[CentOS] kernel not booting after update

Spiro Harvey spiro at knossos.net.nz
Thu Nov 12 21:55:01 UTC 2009


Hi all,

I'm having a strange problem in which a certain box won't boot
any kernel newer than 2.6.18-53.

I have a kickstart setup that installs a CentOS 5.1 base (which comes
with kernel 2.6.18-53), and then I do a "yum update" to 5.3. 

However, when 2.6.18-164 gets installed, the box is rebooted, and it
dumps me in a grub prompt. If I manually enter root, kernel, initrd and
boot commands and point it at the -164 kernel, I am given "Error 13:
invalid or unsupported executable format."

But I can manually enter the -53 kernel and that boots fine.

I tried backing down to the -128 and same problem.

(all our updates come from our own mirrored repos and we only sync i386
directories)

I enabled the menu and selected -164, and it gave me Error 13 the first
time, and subsequent selects of the menu item resulted in Error 15:
File not found.

Now all of the above was with a separate /boot partition.

Box is a dual core Xeon (E8500) with hardware SATA RAID on board.

I'm pretty sure the old boxes were the same spec (but I don't have them
onsite so can't verify that) and they successfully booted the -128
kernel. 

I've since rebuilt it with a single / partition. I then did all the
updates, and updated my grub.conf to the following:


default=0
timeout=5
splashimage=(hd0,0)/boot/grub/splash.xpm.gz
#hiddenmenu
title CentOS (2.6.18-53.el5)
        root (hd0,0)
        kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.18-53.el5 ro root=LABEL=/
        initrd /boot/initrd-2.6.18-53.el5.img
title CentOS (2.6.18-164.el5)
        root (hd0,0)
        kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.18-164.el5 ro root=LABEL=/
        initrd /boot/initrd-2.6.18-164.el5.img

The menu came up but only showed the -53 option.

The most common answer I seem to find with Grub's Error 13 is that a
different architecture kernel was installed, but they're all the same;
ie; i686 kernel from i386 repo.


[root at dhcp-248 boot]# file vmlinuz-2.6.18-53.el5 
vmlinuz-2.6.18-53.el5: ELF 32-bit LSB shared object, Intel 80386, version 1, stripped
[root at dhcp-248 boot]# file vmlinuz-2.6.18-164.el5 
vmlinuz-2.6.18-164.el5: ELF 32-bit LSB shared object, Intel 80386, version 1, stripped


current running kernel is:

Linux dhcp-248.off.knossos.net.nz 2.6.18-53.el5 #1 SMP Mon Nov 12 02:22:48 EST 2007 i686 i686 i386 GNU/Linux

[root at dhcp-248 ~]# rpm -qa | grep kernel
kernel-2.6.18-53.el5
kernel-2.6.18-164.el5
[root at dhcp-248 ~]# yum list kernel*
Loaded plugins: fastestmirror
Determining fastest mirrors
knl-base                                                       2508/2508
knl-gen                                                        42/42
knl-updates                                                    528/528
Installed Packages
kernel.i686                                       2.6.18-53.el5                            installed  
kernel.i686                                       2.6.18-164.el5                           installed  
Available Packages
kernel-PAE.i686                                   2.6.18-164.el5                           knl-updates
kernel-PAE-devel.i686                             2.6.18-164.el5                           knl-updates
kernel-debug.i686                                 2.6.18-164.el5                           knl-updates
kernel-debug-devel.i686                           2.6.18-164.el5                           knl-updates
kernel-devel.i686                                 2.6.18-164.el5                           knl-updates
kernel-doc.noarch                                 2.6.18-164.el5                           knl-updates
kernel-headers.i386                               2.6.18-164.el5                           knl-updates
kernel-xen.i686                                   2.6.18-164.el5                           knl-updates
kernel-xen-devel.i686
2.6.18-164.el5                           knl-updates

[root at dhcp-248 ~]# cat /etc/fstab 
LABEL=/                 /                       ext3    defaults        1 1
tmpfs                   /dev/shm                tmpfs   defaults        0 0
devpts                  /dev/pts                devpts  gid=5,mode=620  0 0
sysfs                   /sys                    sysfs   defaults        0 0
proc                    /proc                   proc    defaults        0 0
LABEL=SWAP-isw_dgcfec   swap                    swap    defaults        0 0
[root at dhcp-248 ~]# fdisk -l

Disk /dev/sda: 251.0 GB, 251059544064 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 30522 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sda1   *           1       30391   244115676   83  Linux
/dev/sda2           30392       30522     1052257+  82  Linux swap / Solaris

Disk /dev/sdb: 251.0 GB, 251059544064 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 30522 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sdb1   *           1       30391   244115676   83  Linux
/dev/sdb2           30392       30522     1052257+  82  Linux swap / Solaris
[root at dhcp-248 ~]# df -h
Filesystem            Size  Used Avail Use% Mounted on
/dev/sda1             226G  1.3G  213G   1% /
tmpfs                 504M     0  504M   0% /dev/shm


-- 
Spiro Harvey                  Knossos Networks Ltd
021-295-1923                  www.knossos.net.nz
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