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 🙂   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


2 thoughts on “XenServer 5.5.0 and the case of the missing /dev/root

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention XenServer 5.5.0 and the case of the missing /dev/root « MrPointy’s Weblog -- Topsy.com

  2. Hi there!!

    Thanks to your information I was able to solve my problem.
    It was pretty similar to yours, but not the same!

    The error I got was the same, but the solution was this:

    -> I’ve installed XenServer on AHCI SATA mode.
    -> The system for somehow (probably CMOS battery) change to default setttings with IDE SATA enabled.
    -> I simply switched back from IDE SATA to AHCI SATA and the system boots up normally.

    Thank you again!

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