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SubjectRe: ide boot failure 2.6.36/2.6.28 - 2.6.27 works
Answering myself (and providing info that can be Googled):

> I wanted to boot a recent kernel on an old machine and failed.
> The last kernel that worked was 2.6.27.
> What goes wrong is that the disks are no longer detected on 2.6.28.

A typical error would be

Cannot open root device 342 or unknown block (3,66)

Reading the code shows that the default probing is no longer done.
Editing ./drivers/ide/ide-generic.c and changing

-static int probe_mask;
+static int probe_mask = 3;

returns my disks to life, and this old machine boots again.

Andries


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