GDM not starting on CentOS 7.6

We did a big update, as I mentioned previously, and after the update I found out some of the graphic cards were not anymore supported by the newest NVIDIA drivers for CentOS x64, at this moment  This may make some sense, since the Quadro 4000 was released in November 2010, but on the other hand it is a perfectly fine graphic card able to do 3D and hook up to 3 monitors. In principle I don’t like to throw away working hardware…unless requested to do so 🙂

I experienced all these symptoms depending on what I do:

  • you seem to have the drivers running but there is no output of nvidia-smi
  • you get an output that tells you that there is no device compatible.
  • there’s an ouput from nvidia-smi but GDM crashes

Sample GDM crash on my client “tiny” looks like this:

systemctl status gdm
● gdm.service - GNOME Display Manager
Loaded: loaded (/usr/lib/systemd/system/gdm.service; 
enabled; vendor preset: enabled)
Active: active (running) since XXX; 52s ago
Process: 24578 ExecStartPost=/bin/bash -c TERM=linux 
/usr/bin/clear > /dev/tty1 (code=exited, status=0/SUCCESS)
Main PID: 24575 (gdm)
CGroup: /system.slice/gdm.service
└─24575 /usr/sbin/gdm

XXX tiny systemd[1]: Starting GNOME Display Manager...
XXX tiny systemd[1]: Started GNOME Display Manager.
XXX tiny gdm[24575]: GdmDisplay: display lasted 0.093784 seconds
XXX tiny gdm[24575]: GdmDisplay: display lasted 0.031349 seconds
XXX tiny gdm[24575]: GdmDisplay: display lasted 0.017635 seconds
XXX tiny gdm[24575]: GdmDisplay: display lasted 0.016253 seconds
XXX tiny gdm[24575]: GdmDisplay: display lasted 0.016001 seconds
XXX tiny gdm[24575]: GdmDisplay: display lasted 0.017770 seconds
XXX tiny gdm[24575]: GdmLocalDisplayFactory: 
maximum number of X display failures reached: 
check X server log

Above, XXX corresponds to the date. We check the X server log as suggested. It reads:

root@tiny ~ ## > tail /var/log/Xorg.0.log
[ 344.316] ==== WARNING WARNING WARNING WARNING ================
[ 344.316] This server has a video driver 
ABI version of 24.0 that this
driver does not officially support. Please check for driver updates or downgrade to an X
server with a supported driver ABI.
[ 344.316] =====================================================
[ 344.316] (EE) NVIDIA: Use the -ignoreABI option to 
override this check.
[ 344.316] (II) UnloadModule: "nvidia"
[ 344.316] (II) Unloading nvidia
[ 344.316] (EE) Failed to load module "nvidia" (unknown error, 0)
[ 344.316] (EE) No drivers available.

To get back GDM and a desktop environment for 418.43 and Quadro 4000 I tried uninstalling and installing again the 418.43 drivers, and to install and use lightdm instead of gdm. None of the solutions worked. Installing the previous drivers on the new kernel I end up with the message  Unable to load the kernel module nvidia.ko. Obviously because of the new kernel, of course.

What next? Downgrade maybe to avoid the xorg crash? From NVIDIA, I downloaded and install the latest legacy drivers and I got my desktop back. Yeah, you can say: “why didn’t you do that to start with?“. Very simple answer also: I want to have homogeneous installations, not one machine with drivers version 390.87, the other one with 418.43. But I need to live with the fact that we are not all the same. unfortunately 😦

Posted in bash, centos, errors, GPU, hardware, nvidia, software | Leave a comment

The best place

– I have been in many places around the world, but this one is really nice!

We were waiting in front of the standing desk of the maître to have our table assigned. I didn’t know where to go with her, so I spontaneously decided to try that fancy new place in town, Le Creuset. Being a local it is not easy to impress me with the setup, since this city is getting most of its business from tourism and almost everything was tried before to attract public. After entering, the only thought that crossed my mind was “it’s bigger on the inside”.

– Could the happy couple come with me, s’il vous plait?

