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4.5. Disable root prompt on the initramfs

Note: This applies to the default kernels provided for releases after Debian 3.1
Linux 2.6 kernels provide a way to access a root shell while booting which will be presented during loading the initramfs on error. This is helpful to permit the administrator to enter a rescue shell with root permissions. This shell can be used to manually load modules when autodetection fails. This behavior is the default for initramfs-tools generated initramfs. The following message will appear:
  "ALERT!  /dev/sda1 does not exist.  Dropping to a shell!
In order to remove this behavior you need to set the following boot argument:panic=0. Add this to the variable GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX in /etc/default/grub and issue update-grub or to the append section of /etc/lilo.conf.