System with cciss storage controller fails to boot after kernel update.

Solution Verified - Updated -


  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 5.4
  • Smart Array Controller
  • HP ProLiant BL465c G5


  • After upgrading kernel from 2.6.18-164 to 2.6.18-164.10.1 system fails to boot with following error :
Volume group "VolGroup00" not found 
Unable to access resume devices (/dev/VolGroup00/LogVol01) 
mount: could not find file system /dev/root 
setuproot: moving /dev failed: no such file or directory 
setuproot: error mounting /proc no such file or directory 
setuproot: error mounting /sys no such file or directory 
switchroot: mount failed: no such file or directory 
kernel panic - not syncing Attempted to kill init!


  • Using below steps required driver can be added to initrd file :

1. Add below entry in /etc/modprobe.conf

alias scsi_hostadapter3 cciss

Above entry will change based on existing entries for scsi_hostadapter in modprobe.conf file.

2. Rebuild initrd as below example :

#mkinitrd --with=cciss /boot/initrd-2.6.18-164.10.1 2.6.18-164.10.1

3. Reboot the system to load the new initrd file.

Root Cause

  • The error indicates that the entire volume group is not visible to system. From initrd file one can see that driver required for scsi device is not available in newer initrd file. System fails to boot due to unavailability of cciss driver in the initrd file for kernel-2.6.18-164.10.1.

  • There is a known bug solved in mkinitrd-6.0.67-1.fc10 and similar request to include cciss devices detection fix in RHEL 5.

Diagnostic Steps

  • Compare the module list of the initrd files for working and failing kernel.

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