Grub can't find my hard drive

Joel Miller cheeziologist at
Sat Jun 4 14:21:33 PDT 2005

Chakkaradeep C C wrote:
> hi,
>>I just want to comment that two other people have replied to you saying
>>that you need to be sure that /dev is populated. I don't actually know
>>if that is the right answer or not, but I suspect that it isn't true. If
>>grub depended on /dev for tab completion, then how would it be able to
>>do it when you go into the grub console when your system is booting? I
>>think the answer lies somewhere else. Unfortunately, I don't know what
>>the answer is.
> actually if you are in chroot environment, unless you populate /dev
> and mount /proc systems you wont get access to these as those are the
> jobs the kernel does and i think thats why we Mount Virtual Kernel
> File Systems at the beginning of the 6th Chapter. Am sorry if am wrong
> :-)
> jsut try "fdisk -l" without mounting kernel virtual file-systems and
> populating /dev, there wouldnt be any output displayed. :-)

That's because fdisk needs an argument of the block device to perform 
operations on. Let me try to illustrate what I'm saying:
Reboot your system and when the grub selection screen comes up enter the 
console (I can't remember right now if you press the 'c' or 'e' key to 
do that). You are now in the grub console and the only thing that has 
been loaded is the grub from the master boot record. Control has not 
been handed off yet to an operating system, let alone having virtual 
filesystems mounted. You can now make tab completions in the console 
without any operating system loaded and any partitions mounted. 
Obviously /dev does not play a role in this.

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