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Debian GNU/Linux Reference Guide
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8.1.3 Cannot boot the system

No problem, even if you didn't bother to make a boot disk during install. If lilo is broken, grab the boot disk from the Debian installation set and boot your system from it. At the boot prompt, assuming the root partition of your Linux installation is on /dev/hda12 and you want runlevel 3, enter:

     boot: rescue root=/dev/hda12 3

Then you are booted into an almost fully functional system using the kernel on the floppy. (There may be minor glitches due to lack of kernel features or modules.)

See also Install a package into an unbootable system, Section 6.3.6 if you have a broken system.

If you need a custom boot floppy, follow readme.txt on the rescue disk.

Debian GNU/Linux Reference Guide
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