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Bug 19654 - LILO reports misleading error when /boot/message has size 0
LILO reports misleading error when /boot/message has size 0
Product: Red Hat Linux
Classification: Retired
Component: lilo (Show other bugs)
i386 Linux
medium Severity medium
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Assigned To: Michael K. Johnson
Brock Organ
Depends On:
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Reported: 2000-10-23 20:37 EDT by Pierre F. Maldague
Modified: 2007-04-18 12:29 EDT (History)
1 user (show)

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Fixed In Version:
Doc Type: Bug Fix
Doc Text:
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Clone Of:
Last Closed: 2001-06-29 15:14:06 EDT
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RHEL 7.3 requirements from Atomic Host:
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Description Pierre F. Maldague 2000-10-23 20:37:32 EDT
Although LILO worked just fine when I installed RH 7.0 out of the box, I
upgraded LILO on another machine (running RH 6.2) to the same version as RH
7.0. It is on this other machine that I noticed the problem.

The problem is that if you don't have a file called 'message' in the /boot
directory (as would be expected when you ipgrade LILO) AND you
inadvertently create a file named /boot/message with nothing in it (e. g.
using 'touch', which I did), then any attempt to run LILO will give you an
"Empty Image" error message.

This is very frustrating because it says nothing about where the error is
coming from. I tracked down the error in the source and it seems to come
from the file that actually writes to the boot sector when it notices that
a block to be written has size 0.

The obvious fix would be to have the calling program notice that the
message file is empty (not the same as a message file containing the single
character '\0') and refrain from writing the block in question.
Comment 1 Chris Abbey 2001-06-29 15:14:04 EDT
equally irritating is this self contradicting output seen on 7.1 and caused by 
a typo in the default= line which rendered it invalid (i.e. not pointing to a 
valid image):

[root@chesire /boot]# lilo
Added linux-243-12smp
Added linux-242-2smp
Added linux-242-2
Added win2k
Fatal: No images have been defined.

Comment 2 Jeremy Katz 2002-06-04 01:23:02 EDT
Not going to fix these as we've switched to grub as our default bootloader only
leaving lilo as a fallback for a few cases that grub doesn't work as well with yet

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