Category Archives: Administrative

Back In LA

I was scheduled to come home this evening, but I had no other business in Seattle, and it turned out that Alaska lets you change flights same day for only $25, so I actually caught a 6 AM flight.

The bad news is that Fedora doesn’t seem to want to boot into the 4.2.5 kernel, in either Fedora 22 or Fedora 23 (I hoped upgrading to the latter would fix). It just bombs out and loops in a continual effort to boot. I had to revert to 4.1 to boot it. Not sure how to diagnose. I’ve seen hints that others are having similar problems in the Fedora fora, but no indication of what to do about it.

In Seattle

I had a long trip to get here, starting at 2:30 AM Central (two-hour bus ride from Columbia MO to St. Louis, two-hour plane ride to Charlotte, five-hour plane ride to Seattle), but I’m at the Museum of Flight, where I’ll be giving a talk and book signing tomorrow, for any Seattlites who want to show up. It’s $20 admission to the Spacefest, but it’s an opportunity for a signed book if you don’t have one.

I’ve never been here this time of year. I was surprised at the fall colors.

Back In Missouri

We drove back to Columbia today from west of Ann Arbor, after visiting family and friends up there. Initially took back roads, not the freeway, as we were trying to catch the last of the fall colors. I took Route 12 from south of Manchester all the way to Coldwater, through the Irish Hills which, despite having been raised in southeast Michigan, I’d never done, so if I had a bucket list, I’d cross that one off. Lovely (but looking a little depressed in off-season), and Michigan International Speedway was impressive from a distance.

From there we headed south to Fort Wayne, went east on 24 across northern Indiana. The plan was to go to Peoria, then continue down to Hannibal, but we realized that we would run out of light (and butt stamina in the car) long before we ran out of road, so we bailed not long after getting into Illinois, and took 57 south to 72, then 55 south to 270, then 370, then 70 west to Columbia. Got in about 7:30. Always nicer to gain an hour from the time change than losing it (we got into Michigan about 10 PM when we drove up Friday).

Anyway, here until Friday when I fly to Seattle for a book signing at the Museum of Flight on Saturday. Hope locals can make it.

Linux Problem

Can anyone figure out why /home is mounting read-only at boot?

Here’s my fstab:

# /etc/fstab
# Created by anaconda on Sat Apr 18 17:14:21 2015
# Accessible filesystems, by reference, are maintained under ‘/dev/disk’
# See man pages fstab(5), findfs(8), mount(8) and/or blkid(8) for more info
/dev/mapper/fedora_new–host–5-root / ext4 defaults 1 1
UUID=058cc312-d471-41b9-a346-6ecf7dd2484b /boot ext4 defaults 1 2
#/dev/mapper/fedora_new–host–5-home /home ext4 defaults 1 2
/dev/mapper/fedora_new–host-home /home ext4 defaults 1 2
/dev/mapper/fedora_new–host–5-swap swap swap defaults 0 0

Note that /dev/mapper/fedora_new–host–5-root is an SSD (as is boot), and /dev/mapper/fedora_new–host-home is a physical hard drive.

And here’s /proc/mounts:

sysfs /sys sysfs rw,seclabel,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime 0 0
proc /proc proc rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime 0 0
devtmpfs /dev devtmpfs rw,seclabel,nosuid,size=7787916k,nr_inodes=1946979,mode=755 0 0
securityfs /sys/kernel/security securityfs rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime 0 0
tmpfs /dev/shm tmpfs rw,seclabel,nosuid,nodev 0 0
devpts /dev/pts devpts rw,seclabel,nosuid,noexec,relatime,gid=5,mode=620,ptmxmode=000 0 0
tmpfs /run tmpfs rw,seclabel,nosuid,nodev,mode=755 0 0
tmpfs /sys/fs/cgroup tmpfs ro,seclabel,nosuid,nodev,noexec,mode=755 0 0
cgroup /sys/fs/cgroup/systemd cgroup rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,xattr,release_agent=/usr/lib/systemd/systemd-cgroups-agent,name=systemd 0 0
pstore /sys/fs/pstore pstore rw,seclabel,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime 0 0
cgroup /sys/fs/cgroup/blkio cgroup rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,blkio 0 0
cgroup /sys/fs/cgroup/net_cls,net_prio cgroup rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,net_cls,net_prio 0 0
cgroup /sys/fs/cgroup/hugetlb cgroup rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,hugetlb 0 0
cgroup /sys/fs/cgroup/memory cgroup rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,memory 0 0
cgroup /sys/fs/cgroup/perf_event cgroup rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,perf_event 0 0
cgroup /sys/fs/cgroup/cpu,cpuacct cgroup rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,cpu,cpuacct 0 0
cgroup /sys/fs/cgroup/cpuset cgroup rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,cpuset 0 0
cgroup /sys/fs/cgroup/freezer cgroup rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,freezer 0 0
cgroup /sys/fs/cgroup/devices cgroup rw,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,devices 0 0
configfs /sys/kernel/config configfs rw,relatime 0 0
/dev/mapper/fedora_new–host–5-root / ext4 rw,seclabel,relatime,data=ordered 0 0
selinuxfs /sys/fs/selinux selinuxfs rw,relatime 0 0
systemd-1 /proc/sys/fs/binfmt_misc autofs rw,relatime,fd=24,pgrp=1,timeout=300,minproto=5,maxproto=5,direct 0 0
tmpfs /tmp tmpfs rw,seclabel 0 0
debugfs /sys/kernel/debug debugfs rw,seclabel,relatime 0 0
hugetlbfs /dev/hugepages hugetlbfs rw,seclabel,relatime 0 0
mqueue /dev/mqueue mqueue rw,seclabel,relatime 0 0
nfsd /proc/fs/nfsd nfsd rw,relatime 0 0
/dev/sdb1 /boot ext4 rw,seclabel,relatime,data=ordered 0 0
/dev/mapper/fedora_new–host-home /home ext4 ro,seclabel,relatime,data=ordered 0 0
sunrpc /var/lib/nfs/rpc_pipefs rpc_pipefs rw,relatime 0 0
tmpfs /run/user/42 tmpfs rw,seclabel,nosuid,nodev,relatime,size=1559960k,mode=700,uid=42,gid=42 0 0
tmpfs /run/user/1000 tmpfs rw,seclabel,nosuid,nodev,relatime,size=1559960k,mode=700,uid=1000,gid=1000 0 0
gvfsd-fuse /run/user/1000/gvfs fuse.gvfsd-fuse rw,nosuid,nodev,relatime,user_id=1000,group_id=1000 0 0
fusectl /sys/fs/fuse/connections fusectl rw,relatime 0 0
binfmt_misc /proc/sys/fs/binfmt_misc binfmt_misc rw,relatime 0 0

[Update a while later]

OK, clearly the disk is getting corrupted. I put in a file check option in the fstab, and it (temporarily) mounted it read-write at boot, but after working a while it became remounted read-only.

Any suggestions?

[Update a while later]

I had a spare 2T drive that I hooked up, and made it /home at boot (it was an old original, and the new drive was actually backup of it, so it had a lot of the data on it already). It’s working fine so far, except that when I copied my Gnome user configuration data over and rebooted, it decided that I wanted to have a Spanish desktop. I’ve changed the system settings to en_US, and even ‘localectl status’ give me:
System Locale: LANG=en_US
VC Keymap: us
X11 Layout: us

I can’t figure out where in the configuration files it’s getting the idea that I want to compute en Espanol, but while I can stumble along in it, it’s quite annoying.

[Wednesday-morning update]

OK, I determined that the language is changed in Gnome in “Settings,” but in the Spanish interface, that gets translated into “Configuracion,” so I was looking in the wrong place. So, now all is well, as far as I can tell. And as of this morning both the old and the new drive remain read/write. So still not sure what the problem was, but it seems to be a lot better now.

