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Grubby Fatal Error: Unable to Find a Suitable Template (Solved)

Updated: June 17, 2021

The error message “Grubby Fatal Error: Unable to Find a Suitable Template” came up when I ran a system update with a “yum update” command on some Linux VPS systems. I got the problem solved and let me tell you how I did it.

I found that this problem affected the following DigitalOcean Linux VPS images:

  • CentOS 5.x, 32-bit and 64-bit
  • CentOS 6.x, 32-bit and 64-bit
  • Fedora 17.x, 32-bit and 64-bit
  • Fedora 18.x, 32-bit and 64-bit
  • Fedora 19.x, 32-bit and 64-bit

For those of you who have never heard of DigitalOcean, it is a Linux VPS cloud hosting provider established in New York City several years ago. It has grown rapidly since its inception and is now one of the largest cloud hosting providers in the world. You can read our DigitalOcean review here. The error message described in this article applies to DigitalOcean’s VPS cloud servers. The same error can also be seen on Linux servers from other hosting providers.

The images below are the captured screens that display the fatal error message.

On CentOS 5.x and 6.x (either 32-bit or 64-bit):

Grubby Fatal Error - CentOS

On Fedora 17.x, 18.x and 19.x (either 32-bit or 64-bit):

Grubby Fatal Error - Fedora

How to Deal with Grubby Fatal Error

Before running the very first update on your CentOS or Fedora systems, remove file “/boot/grub/grub.conf” with the following “rm” command.

rm /boot/grub/grub.conf

Optionally, remove the symbolic link “/etc/grub.conf” with the following line.

rm /etc/grub.conf

And then update your systems.

yum update

If you follow the steps above, you should be able to update the kernel without seeing the “Grubby Fatal Error” message.

Some VPS cloud hosting providers such as DigitalOcean are not using GRUB. However the CentOS and Fedora templates they provide to their users still include the GRUB menu interface configuration file. That is the cause of the grubby fatal error. After the removal of the configuration file grub.conf, the Linux kernel can be successfully updated without the error message “Grubby Fatal Error: Unable to Find a Suitable Template”.

I hope this article will help those who have run into the same issue when doing an update on CentOS or Fedora servers. On the other hand, hosting providers should look into this issue and probably update their Linux images if GRUB is not in use. When a user spins up a fresh VPS server and runs an update on it right away, the Linux kernel should be updated without any Grubby fatal error messages.

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