emacs on freebsd 5.3

Greg 'groggy' Lehey grog at FreeBSD.org
Thu Feb 17 01:26:06 GMT 2005

On Wednesday, 16 February 2005 at 17:20:24 -0800, Tony Tung wrote:
> Hi,
> I have an unusual problem I was hoping someone could help me with.  I have
> a FreeBSD 5.3 server that's been up for longer than a month.  In that
> period, everything seemed fine.  However, all of a sudden, I'm no longer
> able to spawn a shell in emacs.  In fact, I cannot start any process
> (shell, gdb, grep, compile) inside emacs.  It is happening to all the
> users, which makes me wonder if there's some OS-related issue in play
> here.
> I've tried restarting emacs, bypassing the emacs startup file,
> reinstalling emacs, and just about everything I could think of short of
> restarting the server (don't want to do that until I'm physically
> present).

It would be worth attaching a ktrace to the Emacs to see what it's
doing.  Something like this:

  $ ps aux | grep emacs
  root    12978  0.0  1.3 12880 9832  p5  R     8Oct04 222:09.31 emacs
  $ ktrace -i -p 12978
  (in Emacs, do your thing)
  $ ktrace -C -p 12978
  $ kdump | less

You should then look for a call to fork or execve and see what errors
are returned.

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