Ask Shadowman:

January 2003

He survived another New Year's Eve in Times Square, he can survive your quizzical queries. He's got one name, like Morrissey or Bjork. He's strong, he's beautiful, he's... the Shadowman. And he's here to answer the toughest questions ever asked of a Trademark or Registered Trademark of a publicly held corporation. Void where prohibited.

Got a question that you'd like Shadowman to answer? Ask him.

Steve shook off the malaise and yawned out:
I tried to install the Redhat 8.0 Athlon nvidia drivers and there was an error reported when the kernel rpm was installed. I tried again and rpm informed me that the kernel rpm was already installed (good?). I installed the glx rpm and the tried to restart x which did not start. I managed to get x going again and then tried to uninstall the nvidia kernel rpm and it said it was not installed. So I tried to install it again, and it says it *is* installed.

I don't understand why RPM behaves like this.

Shadowman says:
Like Shadowboy, RPM is an only child. In any case, when Shadowman wants to lay the smackdown on RPM, he follows these steps:

#Please get your house in order
rpm --rebuilddb
Which, in most cases, will allow RPM to get its wits about itself. If sterner action is required, say for example that last command hangs indefinitely, or the misreporting of what is and isn't installed continues, try the following:
#Stop any RPM business
pkill rpm

#Get rid of db cruft
rm -f /var/lib/rpm/__db*

#Pretty please, with sugar on top...
rpm --rebuilddb
And that will shape things up nicely.

Norbert... yes, Norbert, woke up on the wrong side of the bed and grumbled:
My first question is why does the rhnsd on my local computer makes every two hours a connection to the red hat network and what is it look for? The second question. How can I change the time interval for the rhnsd?

Shadowman says:
What's going on is that the Red Hat Network daemon is connecting to see if you have any updates available that it can pass along to the update agent or the task bar RHN applet.

Shadowman has multiple machines and schedules his updates, and responds to alerts via the RHN website, but to change the interval locally, edit /etc/sysconfig/rhn/rhnsd and set:

To some other number (in minutes).

Damien, who passed up a chance at a happy life in forestry for technology, asks:
How do I use the --bind option from the mount command in my /etc/fstab file? I have a directory /shared that I wish all users of my system to have unlimited access to. I therefore would like to bind it to ~/shared for each user. On the command line I simply use the command "mount --bind /shared /home/damien/shared" for each user. I would like this to be done automatically on boot up and thought that fstab would be the way to do it.

Also related, I want the permissions of this directory to remain 777 regardless of what any one user may set their files. Is there some way I can do this that doesn't involve having /shared on its own partition?

Shadowman says:
Hey, why not just save the stuff in /shared? If you have to have it local to yourself and shared elsewhere, you may want to just:

ln -s $HOME/shared /shared
Now whatever you place into the /home/damien/shared directory is automagically in /shared. fstab is really for block devices.

On to the rest of your question. As root:
chown -R root.root /shared

chmod -R 777 /shared

In short:

To Tal, who firewalled himself into his own home, Shadowman says: service iptables stop, chkconfig iptables off will help immensely.

To Jerry & Deb, who have a Xenix floppy, Shadowman says: mount -t sysv /dev/fd0 /mnt/floppy

To Glenn, with all the umask questions, Shadowman says: umask resets default permissions. For example a umask of 022 on a 777 file:

    777 Default Permissions
  -022 Minus umask value
    755 New Permissions