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Missing fdisk Partition on SVM, VxVM or ZFS Root Disk: Hang after BIOS Screen or Invalid Partition Error, No GRUB Menu, format and fdisk Say 'no partition table exists' (Doc ID 1480337.1)

Last updated on MAY 18, 2021

Applies to:

Solaris Operating System - Version 10 to 10 1/13 U11 [Release 10.0]
Information in this document applies to any platform.
One or both root disks have been 'hot' replaced at some point in the system's history.
This document also serves as an addendum to "Solaris Volume Manager Administration Guide > Chapter 24 Troubleshooting Solaris Volume Manager > Replacing Disks" ( ) where there should be an x86 specific step before step 8 which instructs the user to partition the new disk using 'fdisk -B /dev/rdsk/cXtXdXpX'


An x86/x64 system fails to boot, nor even reach the GRUB boot menu. Exact symptoms will be specific to the machine's BIOS but there may be no error it hangs, or a warning about the disk being unbootable or having an invalid partition table.

Because GRUB doesn't load, it is not possible to choose 'Failsafe' boot either so the system must be booted from Network or a Solaris 10 DVD. Once booted, attempts to examine the VTOC of the disks may succeed as may attempts to update the boot archive, but any attempt to check the VTOC using format or the fdisk partition table with 'fdisk' will fail:

Format example:


This issue is most likely to occur if one of more of the root mirror disks has been replaced.

It may also occur if the disks were mirrored incorrectly.


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