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V.T. Eric Layton

Slack Go BOOM!

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V.T. Eric Layton

Well, I've had a fun day.

 

I got an email from Slackware-Security mailing list late last night that there was a kernel upgrade (4.4.208) available. I'm currently running the 4.4.14 kernel that I upgraded to back in December when I upgraded the OS from 14.1 to 14.2.

 

So, what the hey... it's just a simple little kernel upgrade, right. After coffee this morning I decided to boot up, download kernel, headers, modules, etc. and give it a go. First, though, I thought to myself...

 

BETTER RSYNC to my backup drive FIRST!

 

I'm sure glad I did that because the simple little kernel upgrade blew up all over the place. I spent 4 hours troubleshooting by chrooting into the Slack installation from Porteus. Everything looked good. The initrd and LILO and all that were configured properly. The system just would not boot (Panic!).

 

I finally got too aggravated to continue so I wiped the partition and rsync'd my freshly made backup back onto the main drive from the mirror drive. I had to boot it with the Slack .iso disk, though, because I had to rerun LILO since the mirrored backup was copied from a different partition. Once I did that, though, my backup booted fine. I'm in there now typing this to you.

 

About that kernel upgrade? Well, I'm going to save that for another day. I'm done with this carp for today.

 

So, how'd your day go? ;)

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securitybreach

So you only had one kernel installed? I usually have two installed, the default one and the Zen kernel (Hardened one on server). Also, do you have to compile the kernel on Slackware or do they offer a sort of upgrade like slackpkgs and such?

 

Slackware is what drove me to binary packages. Back then, Archlinux was like slackware but binaries instead besides ABS.

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V.T. Eric Layton

No. I had the huge and the generic kernels both installed. However, I rarely use fallback kernels with Slack because it trashes my Nvidia drivers, which are only built on one kernel at a time on the system. It's easier to just restore my mirrored backup.

 

I've never had an issue like this while upgrading a kernel in Slack. Everything upgraded fine. The configs and all that were fine. It just wouldn't boot (kernel panic). I uses Porteus to chroot into it and look at everything again. All was fine. I even made a new initrd (2nd one - made one during the upgrade). That didn't help.

 

A clue to the issue is the fact that I could boot the system using the Slack .iso and the huge.s kernel that it loads on boot. Of course, it was the same version kernel 4.4.14 that I was trying to upgrade. I'm thinking it might have been a corrupted download of the headers or modules, maybe.

 

When I get bored later next week, I'll d-load again and check MD5 when I do. I didn't this last time... lazy. Besides, how often do you get a corrupted download these days. I can't even remember the last time that happened to me.

 

Maybe I hadn't had enough coffee when I started this project. It's been a while since I had to upgrade a kernel. Heck, I was still using 3.10.xxx in 14.1 just a couple weeks ago. Hey... why fix what works? Heh! ;)

 

Anywho... YAY FOR BACKUPS! I sure wouldn't have wanted to do a complete (clean sweep) install.

 

I'll post here when I attempt this again in the near future.

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securitybreach

Indeed, I just did a clonezilla backup last night of my main machine. Then I plan on restoring it to a new 1tb nvme drive that I just picked up.

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V.T. Eric Layton

I can easily set my Slack up to do all of those things. Don't need to, though. I prefer the simplicity. Everything I did yesterday to Slack was done from command line. I can use the graphic interface to do all of it, but prefer the CLI. I type faster than I do swooping around and clicking things with a mouse.

 

To each, their own. We all use what works best for us. To me, the attractiveness of Slackware is its simplicity.

 

UiZb4iB.png

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Hedon James
13 hours ago, V.T. Eric Layton said:

I can easily set my Slack up to do all of those things. Don't need to, though. I prefer the simplicity. Everything I did yesterday to Slack was done from command line. I can use the graphic interface to do all of it, but prefer the CLI. I type faster than I do swooping around and clicking things with a mouse.

 

To each, their own. We all use what works best for us. To me, the attractiveness of Slackware is its simplicity.

 

UiZb4iB.png

 

Agreed.  LOVE the bold part.  We all escaped the clutches of Windows (or even OSX?) because of their "this is how we do it, and NO you can't change it" policies.  So I always scratch my head a little when I hear folks in the Linux community decry the fragmentation and call for standardization.  (not referring to Bookmem here)  NO...we left standardization, we want CHOICE!

 

(referring to Bookmem HERE)  I enjoy when folks share THEIR choices.  MY choices are based on what (I think) is best for me...until someone shows me something that makes me go "AHA!" and causes me to choose differently.  Most of the time, other peoples choices have strong merits, but they just aren't for me. 

