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By James T. Dennis, tag@lists.linuxgazette.net
LinuxCare, http://www.linuxcare.com/

(?) Upgrade to 6.2 from 6.1 Disables Login

From Dave on Tue, 12 Oct 1999

I recently began setting up a SuSE linux system to replace my Win9x system. The installation of SuSE 6.1 went great. As well as XFree86 and several software packages including Netscape and RealPlayer.

While under X I installed the base RPM upgrades for SuSE 6.2. The only packages it replaced are at ftp://ftp.suse.com/pub/suse/i386/update/6.2/a1.

Nothing that would affect my logging I thought. After logging out as root I was unable to log back in as root or my user account. It would just give me and "invalid login" message. I tried going into rescue mode and clearing the root password entry in the /etc/shadow file as well as the /etc/passwd file.

The login error remains. Can you give any suggestions as to where the source of this problem might be?

Thanks, -- Dave N.

(!) My wife just did the same thing this weekend. She's still working on it. Her plan is to push forward with the full system upgrade. She's using one of the other systems to fetch all the RPMs to a local mirror (since full FTP installation/upgrade over the Internet is far too unreliable to complete; she tried that already).
So, she's still waiting on the DSL line to finish that process. She has a Debian laptop and we have a couple of others Linux boxes around, so it's not like she's totally stuck.

[ I was solved fairly quickly once I got enough of the base back in sync with itself. Because I was foolish enough to do my update over the net (I was too impatient to wait for the boxed copy to arrive at my local store) I had to wait for hours that were lightly travelled around here, and a mirror that had free ftp logins available around that hour.

Many things about my system seem more stable now, although gimp and enlightenment appear to have an allergy with each other. -- Heather ]

I would guess that there's a problem with the libc libraries. I guess that S.u.S.E. 6.2 installs glibc 2.1 libraries. Some of the programs that are linked to glibc2 (libc.so.6) are failing on some differences between 2.0 and 2.1. (Those programs probably should have been linked more tightly --- to 2.0 rather than just 2).
Anyway, your best best is probably to push forward and upgrade the whole system. You might be able to temporarily fix your system (well enough to log in) by booting from a rescue floppy, mounting your root filesystem and tweaking the symlinks under /lib. Basically make the libc.so.2 link point to libc.so.2.0 rather than libc.so.2.1. (If the links don't look something like that when you get there, it blows my theory; there'd have to be something else wrong). If you do find the symlinks wrapped like I'm thinking --- change them around, cd to the root of filesystem (the top level mount point below your rescue, usually /mnt) and run the command:
usr/sbin/chroot . /sbin/ldconfig
... that should force the ldconfig command to execute properly on your filesystem tree.
This "chroot" stuff is very handy for working on rescue disks. You boot on the rescue, mount your normal filesystems under /mnt, cd to there and "chroot . /bin/sh" Then you can work on your normal fs structure and the commands you use like /sbin/lilo, rpm, ldconfig, passwd, et al, will all find things where they're "supposed to be" (like the /etc directory, the rpm dbm files under /var/lib/redhat, and the /lib directory).
It's a bit confusing to describe. Play with it a bit and see what you figure out.

Copyright © 1999, James T. Dennis
Published in The Linux Gazette Issue 48 December 1999
HTML transformation by Heather Stern of Starshine Technical Services, http://www.starshine.org/

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