[Update a while later]

Wow. That drive had been causing problems I hadn’t even realized. My system had been running like molasses, with lots of runaway processes (like in Chrome). That’s completely disappeared. It’s like greased lightning now, even with several instances and many dozens of tabs open in Firefox.

My Return Trip From Hell

I started to leave Las Cruces for LA on Thursday evening. I got back last night.

I missed my flight on American Thursday night by not allowing enough time to get to the airport in El Paso. They put me on standby for a flight at 6:15 the next morning, so I kept my rental and got a room a couple miles away.

I got to the airport, but the flight to LA (via Phoenix) was full. My next opportunity was a non-stop to LA at noon, but also standby. This was all complicated by the fact that an early-morning Dallas flight had been delayed due to mechanical issues (brakes) and it was a nightmare for the agents to reroute people while they dealt with the issue. I was in a long line with Dallas people, and in front of a couple heading to New Orleans. But I did get my standby opportunity, and spent the morning working on my laptop.

At noon, the board for the flight was down, and there were no standbys listed. I was told to wait, but once again, it was a full flight (including Garrett Reisman of SpaceX).

My next chance was another one through Phoenix, at 2:45, also overbooked. I missed that one too, but as soon as I did, I went over to the agent who had switched me to that one, and just asked her if I could get to Dallas (the next chance out of ELP was the flight that I’d missed first thing in the morning, though this time I would have been confirmed). I figured that once I was in Dallas, I’d have a lot more options. Fortunately (this is about 3 PM), the Dallas flight that had been delayed since early morning had finally gotten its brakes fixed, and was about to depart. Because they’d rerouted people, it had a few empty seats. The one they issued me, by bizarre coincidence, ended up being between the couple heading to New Orleans that had been behind me in line hours earlier.

My confirmed flight to LA from Dallas was at 10:10 PM, to arrive about 11 in LA, meaning about a four-hour layover. When I got into Dallas, I looked at the board, and saw another flight leaving from another terminal in about ten minutes, so I took the tram over. But it was overbooked. I went to look for another agent who wasn’t busy boarding a plane, and asked him if I could get out earlier than the 10:10 (there was an 8:45 on the board). He looked, and said, how about 7:30? I told him, sure, but I didn’t know there was a 7:30. He told me that it was a 4:20 that had had mechanical issues, but would be ready to go. I asked him for a window seat, and he said sure, and gave me a pass, with priority boarding (sweet).

Turns out that it was a 767 that they’d brought in to replace a 737 that they couldn’t fix, so it had lots of empty seats. As a bonus (which believe me, I hadn’t asked for), they put a cute nursing student from TCU on a weekend visit to her sister in LA next to me (though I later suggested that she take the empty row behind, when she wanted to study but the woman in front of her put the seat back).

So thanks to maintenance issues with American, my day that had started out disastrously ended up on a run of good luck. I got into LA about 8:30, after flying about 2800 miles to get 800, and was beat, but I’m recuperating this morning.

Fedora Question

I was thinking of upgrading to 22, and I belatedly discovered that I was still running 20. Do I have to fedup to 21 first, or can I safely just go straight to 22?

[Update a while later]

OK, just discovered why I’m running 20 when I thought it was 21. All this time I’d been thinking that I was booting from my SSD, but it turns out that I’ve been booting from my hard drive, with the older OS on it. I went in to change the boot order, and I can’t find the SSD. The OS can see it with pvdisplay, the BIOS shows it in system status, but it doesn’t appear anywhere in the boot menu. Anyone have any idea what’s going on, or how to get it to show up?

[Update a few minutes later]

Wow, weirder and weirder. I unplugged the hard drive, then rebooted. It booted with the SSD. I went back into the BIOS, and now the SSD is a boot option. I made it highest priority, then shut down and plugged in the hard drive again. Now in the BIOS the hard drive won’t show up as a boot option. Which is OK, because I didn’t want to be booting from it, but it seems like strange behavior from the BIOS.

Anyway, I’m booted into 21 now, and doing a ton of updates. It had been booting from the wrong drive for weeks, and I hadn’t realized it.