 

- For example, SB is a huge proponent of Arch, and I can certainly see the merits (and have learned a LOT tinkering with it in VM); but it's just not practical for me (at this time). 

- Ray is a big fan of Mint, and I've recommended and installed it for others; but it resembles Windows too much in appearance for me (the Gnome2 layout pulled me into Linux....it made SO MUCH sense!). 

- Sunrat is a big fan of Debian and some offshoots, like Siduction and MX.  I LOVE Siduction, but it's not practical for me. 

- I love the stability and 5-year term of a Debian release, but not a fan of their strict policies regarding proprietary software, formats, and/or firmware.  While I can work my way around those issues now, it's still a PITA, and there was a time this policy prevented my use of Debian, FWIW.

- When Ubuntu introduced their Unity desktop, I was NOT a fan...in fact, HATED it...how can anyone be so full of hubris as to think they could improve Gnome2?!  LOL!  But I continued to tinker in a VM and came to realize the sense it makes.  I now customize every desktop I use (LXDE, LXQt, Mate, KDE, and even XFCE) to resemble the Unity layout with top panel and left launcher.

- I often tinkered with Openbox and Fluxbox using online tutorials, but they were just internet exercises.  Couldn't understand who would go to all that trouble....and WHY....when so many ready-made alternatives were available for the choosing.  Then Saturnian posted a screenshot that intrigued me; I started asking questions and that "AHA!" moment happened.....THIS is why people choose Openbox or Fluxbox.  I look for Openbox distros now, because Fluxbox is just SO EASY to add and customize.  I'm addicted to Fluxbox now, as it has the perfect feature set for me.  If I was a developer and scratching my own itch to create a WM to my own personal preferences, it would be Fluxbox!  I have since added PekWM to the stable, with Pek's only "flaw" IMO being the syntax.  But I digress...

 

Even if it isn't for me (and history suggests it probably won't be), I'm still interested in the alternative knowledge.  And on very rare occasions, someone posts a game-changing, paradigm-shifting nugget of knowledge that fundamentally disrupts what I think I know and what I think I like.  And THAT, in fact, IS FOR ME!!!!     😎

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V.T. Eric Layton

Excellent reply, @Hedon James

 

Oh, and @Bookmem... thanks for your posting. It's OK that folks don't understand Slackware or its proponents. As I said, we all use what we like and what's best for our needs, talents, knowledge-base, etc. It is all about choice. There is SO MUCH choice in Linux! I've probably run 75+% of the distros out there at one time or another as testers on my systems (not VM, but true on the rails installs). Every distribution of Linux, even though it's "Linux" under the hood, is a learning experience.

 

I usually install Linux Mint or Ubuntu on the systems of friends and family who are sick and tired of Windows issues on their computers. I choose those distributions because they are simple for the non-nerd/geek to use and maintain. And it means less calls for tech support from the friend/family IT guy. ;)

 

I run Slackware as a primary OS just for it's simplicity and UNIX-like KISS philosophy. Slackware is definitely NOT for everyone; just as Gentoo is not for everyone. My Slack isn't the point 'n click Windows zombie operating system. It's not meant to be. As far as it being GUI-based. Well, it's very GUI based if I want it to be, but prefer simplicity; hence my usage of lightweight desktop managers like Xfce. I loved Gnome in Debian (and Deb-based distros), but when Gnome went to v3, I was done with that DM. I also used to love KDE (up to v3.15), but it also went to heck in hand basket on v4.0 (my humble opinion, only).

 

It's ALL GOOD!

 

Today's Slack desktop (not much winter in Florida, so I have to imagine it ;) )...

 

SBqpnre.png

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raymac46

I would probably describe myself as a big fan of Debian. I run it natively on my Thinkpad, and I have another couple of old junkers that run MX Linux. My main desktop does run Mint but that is because I have visitors to the house that are used to Windows and want to use the desktop for browser games and web surfing. I have an Arch install too, but that is the outlier.

