Error: Switching to the Installed System Failed

This document (7016208) is provided subject to the disclaimer at the end of this document.


SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 Service Pack 1 (SLES 11 SP1)

SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 Service Pack 2 (SLES 10 SP2)
SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 Service Pack 3 (SLES 10 SP3)
SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 Service Pack 4 (SLES 10 SP4)


SLES 10 SP2 servers was being upgraded to SLES 11 SP1.  (note: SLES 10 SP2 server had no patches applied other than certain security vulnerability updates).  After the file copies completed, the system would attempt to complete the next phase and would fail with "Switching to the Installed System Failed".

Rebooting the host yielded a failure with grub error 15.

Log file indicates:
=== Checking YaST log file /mnt//var/log/YaST2//y2log... ===
Opening file... Failed


There are multiple reasons this might occur and the information in the Additional Information section are possible solutions.  Note: Upgrading SLES 10 SP2 to SLES 11 SP1 (or later) is not on the supported matrix.

Additional Information

  1. Correct the /boot/grub/menu.lst file and upgrade to later SLES version/SP
    In this case, the server(s) in question were being upgraded to SLES 11 SP3.  Additionally, the menu.lst file still showed the old kernel as part of both the failsafe and the regular build -- both of which failed to boot.  In this case, we needed to change both the "kernel" and "initrd" to point to the proper version:

    title SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 SP1
        root (hd0,0)
        kernel /boot/vmlinuz- root=/dev/sda1 vga=normal    splash=silent showopts
        initrd /boot/initrd-

  2. Use a supported method such as:
    - upgrade SLES 10 SP2 -> SLES 10 SP3 -> SLES 10 SP4 -> SLES 11 SP3 (via down server upgrade)


This Support Knowledgebase provides a valuable tool for SUSE customers and parties interested in our products and solutions to acquire information, ideas and learn from one another. Materials are provided for informational, personal or non-commercial use within your organization and are presented "AS IS" WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND.

  • Document ID:7016208
  • Creation Date: 18-Feb-2015
  • Modified Date:12-Oct-2022
    • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server

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