[syslinux] ISOLINUX: Mounting devfs on /mnt/dev failed

Siegfried Ballmann sball at web.de
Sun Oct 17 03:47:16 PDT 2004


I am trying to boot from an external USB hard drive (partition 1: 
Windows, partition 2: primary/bootable ext3).

I took the kernel-image-2.6.8-1-368.deb and created a new initrd with 
all modules, root=/dev/sda2 and Busybox (mkinitrd failed with my own 
kernel ;-)

isolinux.cfg contains:

LABEL sda1
  KERNEL vmlinuz
  APPEND initrd=initrd ramdisk=16432k root=/dev/sda1 devfs=mount
LABEL sda2
  KERNEL vmlinuz
  APPEND initrd=initrd ramdisk=16432k root=/dev/sda2 devfs=mount
LABEL hda1
  KERNEL vmlinuz
  APPEND initrd=initrd ramdisk=16432k root=/dev/hda1 devfs=mount
LABEL hda2
  KERNEL vmlinuz
  APPEND initrd=initrd ramdisk=16432k root=/dev/hda2 devfs=mount

(I hope the copy&paste error above is not really important :-)

The whole directory /root/CDroot for mkisofs:

-rw-r--r--    1 root     root     15601664 Oct 16 19:58 initrd
-rw-r--r--    1 root     root           10500 Oct 16 19:59 isolinux.bin
-rw-r--r--    1 root     root               420 Oct 16 19:59 isolinux.cfg
-rw-r--r--    1 root     root       1089561 Oct 16 19:58 vmlinuz

I called

mkisofs -o /root/bootcd.iso -b isolinux.bin -c boot.cat -no-emul-boot 
-boot-load-size 4 -boot-info-table /root/CDroot

and created a CD.

Booting works, the external USB hard drive is recognized - I believe, 
but just when the boot process shall continue to use my USB drive, 
mounting of devfs fails (see the attached image too):
sda: assuming drive cache: write ...
  /dev/scsi/host2/bus0/target0/lun0:<7>usb-storage: ....
  p1 p2
Attached scsi disk sda at scsi2, channel 0, id 0, lun 0
Attached scsi generic sg0 at scsi2, channel 0, id 0, lun 0, type 0
ReiserFS: sda2: warning: sh-2021: reiserfs_fill_super: can not find 
reiserfs on
kjournald starting. Commit interval 5 seconds.
Ext3-fs: mounted filesystem with ordered data mode.
mount: Mounting devfs on /mnt/dev failed: No such file or directory.
/sbin/init: 426: cannot create /dev/null: Directory nonexistent.
/sbin/init: 427: cannot open dev/console: No such file
Kernel panic: Attempted to kill init!

I used Busybox to check whether /mnt/dev exists or not. It doesn't 
exist, which explains the error above.

My tools:

initrd-tools   0.1.74
modutils       2.4.26-1
module-init-tools 3.1-pre6-1
kernel-image-2.6.8-1 (debian; has devfs support)

Booting my hard drive (hda2) via my boot CD works fine.

I couldn't find any hint neither in the email archive nor in 

Has anyone a hint to solve this problem?

Thanks and regards,

- Siegfried

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