For no obvious reason (!), the VM kept booting into so-called Emergency Mode: -
Emergency mode, provides the minimal bootable environment and allows you to repair your system even in situations when rescue mode is unavailable. In emergency mode, the system mounts only the root file system, and it is mounted as read-only. Also, the system does not activate any network interfaces and only a minimum of the essential services are set up. The system does not load any init scripts, therefore you can still mount file systems to recover data that would be lost during a re-installation if init is corrupted or not working.
33.3. Emergency Mode
- Don't fiddle
- Watch the logs