Take the 2-minute tour ×
Server Fault is a question and answer site for professional system and network administrators. It's 100% free, no registration required.

How do you repair/reinstall Fedora without deleting any existing partitions or data?

I was attempting to upgrade some old Fedora 13 servers to 17, following the instructions in the wiki. After the 14->15 upgrade, rebooting resulted in the output:

Dropping to debug shell.

sh: can't access tty; job control turned off
dracut:/#

Running dmesg also shows:

dracut Warning: No root device "block:/dev/mapper/VolGroup-lv_root" found

Googling shows this error is typically related to some weird RAID issues, but my server is a virtual machine not using any RAID. Using a rescue CD, I can chroot /mnt/sysimage, and all packages and data still seems to be there. How do I make the system bootable again?

share|improve this question

1 Answer 1

up vote 1 down vote accepted

Apparently, it's not uncommon for Fedora's upgrade process to corrupt the /boot/initramfs filesystem, resulting in an unbootable system.

Using a tip I found here, the solution is to boot using a Fedora Live CD, and select "rescue installed system" from the menu. Then walk through the menu to get to the rescue shell. Then mount the system using chroot /mnt/sysimage. The tip recommended repairing initramfs by running:

mv /boot/initramfs-$(uname -r).img /boot/initramfs-$(uname -r)-nouveau.img
dracut /boot/initramfs-$(uname -r).img $(uname -r)

However, since you'll be running the Live CD's kernel, this will likely fail if your system's kernel version does not exactly match the Live CD. My Live CD was using a 2.6.* kernel, but I had a 3.4.* kernel installed, so I ran:

mv /boot/initramfs-3.4.2-1.fc16.x86_64.img /boot/initramfs-3.4.2-1.fc16.x86_64-nouveau.img
dracut /boot/initramfs-3.4.2-1.fc16.x86_64.img 3.4.2-1.fc16.x86_64
exit

Afterwards, removing the Live CD and then rebooting resulted in a bootable system.

share|improve this answer
    
Did this solve the problem? You never marked it as solved. –  Michael Hampton Oct 17 '13 at 7:03

Your Answer

 
discard

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.