Blank screen when booting from ISO on Dell R240 server

So, our small office in Bangalor has finally purchased a proper 1U rack server (and not the one I recommended - sigh). I can get it to boot without issues to Ubuntu 16.04 Server ISO (using remote management console from a remote desktop session at that office to provide virtual media). IPFire 2.25.x86_64-full-core141 and core144 ISOs fail to display anything past grub, even in text mode. I have spent the day trying to remotely debug it from Portland, Oregon. Needless to say, this has been very painful to do remotely.

I’m going to see if I can get a virtual serial output running, see if it has any more info. Suggestions?

Serial over IPMI proved to be very helpful. Here is the kernel panic output, shortly after booting to the filesystem (earlyprintk exited, console started):

Kernel panic - not syncing: timer doesn’t work through Interrupt-remapped IO-APIC
CPU: 0 PID: 1 Comm: swapper/0 Not tainted 4.14.173-ipfire #1
Hardware name: Dell Inc. PowerEdge R240/0DRR0P, BIOS 2.2.3 09/27/2019
Call Trace:
? delay_tsc+0x1e/0x50
? rest_init+0x9a/0x9a
—[ end Kernel panic - not syncing: timer doesn’t work through Interrupt-remapped IO-APIC

Ok, figured out the issue. Had to disable X2APIC in the bios. Eventually figured it out but had to boot with ‘noapic nolapic’ for the kernel to actually display a message to disable x2apic. Should be resolved in a kernel update (Ubuntu 16.04 4.14-hwe kernel works fine).

This seems to become a common issue with those systems now. Recently, somebody else reporting similar problems…

I cannot find the post right now.

But great this is working for you now.

It’s this topic where I got the problem with a Dell Optiplex C521 + Athlon 64 CPU: Dual Opteron Grub Problem