Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have an Ubuntu 11.10 VM which I just upgraded to 12.04. The installation went fine, but now using the 3.2.0 Kernel it fails at boot with

Gave up waiting for root device.


ALERT! /dev/mapper/uvm-root does not exist. Dropping to a shell!

If I boot using the previous kernel Linux uvm 3.0.0-17-server #30-Ubuntu SMP Thu Mar 8 22:15:30 UTC 2012 x86_64 x86_64 x86_64 GNU/Linux everything works. In the previous kernel, I have manually enabled the hyper-v modules as described here ( -- basically, they have been added to the /etc/initramfs-tools/modules.

How can I debug the problem? I have the machine running Ubuntu 12.04 with the 3.0 Kernel now, so I can investigate. Nothing seems really fishy, looking at /boot/grub/grub.cfg I can see the exact same IDs being passed around; I have also tried an update-initramfs -u -v and I can see that the hv_storvsc.ko is being included.

share|improve this question
Ubuntu's not supported on Hyper-V is it? – Chopper3 May 8 '12 at 13:06
It used to work for 11.04 and 11.10, and the new ubuntu comes with hyper-v integration built-in. It used to work, and it works with a different kernel -- I want to figure out why it doesn't with the 3.2 kernel. – Anteru May 8 '12 at 13:13
But this site is for professional sysadmins, who don't typically use unsupported integrations. – Chopper3 May 8 '12 at 13:30
And this is a professional problem; we have ubuntu on the hyper-v for various reasons. The server is big iron and was in place already, and we needed a ubuntu server for CI. Running it on the server was the easiest solution, and it worked fine -- and even Microsoft publically tells you that Ubuntu works fine on Hyper-V:… My hope is that this is some trivial config issue and not a general problem. – Anteru May 8 '12 at 15:19
What do you mean by "big iron"? I don't know of any mainframes or supercomputers that can run Hyper-V. – MDMarra May 8 '12 at 15:26

My answer here, copied below, is most likely applicable to you as well and explains why the kernel update and kernel module (storvsc) fixed your issue. Here's how to get a stock Ubuntu 12.04 machine running on Hyper-V:

Copied from my answer here:

The easiest way to get Ubuntu 12.04 running well under Hyper-V on the 2012 platform would be to download the Windows Azure Cloud Image - unfortunately as I check today (July 10 2013) the images are not available on the Ubuntu Cloud Images image store. I've filed a question on their answers site which you can follow to see if they restore the cloud images.

That said, let's discuss why you have an issue: 12.04.2 has an older kernel without the latest Hyper-V integration (kernel modules) that were baked into 12.10 and are in 13.04 as well. The cure is to get a newer kernel. As I said earlier, the easiest way to get the right image is to get an image built for Windows Azure - the Azure public cloud and your private Hyper-V server both run essentially the same hypervisor, so any instructions applicable to Azure are applicable to you.

To run on the Azure platform, aka the 2012 Hyper-V hypervisor, Microsoft recommends under their list of endorsed distributions of Linux that you follow a number of steps to update 12.04.x distributions to use a backported kernel and kernel modules. You do not need to install the walinuxagent or reconfigure GRUB, which is only necessary for Windows Azure. The full instructions are reproduced here with the walinuxagent and GRUB instructions removed:

  1. sudo sed -i "s,,,g" /etc/apt/sources.list

    This step updates the mirrors to point to an Azure hosted mirror.

  2. sudo apt-add-repository ‘ precise-backports main’

    This step adds the repository needed to get the kernel and agent changes.

  3. sudo apt-get update
  4. sudo apt-get install linux-backports-modules-hv-precise-virtual

    This step adds the update kernel and associated modules.

  5. sudo apt-get install hv-kvp-daemon-init

    This step adds the updated agent.

    NOTE: I have removed the walinuxagent from this command. It is not needed for private clouds, but is for Windows Azure. This update does however install the key value pair exchange which may be used for time sync and other things, but I am not entirely certain.

  6. This step removed as it pertains to modifying GRUB to run more efficiently on Windows Azure.
  7. (recommended) sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
  8. sudo reboot

A final note: these instructions add a new repository to your Ubuntu machines and you should be aware of the effect this has. Ensure that the first command runs correctly (I have not tested it myself in the past week) to replace with I have performed these steps myself but I cannot say they will work in the future. Just be aware that the goal of the first step is to point your Ubuntu distribution to use a new set of default repositories designed to backport support for Windows Azure and the 2012 Hyper-V hypervisor.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.