Occasionally my Pi3 will crash during boot and hang on the error message:

Fixing recursive fault but reboot is needed

Manually power cycling it sometimes fixes this, but sometimes the error immediately re-occurs. What's causing this?

It seems to occur more often if I try to SSH into my Pi while it's booting.

I'm running Ubuntu 16.04.

Edit: I'm also occasionally seeing the error:

Unable to handle kernel null point at virtual address

during boot, which also hangs.

Would this be caused by a corrupt or defective SD card? I'm using an 8GB Kingston, which is reported to work.

  • Well, you're not alone. I just upgraded from jessie to stretch, and see the same on at least one π3. I have a booting issue with an original like model b as well (blank screen). So there may be something. I'm using raspbian. Jun 29, 2017 at 4:23

1 Answer 1


This is caused by an incorrectly compiled kernel for the ARM platform. The images I was using weren't properly designed for the Pi. Unfortunately, Canonical doesn't offer any official ARM images, and most of the unofficial ones are poorly built.

However, from this site I found this Ubuntu 16.04 image works perfectly with the Pi3.

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