Bug 1418823 - Upgrading from f23 to f24 with separate /var partition creates /var directory on root partition
Summary: Upgrading from f23 to f24 with separate /var partition creates /var directory...
Alias: None
Product: Fedora
Classification: Fedora
Component: dnf-plugin-system-upgrade
Version: 24
Hardware: x86_64
OS: Linux
Target Milestone: ---
Assignee: Will Woods
QA Contact: Fedora Extras Quality Assurance
Depends On:
TreeView+ depends on / blocked
Reported: 2017-02-02 19:49 UTC by Philip Prindeville
Modified: 2017-08-08 19:37 UTC (History)
3 users (show)

Fixed In Version:
Doc Type: If docs needed, set a value
Doc Text:
Clone Of:
Last Closed: 2017-08-08 19:37:28 UTC
Type: Bug

Attachments (Terms of Use)

System ID Private Priority Status Summary Last Updated
Red Hat Bugzilla 1045168 0 unspecified CLOSED failure to boot upgrade environment if /var is not on rootfs 2021-02-22 00:41:40 UTC

Description Philip Prindeville 2017-02-02 19:49:09 UTC
Description of problem:

Yesterday (2017-2-1) I did an upgrade of our mail server from F23 to F24 via "dnf system-upgrade --releasever=24" and it seemingly went okay.  This morning I was reading the logwatch emails from all of my machines and saw:

   var.mount: Directory /var to mount over is not empty, mounting anyway.: 1 Time(s)
   var.mount: Mount process exited, code=exited status=32: 1 Time(s)

so I edited /etc/fstab to mount the partition as /var.new, did an mkdir of that directory (obviously), and rebooted.

Sure enough, /var (on the root partition) contains files and directories touched yesterday, and there's /var/lib, /var/cache, /var/run, /var/spool, etc.

Given the enormous Charlie Foxtrot that happened with fedup (which, among other things, contributed to its very short shelf-life), I'd have thought this would be one of the things REALLY WELL TESTED before rolling out a replacement.

Apparently I've overestimated severely.

Version-Release number of selected component (if applicable):

How reproducible:

As per above

Steps to Reproduce:
1. Install F23, provision it with a separate /var, update it to most recent
2. Run "dnf system-upgrade --releasever=24"
3. Mount the /var partition elsewhere and look into the /var directory on the root partition
4. Gnash teeth and weep and repeat "fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice shame on me..."

Actual results:

Some or all of the upgrade happened in /var on the root partition.

Expected results:

The upgrade should have mounted and touched the /var partition instead

Additional info:

Comment 1 Philip Prindeville 2017-02-02 19:51:50 UTC
I have a primary server down right now so any comments about recovery would be appreciated.

Comment 2 Zbigniew Jędrzejewski-Szmek 2017-02-02 20:32:41 UTC
For the future: if you get the " Directory ... to mount over is not empty, mounting anyway" message, you can just mount the underlying partition at a second mount point:
  sudo mount -o x-mount.mkdir / --bind /tmp/root-copy
and then you can compare /var with /tmp/root-copy/var and so on.

Before we get to *why* /var wasn't mounted: it shouldn't make that much of a difference. The upgrade process probably created some directories there, but you should already have them in your old var. Did you see anything wrong or other error messages except from the one about non-empty dir?

As to *why*: this shouldn't happen... dnf-system-upgrade.service has a dependency on sysinit.target, which has a dependency on local-fs.target, which has a dependency on all mounts specified in fstab. Do you have any special configuration for /var? How does the entry in fstab look like?

Comment 3 Zbigniew Jędrzejewski-Szmek 2017-02-02 21:01:06 UTC
Ah, I forgot about /var/lib/rpm. You probably should copy that over to the real filesystem, if you still have the old one in the real filesystem.

Comment 4 Philip Prindeville 2017-02-02 21:14:31 UTC
(In reply to Zbigniew Jędrzejewski-Szmek from comment #2)
> Do you have any special configuration for /var? How does the entry in fstab look like?

Turns out that there wasn't a /var/lib/rpm so that was fortunate (see above).

Here's my /etc/fstab:

# /etc/fstab
# Created by anaconda on Wed Oct  6 07:29:58 2010
# Accessible filesystems, by reference, are maintained under '/dev/disk'
# See man pages fstab(5), findfs(8), mount(8) and/or blkid(8) for more info
UUID=305deba5-a9dd-4112-a469-908dfd9d0a59 /                       ext4    defaults        1 1
UUID=7f5f9f37-c68e-4a30-82d5-78c472dac999 /boot                   ext4    defaults        1 2
UUID=8d134425-e74a-430e-bd7a-72c116924ff5 /home                   ext4    defaults        1 2
UUID=83aaa490-5bcb-4c77-8055-3524354b5a80 /var                    ext4    defaults        1 2
UUID=11416992-abc8-450d-8e34-a893eb11e110 swap                    swap    defaults        0 0

tmpfs                   /dev/shm                tmpfs   defaults        0 0
devpts                  /dev/pts                devpts  gid=5,mode=620  0 0
sysfs                   /sys                    sysfs   defaults        0 0
proc                    /proc                   proc    defaults        0 0

nothing exception (just that I'm not using LVM).

Comment 5 Zbigniew Jędrzejewski-Szmek 2017-02-02 21:54:30 UTC
So, what files do you have in the /var directory on the root filesystem?

Comment 6 Philip Prindeville 2017-02-02 22:10:08 UTC
Well, too late now to look again, but from memory it was:


and lib contained (again from memory)


Comment 7 Zbigniew Jędrzejewski-Szmek 2017-02-02 22:31:57 UTC
Interesting. That's quite strange, because if /var/lib/rpm was updated properly, that means that /var must have been mounted when the upgrade was running.

Is it possible that you had those files in /var-on-the-root-filesystem before, and just didn't notice?

Comment 8 Philip Prindeville 2017-02-02 22:42:18 UTC
(In reply to Zbigniew Jędrzejewski-Szmek from comment #7)
> Is it possible that you had those files in /var-on-the-root-filesystem
> before, and just didn't notice?

Perhaps, but that wouldn't explain why some of them had been modified in the last 24 hours...

Comment 9 Fedora End Of Life 2017-07-26 00:14:07 UTC
This message is a reminder that Fedora 24 is nearing its end of life.
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Comment 10 Fedora End Of Life 2017-08-08 19:37:28 UTC
Fedora 24 changed to end-of-life (EOL) status on 2017-08-08. Fedora 24 is
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