After in-place upgrade to RHEL 8, stuck at the boot screen message [OK]Started Update UTMP about System Runlevel Changes.

Latest response

Hi,
After a lengthy in-place upgrade from RHEL 7 to 8, boot seems to be stuck on the:

[ OK ]Started Update UTMP about System Runlevel Changes.

This is a fairly old system that used to run RHEL 7.6 ok, has AMD A8 processor and 16GB of RAM.
Leapp reported few incompatibilites regarding kernel modules that RHEL 8 no longer support, but that was dealt with and upgrade proceeded succesfully. Boot loader screen shows RHEL 8.1 is loading, the final installation screen where subscription is confirmed is shown, I would press "FINISH CONFIGURATION" button and after a bit of messages about AMD processors not being tested by Red Hat and "No irq handler for vector" repeated 3 times, boot proceeds to inform that GNOME Display Manager is started, target Graphical Interface is reached and then stops at the message above.
How do I make my system pass this stage and get it to boot on normally?

Responses

Hi Gjorgi Varelov,

As per the upgrade articles: Supported in-place upgrade paths for Red Hat Enterprise Linux UPGRADING TO RHEL 8

I see that upgrade is only supported for Server variant not Desktop. Hence, any GNOME or Desktop packages would either fail or may not work, so there is no guaranteed solution for this. Read the Limitations part of the Upgrade to RHEL8 section to understand about this:

Packages that are not a part of the Minimal (@minimal) or Base (@base) package groups can cause the upgrade to fail.

I guess since it is only stuck at loading GNOME or Desktop related services/daemons you could bring it up to single user mode or boot into multi-user.target and check what caused the issue.

I hope this helps. All the best!

Hi Gjorgi,

Right as I have explained it to many other users before ... although an "in-place upgrade" from one major edition to the next is
possible, it's not recommended to do that. Too many things may go wrong - a fresh installation is what you want to consider. :)

Regards,
Christian

Following Christian's response, since the machine I am using to upgrade 7.6 from has properly been backed up, I proceeded with fresh install of the latest version of RHEL8 at this moment, RHEL 8.1. Installed like a charm and boots as normal. On the same hardware that may have not been good enough for an upgrade. Also on which 8.0 refused to install. I later turned that machine into dual boot. While having extra time on my hands during mandated stay-at-home, I turned an old laptop into dual boot machine with RHEL 8.1 and Ubuntu 20.04. Interesting learning experience, if you are thinking of going down the same multiboot path just know that installing RHEL first alleviates a lot of headache later, RHEL just insists on creating its own boot partition. Ubuntu is much more forgiving and will detect the previously installed OS already on the disk.

Hi Gjorgi,

I'm glad to read that you could install the system successfully. :)

Regards,
Christian

Hi Gjorgi,

Right as I have explained it to many other users before ... although an "in-place upgrade" from one major edition to the next is possible, it's not recommended to do that. Too many things may go wrong - a fresh installation is what you want to consider. :)

Regards, Christian

Problem is i am having this from a fresh install. ps, took some reboots to get past this initial freeze.

Hi Benjamin,

Freezes generally can have several different root causes ... a lot depends on the specific hardware being in use. :)

Regards,
Christian

Hello Gjorgi,

in-place upgrade is supported by Red Hat, please open a Support Case if you're still experiencing this issue and we'll do our best to help.

Cheers,

Pavel

Hi Pavel,

Thanks for your suggestion to open a Support Case ... it depends on which subscription one has.
I think Gjorgi has solved the problem meanwhile, since this discussion started four months ago. :)

Regards,
Christian