lost network during freebsd-update install

Tom Worster fsb at thefsb.org
Thu Mar 10 15:24:38 UTC 2011

On 3/10/11 9:13 AM, "Bas Smeelen" <b.smeelen at ose.nl> wrote:

>On 03/10/2011 03:03 PM, Tom Worster wrote:
>>at this stage, i have no remote access. even if i could gain access, i
>>wouldn't know what state it's in or how to proceed. it's probably best
>>to pay for the hosting company to install 8.1 from cd.
>Well if this is an option. But before paying and with a bit of bad luck
>getting the same problem in 8.1 it would be nice to know what's the cause.
>You do not have remote console access and a way to mount a virtual cdrom?

no. if i can't ssh then i need local help. i'll ask them to try rollback
before resorting to cd.

>It sounds more like kernel and userland are not in sync or something else.
>This shouldn't be a problem caused by freeb-update though.

the handbook describes a procedure:

A) 1st freebsd-update install: The kernel and kernel modules will be

B) reboot

C) 2nd freebsd-update install: The state of the process has been saved and
thus,freebsd-update will not start from the beginning, but will remove all
old shared libraries and object files

i'm just guessing... A) did not complete because its shell exited. i was
left with a half-patched kernel. when i did "freebsd-update install"
again, instead of doing A) over from scratch, it attempted C) and started
dumping cores all over the carpet. result: system can't get the kernel up

or another guess... A) did complete while i was disconnected. when i
repeated "freebsd-update install" it attempted C) but because the old
kernel was still running it didn't work and started dumping cores all over
the carpet. result: system hangs attempting to start some userland part.

it seems a pity now that freebsd-update chose to use the same command verb
for both A and C.

>Maybe someone has a clue about this?
>Is this on real hardware or hosted in a virtual machine setup?

real hw.

i'm considering going to the clouds. i could easily restore from a vm
snapshot. but for that i need to learn linux, another big time sink.

add votes here:

>I haven't have this happen with about 30 servers the last three years
>from 6 to 7 and to 8, the latter with freebsd-update, rebooting with
>and then building a custom kernel.

i haven't done so many but i've had good luck with freebsd-update in the
past too.

but i haven't had the network fail during the process before.

and i didn't have the foresight to use screen. i guess using that is a bit
like following the admonitions when reflashing your firmware to have a
fully charged battery AND be plugged into the wall. perhaps the handbook
could suggest it.

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