We walk after him. The path crosses the dining room, direction to the imperial stairs at the end of the hall. I look around surprised. The place is really heterogeneous, filled with tables of different sizes, for four diners, six, or twelve. Some of the tables had funny shapes, like L-shaped, semicircular, and so on. Light comes from chandeliers of different sizes, candles, and some kind of shinny mushrooms… probably to create this so called organic feeling.

– Is it your first time in Le Creuset, messieur, madame? – We are still walking, apparently we go upstairs. I answer our waiter, that seems to be waiting for a feedback.

Oui. Although I’m a local. I simply heard that this new place was kind of out-of-options if you come uninvited or without a reservation. But I’m this kind of guy that doesn’t believe what people say…

– I can smell that – was the odd answer of our guide. – So you don’t know how this thing work. Magnifique! First I need you to tell us what are your expectations.

– Expectations? – She says. I do expect to have sex with her tonight, I refrain myself to say.

– Expectations, Erwartungen, les attentes. If I don’t know what you expect, how can I please you? – He smiles. His mouth is oddly big, and at one point I seem to see more teeth than what I could expect one to have. Again, he stops. We are halfway up the stairs. I look back, to the hall we crossed. The mix of differently shaped tables seems to want to tell me something…that I don’t manage to interpret.

– I just want to have a nice fish. This is a fish restaurant, right?

– We do are a fish restaurant, mlady. In fact, this is the place to come if you are a fish. – Again this weird smile with a mouth more filled with teeth than usual. And they really look sharp, I observe. I will never understand these new XXI century fashion trends, with those hipsters, trappers, and so on. I’m too old for that shit.

– I’m going to say I want also a nice ambient. A quiet table. In a terrace, if you have any.

– We do have terraces. You will love ours. Par ici. – The second floor extend deeper into the building. The chandeliers are almost gone here.  I look at the tables and the bar. Yes, this one looks better than downstairs. To my left and right, I see terraces opening, but we seem to walk straight. At the end, a big balcony seems to be guarded by two thugs. I grab her hand and we enter the balcony just to find out it ends on stairs…that go down to some sort of beach. An hologram, probably. The effect is amazing, there’s breeze and sea smells. There are also two empty tables. The waiter walks us to one.

– Please sit down, and I will send you someone to take note of your order. In the meantime, enjoy these caipirinhas by the house. We love to make new friends! Adieu…

We wave our hands in a stupid way to the leaving waiter. He smiles. What a big amount of teeth. I wonder if he can eat as usual with them. Probably I’ll never know.

Posted in 2050, bits, fantasy, new dreams, yellow earth | 2 Comments

GPFS error [E] Pagepool has size … instead of the requested … on CentOS 7

We just updated our GPFS systems for the new kernel. The installation was smooth once we get the rpm packages. Basically:

rpm -Uvh gpfs.base-4.2.3-13.x86_64.rpm \ gpfs.ext-4.2.3-13.x86_64.rpm \
gpfs.gpl-4.2.3-13.noarch.rpm gpfs.gskit-8.0.50-86.x86_64.rpm \
gpfs.license.std-4.2.3-13.x86_64.rpm \

And after that the compiled binary for our kernel:

rpm -Uhv gpfs.gplbin-3.10.0-957.5.1.el7.x86_64-4.2.3-13.x86_64.rpm

On one of my small clients that I will call tinyone, it worked for a while, then it stopped and my GPFS mounts were gone. Of course I blame the software install, so I do another install, but the service keeps exiting and unmounting my filesystem with a return code 16 reason code 73354After the second reboot, I manually stop the service and start it again. Inmediately after the restart, I see…