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V.T. Eric Layton

Well, here's the short (as short as I can be, which isn't usually short enough ;) ) version of today's 2nd attempt at a kernel upgrade from 4.4.14 to 4.4.208:

 

  • ran Slackpkg to update my system
  • created a new mirrored (rsync'd) backup image
  • downloaded 4.4.208 kernel, source, headers, modules (huge)
  • upgraded kernel
    • #upgradepkg kernel-*.txz
    • #/usr/share/mkinitrd/mkinitrd_command_generator.sh -k 4.4.208 | bash
    • #lilo
    • #reboot
  • system booted to run level 3 (multi-user - no X running) - all OK so far
  • reinstall Nvidia drivers
    • #sh NVIDIA*
    • NVIDIA FAILS on make error (1)
  • restore rsync'd backup (via Porteus)
  • reboot using Slack ISO to boot system
    • #lilo
  • installation restored 100% (back to 4.4.14 kernel now)

So, as you can see, I made progress. The kernel upgrade went well, but I could not reinstall (build on the new kernel) the Nvidia drivers, so with X all kerflooey, the restore to backup was the only option. Trying to t-shoot the Nvidia failure was beyond my pay grade. Guess I'll just stick with this nice little 4.4.14 kernel for a while.

 

And my next upgrade (to Slackware 15) will require a clean install. I cannot upgrade the existing twice. I think the first upgrade (from 14.1. to 14.2) recently left some detritus on the operating system and this is the reason I'm getting compiling errors with the Nvidia drivers, I believe.

 

And that's how it is...

 

 

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raymac46

I have basically given up on the proprietary Nvidia graphics stack. I have only one machine running Linux with an Nvidia graphics card, and it is a very old desktop that would never do much graphically anyway. I just stick with Nouveau on that machine. My main Linux driver uses an older AMD graphics card and it works great with the FOSS AMD Linux stack. The Thinkpad is Intel all the way and we know that'll be fine with the FOSS Intel driver.

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securitybreach

So much easier to run

pacman -S linux linux-headers nvidia-dkms nvidia-setttings 

And reboot.. Just saying B)

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Bookmem
23 hours ago, V.T. Eric Layton said:

Excellent reply, @Hedon James

 

Oh, and @Bookmem... thanks for your posting. It's OK that folks don't understand Slackware or its proponents. As I said, we all use what we like and what's best for our needs, talents, knowledge-base, etc. It is all about choice. There is SO MUCH choice in Linux! I've probably run 75+% of the distros out there at one time or another as testers on my systems (not VM, but true on the rails installs). Every distribution of Linux, even though it's "Linux" under the hood, is a learning experience.

 

I usually install Linux Mint or Ubuntu on the systems of friends and family who are sick and tired of Windows issues on their computers. I choose those distributions because they are simple for the non-nerd/geek to use and maintain. And it means less calls for tech support from the friend/family IT guy. ;)

 

I run Slackware as a primary OS just for it's simplicity and UNIX-like KISS philosophy. Slackware is definitely NOT for everyone; just as Gentoo is not for everyone. My Slack isn't the point 'n click Windows zombie operating system. It's not meant to be. As far as it being GUI-based. Well, it's very GUI based if I want it to be, but prefer simplicity; hence my usage of lightweight desktop managers like Xfce. I loved Gnome in Debian (and Deb-based distros), but when Gnome went to v3, I was done with that DM. I also used to love KDE (up to v3.15), but it also went to heck in hand basket on v4.0 (my humble opinion, only).

 

It's ALL GOOD!

 

Today's Slack desktop (not much winter in Florida, so I have to imagine it ;) )...

 

SBqpnre.png

There is a PBS show about a guy who uses woodworking tools from the 17th and 18th centuries.  While I certainly admire his skill and craftmanship, I'd never hire him to build a house for me.  I beleive in "the right tool for the right job".  So I do use the CLI for some things but a GUI tool can often be "the right tool for the job".  So why not get used to using both?  In just the time you've spent here writing about your upgrade problems, you could have accomplished it in Mint.  And you can still use the terminal in Mint.

 

Personally, I think it is great for someone who wants to learn the inner working of Linux, to learn how to use Slack.  And I know it is your personal choice, and I support that.  I just don't understand using it for a main box. 

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V.T. Eric Layton
4 hours ago, securitybreach said:

So much easier

 

If I wanted "easier", I'd still be running Windows. ;)

 

4 hours ago, raymac46 said:

...given up on the proprietary Nvidia...

 

I can't get my monitor's native resolution with the generic Nouveau, so I'm forced to use Nvidia. However, this is actually the first time I've had any issues getting Nvidia to run/install. As I said above, I'm pretty sure there's some detritus left over from the upgrade to 14.2 that may be causing the issue.

 

1 hour ago, Bookmem said:

There is a PBS show about a guy who uses woodworking tools from the 17th and 18th centuries.

 

HAHAHA! I love that show. Figures, huh? ;)

 

1 hour ago, Bookmem said:

...you could have accomplished it in Mint.

