Best of Technical Support
I am using Red Hat 9 on an HP Brio (PIII,
20GB and 192MB of RAM). I first installed Linux when my
hard drive was a primary slave. Later I changed
it to primary master. I am using a boot disk to
boot in to Linux, but when I try to boot in to the
system, I get an error that the swap partition was
not initialized. The kernel could detect changes
to my root and boot, but it was unable to in the
case of swap partition.
How can I change the swap partition dynamically? In other words, what parameter
should I pass to the kernel before booting so as to specify my swap at
the command line? Also, can I use the same boot disk to boot on other systems
with different partition allocations, as with Windows startup disks?
This is easy to explain; Linux is looking for the swap partition on one device (the primary slave), probably named /deb/hdbX, X being the partition number, and it happens that it now resides on the primary master disk, which probably is /dev/hdaX. Therefore, Linux can't find the designated swap partition and is unable to initialize it. To fix this, edit your /etc/fstab file and change the device on the line that has the swap entry. It may be something like:
/dev/hdb2 swap swap defaults 0 0
So, change it to:
/dev/hda2 swap swap defaults 0 0
In this example, the swap partition is number 2 on the disks.
Then, reboot your system, and it should work fine. An alternate way to reboot
would be to start the swap partition manually with the command
swapon -a -e, after editing the /etc/fstab file as indicated above.
Felipe Barousse Boué
I intend to install SuSE 8.2 and want to know if I can
install it on a Serial ATA hard drive.
Serial ATA hard drives are supported by Linux
(including the SuSE 8.2 distribution's stock kernel
version 2.4.19). This will be obvious, but
as always, first you must check that the BIOS
and/or disk controller hardware of your system
does support Serial ATA hard drives.
Felipe Barousse Boué
As usual, the first question is, does your BIOS
support booting from your serial ATA interfaces?
If your BIOS doesn't support booting from this
controller, you might be able to install Linux to
boot from some other device.
You can look up your hardware on SuSE's component
database at hardwaredb.suse.de. Other Linux
distributions also maintain their own hardware
Although something technically might be supported
in the kernel version that your distribution
ships, it's best to check your distribution's
hardware compatibility list before you go hardware
shopping. Items on the list are more likely to be
detected by the installer automatically, and your
distribution is more likely to include up-to-date
utilities with support for items on the list.