LVM based system drops to emergency console during boot

This document (7017656) is provided subject to the disclaimer at the end of this document.

Environment

SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12 Service Pack 1 (SLES 12 SP1)

Situation

During boot the system drops to emergency console, the following is an example of the messages that can be seen in the system log:

May 17 13:20:10 server-name LVM: Failed to initialize library context for activation generator.
May 17 13:20:10 server-name lvm[xxx]: /var/lock/lvm/V_volume:aux: open failed: No such file or directory

Resolution

Verify that in "/etc/lvm/lvm.conf" the "locking_dir" setting points to "/run/lock/lvm" eg.:

locking_dir = "/run/lock/lvm"

Cause

If "/var" is configured as a separate Logical Volume (LV) it can happen during boot that "/var/lock/lvm" is not available yet when LVs specified in "/etc/fstab" are attempted to be activated.

Additional Information

With SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12 Service Pack 1 (SLES12 SP1) the "locking_dir" setting was changed from "/run/lvm/lock" to "/var/lock/lvm" to match this with the upstream setting. The default for this setting has since been changed back with an LVM update, however by default configuration files are not changed during updates thus on fully patched systems the setting will still be set to "/var/lock/lvm".

The following should also be noted regarding the "locking_dir" setting as mentioned in "/etc/lvm/lvm.conf":

# Local non-LV directory that holds file-based locks while commands are
# in progress.  A directory like /tmp that may get wiped on reboot is OK.

Disclaimer

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:7017656
  • Creation Date: 01-Jun-2016
  • Modified Date:03-Mar-2020
    • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server

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