Tags: headless

11/04/13

  07:23:00 pm, by The Dreamer   , 2301 words  
Categories: Hardware, Computer, Operating Systems, FreeBSD

Upgraded to FreeBSD 9.2

So, the announcement of FreeBSD 9.2 came out on Monday [September 30th], which I missed because I was focused on my UNMC thing. But, once it appeared, I knew that I was going to want to upgrade to it sooner than later.

From its highlights, the main items that caught my attention were:

  1. The ZFS filesystem now supports TRIM when used on solid state drives.
  2. The ZFS filesystem now supports lz4 compression.
  3. DTrace hooks have been enabled by default in the GENERIC kernel.

But, I did start this upgrade on October 4th....where for an unknown reason, I launched the freebsd-update process on cbox, the busier of the two headless servers. I suspect I went with doing the upgrade on my headless servers, because they are entirely running on SSD and would likely see the benefit of lz4 compression. And, perhaps I did cbox, because it was the system that could most gain from lz4.

It took a couple iterations through freebsd-update, before I got an upgrade scenario that could proceed. And, it took a long time given the high load that is cbox.

That is cbox is an Atom D2700 (2.13GHz, dual core) processor. And, cacti (especially with the inefficient, processor/memory intensive percona monitoring scripts -- might help if only scrpt server support worked, and wasn't just a left over from what it was based on.) being the main source of load. That is usually in the 11.xx area, except during certain other events (like, since 3.5, when cf-agent fires...cbox is set to run at a lower frequency than my other systems.) or when the majority of logs get rotated and bzip'd. And, there's also some impact when zen connects to rsyncd each day for backuppc. But, these spikes weren't that significant. Though the high load would cause cf-agent runs to take orders of magnitude longer than other systems, including its 'twin' dbox.

Also ran into a problem (again?) where a lot of the differences that freebsd-update needed resolved were differences in revision tags....some as silly as '9.2' vs '9.1', others had new time stamps or usernames, but seldom any changes to the contents of the file. Which I then discovered a problem from having some of these files under cfengine control. cfengine would revert these files back to having '9.1' revision strings, which confused the freebsd-update. I ended up updating all the files in cfengine to have the 9.2 versioning, though I thought about just removing/replacing it with something else entirely, though wasn't sure the impact that would have on current/future freebsd-update upgrades.

Though it did seem to cause problem with the other two upgrades, where it would say that some of these files were now removed and asked if I wanted to remove these. Which doesn't make sense, since it didn't say that with the first upgrade. It was probably just angry that these files already claimed to be from FreeBSD 9.2.

It also didn't like that I use sendmail, therefore my sendmail configs are specific to my configuration, or that I use cups, so printercap is the one auto-generated by cups, etc.

But, once it got to where it would let me run my first "freebsd-update install". I ran it, rebooted, ran it again, rebooted, updated stuff (though it didn't complain as much, perhaps because some of the troublesome kernel mod ports had corrected the problem of installing into /boot/kernel, or perhaps enough stayed the same between 9.1 and 9.2, that things didn't freak out like before. And, this includes the virtualbox kernel mod, when I did the upgrade on zen, and later mew. But, I re-installed these ports and lsof. I did a quick check of other services, and then upgraded the 'zroot' zpool to have feature flags (which now means it no longer has a version, apparently instead of jumping the numbers to distinguish from Sun/Oracle it has eliminated having version numbers (for beyond 28) and having flags for the features added since. Wonder if the flags capture all has changed since 28, since I thought there have been other improvements internal that aren't described by version numbers. Namely, I seem to recall that there have been improvements in recoverability....namely it had been suggested, when I was trying to recover a corrupt 'zroot' on mew, to try finding a v5000 ZFS live CD. Which I don't think I ever found, and gave up anyways when I concluded the level of corruption was too great for any hope of recovery and that I needed to resort to a netbackup restore, before the last successful full get's expired. Though being that it was nearly 90 days old, the other two month fulls didn't exist due to system instability that eventually caused the corrupted zpool (eventually found to be a known bad revision of the Cougar Point chipset and a bad DIMM...things seem to finally be stable from using a SiI3132 SATA controller instead of the on board, and getting that bad DIMM replaced....was weird that it was a Dell Optiplex 990, purchased new over a year after the problem had been identified and a newer revision of the chipset was released. I did eventually convince Dell support to send me a new motherboard and replace the DIMM. The latter was good, since I had to use DIMMs from another Dell that had been upgraded, so I had less memory for a while. But, while at first I did use the onboard SATA again, eventually I started having problems that would result in losing a disk from the mirrored zpool, to eventually causing a reboot where they would both be present again [though gmirror would need manual intervention]....and moving back to the SiI3132 has finally gotten things stable again. Though the harddrives in mew are SATA-III, so it would've been desirable to have stayed on the SATA-III onboard ports, where it was these ports that were the main source of problems in the prior defective version. Perhaps the fact that the prior version had a heatsink and the new version didn't, wasn't because they didn't need it to try to compensate for the problems caused by over-driving the silicon for the SATA-III portion. But, an oversight with the newer revision motherboard. The problem did tend to occur in the early morning hours on the weekend, when not only is there a lot of daily disk activity, but there is also a lot of weekly disk activity, etc. Oh well.)

