SIGNAL 11 ==> core dump

Matthew Seaman m.seaman at
Sun Apr 13 14:27:10 PDT 2003

On Sun, Apr 13, 2003 at 02:05:13PM -0700, Joseph Maxwell wrote:

> Is there a paid service for solving intermittent  FREEBSD problems? Have
> been dealing with some problems [Related to: New MBoard & CPU, Upgrade &
> fsck problem(s) etc] for a long time, that was not really worth the
> time, getting extremely scanty or no responses from list.
> Hopefully, there will / may be some on this subject.
> Finally got fsck to run to completion, All systems reported clean on all
> partitions. On booting, after device probe ==>
> pid 6 (sh), uid 0: exited on SIGNAL 11 (core dump)
> Apr 12 23 57:13 init /bin/sh on /etc/rc terminated abnormally, going to
> single user mode
> Enter full pathname or RETURN for /bin/sh
> Interestingly enough 'shutdown -p now' goes to a reboot and after
> rebooting comes back up with a
> '/ was not properly dismantled'
> What is the best method for doing a 'core debug' with BSD. Which is
> SIGNAL 11, is it SIGSEGV?

Yes --- see /usr/include/sys/signal.h for the mapping of signal names
onto numbers.

However, for your crashing problem, if you're seeing the system
generate SIGSEGV randomly (ie. not repeatably and at the same point in
some process) then the cause is almost always a hardware fault.  It
can be due to cooling problems, in which case the computer will likely
keel over either a short interval after power on or when it's in the
middle of a heavy CPU/memory/disk work load.  Or it can be due to
faulty RAM or CPU chips --- sometimes intermittently as you're seeing.
Or it can be that your power supply just doesn't have enough grunt to
drive your machine.

Hardware fault diagnosis is a black art in itself.  If you haven't got
a whole bunch of sophisticated digital analysers and the know-how to
use them, you'll have to fall back on the old "swap out components
until the problem disappears" heuristic.  That and apply something
like memtest86 --- --- which can pick up
almost all memory problems.



Dr Matthew J Seaman MA, D.Phil.                       26 The Paddocks
                                                      Savill Way
PGP:         Marlow
Tel: +44 1628 476614                                  Bucks., SL7 1TH UK
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