Random failure to boot

I installed Endeavour a couple of weeks ago, and randomly (as far as I can tell so far), booting fails. The top of the screen shows Error preparing initrd: Device Error in red, then restarts. Usually, selecting the fallback option in the boot menu after works, but sometimes that does the same thing, too.

This system is a UEFI dual-boot setup with Windows 10 using systemd-boot. Windows 10 and Endeavour are on separate drives, and systemd-boot is installed on the Endeavour drive. I’m using the latest kernel, 6.2.2 at the time of writing. Unfortunately, I can’t find a correlation between using Windows 10 and the boot failure; it can occur after either OS was last booted, or it can fail after either was last booted.

Installing a kernel update seems to fix the problem for the next boot, until the failure happens again, I’m guessing because the initramfs gets regenerated or updated or something.

The only report of this I’ve found so far is this, but it is less than helpful in actually finding or solving the problem. I don’t even know where to look for anything that might be helpful, like logs.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Edited to add: This system has an Intel CPU and an AMD GPU.

Ah, I should have mentioned that this is an Intel CPU and AMD GPU. I don’t get any of the usual text scroll when it goes wrong, just the red text at the top and reboot. I don’t think it’s even getting to the point where anything gets logged, at least not that I can see with journalctl.

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Does the named “randomness” appear, after shutting down or rebooting from Windows? - If so, this could give you a hint… to look at your UEFI-bios settings, e.g.


Unfortunately, it can happen either way; sometimes after booting Windows 10 last, sometimes after booting Endeavour last. Fast boot is also disabled, and I just made sure to disable hibernation in Windows 10 since my UEFI doesn’t have an option for it.

I think this message is clear enough. FWIW, I have never seen such a message, and also, nothing about initrd or preparing initrd exists in my journal.

The linked article user says it happens in both BIOS and UEFI entries. This suggests it has nothing to do with the file system itself, which conforms with other info (fsck doesn’t correct it, other boot attempts succeed, etc.).

Unless some hardware component is failing, you might want to reset the BIOS, or re-install the BIOS (if updated firmware does not exist).

Reinstalling the kernel (and thus regenerating the boot fs stuff) does temporarily fix it though, wouldn’t that indicate that the problem is away from the UEFI/BIOS?

A hardware failure is possible, but since I was using Solus up to a couple of weeks ago with basically this same setup without issue, that would be a heck of a coincidence for it to start right after installing Endeavour. There’s clearly something wrong with my setup, I just have no idea what lol

I think this not exact. Regenerating a kernel does not affect the FS (as a file system).
Even if it does,

it would be permanent.
The fact by itself, that the issue is random, suggests it is not connected to the files in use, but to a hardware or firmware (BIOS) problem (that’s always true in my experience).

IMHO, this coincidense is more probable to be true, than the system software.

But, since we can never know, :person_shrugging: I hope I am wrong.

I would test my theory, if it was mine.

Anything to lose?

Re-flashed BIOS and reinstalled Endeavour, no change.

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What is the hardware? Post only the url from the command.

inxi -Faz | eos-sendlog

Had much of the same happen to me, ever 2nd boot would drop me to rootfs only on kernel 6.2.xx
Happen to get around it in this thread.


I’ll get you this later this evening; have to do stuff on Windows today.

An update though: Since my last post I started using the LTS kernel (6.1), and I haven’t had a failure since. It’s been a few days of using it successfully, which is promising… Before, it was (almost) every other boot that would fail.

Here you go: https://0x0.st/HimW.txt

Windows uses the two Samsung SSDs, Endeavour only has the Seagate.