Coda File System

Re: Coda Nightmare "or" How coda doesn't like me...

From: Jan Harkes <>
Date: Mon, 1 Nov 2004 21:34:10 -0500
On Mon, Nov 01, 2004 at 02:14:50PM -0800, redirecting decoy wrote:
> So tell me, how is it that I can't make this nice
> little filesystem function correctly.  I "guess", the

Not sure, my current guess is that there is something whacky with the
networking setup. Your servers might be multi-homed, firewalled, or some
other reason why the server cannot set up a working connection back to
the client.

> replication works. But now it seems that I am having
> trouble with my clients.  First of all, whenever I
> stop venus, in order to restart it I have to do "Venus
> -init", otherwise it turns into a zombie. Once I do
> that, then I can stop venus and restart it without the
> "-init". What is causing this?  Second it seems that

Maybe bad memory or some other reason that causes RVM to get corrupted.
Are you by any chance using some unusual filesystem as a backing store?
I tend to use ext2 or ext3 and don't trust reiserfs too much.

Other possibilities are that you're using a gcc version that miscompiles
some code, or incorrectly pads some structure. Venus is an interesting
mix of C, and aging C++ code that doesn't necessarily always follow the
latest standard. We've been bitten before by compiler changes where we
used to assume that a C struct would be layed out similar to a C++ class
with identical members, when exceptions were introduced they broke LWP
threads (or the other way around), and the latest one was glibc built
with wide characters, which doubled the stack usage of vsprintf which
caused stack overflows in some threads.

It also depends on which versions of LWP/RPC2/RVM you are linking
against, especially when you build your own libraries in /usr/local/lib,
but might have an older version installed in /usr/lib and so we build
against one version but the dynamic linked uses the other at runtime
(although I've been pretty consistent about bumping the library version
numbers on any incompatible changes).

> propagate, I have to do a combination  of the
> following commands, each of which has it's own
> problems.  
> 1) cfs cs myrealm
>    *Note: I try this command, and sometimes it works,
> other times to doesn't. 

'cfs cs' 		- check/rebind connections with all known servers
'cfs cs servername ...' - check/rebind connections with specified servers

There is no 'cfs cs <realmname>', it will interpret that names as the
name of a 'server' and try to bind to it.

'cfs cs' will try to bind to our webserver, which
happens to run, but that server isn't part of
the '' realm. So even when the connection succeeds it
doesn't do anything for the connections to the realm.

> 2) cfs reconnect
>   *Note: I have never been able to get this command to work.

cfs disconnect activates a 'fail filter' in the RPC2 layer. Basically
this filter quietly drops any packet we receive or try to send. There
are other filters available that slow down packets to simulate a modem
(low bandwidth) or a satellite link (high latency) connection, but those
are mostly for experiments and not enabled by default.

> 3) cfs fr /coda/myrealm/storage
>   *Note: Sometimes I have to do this inorder for
> changes to be made to the server.  Isn't there a
> better, automatic way?

I accidently broke forcereintegrate a week or two before the 6.0.7
release. It is fixed in CVS, and I will hopefully make a new release

> 4) echo -n "pwd" | clog user
>   *Note: I run this command on all my machines, and
> sometimes it reconnects the volume, sometimes it
> doesnt. Functionality is sporadic.

Obtaining new tokens doesn't necessarily reprobe the the servers, but it
will kill off any old connections for that user and rebind those. You
could also put the password in a file and use clog user < pwdfile, that
way the password won't be visible in a 'ps auxwww' listing.

> Basically, one of the applications I am attempting to
> run is an mpi version of povray.  MpiPovray works best
> with shared storage.  If I have 8 machines total, then
> to the working dir. I am unsure if this particular
> application send's data back to the master mode to
> final output to file, or if each worker node write's
> to the file from it's respective machine.   So, my

I looked at the patch at (

The image data is sent back to the master process over MPI messages. So
that is safe. It also looks like the slaves have the DISPLAY and VERBOSE
flags cleared so they shouldn't try to display anything or send stuff to
stdout. However if povray has some 'append stuff to logfile', then I
assume that all slaves are trying to append to the same file which will
just create one big conflict.

For the rest it depends on what the scene files specify. The scene
language is pretty much a scripting language, and it allows read/write
access to the directory where the scene files are located, so depending
on what the scene contains we might have concurrent writes to the same
file from several clients (i.e. mpipov slaves).

> BTW: in my server.conf file on both servers I have
> "mapprivate=1" enabled. and in venus.conf would
> "dontuservm=1" make any difference to my situation. I
> am unsure of it's proper use.

dontuservm does exaclty what it says, it doesn't store the cached
metadata in recoverable virtual memory, but simply uses malloced areas.
This way locally cached stat cannot survive a venus restart, so it is
similar to always starting venus with -init. We used this on iPaq's to
avoid wearing out the flash. With the venus.cache in a ramdisk, the
dontuservm flag enabled and no swap we never actually wrote anything to

Received on 2004-11-01 21:36:23