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I just upgraded my (remote) webserver to Lenny from Etch. and no real issue occurs except that I cannot reboot that server. (I can only start in a rescue mode) I recall that a MBR change performed and I am wondering if that could be the reason for this failure. Would someone know how I can revert this MBR change ? I had switched back to my previous linux kernel, still cannot reboot. I would appreciate your help. thanks


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Are there any errors when it fails to boot? –  Sim Mar 28 '10 at 2:21
Hi Sim, it seems the server boots with the login prompt (this is what I have been told) but server does not repond to ping or ssh (it sounds like no/or just a few service is started) Not sure what is wrong and I don't have physical access to the server. Hope that helps –  Jack Mar 28 '10 at 4:31
@Jack - what i describe in my answer is reparation process, not upgrade. i dont know how did you got into the state you are in - i've done quite a few upgrades from etch to lenny but i don't recall any problems of this sort. anyway - method described in my post should help you get bootloader up & running. –  pQd Mar 28 '10 at 13:01

3 Answers 3

after a few hours research. It seems to be related to a known issue, lenny changes the network rules during the upgrade process solution : delete the file /etc/udev/rules.d/70-persistent-net.rules and reboot

Hope that helps

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Upgrading from Etch to Lenny involves an upgrade from GRUB to GRUB2. For this reason Debian has lots of alert dialogs during the installation to tell you that this upgrade is going to happen and to confirm your GRUB config file and how to complete the upgrade process. You must not have paid attention to these dialog messages during your upgrade. There should have been at a minimum 2 such dialog boxes requiring interaction given the changes that were about to take place.

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Hi Jeremy, This is interesting, I did see that an upgrade was necessary and the update for the MBR. I don't recall however any particular upgrade process except /sbin/lilo after installing the new kernel. Do you have a clue about how to complete the upgrade process ? Thank you –  Jack Mar 28 '10 at 4:27

you are lucky if you can get rescue shell.

i don't know what is your rescue shell, but i've managed to repair grub few times by booting from knoppix from a cd, chrooting to the actual unbootable disk and following steps as described for instance here.

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yes, a bit lucky. It seems that the issue is not related to the grub. after analyzing the logs, the server starts but no network (mysql started among other services). It seems to be related to a known issue (I did not know about), lenny changes the network rules. solution : delete the file /etc/udev/rules.d/70-persistent-net.rules and reboot –  Jack Mar 28 '10 at 12:50

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