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"fsck failed" error when starting vCenter Server Appliance (2081464)

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  • Cannot start the VMware vCenter Server Appliance.
  • You see these errors:

    • fsck failed. Please repair manually and reboot. The root file system is currently mounted read-only. To remount it read-write do:
      bash# mount -n -o remount,rw /
      Attention: Only CONTROL-D will reboot the system in this
      maintanance mode. Shutdown or reboot will not work.
      Give root password for maintenance
      (or type Control-D to continue):

    • /dev/mapper/log_vg-log: UNEXPECTED INCONSISTENCY: RUN fsck MANUALLY 


When the vCenter Server Appliance fails to start with the error fsck failed. Please repair manually and reboot, check your filesystem for errors and repair in a Linux guest.


This issue occurs when appliance is configured to perform a preen disk check every time it starts. In this case, the routine disk check discovers a serious issue that needs operator intervention.


Note: Ensure to create a backup or snapshot of the appliance before proceeding.

To resolve this issue, check your file system for errors and repair them on a Linux guest:

Option 1:
  1. Power on the vCenter Server Appliance.

    Note: In vCenter Server Appliance 6.0, it is required to enable BASH shell. For more information, see Enabling BASH shell in vCenter Server Appliance 6.0.

  2. Open a console to the appliance and enter the root credentials.

  3. Run this command to check for disk errors:

    Caution: When you click y key to fix an error, the  e2fsck command corrects the state of the disk it is currently working.

    #e2fsck -y /dev/sda2

  4. Run this command to remount the file system: 

    mount -n -o remount,rw /

  5. Press CTRL+D to exit maintenance mode and complete the starting process.
Option 2:

  1. Press Control+D or reboot the vCSA using the vSphere Client.
  2. When the GRUB bootloader appears, press Spacebar to disable autoboot.
  3. Select p and enter the root password
  4. Type e to edit the boot commands.
  5. Scroll to the second line displaying the kernel boot parameters.
    You see this line:
    kernel /vmlinuz-3.0.101-0.35-default
  6. Type e to edit the boot command.
  7. Append init=/bin/bash to the kernel boot options.
  8. Press Enter.  The GRUB menu re-appears.
  9. Type b to start the boot process. The system boots to a temporary BASH shell.
  10. Set the default shell to BASH by running this command:
    chsh -s /bin/bash root
  11. Reboot the vCSA using the vSphere Client.
  12. Enter the root password.
  13. At the repair filesystem prompt, type this command:
    fsck /dev/mapper/log_vg-log
Enabling BASH shell in vCenter Server Appliance 6.0
vCenter Server Appliance 6.0 does not boot to the BASH shell by default.
To enable the BASH shell:
  1. In the GRUB boot loader press p.
  2. Enter the root credentials when prompted.
  3. Select VMware vCenter Server Appliance and press e.
  4. Select the line that begins with kernel and press e.
  5. Add init=/bin/bash to the end of the line and press Enter. This line should start with <nousb audit=1.
  6. Press b.


Starting appliance fails, Unable to start appliance, fsck

See Also

Request a Product Feature

To request a new product feature or to provide feedback on a VMware product, please visit the Request a Product Feature page.


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  • 18 Ratings