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Sendmail crash on boot

Posted on 1999-07-19
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Last Modified: 2013-12-15
Running Redhat 6.0 smoothly until just a few minutes ago and now sendmail locks up at boot.  None of the system files have changed...is there a way around w/o having to fully install it again?
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Question by:SpringA
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15 Comments
 
LVL 51

Expert Comment

by:ahoffmann
ID: 1629768
what do you mean by "now sendmail locks up at boot"?
WHat crashes?
0
 

Author Comment

by:SpringA
ID: 1629769
When Linux is starting....it displays most of the normal information...and after it displays:
"Starting sendmail"  

it doesn't continue to loading process...
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LVL 2

Expert Comment

by:EatEmAndSmile
ID: 1629770
Telnet into the machine that has the problematic sendmail through another station and run 'killall sendmail'. If this doesn't make the bott-up process to continue, run 'ps xa | grep rc.' It will give you the 'rc.*' file that is hanged... Kill it with 'killall rc.fileyoudiscovered' to regain access to your station. Try replacing the '/etc/sendmail.cf' file with a fresh one, that's probably included among sendmail's docs...

 Good Luck!
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LVL 51

Expert Comment

by:ahoffmann
ID: 1629771
senmail relies on DNS. So I assume you have not setup DNS, or not properly. Then sendmail uses a timeout (about 5 mins) and continues.
Just disable sendmail in you rc scripts (sorry don't know if RedHat has a rc.config).
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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:paulmitch
ID: 1629772
Did you change the hostname of the machine between reboots when this first happened?

Paul
0
 

Author Comment

by:SpringA
ID: 1629773
I haven't changed a single piece of the config since the previous boot...
Everything was running smoothly..then this suddenly happened...

The telnet idea: is that possible if that is the only box running linux on the network...( i am running 5 boxes, w/ one dual booting LINUX and W98 )

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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:paulmitch
ID: 1629774
You can telnet from a windoze box fine.  Remember to login as a non root user (by default Red Hat doesn't allow root logins over a telnet) and then do an:

 su -l

to login as root and try to kill sendmail as EatEmAnSmile suggests, or wait for the timeout.

Paul
0
 
LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:paulmitch
ID: 1629775
You can telnet from a windoze box fine.  Remember to login as a non root user (by default Red Hat doesn't allow root logins over a telnet) and then do an:

 su -l

to login as root and try to kill sendmail as EatEmAnSmile suggests, or wait for the timeout.

Paul
0
 

Expert Comment

by:sjz8257a
ID: 1629776
(From SpringA on another computer)

I am unable to telnet into the puter...( is this because the box hasn't fully started up...)

Any other ideas?
0
 

Author Comment

by:SpringA
ID: 1629777
New info: I am now able to atleast get into linux...however my system is not resolving host names...?!?!?
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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:paulmitch
ID: 1629778
Are you using named, or just putting machine names in /etc/hosts?

Paul
0
 
LVL 2

Expert Comment

by:EatEmAndSmile
ID: 1629779
So, you could run 'telnet' from Windows and regain access to the Linux box, right? Good.

My httpd used to hang for a while during boot-up when I was still configuring my DNS sometime ago. I believe sendmail also relies on DNS. Do you know where your daemons are started from? In Slackware it would be '/etc/rc.d/rc.M', but in RH I don't know. Go to the '/etc/rc.d' directory and type:

grep sendmail *

if you don't get anything, try:

grep sendmail */*

It must be there somewhere.

I'd suggest to call named before all other daemons. Make sure there's a call to named on the rc files.

I guess RH sets this automatically if you select the named service to run at startup through the menus of the application you call by typing 'setup'. I believe there's a "System Services" options or something like this.

Good luck!
0
 
LVL 1

Accepted Solution

by:
arikb earned 100 total points
ID: 1629780
Are you _SURE_ this is a lockup? It happened to me once, when the network wasn't configured. I just left it there, and after a few minutes sendmail comes to its senses and lets you reboot.

My solution is this: Go to /etc/rc.d/init.d/sendmail and replace:

        echo -n "Starting sendmail: "
        daemon /usr/sbin/sendmail $([ "$DAEMON" = yes ] && echo -bd) \
                                  $([ -n "$QUEUE" ] && echo -q$QUEUE)

with this:

        echo -n "Starting sendmail: "
        /usr/sbin/sendmail $([ "$DAEMON" = yes ] && echo -bd) \
                                  $([ -n "$QUEUE" ] && echo -q$QUEUE)    &

(note the ampersand in the end).

It will cause sendmail to do whatever it was doing that caused it to delay your boot in the background, rather than annoy you with it.

Do it only if sendmail actually loads up eventually. Wait it out - even 20 minutes if you have to. If it does - use my trick.

What is the real source of the problem - I think it is a network related problem, but I just didn't bother to check.
0
 
LVL 2

Expert Comment

by:EatEmAndSmile
ID: 1629781
I guess arikb's solution is awesome, but make sure your sendmail actually works fine after a while. Boot your machine and go eat something, then get back and see if the rest of the boot-up process just happened.

[]'s,

Diogo.
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LVL 51

Expert Comment

by:ahoffmann
ID: 1629782
see my last comment !!
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