systemctl status gpfs
● gpfs.service - General Parallel File System
Loaded: loaded (/usr/lib/systemd/system/gpfs.service; 
enabled; vendor preset: disabled)
Active: active (exited) since XXX; 3s ago
Process: 8545 ExecStop=/usr/lpp/mmfs/bin/gpfsrunlevel stop 
(code=exited, status=0/SUCCESS)
Process: 8761 ExecStart=/usr/lpp/mmfs/bin/gpfsrunlevel start 
(code=exited, status=0/SUCCESS)
Main PID: 8761 (code=exited, status=0/SUCCESS)
CGroup: /system.slice/gpfs.service
├─ 8796 /usr/lpp/mmfs/bin/mmksh 
/usr/lpp/mmfs/bin/mmccrmonitor 15
├─ 8815 /usr/lpp/mmfs/bin/mmksh 
/usr/lpp/mmfs/bin/mmremote startSdrServ CURRENT
├─ 9333 /usr/lpp/mmfs/bin/mmsdrserv 1191 10 10 
/var/adm/ras/mmsdrserv.log 8192 yes no
├─ 9348 /usr/lpp/mmfs/bin/mmksh 
/usr/lpp/mmfs/bin/mmsysmoncontrol start
├─ 9795 /usr/lpp/mmfs/bin/mmksh 
├─10124 /usr/lpp/mmfs/bin/mmfsd
├─10255 /usr/lpp/mmfs/bin/mmksh 
/usr/lpp/mmfs/bin/mmcommon getUserExits
├─10496 /bin/sleep 3
└─10684 python /usr/lpp/mmfs/bin/

XXX tinyone systemd[1]: Starting General Parallel File System...
XXX tinyone systemd[1]: Started General Parallel File System.
XXX tinyone mmfs[10124]: 
[E] Pagepool has size ... bytes instead of the requested ... bytes.
XXX tinyone mmfs[10124]: [E] Pagepool ...
XXX tinyone mmfs[10124]: [E] Pagepool ...
XXX tinyone mmfs[10124]: [E] Pagepool ...

And a quick google leads us to this IBM page. That is exactly correct, since my tinione has only 4 GB of RAM. Well, what can I say. You can’t have GPFS everywhere. The good thing is that after the errors it works (I do have my GPFS filesystem mounted) it’s only not reliable. But I can access to the files, so so far so good 🙂

Posted in big data, bits, centos, GPFS, linux, software | Leave a comment

A special date

– I must say I’m a little disappointed. – The girl I chose to meet was supposed to be 100% compatible, but the whole introduction thing was weird and the date was going down since I asked her to say my name. – Coming from another stelar system you seem so…ordinary.

– I will take that as a compliment. What were you expecting? – I had this conversation like a hundred times since we arrived. – Big eyes? Crab claws? Tentacles?

– Tentacles! – She flashes me the blondie smile. I am really trying hard not to leave. The truth is, I want to meet a girl. And the Earthlings are more interesting than the average for me because of the cultural background. I read of course the basics, but the challenge is, as it always has been, to live it. I look at my wine glass, evaluating if I have enough to repeat what we said to them when we all arrived.

– My love, there’s almost no genetic difference between us. As far as I know, you could be an “alien” too. – My time to show her my teeth.

– I know, I know, I know! – She giggles.-  That’s great, that you guys came in your fancy interstellar cruise… knowing you will probably find us here! So you are… star tourists! – I sight. Our people chose this metaphor to explain our presence on Earth, and it stuck like glue. Like if you can take your ship and go to Proxima for a weekend.

– I am a tourist. But not on your planet. On this city. I took residence on Paris….no special reason, just the Eiffel Tower reminded me something similar in my hometown.

– Sorry Mark…can I call you Mark? You look like Mark to me – I sight. Then I nod. I need to delete this dating app as soon as I manage to escape. – Can you tell me, with your own words – she waves both hands, I believe trying to symbolize the two solar systems – how come you look like…a Mark to me?

– It’s very simple. The universe is not random. – She looks at me, then around, then to her cocktail, that she sips. Her eyes are open wide. I need to continue. – Everyone here will agree we all have a very successful body design. – She giggles. I think she believes I’m speaking about her boobs. – It’s true there are other possibilities. But the bilateral solution is the simplest one. So we have multipedes, quadrupeds and bipeds. Which one is the most economical one? The biped. Add to this the common chances to have a mass extinction, plus the existence of a limited amount of life building blocks and you will end up with an human. Not with an octopus. Or an ant. Or a dolphin.

