > there is no fstab in the initrd :)
> I remember doing an lsinitramfs and seeing an fstab; perhaps not.
>
well, there is a file node but it is completely empty ...

when using full disk encryption an fstab entry for the rootfs is
created dynamically in it from the kernel commandline args.

the actual read_fstab_entry() function in the initrd uses:

"for file in ${rootmnt}/etc/fstab; do" 

where $rootmnt is the already mounted rootfs disk (unless overridden
mounted in /root by default at that point)

ciao
        oli

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Re: systemd fails to boot most of the time

Liam Proven
In reply to this post by Liam Proven
On 24 February 2017 at 12:41, Liam Proven <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Yes, I've had this too, on 2 different machines. It's a pain.


Make that 3 different machines. This morning my desktop did it, too.

It couldn't mount the Hackintosh partition with OS X 10.6 in it. I
fscked this, fixed it --  there were errors --  rebooted, still no
joy.

Rebooted again, it came up fine. I'm typing on it now.

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