Thursday, February 19, 2009

grub error 17

I finally managed to free up an old system at work and put it in the lab so that others on my team can start getting comfortable using a Linux desktop.

I installed 8.04 since I am still a little wary of 8.10.

A very simple install with just a single root partition and a swap partition. Things seemed fine, for a few days after which the system just locked up. After forcing a power cycle, grub complained saying "Error 17".
A quick google search will tell you that this has something to do with the hard-disk. Probably a failed disk or at the very least some errors.

Fortunately it was just the case of errors on the disk which I was able to fix by booting the live-cd and doing the following:

sudo -s
fdisk -l # to figure out the root partition.

ext3fsck -y /dev/sda2 # to find and fix disk errors

fsck found and fixed a few errors. The subsequent reboot was fine.

Searching for the error on google, showed a good discussion on the Ubuntu forums about another case when you might run into this error after a fresh install. Probably the case if you have multiple disks and/or more partitions. Check it out:

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