I have a Debian Linux install that boots but only to a specific point...

The booting stops at a firmware error. My system seems to be RO and when I boot into a "safe mode," to alter the set up to handle firmware-realtek for my Ethernet Port in /lib/firmware, I cannot do anything since it is RO.

Is there a way to place and save files, .fw files, so that the system accepts them and I can finally boot?

rtl_nic/rtl8168-2.fw is the file in question that is preventing my Ethernet Port from working on this model of motherboard.

2 Answers 2


You'll have to manually remount the system to read/write:

# mount / -oremount,rw

After this your root filesystem will be mounted read/write so you can modify files.

Normally this step is performed at the appropriate point when the system progresses from starting with its initial setup and system checks to enabling a full multi-user environment, but during safe mode it doesn't -- because it's meant to be safe mode, to allow you to run checks before it does anything that might affect the system and/or trigger whatever happened that made you feel it was necessary to boot into safe mode in the first place.


I could not find an answer quick enough or by any research performed. I booted another image to the machine in question. For some reason, it booted w/out error this time.

I see that firmware-realtek is not even a thing but that it is referenced in many places online.

  • Yes it is. apt search firmware-realtek returns firmware-realtek/stable,stable,now 20210315-3 all [installed] ... Binary firmware for Realtek wired/wifi/BT adapters. You need to have the non-free repo in your /etc/sources.list to apt install it. Commented Mar 9, 2023 at 7:08
  • As it’s currently written, your answer is unclear. Please edit to add additional details that will help others understand how this addresses the question asked. You can find more information on how to write good answers in the help center.
    – Community Bot
    Commented Mar 10, 2023 at 7:51
  • @Peregrino69 , thank you. I misunderstood how to attain the firmware-realtek installs.
    – De Funct
    Commented Mar 17, 2023 at 20:51
  • @Community , I do not know what happened and to say that I am completely sure of what happened will be false. I am sorry.
    – De Funct
    Commented Mar 17, 2023 at 20:53

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