Solved: kernel panic; not syncing: VFS: unable to mount root fs on unknown block

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jrbuergel

Jim
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When I try to boot PCLinux 2010 or Mandriva 2010 installed onto an external esata drive in a enclosure with a 2009 store built desktop computer it results in this error message; kernel panic; not syncing: VFS: unable to mount root fs on unknown block (0,0), and this too; cannot open root device "UUID= (some numbers and letters) or unknown block (0,0) please append a correct root= boot option. Is a possible cause for this issue due to those Linux installs were done with a older computer with way different hardware components, (a 2006 Gateway) ? I have a total of 6 versions of Linux installed on that 500 Gb external hard drive, and several do boot okay; (Fedora 15, Mint 9,Kubuntu 10.04,), and my internal PC drive has Ubuntu 10.04 and 12.04 installed. What if I just use a command to generate and set a new UUID for those not bootable partitions ?
 
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Although some installed Linux could be used on a different computer (other than one installed originally) there is difference in their behaviour. This is to do with whether a distro has been designed to detect new hardware from scractch in a new environment.

The Debian and Red Hat family (Fedora) are more able to migrate without too much fuss but others may not play ball at all.

PCLinuxOS and Mandriva belong to the same Mandrake family and they are not as flexible.

An new installation is recommended. Also Mandriva has been rebanded as Mageia now.
 

jrbuergel

Jim
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Okay I see then, and thanks, some new versions installs is the best thing to do. That could be caused by not having the right device drivers for the newer computer system, such as going from a IDE drive to sata in AHCI mode ?
 
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You need kernel older than 2.60.20 (at about Sept 2007) to use different device names for Pata (or IDE) and Sata. Since the 2.60.20 kernel all disks, IDE/ATA/Pata, Sata, eSata, SCSI, USB flash drives, memory cards, SSD etc, are all called /dev/sdx where X can be a, b, c, d, e, f......etc according to the prefixed order of the motherboard detection sequence of the available controllers if the hardware were attached.

The AHCI, IDE and Raid modes are Bios and motherboard specific because if the motherboard/Bios does not detect the disk then no operating system can use it.
 

jrbuergel

Jim
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804
So then if I hit e to edit the PCLinux or Mandriva grub 2 boot entries to change it from root= UUID , to root= /dev/sda2 and 8 for my system, it will still boot to that error message then. Both are from 2010 so time for the new and improved releases.
 

rikai

Matt
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Jul 30, 2011
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I would suggest upgrading the current installs with the hard drive in the new hardware.
 
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