elemntaryOS/Ubuntu 18.04 boot failure: failed to isolate default target freezing

Wondering if there is a solution for this issue that doesn’t involve reinstalling my elementary/Ubuntu 18.04 OS.

Couldn’t get size: 0x800000000000000e
systemd[1]: Failed to isolate default target: Unit basic .target not found.
systemd[1]: Freezing execution.
/dev/sda2: clean, 1011700/122068992 files, 211930985/488247296 blocks
“Failed to isolate default target, freezing”

Have absolutely no clue that this is but it happened after I had to fsck my boot device after a power out forced shutdown.

Guess: The “Couldn’t get size” message is from UEFI. initramfs is running stuff, this may be from the /boot/efi partition. The next stage is to run from the root partition and that is failing. The initramfs is a pre disk initialization that make ram look like a hard drive. There is a syscall named pivotroot which flips the ram disk for a real disk. That doesn’t look like it is working.

You may need to boot a rescue disk and take look at the filesystems.

Thanks for your reply and the info.
Sadly I have no rescue disks and couldn’t follow what I was finding on google searches. So ended up reinstalling the OS. Next time, I will backup the drive so I can at least get back to an older state.

The install media usually has a rescue option, that’s what I usually use.

There is another trick that sometimes works. The old recovery method was to boot in single user mode, with an s appended to the boot command line. With linux, you can sometimes tell the kernel to run a different init program within the initram. The standard init is systemd, to tell the kernel to use a different one, append initrd=/bin/bash. That can recover root passwords, so it is sort of a security risk that may be disabled. After booting like that, you will be in initram, with no hard disks mounted.

That’s good to know, I am so used to the way Windows has recovery and restore points built in that every time something happens to my Linux OS I end up in panic because the Windows style repair and restore system isn’t or doesn’t seem to be in Linux.

I wonder if someone has put up a tutorial on these tricks in Linux?

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The Arch wiki has a lot of unique info in it.

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