No disk seen when booting the disk in another system

My dual proc, dual core Opteron MSI Master2FAR motherboard failed, and I try to boot a disk, used on this board as boot disk, on an Intel based Gigabyte GA-965-DS3. Both systems are x86_64 architecture.

The OS is on both systems is openSUSE 11.1.

On booting the disk on the Gigabyte, the disk is seen correctly by the BIOS, but not by the OS, and there is no /dev/sdX; no /dev/disk/… either. I am taken to a login shell from the ramdisk.

When I just mount this disk on the Gigabyte (booted with the Gigabyte’s original boot disk) everything seems fine. No suprise to me, since the disk was fine, and was unmounted gracefully and physically taken off the MSI before the board failed.

I think that the cause lies in the fact that the harddisk controller on the Gigabyte is different from the MSI, and the driver for that controller is not available at boot time.

I have two questions:

  • is my assumption correct, or is something else going on?
  • if I am right, is there a way to get this disk booting on the Gigabyte (or on another system, for that matter)?

You might want to ask why I want to boot this disk on the Gigabyte in the first place, since I can mount it and see all data on it. I have a reason for that, but telling that story would make this topic too long, and it’s too off-topic. Most certainly I will get to that in another topic.

Thanks for any answers!

On 01/02/2010 03:36 PM, jehojakim wrote:
>
> My dual proc, dual core Opteron MSI Master2FAR motherboard failed, and I
> try to boot a disk, used on this board as boot disk, on an Intel based
> Gigabyte GA-965-DS3. Both systems are x86_64 architecture.
>
> The OS is on both systems is openSUSE 11.1.
>
> On booting the disk on the Gigabyte, the disk is seen correctly by the
> BIOS, but not by the OS, and there is no /dev/sdX; no /dev/disk/…
> either. I am taken to a login shell from the ramdisk.

The disk driver is not in the initrd file, and thus it is not available at boot
time. Running the ‘mkinitrd’ command as root should fix it, but you will need to
get the disk mounted and chroot to it before you do that. You should also be
able to boot a LiveCD and run the initrd rescue on it.

Thanks very much,that was the hint I needed. I read the man page of mkinitrd, and there a sequence of commands were mentioned for just this problem, and after that the disk booted perfectly.

Thanks again!

About why I wanted to have this disk booting - I want to do the same trick with a raid-1/raid-5 combination, which was on that MSI box when it failed. Raid-1 contains the boot dir, raid-5 the rest. So I wanted to be sure I could boot a simple disk, before experimenting with the raid-version.

Before asking help for that, I want to do some reading myself, for example on this forum:

Raid1 problem - openSUSE Forums