 

True. But I'd have to be running Mint.

 

1 hour ago, Bookmem said:

I just don't understand using it for a main box. 

 

It is what it is. After "distro farming" in my early Linux days, I settled on Slackware pretty quickly. At the time, I wanted to learn Linux, not just use it. Slack just appeals to me in numerous ways. The day Patrick Volkerding shuts down Slackware will be the day I go to BSD. Although, I would consider Devuan, also.

 

I drive Chevys. You like Fords. Options are wonderful things to have. For a long time in my early computering days, Windows was just about the only choice. My aggravations with that operating system were the direct cause of my discovering Linux.

 

I was not then, and still am not, a "real" computer nerd (like Josh ;)  ). I'm an old analog (RF Communications and Audio) electronic repair technician (component level repairs). My first experience with computering, per se, was the Commodore VIC 20 that a friend had bought himself. I later acquired a Commodore SX-64 machine. The "Internet" was pretty primitive back then (late 70s - early 80s). I didn't actually get a real PC and access to the modern WWW until summer of 2000 when my brother gave me his Pentium I 90Mhz machine.

 

What a long strange trip it's been... ~The Grateful Dead

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securitybreach
4 hours ago, V.T. Eric Layton said:

I was not then, and still am not, a "real" computer nerd (like Josh ;)  ).

 

It's Geek not nerd. Nerds have no social skills and are awkward. Geek just means that you are passionate about something.

 

Quote

The word geek is a slang term originally used to describe eccentric or non-mainstream people; in current use, the word typically connotes an expert or enthusiest obsessed with a hobby or intellectual pursuit.

 

As an electronics geek, I am sure that you have known plenty of nerds in your profession. B)

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V.T. Eric Layton
1 hour ago, securitybreach said:

It's Geek not nerd. Nerds have no social skills and are awkward. Geek just means that you are passionate about something.

 

See. I don't even know the proper terminology. In my day a geek was some weird fellow behind a cage at the carnival who ate the heads off live chickens and such. ;)

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V.T. Eric Layton
1 hour ago, securitybreach said:

I am sure that you have known plenty of nerds in your profession.

 

Nah... most of the good techs I knew were long-haired, bearded bikers like myself. I did go to Catholic school with a pretty large crop of nerdy types, though.

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V.T. Eric Layton

Back in my day, we called the nerdy types "Poindexters". They were typically the shy ones with the greasy hair and the masking tape on the legs of their thick Coke bottle lens glasses, which were usually a smeared up.

 

840461.jpg

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raymac46

Never thought about a Nouveau resolution issue. My monitor is a bog standard 1920X1080 and Nouveau works OK with that.

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V.T. Eric Layton

The Nouveau was crippled/blacklisted initially on the 14.1 installation. When I upgraded to the 14.2, it remained in that status. However, I also already had Nvidia built to the old kernel from 14.1, then I built against the newer kernel (4.4.14) when I upgraded to 14.2. All was fine with that. However, the issue now is that I cannot build the Nvidia on the 4.4.208 kernel.

 

I'm definitely of the belief that this issue is caused by detritus from previous versions on the upgraded 14.2 installation because I did NOT do a clean install of 14.2... lazy. It's easier to upgrade versions than to clean install due to all my custom setups, VPN setup, added software, etc.

 

It took about an hour or two to upgrade to 14.2. It would have taken me two or three days to put everything as I like it if I had clean installed. I'll just be happy with everything as it is now. I'll do a clean install when Pat V. finally comes out with Slack 15. It's coming!

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sunrat
On 1/13/2020 at 12:56 AM, securitybreach said:

So much easier to run


pacman -S linux linux-headers nvidia-dkms nvidia-setttings 

And reboot.. Just saying B)

Or

apt install nvidia-driver nvidia-settings

Of course you need the kernel and headers but every Debian system I have installs the metapackages for these so they pull in the latest with each full upgrade. You do have the current kernel headers installed, don't you Eric?

In MX there is even a GUI "MX Nvidia Installer" application.

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V.T. Eric Layton
1 hour ago, sunrat said:

You do have the current kernel headers installed, don't you Eric?

 

Indeed, yes @sunrat. :)

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V.T. Eric Layton

Well, after quite a bit of reading at LQ.org and other places, I'm finding that the issue with Nvidia on the newer kernel that I was trying upgrade is being experienced by MANY folks and not just in Slackware. It seems that Nvidia has been a bit remiss in keeping their legacy drivers updated, so there are Xs crashing all over the place. Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be just one common fix, but many work-arounds; some successful, some not.

