[Techtalk] Gentoo Kernel Upgrade - unable to mount root partition

AstroGirl astrogirl at spin.net.au
Mon Oct 29 06:28:54 UTC 2007

On Mon, 29 Oct 2007 10:42:09 am Kat wrote:

> I've had a few crazy months where keeping my box up to date has been
> really low on the list of priorities. Today I finally got around to
> upgrading my kernel from 2.6.20 to 2.6.22.
> When I try to boot into the new kernel, I get the error message:
> Root-NFS: No NFS server available, giving up.
> VFS: unable to mount root fs via NFS, trying floppy
> My root partition is on /dev/sda5
> By changing root=/dev/sda5 to root=0305 in the grub.conf file, I was
> able to get past that point in the boot process, but then I got
> complaints that fstab doesn't define /dev/hda5... which is because
> I've got that down as /dev/sda5.
> I don't dare edit the fstab to reflect the hda thing, since I'm pretty
> sure I won't be able to boot into this (2.6.20) kernel if I do.
> Any idea what sort of changes I should try in the menuconfig?
> Any other things I can look at to figure out what exactly is causing this?

Hi Kat,

I'm by no means an expert in this - but I had the exact same error when 
installing Gentoo for the first time about 2 weeks ago. What I did to fix it 
involved using the liveCD and finding out which modules it loaded, then 
finding out what process "calls" the module, and then searching in Menuconfig 
for the process - the long and the short of it was that it was my HDD not 
being detected properly.

I'm using kernel 2.6.22 as well. It looks like you have a Sata drive? (Me too) 
Under "Device Drivers", there is a "Serial ATA (prod) and Parallel ATA 
(experimental drivers)" section you have to say yes to.. and then hit enter 
to get inside that menu (I didn't realise I could do that and it took me 2 
days to find out), and choose the correct driver in there and make sure it's 
not a <M>odule, but a *. Mine was an Intel PIIX3 support one - worked like a 
charm, no more kernel panics. :)

I hope that was of some help.


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