[syslinux] Syslinux root device problems

Stephen A. Witt sawitt at ELECTRA.RSC.RAYTHEON.COM
Tue Mar 26 08:42:43 PST 2002

Hi, I'm using syslinux to boot an embedded Linux system. I've just started
working on this and am having a problem with the kernel I'm using not
being able to mount the root device. I'm using a 2.4.17 kernel and running
off a small hardisk with msdos filesystem. I'm trying to boot the system
into a ram disk and run out of ram.

My syslinux.cfg file is:

timeout 0
default vmlinuz
append "load_ramdisk=1 initrd=initrd.gz initrd_archive=minix
                           ramdisk_size=8192 root=/dev/ram0"

where the append line is all one line.

I compile the kernel on a machine in which the root disk is /dev/hda1.
When I examine the kernel I'm using with rdev, it shows the root device as
/dev/hda1. I was expecting that the append line with "root=/dev/ram0" in
the syslinux.cfg file would override the root device in the kernel, but
this apparently isn't happening. When I set the root device in the kernel
to '/dev/ram0', then the kernel finds the root device and my system boots
normally. Do I have to set the root device in the kernel with rdev when
using syslinux as the boot loader?


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