 

I guess I'll just keep things as they are (working properly) for the time being. I'll worry about all this Nvidia carp when I do a clean install of the next version of Slack... whenever that comes out.

 

It is what it is...

 

 

.

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V.T. Eric Layton

HOORAY FOR ME!

 

I finally managed to successfully upgrade my kernel. I'm now posting to you from a 4.4.208 kernel in my Slackware 14.2. :) The kernel upgrade was never the problem. It was the crashing X afterwards due to my inability to get Nvidia to compile on the .208 kernel.

 

Well, earlier this morning I saw where someone had posted a link from Nvidia's site to an upgraded driver that would work all the way up to the 5.x kernels. The previous version that I was having troubles with was from July of 2019 (v390.87). This newer version from November of 2019 (v390.132) compiles fine on my newly upgraded kernel. YAY!

 

It's all my fault really. I wasn't paying attention when I did the driver search on Nvidia's site before. I was just picking the first "hit" that popped up for my card. I should have scrolled down the hit list a bit and I would have seen the updated version. Duh! I'm getting old and senile. :(

 

I'm HAPPY NOW, though! :)

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securitybreach

Great news!

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V.T. Eric Layton

--- Another Kernel Upgrade ---

 

OK, got a notice from Slackware security about a month ago that there was a new kernel available for Slack 14.2 (security fixes). I had been putting it off because I was just lazy. However, I decided to do that upgrade just a few minutes ago. I guess I'm on my game this time around because it went SMOOTHLY! I like it when it does that. :)

 

All's well now... running 4.4.217 with a reinstalled Nvidia 390.32 drivers. Below I'm going to show my method just in case someone else searching needs a solution.

 

---

 

  1. Downloaded Generic --> kernel, headers, modules, and source
  2. Downloaded Nvidia drivers
  3. Performed rsync backups
  4. CLI --> #reboot
  5. Navigate to download directory
  6. CLI --> #upgradepkg kernel-*.txz
  7. CLI --> #/usr/share/mkinitrd/mkinitrd_command_generator.sh - k <kernel version> | bash
  8. Check /etc/lilo.conf to make sure initrd line is OK (initrd = /boot/initrd.gz)
  9. CLI --> #lilo
  10. CLI --> #reboot
  11. CLI --> #telinit 1
  12. Navigate to download directory
  13. CLI --> #sh NVIDIA*
  14. CLI --> #reboot
  15. Login as normal user and $startx

That's it. YAY! :)

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securitybreach

Nice :thumbsup:

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raymac46

You were working on software, I was into hardware today. Check my post in the Hardware section.

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sunrat
4 hours ago, V.T. Eric Layton said:

All's well now... running 4.4.217 with a reinstalled Nvidia 390.32 drivers. Below I'm going to show my method just in case someone else searching needs a solution.

---

Downloaded Generic --> kernel, headers, modules, and source

  1. Downloaded Nvidia drivers
  2. Performed rsync backups
  3. CLI --> #reboot
  4. Navigate to download directory
  5. CLI --> #upgradepkg kernel-*.txz
  6. CLI --> #/usr/share/mkinitrd/mkinitrd_command_generator.sh - k <kernel version> | bash
  7. Check /etc/lilo.conf to make sure initrd line is OK (initrd = /boot/initrd.gz)
  8. CLI --> #lilo
  9. CLI --> #reboot
  10. CLI --> #telinit 1
  11. Navigate to download directory
  12. CLI --> #sh NVIDIA*
  13. CLI --> #reboot
  14. Login as normal user and $startx

 

Here's how to do all that except the backups in Debian:

apt update && apt full-upgrade

 

Congrats however on successful upgrade without breaking it this time! 😉

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V.T. Eric Layton

Oh, kernels can also be upgraded using Slackpkg in Slackware, but it's NOT recommended to do it auto-magically. It can create issues.

 

Oh, and you don't need to 'splain to me about how Debian works. For many years, that was my second fav Linux distribution. It was also my secondary backup OS for a long time on my main systems. I got away from Debian with the advent of systemD, as many of you know.

 

Apt-Get is probably THE best package manager in existence. It's one of the MANY things Debian did right.

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abarbarian
11 hours ago, V.T. Eric Layton said:

That's it. YAY!

 

Blimey ! Three reboots ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, you would have less reboots with a Windows update :hysterical:

 

Congrats however on successful upgrade without breaking it this time! 😉

 

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