Subject: truncated inode, and painful death
To: None <>
From: Wolfgang Rupprecht <>
List: current-users
Date: 01/26/2001 09:37:31
Can softdeps on the source partition of a massive tar-gzip ever cause
corruption on the destination partition?  I was trying to tar and
compress 30 gigs of ascii data files into an estimated 4-gig tar.gz
file into my home directory.

Without softdeps on the source side things were only going at a
megabyte or two per second. I figured the access time updates were
slowing me so I unmounted the source and remounted it with softdeps.
Things did pick up a bit.  After 20 minutes or so I knew something
strange was happening.  My xterms and emacs started closing (exiting)
on their own.  Restarting them got me an " not found".
Oh-oh.  Quick reboot attempt.  Hang.  Try DDB.  Nope.  Wait a minute
just in case.  Nope.  Power button time.

Upon reboot fsck asked for assistance. ("I'd like to newfs your disk
one inode at a time.  ok? [yn]") The initial gripe was a truncated
inode.  After fixing that it moved onto a never ending stream of DUP
inodes, intermixed with the occasional digital joke.  ("CANNOT SEEK:
fsck run for half an hour watching the bad news scroll by screen after
screen.  I finally bored of that game and went multiuser without my
x11-pkg-home partition.

So the question is, is this the sort of thing other folks are seeing
with softdeps under extreme load?  I can't rule out hardware, but up
to this point things have been somewhat calm on my system ever since I
stopped using the Promise ultra-100 hardware on my motherboard and I
got a 400Watt power supply.

       Wolfgang Rupprecht <>
Coming soon: GPS mapping tools for Open Systems.