[lug] Weird glibc upgrade problem

D. Stimits stimits at idcomm.com
Wed Mar 21 13:49:39 MST 2001

Additional note to what Michael Pedersen wrote.

glibc is the spinal cord of your machine. Virtually all access to and
from the kernel (aside from direct system calls) are through this. When
an app is running, it might load and cache what it needs in memory, and
deleting the glibc at that point could appear to not be a problem.
However, anything that hasn't already loaded functions it needs is dead.
Always use the rpm -Uvh to upgrade it.

A means to fix it is to boot to a rescue disk, use the chroot command to
change to the root of the real hd partition, and then install glibc
again, using the rescue disk's rpm tool. If you can't get an rpm tool on
the rescue disk, you may need a tarball install through a rescue disk,
followed by an rpm forced install while running on the tarball version.

Justin wrote:
> Well this problem happened to me a while but I was able to fix it on my
> slack7.1 box. Now, just today it happened on my friends RH7 box and I'm
> wondering if anyone else has seen this.
> In my case, I was upgrading to the latest glibc on my slackware 7.1
> installation. I was using pkgtool to remove the existing glibc and then
> I was going to do a fresh install of the new glibc. Well, when pkgtool
> started removing glibc it crashed out and dumped me back to a prompt.
> At this point my system was hosed, I didn't have any /usr/bin or /bin
> programs, ie: ls, cd, mv, cp, grep, ps, reboot!, shutdown...nothing. I
> couldn't do anything, I ended up hard booting the box and booting back
> to a boot disk. Same problem...from there I booted to my slackware
> installation cd and fooled thru the installation process and managed to
> re-install only the packages that contained the binary's that I needed.
> All fixed, so I then try to upgrade my glibc again with pkgtool just
> for giggles. Same crash out sequence again...and I'm dead in the water.
> So another hard boot and restore later, it's back up. I finally got my
> glibc upgraded by using the command line package tools (I think
> anyways).
> Moving to today, my friend is upgrading his glibc on his RH7 box using
> rpm. This failed miserably too, oddly enough in the same why my
> slackware box did. We tried removing the old glibc packages with --
> nodeps with a plan to reinstall the new ones from scratch. Well, during
> the rpm -e --nodeps glibc glibc-common it too failed out with an exit
> status 255. My friend is now hosed in the same boat I was, no common
> commands (ls, cd, mv, cp, reboot, shutdown, etc).
> Has anyone else come across this nonsense? At first I thought I just
> messed something up somewhere along the line. Until today when my
> friend ran into the same thing, but with a different package manager,
> same packages. I don't understand how trying to remove glibc could
> result in such a disaster as this. Anyone thoughts?
> Justin
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