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  #1  
Old 18th October 2004, 11:01 AM
jlblom Offline
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unreachable directories

Hi Forum,
I am not sure this is the right forum but anyway here's the problem I recently encountered.
My system and settings: AMD K7 450 Khz, 320 MB, 50 Gb disk. Fedora 2 (latest stable).
Problem:
After a restart of the system some directories cannot be reached by applications using them. The most important ones are:
Mozilla: cannot open /var/www/html (root directory). However, I can open the index-file (/var/www/html/index.html).
The software installer says it cannot find stabdard packages like pam, sed, usermode,setup, chkconfig, grep etc.
Of course I can open the programs (like sed, grep, etc) normaly from the prompt in a terminal-window.
I have looked at the ldirectories with respect to permissions but these are OK. Also yum doesn't complain when upgrading packages. RPM, however, has this problem (which I think corroborates with the problems with the software installer).
It doesn't matter if I use RPM from root or as a different user.
I hope somebody has a suggestion on what has happened and how it can be repaired (short of a compete reinstall).
Greetings
Joep
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  #2  
Old 18th October 2004, 02:55 PM
tashirosgt Offline
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Some specifics would help. You said the permissions look ok, but what are the permission on the whole tree that leads to a file that something can't open. For example, what are the permissions on each of /var, /var/www , var/www/html ?
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  #3  
Old 18th October 2004, 11:29 PM
jlblom Offline
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tashirosgt,
Thanks for reacting.
The permissions of all directories are : drwxr-xr-x.
Also for the library-containing directories all permissions are axecutable for anybody and the files are readable (-rw-r--r--).
I don't think something in the permissions has changed. By the way Mozi;;a gives the following error when trying to log in the -local - sirte:
Forbidden
You don't have permission to access / on this server.
(it says error 403 in the heading). Now how it is possible to forbid access to a mounted root filesystem for certain applications and not for others I don't understand.
To be complete:
/dev/hdc is a 33,8 GB disk (a clipped 80 GB disk)
/dev/hda is a 20,4 GB disk
content of /etc/fstab:
LABEL=/1 / ext3 defaults 1 1
LABEL=/boot /boot ext3 defaults 1 2
none /dev/pts devpts gid=5,mode=620 0 0
none /dev/shm tmpfs defaults 0 0
none /proc proc defaults 0 0
none /sys sysfs defaults 0 0
/dev/hdc3 swap swap defaults 0 0
#/dev/hdc7 swap swap defaults 0 0
/dev/hda6 swap swap defaults 0 0
/dev/cdrom /mnt/cdrom udf,iso9660 noauto,owner,kudzu,ro 0 0
/dev/fd0 /mnt/floppy auto noauto,owner,kudzu 0 0
content of /etc/mtab:
/dev/hdc2 / ext3 rw 0 0
none /proc proc rw 0 0
none /sys sysfs rw 0 0
none /dev/pts devpts rw,gid=5,mode=620 0 0
usbdevfs /proc/bus/usb usbdevfs rw 0 0
/dev/hdc1 /boot ext3 rw 0 0
none /dev/shm tmpfs rw 0 0
sunrpc /var/lib/nfs/rpc_pipefs rpc_pipefs rw 0 0

Maybe you - or others - have some ideas.
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  #4  
Old 18th October 2004, 11:40 PM
tashirosgt Offline
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You get an error message about a server, is there something involving a network going on? If you are not connected to a network, are you, nevertheless, running your machine as a server? Or did you recently change the machines IP address? What services are running?

If there is a simple command-line command that will reproduce the error, you might get some insight by running it with strace and creating your own logfile as with:
strace mycommand >&mylog
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  #5  
Old 19th October 2004, 10:06 AM
jlblom Offline
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Yes, I have a network (local) and internet (obviously) and there are several servers running on the system which is the culprit e,g, sendmail, biind, apache, etc. but sendmail is working OK as is the DNS server. Good suggestion to try strace. I used it on RPM but the output is very confusing. However, the following error occurs: I want to install libjpeg.
The latest one I loaded from Fedora is libjpeg-6b-31.1.i386.rpm with the developer libjpeg-devel-6b-31.1.i386.rpm.
When I try to install libjpeg-devel- rpm says that linjpeg-6b is not installed. When I the install (again) jibjpeg-6b (with rpm) no error is presented. However, installing libjpeg-devel- again gives the same error but looking In the relevant dircetories the correct files are available. However, the strange thing is that some have the installation date and some have an older date, but as I always use RPm eith the U option it may be that files that aren't changed in a package aren't updated.
But as I said earlier, the gome software installer thinks that packages like pam, chkconfig, sed etc. are not installed but I can use the programs without any problem.

For me it is still a mystery although I know there must be a logical explanation (mysteries don't exixst: it's only humans who cant find the logical explanation for it).
Joep
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  #6  
Old 19th October 2004, 03:20 PM
tashirosgt Offline
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The strace may be long, but can you post a portion of it where there is an error involving one of the files in question? This would probably involve the functions open(..) or ioctl(...). The log usually mentions the full path to the files.

Is rpm the only command-line program that can't find the files it ought to?
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  #7  
Old 19th October 2004, 11:50 PM
jlblom Offline
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As far as I have found RPM is the only one that behaves like that and of course the fact that Mozilla (Gecko-engine) refuses to let any client open de html root directory (/var/www/html). All the commands that the gnome-installer says are not installed can be started normally from a terminal window (e.g. sed, ipconfig, chkconfig, etc.).
I don't think it has anything to do with the windowmanager (gnome) as rpm is used from a terminal ( I tried it from the standard terminal outside the X-Window and it showed the same problem (rpm libjpeg-6b installs OK but rpm libjpeg-devel doesn't see the seconds earlier installed libjpeg).
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  #8  
Old 20th October 2004, 02:47 PM
tashirosgt Offline
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I still say its worth running rpm (or even starting mozilla) from the command line with strace and looking through the log to see the error messages associated with failed open(...) and ioctl(...).

I f we just want to guess what's wrong from the general symptoms, my guess is that it has to do with the /var directory because rpm uses the /var directory for its database (all those files listed in the man on rpm). I don't think many of those files are human readable. But you could do a md5sum and also note the sizes of these files before doing an rpm install and look at them afterwards (also note it uses /var/tmp). However, it seems simpler to use strace.

Could there be some wierd condition that would make your machine think that /var is a directory that is on a different machine?
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  #9  
Old 21st October 2004, 02:52 PM
jlblom Offline
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fashirosgt,
I'm sorry I didn't reply sooner but I was very busy elsewhere. The problem with RPM turned out to be a faulty database. After I rebuild the database rpm worked as before, stupid I didn't think of it earlier.
The problem with apache is in in one of the configuration files but I haven't found as yet which one.
Thanks anyway for the help. The trick of using strace is vary valuable and I will use it more in the future.
Joep
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