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Kernel Panic!

November 1st, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

So like Tyler, I’ve decided to run Gentoo. Hey, it seemed like a good idea at the time.

My experience thus far can be summed up with a single word: frustrating. I spent my first day working through the (excellent) Gentoo Handbook. Like Jake, I found it handy to have run lshw on my system prior to installing Gentoo. This provided me with a list of my hardware that I could refer back to during the installation process, and saved me a few headaches.

At first, my live-cd environment lacked a network connection. My machine has two network interfaces in it. One uses the sky2 kernel module, while the other uses skge. I ran:

modprobe skge
net-setup eth1
[follow on-screen instructions]
ping google.com

and was successful.

On that first day of dicking about, I managed to get all the way to Chapter 10: Configuring the Bootloader. It was at this point, in subchapter 10.d, that I was instructed to reboot the system, as though it would be a relaxing, daisy-scented walk in the park. Not so.

Apparently, the kernel that I’ve managed to compile does not recognize the SATA interface on my motherboard. When I attempt to boot, GRUB hands control off to the kernel, which goes looking for my root partition on /dev/sda3. It then dies with a message like

Kernel panic – not syncing: VFS: Unable to mount root fs on unknown-block(8,3)

This error message is the bane of my existence.

After a great deal of head-vs-desk action, approximately 37 kernel compilations, and a great deal of googling, I managed to find a Gentoo wiki entry that instructs users of my chipset on how to compile their very own working kernel. Tonight, I intend to follow it, in hopes that I can get the system to boot some time soon.

At this rate, I’ll be lucky to have a working desktop by the end of the experiment.

Categories: Gentoo, God Damnit Linux, Jon F, Linux Tags:
  1. November 1st, 2011 at 19:25 | #1

    Sorry to hear you’re having issues installing! I’ve never used Gentoo, but its been on my list of distro’s to try for a while. I’ve just never had to time to commit to it, but I hear great things!

    Best of luck to you and Tyler! I’m looking forward to seeing the results (and some screenshots once you’ve got a gui functioning, haha). 😀

  2. Jon F
    November 1st, 2011 at 19:39 | #2

    @kyleabaker – thanks for the support. I’m tired of the recompile reboot cycle, so I’m going to blow everything away and start fresh. Perhaps I missed something earlier on or screwed something else up the first time round.

  1. November 1st, 2011 at 22:47 | #1