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#1 2021-07-17 12:35:56

toomanyquestions
New Member
Registered: 2021-06-12
Posts: 4

Failure to boot root account locked error

I have encountered a complete failure to boot post suspend/hibernate.

The start checks reveled "[Failed] Failed to start File System" and the Dependency failed for /home & for Local also. It then went into emergency mode, but subsequently noted "Cannot open access to console, the root account is locked"?

Roughly 30 hours ago the system booted/operated just fine; I have not updated it since. The system has not booted up since I placed the computer in "suspense / hibernation" for an extended period of time. Afterward I shut it down, correctly, or so I thought. I am guessing the process of emerging from suspense/hibernation somehow resulted in a locked file system(?). I am fairly certain my HD is not encrypted.

In case it matters: my most recent update was probably a week ago, maybe more. I used: sudo apt-get update (and then separately ran) sudo apt-get (I think it was) dist-upgrade (the command noted in the BL welcome script).

I hope there is an easy work around for my borked boot/locked system. I don't really want to reinstall (Debian stable? SMH). I have used Bunsen for a fair while, and before that CB a bit - and never have I had a problem quite like this. 

Update -- it appears that I cannot access my home folder via a bootable live OS (running as root), but on the bright side I seem to be able to access the root folder via that same live OS. This seems unusual - in other situations I have been able to use a live OS to view/collect files from the home partition of a failing HD.

Any suggestions?

Last edited by toomanyquestions (2021-07-17 15:32:43)

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#2 2021-07-17 16:27:47

rbh
Moderator
From: Sweden/Vasterbotten/Rusfors
Registered: 2016-08-11
Posts: 1,513

Re: Failure to boot root account locked error

Your problem booting system should not depends on a bug in Bunsen Labs Linux. Help request like this ought to be posted in Basic Help & Support

If the system encounters file system errors, it want to boot into rescue-mode. With Sudo installed, the system can not log in root user.

If you can boot live iso and mount rot system, you can list the content of the mounted rotpartitions ../etc/fstab.
take a picture or write down the UUID of the /home if it was mounted separetly.
Then run command "lsblk -f" to list the UUID's of all filessytem.
If the UUID of /home is not listed, then that drive has given up or the cable to the drive can be loose.

Yo can also investigate the logs in the rot partionin ../var/log


// Regards rbh

Please read before requesting help: Guide to getting help,
Introduction to the Bunsenlabs Lithium Desktop and other help topics under "Help Resources" on the BunsenLabs menu

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#3 2021-07-17 17:40:52

toomanyquestions
New Member
Registered: 2021-06-12
Posts: 4

Re: Failure to boot root account locked error

rbh wrote:

Your problem booting system should not depends on a bug in Bunsen Labs Linux. Help request like this ought to be posted in Basic Help & Support

I wasn't sure where this thread belonged; this certainly seems like a bug. Perhaps it is a debian bug. Just last week another debian based OS, running on a different computer, suffered from a failure to boot (the reason was apparently different). Nevertheless, the failure occurred after an extended period in suspense / hibernation. That said, I would move the thread myself, if I could.

I highly doubt my situation is due to a lose connection or some other hardware problem. However, I will try what you suggest and report back (I probably will not post a picture because I saw no practical method of uploading one).

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#4 2021-07-17 19:23:02

toomanyquestions
New Member
Registered: 2021-06-12
Posts: 4

Re: Failure to boot root account locked error

Apparently the /home partition of the disk was full of errors and bad blocks, and the fix of said problem led to the apparent elimination of /home. At this point I am looking at a full reinstall. sad

Needless to say I plan to disable suspend and hibernate in my new installation. Debian wiki.

If anybody else has has experienced problems/corruption due to prolonged periods (4hrs+) of suspense or hibernation it would be helpful to let others know. If I had only turned the machine off....

I will post back if my drive begins to show signs of failure or suffers from an apparent loose connection as rbh suggested.

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#5 2021-07-17 21:05:13

rbh
Moderator
From: Sweden/Vasterbotten/Rusfors
Registered: 2016-08-11
Posts: 1,513

Re: Failure to boot root account locked error

toomanyquestions wrote:

Apparently the /home partition of the disk was full of errors and bad blocks,

If the partion has badblock, it means thatthe disk is in very bad physical health.
You ougt to run a physicak helth checkup (program smartctl). See more on https://www.tecmint.com/check-linux-har … bad-blocks

and the fix of said problem led to the apparent elimination of /home.

If you had important data, you can use program "testdisk", to try recreate partition or just files.

At this point I am looking at a full reinstall. sad

You can continue to use a disk after marking badblocks. But, remember that the disk can stop function any time or slowly degrade... (I have one laptop with a very old disk, that dayly reports health change (I like to set smartctl in deamon mode and reporting health.)

