Many users had reported (particularly having Intel Integrated Graphics Chipsets machines ) boot freezing with very similar or identical symptems as discribed in this thread
11.4 Boot Freeze
This problem also appeared in my new Samsung Laptop when I installed openSUSE11.4
(Model R528-DA04IN -/ Pentium Dualcore T4400 @ 2.20GHz/2GB/Intel Corporation Mobile 4 Series Chipset Integrated Graphics Controller [8086:2a42] (rev 09)/250GB HDD)
I am not much knowledgeable on Linux matters. (other than running openSUSE 10.3/SAMBA /raid as a small workgroup server in my office having only win xp clients.) I certainly welcome corrections if I am wrong in my conclusions!
Even users having Nvidia as well as ATI graphics controllers faced similar or slightly different problems after installing 11.4.
One common factor appears to be use of KMS enabled open source drivers which are naturally the default first choice loaded by all distributions including openSUSE.
As for the ATI /RAdeon chip sets, so called proprietary Drivers from the chip set vendors are available which often are superior and guides and procedures to install them written by senior members are available ref OLDCPU’s
openSUSE Graphic Card Practical Theory Guide for Users
SDB:Configuring graphics cards - openSUSE
These drivers are not KMS enabled and users have to disable KMS by using ‘nomodeset’ boot parameter.
But unfortunately for Intel graphics hardware similar non KMS driver apparently not available and INTEL supports only KMS enabled Opensource drivers.
So if you want to follow the ‘nomodeset’ boot paramter method it will end up with using what is referred as the fbdev- FrameBuffer Driver or in case even this does not work the Kernel loads the ‘Vesa’ Driver. Unfortunately these drivers most of the time cannot use the NAtive resolution of the LAptop Monitor and you endup with ugly and squashed looking desktop.
Further the ‘Desktop effects’ which is the mainstay/attraction of the modern display managers like Gnome and KDE including the hardware display accleration for /videoplayback/HDMI are disabled.
An alternative is the older non KMS intel driver called ‘intellegacy’ (which is included as part of the standard XORG video drivers package) But this driver while correctly switching the native resolution of the LAptop Monior, manytimes is unstable or wont work when ‘desktop effects’ are enabled.
But on checking the actual message displayed just immediatly prior to the boot freeze point the issue had nothing to do with the graphics driver itself. They are when the UDEV segment of the boot process is going on. Thus it can be said that the kernel is unable to properly identify hardware details. It could be mostly on the modern systems to do with the so called ACPI implementation done by the SYStem MAnufacturer (In my case Samsung).
So simple setting of ‘acpi=off’ boot parameter or the variations of ACPI related parameters including ‘acpi_osi=linux’ etc are suggested by various users. But ACPI implementation is critical PArtricularly for LAptops due to heat/fan/battery related issues and skipping ACPI is bad and not all advisable.
And in my case no other setting enables the boot process to go on other than the drastic ‘acpi=off’ setting.
This is definitely unsatisfactory and an searching further I accidentally came across this older thread
Stuck during boot-up (Creating device nodes with udev)
particularly post #4 where user Per Jessen suggested maxcpu=0 boot parameter.
Surprisingly this worked on my machine!
Here it is suggested on multiCPU systems ( almost 99% of modern systems today are dualcore or quadcore cpus)the kernel enables so called SMP and systems having quirky BIOS issues (read ACPI implementation) often SMP will have booting problems and disabling SMP will allow the boot process to go on.
So apparently disabling SMP allowed the kernel to correctly detect the hardware and properly load the KMS enabled drivers. Thus the correct (in this case i915 driver) video driver is loaded and the boot process successfully resulted in consistently booting to graphic desktop always.
But this means I am stuck with only one CPU ! The other (in case of a quad core system other 3 cpus)are simply sucking power doing nothing!. So this not a permanent solution for me.
Tracing this lead I came across many posts and discussions right across almost all distros where it was generally advised that kms enabled drivers should be loaded as early as possible in the boot process.
This means One should compile the driver in to the kernel itself.
Or the next best thing is to build it into the so called** initrd**
Since compiling a kernel is unthinkable and beyond my experience I decided to try the initrd approach. Surprisingly Yast provided a simple method.
I simply used Yast - System - etc/sysconfig editor - System - Kernel - INITRD_MODULES and i added the ‘i915’ name to the already listed modules and saved it. Yast automatically ran the mkinitrd script and the i915 driver is now part of the initrd. ON rebooting the system successfully booted to the Gnome desktop with SMP and desktop effects etc. all intact. ( In between I had to remove the vga=“xxxx” line from the grub entry as this caused garbled screen immediatly after grub even though the system eventually reached Gnome desktop successfully in the end.)
So I request users facing similar issues (most of them anyway will at least have a dualcore processor) including those having ATI / RADEOn hardware to try either compile the corresponding opensource KMS enabled drivers in to kernel or atleast load into initrd and see if their problems are resolved. Any way for INtel video driver this appears to be a must.
Still my SAMSUNG LAPTOP is having further issues in the form of LCD brightness/WIFI/buttons not working. But these are not major issues and anyway i have read that these issues are under active consideration by kernel developers and might be resolved on future kernels.
I have now updated to Gnome 3 and loving everymoment !lol!