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Re: kickstart error - 'no valid devices to create filesystems'

On Fri Feb 15 2002 at 12:05, Ryan Allen wrote:

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> Yeah, I see this all the time. - drives me nutz!
> I first saw this when trying to partition a HD in Linux that was once had BSDi installed.
> Now I seem to see it _all_ the time.
> I'd say this is a problem with the tools Red Hat uses to partition the disks.
> This is what we do to work around the problem.
> If anybody has a more efficient method, please let me know!
> 1) boot a linux distro that mounts no hard drive partitions and lives entirely in ram disk.
> I recommend Toms RBT distro.  (the most linux on one floppy):
> http://www.toms.net/rb/


I know tomsrbt very well, I've been using it for years.

However, that's half of its problem now -- it is getting aged.

It is based on a (modified) 2.0.39 kernel, and these old kernels
don't natively support ext3 and a lot of other filesystems that are
now being widely used today.  The kernel that comes with tomsrtbt
has been patched for sparse filesystem support (which is now the
default for ext2) and that helps a lot, but it doesn't do it with
ext3.  I've never been able to get any of the raid support working
properly with it.  And if you do manage to do a chroot to your
installation image to repair it, the kernel is unlikely to be able
to support many of the system ioctl calls that things like mount are
now using.  Sure, you could build a 2.2.x kernel for it and probably
have more luck.  I'm on the mailing list, and I haven't noticed that
anyone has managed to get a 2.4 kernel working with it (with all the
internal changes in the kernel, I doubt if this is possible).

Likewise, many of the tools and utilities on it are also aged and
don't work properly with a lot of modern hardware (eg, no usb
support and so on).

And most problematic of all is that the entire thing is based on
old, buggy, unsupported and abandoned libc5.  Tom won't (can't) move
to glibc6 because he is unable to keep the size of the shared
libraries + recompiled utilities + kernel small enough to fit onto a
1.72Mb floppy disk image.

tomsrtbt has its place, and it has proved time and again to be a
most invaluable tool for me in the past.  It is a (now rather blunt)
swiss-army-knife linux bootdisk.  However as time has gone by, its
usefullness has been slowly diminishing.

> 2) run the command 'badblocks' on your hard drive (comes with Tom's).
> Give it the 'write' parameters.  For an IDE disk on /dev/hda,
> I do:
> 'badblocks -v -w /dev/had'
> let it go for about 50 to 100 K, then hit ctrl+c to kill the program.
> This thing will overwrite any partitioning information, and kickstart will now think you have
> plenty of hard disk space to build partitions into.

Oh sh*t, I wouldn't trust the state of your filesystems once you
have done that with such an old version of badblocks.

Are you sure know know what you are doing here?

> Good luck!

No, you are the one that needs the luck :-)

I've had to start using the redhat installer in rescue mode as a
(rather poor but slowly improving) replacement for tomsrtbt.  Pity
that, I'd much rather use tomstbt but it just isn't up to the task
any longer.

> Ryan Allen
> Senior Test Engineer
> desk: 206 - 272 - 6538
> fax:   206 - 272 - 5585
> email: r allen f5 com

The real solution to the problem that you are seeing is probably
because you are not using the libparted.so supplied in the installer
update release by redhat (for rh72) last year.

  Tony Nugent <Tony linuxworks com au>
  LinuxWorks - Gold Coast Qld Australia

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