Chapter 10. Troubleshooting Installation on an Intel or AMD System

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This section discusses some common installation problems and their solutions.
For debugging purposes, anaconda logs installation actions into files in the /tmp directory. These files include:
general anaconda messages
all external programs run by anaconda
extensive storage module information
yum package installation messages
hardware-related system messages
If the installation fails, the messages from these files are consolidated into /tmp/anaconda-tb-identifier, where identifier is a random string.
All of the files above reside in the installer's ramdisk and are thus volatile. To make a permanent copy, copy those files to another system on the network using scp on the installation image (not the other way round).

10.1. You Are Unable to Boot Red Hat Enterprise Linux

10.1.1. Are You Unable to Boot With Your RAID Card?

If you have performed an installation and cannot boot your system properly, you may need to reinstall and create your partitions differently.
Some BIOS types do not support booting from RAID cards. At the end of an installation, a text-based screen showing the boot loader prompt (for example, GRUB: ) and a flashing cursor may be all that appears. If this is the case, you must repartition your system.
Whether you choose automatic or manual partitioning, you must install your /boot partition outside of the RAID array, such as on a separate hard drive. An internal hard drive is necessary to use for partition creation with problematic RAID cards.
You must also install your preferred boot loader (GRUB or LILO) on the MBR of a drive that is outside of the RAID array. This should be the same drive that hosts the /boot/ partition.
Once these changes have been made, you should be able to finish your installation and boot the system properly.

10.1.2. Is Your System Displaying Signal 11 Errors?

A signal 11 error, commonly known as a segmentation fault, means that the program accessed a memory location that was not assigned to it. A signal 11 error may be due to a bug in one of the software programs that is installed, or faulty hardware.
If you receive a fatal signal 11 error during your installation, it is probably due to a hardware error in memory on your system's bus. Like other operating systems, Red Hat Enterprise Linux places its own demands on your system's hardware. Some of this hardware may not be able to meet those demands, even if they work properly under another OS.
Ensure that you have the latest installation updates and images. Review the online errata to see if newer versions are available. If the latest images still fail, it may be due to a problem with your hardware. Commonly, these errors are in your memory or CPU-cache. A possible solution for this error is turning off the CPU-cache in the BIOS, if your system supports this. You could also try to swap your memory around in the motherboard slots to check if the problem is either slot or memory related.
Another option is to perform a media check on your installation DVD. Anaconda, the installation program, has the ability to test the integrity of the installation media. It works with the DVD, hard drive ISO, and NFS ISO installation methods. Red Hat recommends that you test all installation media before starting the installation process, and before reporting any installation-related bugs (many of the bugs reported are actually due to improperly-burned DVDs). To use this test, type the following command at the boot: or yaboot: prompt:
linux mediacheck
For more information concerning signal 11 errors, refer to:

10.1.3. Diagnosing Early Boot Problems

The boot console may be useful in cases where your system fails to boot, but does successfully display the GRUB boot menu. Messages in the boot console can inform you of the current kernel version, command line parameters which have been passed to the kernel from the boot menu, enabled hardware support for the current kernel, physical memory map and other information which may help you find the cause of your problems.
To enable the boot console, select an entry in the GRUB boot menu, and press e to edit boot options. On the line starting with the keyword kernel (or linux in some cases), append the following:
  • On a system with BIOS firmware, append earlyprintk=vga,keep. Boot console messages should then be displayed on the system display.
  • On a system with UEFI firmware, append earlyprintk=efi,keep. Boot console messages should then be displayed in the EFI frame buffer.
You can also append the quiet option (if not present already) to suppress all other messages and only display messages from the boot console.


The earlyprintk options for BIOS and UEFI should also be enabled in the kernel's /boot/config-version file - the CONFIG_EARLY_PRINTK= and CONFIG_EARLY_PRINTK_EFI= options must be set to the y value. They are enabled by default, but if you disabled them, you may need to mount the /boot partition in rescue mode and edit the configuration file to re-enable them.
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