Okay, the first problem is this :
VFS : mounted root (ext2 filesystem) readonly
Where the machine just hangs. Consulting the trusty Linux faq, it says
to run e2fsck -av /dev/hda3 on the partition.
I use a boot disk to load, with /dev/hda3 in the fstab and mtab files.
umount /dev/hda3 and ...
% e2fsck -av /dev/hda3
0 bad blocks found
I mount the partition again with a 'mount -t ext2 /dev/hda3 /mnt', then
I cleanly reboot the system (with a bit of fiddling with symlinks), but
the problem persists. Disks sync here, so I'm assuming that it's not
If I view man pages after checking /dev/hda3 and mounting it, I get a
whole bunch of errors relating to the filesystem 'system error 2' etc.
An interesting thing : I can get to /dev/hda3 by specifying
mount root=/dev/hda3 as an option to the boot disk. If I run e2fsck
from there on the boot disk, I get a superblock corrupt error. Try
different superblocks, still get the message.