XenServer 5.5.0 and the case of the missing /dev/root

I was firing up XenServer 5.5.0 in my lab on my trusty m2n-sli deluxe system – boy has that system been hammered with a variety of tasks since it was built ūüôā ¬† Anyway, the install went without incident only to reboot into the freshly installed XenServer system and guess what – reboot loop at the splash screen.

After a small period where I formed bad words I rebooted it again and turned off the splash screen by entering


at the boot prompt, hitting <tab> to go into edit mode and removed the splash/quiet options. ¬†Anyway, to cut a long story short I was getting ‘could not find filesystem /dev/root’ followed by a panic and a watchdog reboot. ¬†All very annoying.

mount: could not find filesystem¬†‘/dev/root’

switchroot: mount failed: No such file or directory
Kernel panic – not syncing: Attempted to kill init!

To cut this story even shorter the problem was related to bios settings. ¬† In my case the primary (and only) hard disk in this box at the moment is an IDE 120Gb Seagate drive. ¬†The fact that it’s IDE wasn’t the problem, the problem was that JMicron RAID was enabled for IDE disks. ¬†I’m guessing the installer had no problems with JMicron support, but the actual installed Xen system did. ¬†I’m not sure I want to actually delve any further into the reasons why but turning off JMicron RAID for IDE took it out of the picture and the system booted fine.

Happy result