So, after upgrading the zpool, and reinstalling the boot block/code. I then rebooted the system again. I had already identified the zfs filesystems where I had 'compression=on', so had written a script to change all these to 'compression=lz4'. Which I now ran.

And, then I turned my attention to doing dbox.

Upgraded to FreeBSD 9.2

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07/14/13

  05:58:00 pm, by The Dreamer   , 2452 words  
Categories: Software, Ubuntu, FreeBSD, CFEngine

Moving irssi

So, recently there was a 'long' 4th of July weekend....on account that I opted to take Friday (the 5th) off as well.

I kind of thought I would tackle a bunch of different projects this weekend, though I've pretty much shelved the idea of re-IP'ng my home network. Perhaps something to do when I get my configuration management better fleshed out.

What I decided was that it looks like its just one last thing on one of the two Ubuntu servers that I'm retiring. So, I figured I'd quickly move that and then go onto the next thing. In the end, I didn't get it completed until Monday night.

For background, some years back...after my return to IRC, I had initially gone with Chatzilla (being that Firefox was my standard browser), which later moved to xulrunner and Chatzilla so it was independent of my browser. Though it was kind of annoying having it running at work and at home, and somewhat confusing for co-workers that ran text based IRC clients in screen somewhere and ssh'd in, etc. Most people that did this, were doing irssi.

So, I initially built it from source and was running on my old RedHat 7.3 server, and that was usable. Later when I setup an Ubuntu box to replace that server (the hardware had previously been SuSE....acting as an internal router for ivs status tracking....) It evolved, in that I would start screen detached from rc.local....which was important since the system would see patches on a regular basis, requiring reboots....which is kind of a reason for switching to FreeBSD.

Over time, I would make little tweaks here and there, to this irssi setup. Like twirssi, doing ssl, and later bitlbee to integrate Facebook chat (came across some stuff that I should add now...)

And, incorporating other tweaks I come across online when there's some problem that becomes sufficient bothersome that I want to address. The one problem I haven't haven't been able to solve is keeping server/system messages confined to the one window. Namely keeping system CRAP going to the system window, and allow channel CRAP to show up in the channel windows....but instead I'll get system CRAP in whatever channel window is active. Which is annoying because its usually the work channel. Where it be just signal and no noise.

Anyways...

I had started to move things more than a month ago, in that I built irssi and bitlbee (including the cfengine3 promise for it...not really much config wise for cfengine to manage for irssi...though I envisioned promising that its running all the time, though irssi has generally been stable everywhere else that I've run it.

But, the I got distracted by other cfengine3 work. Even though things started to get pressing when twirssi stopped working, due to API 1.0 going away...so I had to update Net::Twitter and twirssi. Updating twirssi wasn't that hard to do, but Net::Twitter was a problem, so I opted to remove it and its dependencies and then installing it and its dependencies using CPAN.

I also made note to install net/p5-Net-Twitter from ports on dbox.

twirssi seems to be having other issues, which I had intended to investigate...perhaps after I move... But, that was like a month ago....

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Now instead of subjecting some poor random forum to a long rambling thought, I will try to consolidate those things into this blog where they can be more easily ignored profess to be collected thoughts from my mind.

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