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Debian 3.1 install went bad, what to do?

Posted by rmcgowan on Sat 19 Nov 2005 at 17:16

Well, that may be an overstatement, though I have no idea at this point. What I do know is that the first signs were that 'ssh' failed to configure correctly. The configuration kept bombing on running 'ssh-keygen', with a SIGSEGV. I was able to determine that this file was bad, by comparing with another Debian install. To make a long story short, I eventually determined that I had the following list of files installed from the 'ssh' package:

# dpkg -L ssh
/.
/usr
/usr/bin
/usr/bin/ssh
/usr/bin/scp
/usr/bin/ssh-add
/usr/bin/ssh-agent
/usr/bin/ssh-keygen

Needless to say, there are a lot of files missing. Now, because of the configuration problem with ssh, packages kdessh, kdeutils and kde were also not configured. In order to get some semblance of normalcy, I've copied the 'ssh-keygen' from my laptop, plus a couple of other files, enough to get past the configuration problem. This is just a stop gap, while I figure out how to fix things the 'right' way.

I've gone through the man page for dpkg and apt, looking for something that would tell me the actual status of the ssh install, but nothing I've tried reports any problems at all. It thinks everything is fine, thank you.

So, my question. Is there a tool that will actually find and report on broken installs? I had the impression that I could do it with apt or dpkg, but neither seem to be able to detect the problem I have with this ssh install. Which leaves me wondering how many other packages might be invisibly broken.

I've also not tried to remove ssh, since those other packages all have dependencies on it, such that they would also be removed. I really don't want to have my window system go away. Though that may be the only way to fix this, short of re-installing, which I'd really rather not do.

Thanks for your help.

 

 


Re: Debian 3.1 install went bad, what to do?
Posted by mverwijs (85.144.xx.xx) on Sat 19 Nov 2005 at 17:51
Hi,

How about:
rm /var/cache/apt/archives/*.deb

followed by:
apt-get install --reinstall ssh ?

Hope this helps,

Maarten

[ Parent ]

Re: Debian 3.1 install went bad, what to do?
Posted by Steve (82.41.xx.xx) on Sat 19 Nov 2005 at 19:28
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Seconded.

Still with a new install I'd be tempted to just blow it away and reinstall - after checking the media used to install from.

It almost sounds like a corrupt disk/download caused the problem ..

Steve

[ Parent ]

Re: Debian 3.1 install went bad, what to do?
Posted by rmcgowan (24.6.xx.xx) on Sun 20 Nov 2005 at 06:14

Thanks for both suggestions. I have considered the re-install, but thought I'd take the opportunity to see if there were any other options to try and see how they worked.

The install was net based, with floppies as the starting point.

The main issue with trying to repair the existing install is that I have no idea how many other packages may also be affected, if any. So, if there are any suggestions along the lines of checking packages for number of files or perhaps checksums for the .deb files, that would be nice to know about. I could go to the Packages file and extract check sums and package names, but it seems like there should already be tools to achieve this sort of thing.

On the other hand, maybe there aren't and I should write one?

[ Parent ]

Re: Debian 3.1 install went bad, what to do?
Posted by Anonymous (84.45.xx.xx) on Mon 21 Nov 2005 at 02:35
Debian reference, he say "debsums" does what you want.

However as Steve says, if it is a new install in anger, reinstall.

If it is just for learning about administration of Debian, then we expect you to write up an article on what debsums is good for, what it is bad at, and how it compares to alternatives.

Quick example...

#debsums debsums
/usr/bin/debsums OK
/usr/sbin/debsums_gen OK
/usr/share/doc/debsums/README OK
/usr/share/doc/debsums/copyright OK
/usr/share/doc/debsums/changelog.gz OK
/usr/share/man/man1/debsums.1.gz OK
/usr/share/man/man8/debsums_gen.8.gz OK
/usr/share/man/fr/man1/debsums.1.gz OK
/usr/share/man/fr/man8/debsums_gen.8.gz OK

Looking good here ;)

debsums ssh # oh dear...
apt-cache show ssh # ah enlighenment
apt-get remove ssh # voodoo
debsums -a openssh-client # now we are cooking with gas

[ Parent ]

Re: Debian 3.1 install went bad, what to do?
Posted by rmcgowan (24.6.xx.xx) on Mon 21 Nov 2005 at 06:39

This is the ticket. It took a little playing with the pieces, but it's doing what I want/need.

Now, I just need to decide if I want to go ahead with the fix it up road, or do a re-install. Sigh - decisions, decisions ;-)

Thank you for the pointer. And, I'd be happy to do a write up on what I did and how I used debsums, but I wouldn't have a clue as to how to compare it to alternatives, as my whole problem was that I didn't have any knowledge of it or any alternatives, in the first place.

[ Parent ]

Re: Debian 3.1 install went bad, what to do?
Posted by Steve (82.41.xx.xx) on Mon 21 Nov 2005 at 12:35
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I guess the closest direct competition would be the filesystem integrity monitors such as integrit, tripwire, or tiger.

Of course they require a working installation ;)

I did introduce and compare some of them here a few months ago..

Steve

[ Parent ]

I screwed up with Sarge too
Posted by Anonymous (82.181.xx.xx) on Sun 20 Nov 2005 at 14:22
I dist-upgraded my router machine's Woody via ssh from my local subnet. But of course in the middle of configuring stuff the dhcp-server was updated, not right away restarted and connection lost. Had to finish the upgrade from a local console.

Everything worked smoothly afterwards, exept Gnome has only one virtual desktop on by default, I wonder why. Still, Sarge looks a lot better than I had expected.

[ Parent ]

Re: I screwed up with Sarge too
Posted by Anonymous (66.179.xx.xx) on Mon 21 Nov 2005 at 15:31
For large upgrades, if you've got the disk space, use apt-get's '-d' (download only) option. Once everything is downloaded, do the upgrade again without the -d... and apt-get will notice that everything's already downloaded and install them from the local copies, so there's no chance of an interrupted download screwing with your upgrade.

[ Parent ]