How I solved the red “Illegal OpCode” screen after Debian Lenny Installation


After 6 hours of running down- and upstairs between office and server-room I solved my problem of a red screen after booting a new HP ProLiant DL380 G7 server.

I installed Debian 5 (Lenny) a few days before to the HP SmartArray P410i.

First things first
The reason for all my problems: I used an USB-Stick during installation for getting additional Broadcom-Drivers from it.

The red screen occurs because GRUB isn’t found. The MBR of the RAID is just empty…

For any reason we get a red screen with some not documented error-codes instead of a “MBR not found” or “System not found” message 🙂

The reason
I successfully booted the machine a few times before the red screen appeared.

Now I know that it happened because I removed the USB-Stick this morning. Debian Lenny has a small bug:

If you use an USB-Stick during installation and if you start GRUB at the end it uses your USB-Stick as boot-device instead of your RAID-Controller.

How I solved the problem

After knowing the reason it wasn’t too hard to solve the problem ( follow at your own risk 🙂 )

  1. Boot the server from Live-CD (I used Rescue-Mode of the current Ubuntu-10.10 AMD64 Server-Edition)
  2. I rescue-mode change root to your SmartArray-Partition (/dev/cciss/c0d0p1)
  3. Edit /boot/grub/ and remove entry of USB-Stick if it exists
  4. Edit /boot/grub/ and change the RAID-entry to hd0:
    (hd0)   /dev/cciss/c0d0
  5. Edit /boot/grub/menu.lst and change paths to your boot-partition on SmartArray
  6. Edit /boot/grub/menu.lst and change all hd1’s to hd0 (even the # groot=(hd1,0) entry!):
    title           Debian GNU/Linux, kernel 2.6.26-2-amd64
    root            (hd0,0)
    kernel          /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.26-2-amd64 root=/dev/cciss/c0d0p1 ro quiet
    initrd          /boot/initrd.img-2.6.26-2-amd64
    title           Debian GNU/Linux, kernel 2.6.26-2-amd64 (single-user mode)
    root            (hd0,0)
    kernel          /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.26-2-amd64 root=/dev/cciss/c0d0p1 ro single
    initrd          /boot/initrd.img-2.6.26-2-amd64
  7. Update Grub:
  8. Write new MBR to RAID:
    grub-install hd0
  9. Reboot the system

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