Needless to say I plan to disable suspend and hibernate in my new installation. Debian wiki.

You know that suspend and hibernate prolong your hardware lifetime?

If anybody else has has experienced problems/corruption due to prolonged periods (4hrs+) of suspense or hibernation it would be helpful to let others know.

One laptop lost wifi connection after suspend. I had to create a script with nmcli to be run after suspend. Some months later, some update fixed it.

I have newer encountered filecorruptions or badblock from suspending/hibernating. But, i like to set the filesystem to be autorepaired regularly, every 30'th boot ...

Last edited by rbh (2021-07-17 21:07:23)


// Regards rbh

Please read before requesting help: Guide to getting help,
Introduction to the Bunsenlabs Lithium Desktop and other help topics under "Help Resources" on the BunsenLabs menu

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#6 2022-04-09 23:20:39

toomanyquestions
New Member
Registered: 2021-06-12
Posts: 4

Re: Failure to boot root account locked error

I would like to provide an FYI update for my earlier post.

Since last July I have had months of reliable service from my hard drive. I am therefore fairly certain the error messages I described in the forgoing posts were not prompted by a failing hard drive or a loose wire. It now appears the problem is a bit more interesting.

When my initial problem occurred I tried installing a totally different hard drive - a hard drive I was fairly certain already had an OS on it; I wanted to see if the hard drive or a wire was the problem. The laptop wouldn’t even boot (as I recall the hard drive wasn’t even recognized). Defeated, I installed the stock drive, reinstalled Bunsen, and then enjoyed months of hassle free enjoyment.

However, yesterday I accidentally encountered the same problem: I forgot to plug in my laptop and the battery died. But my previous boot issue resurfaced when I tried to boot it up a while later. There were errors and no progress. I eventually tried booting in advanced/safe mode – only to receive the familiar warning - cannot open access to console, the root account is locked. Additional text output was unhelpful. I was stuck.

Today, I believe I can explain the issue, at least partially. Last night on a debian forum I noted that booting problems such as I encountered were associated with the absence of a separate root password (it is highly unfortunate Bunsen doesn’t offer the option of creating a separate root ID / PW during installation).

This morning I tested the hypothesis as follows: I installed a new root partition (from a fresh ISO image), created a root PW, updated the system, rebooted the system, logged in again, and then left the laptop alone until the battery died (my power management is set to “ask” as opposed to shutdown). When I booted up – unlike yesterday – the laptop did a system check and finished the boot sequence without any desperate problems.

My take away is this: on my hardware, a Toshiba Satellite, it is really important to have a root password that is independent of the password used for the user's profile.

I hope someone gains from my experience.

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#7 2022-04-10 07:35:37

unklar
Back to the roots 1.9
From: #! BL
Registered: 2015-10-31
Posts: 1,762

Re: Failure to boot root account locked error

toomanyquestions wrote:

Today, I believe I can explain the issue, at least partially. Last night on a debian forum I noted that booting problems such as I encountered were associated with the absence of a separate root password (it is highly unfortunate Bunsen doesn’t offer the option of creating a separate root ID / PW during installation).

This is not correct. Of course you can set such a PW in BL (debian-installer expert-mode) during installation.   smile

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#8 2022-04-10 13:27:51

Bearded_Blunder
Dodging A Bullet
From: Seat: seat0; vc7
Registered: 2015-09-29
Posts: 978

Re: Failure to boot root account locked error

This only seems to happen if you're running systemd as init, on my sysvinit systems the rescue mode starts, locked root account or not.

However.. it's not a big deal, you simply hit e to edit the grub command line, where it says "ro  quiet" you change it to "rw init=/bin/bash" & hit F10 which boots you to a root shell regardless if the root account is locked, & without asking the root password even if you have one set..
Then you can enable the root account by doing `passwd root` & ctrl-alt-delete & the rescue mode will work.. alternatively just make repairs from the root shell you have.
(Note: keystrokes to edit the boot parameters are slightly different on a BIOS rather than UEFI machine, but they're explained right there on the grub screen).

The fact anyone can gain access to your filesystem with root privileges that easily without any password is why if someone might get access to your machine you should either slow them down by setting a BIOS/UEFI boot password, or thwart them by installing with the drive encrypted.  The way BL is set up by default does slow them down slightly.. they can't *just* boot rescue mode, as you found out.

As to why extended suspend sometimes causes corruption, eventually the battery goes flat even suspended, this just shuts the power off (unclean shutdown).  If your BIOS/UEFI has a battery calibration routine, it's a good idea to run it occasionally so decreasing battery capacity from age doesn't catch the machine by surprise.


Blessed is he who expecteth nothing, for he shall not be disappointed...
If there's an obscure or silly way to break it, but you don't know what.. Just ask me

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