– Dolphins are very smart! – Maybe smarter than you, I tell to myself. – But why are you here, why did you abandon your planet?

– Why did you go to the Moon, why did you launched all these space probes? Because we can, of course. – She nods. I wonder if I need to go deeper into the subject. Then she takes this pose where she shows the cleavage to the speaker, in this case, to me, so I continue. – Your planet is unfortunately heavier than ours, so to go “up in the air” – I do the gesture with my hand – is more expensive energetically speaking. If you add to this that due to our geography our society lacks of countries and loves science, you will end up with me. Or someone very similar to your … Mark, I will say. Capisce? 

– More or less. – Suddenly she is bored also. Both our glasses are empty. I look around trying to find an escape route. Couples here and there engage on one or another stage of Earth’s mating ritual. The music is loud enough so we can hear the others, but not enough to disturb us. – The truth is, I want to meet someone special. And I thought you, coming from another planet… were the one.

– Coming from another stellar system, my dear. – I hate the mixup of planets with stars. – Coming from another star, if you prefer. Although this is not exactly true, since I was born on the way here…

– Yeah, enough with the space talk, space man. – Her cleavage is gone. She adjusts her tight red dress and look around. She seems to find something interesting to her left, and focus her sight there. I wait. – What was I saying?

– A special one. – She keeps her gaze fixed to her left. I look also. A lonely man just arrived. Will he be her next one?

– Right.  Mark, I’m very glad I have met you, but I think this is not going to work. So we better move each one in a different direction, so to say. – Don’t make the gravity analogy, please. Don’t. – Some bodies attract each other, some repel… you know… like gravity.

– Not like gravity. Whatever other one but gravity. – I try not to get up and leave immediately. What a waste of time. She stands up and extends me her hand.

– Well, it was nice to meet you, Mark. See you around! – I shake her hand and she leaves without waiting for my answer. See you around, and thank you for the fish.

Posted in 2050, aliens, new dreams | Leave a comment

Buried on the moon

– Is this your first burial?
– Yeah. – I look at my interlocutor. She’s a good-looking human. Through the helmet I can barely see her face, but her semi-transparent suit is very revealing. – Is it your first?
– Nah. As a mooner, I enjoy coming to this. – I try not to see her smile. – Don’t worry about it – she adds – I don’t mind to recognize I’m happy people choose to be buried here, on Serenitatis. Their reasons must be different, but the output is the same.
– More active biomass. – I smile. Of course she doesn’t see it.
– More active biomass. The Dome, as you know, was the dream of that businessman. What was his name?
– I don’t remember. – I do remember, but I don’t want to look like one outsider to her. – Musk, Cook, some of them. Does it matter?
– Right. That was his dream. But our dream is to have farming land. I want to eat Moon tomatoes. I mean, on a regular basis! And run around without this suit.
– Me too. – I lie. The moon tomatoes are tasteless in comparison with the California ones. I don’t know why, they remember me somehow always of the night when I eat them. I look up. The Earth is half full above me. Beautiful. And bigger than the Moon is seen from Earth, of course. I can’t get familiar with this sensation, the sensation I’m going to fall up back at any moment, at any time. The lower gravity doesn’t help also. Maybe I should have chosen a heavier spacesuit, as recommended for earthlings.

– Why do you come, if I may ask? – My moon girl seems to be a little bit more interested on me than I am on her. I look at her body again. Not my type, but I must admit, a very gorgeous type. To my left, the second row of our procession is walking in apparent silence. Four AUmans walking without spacesuit. Two non-humans seem to be tourist. The rest are dressing with more or less fashionable variations of our suits.
– I’m considering to apply. I have some savings…
– That’s great! – My moon girl jumps and stays in the air an unreasonable long time. Unreasonable for me, of course. – Don’t forget to invite me. Are you planning to die soon? – I look at her. Then to the Earth above us. The to the Dome where they bury all the approved candidates. She’s seriously asking it.
– No no no. Not soon. The problem is, I have my doubts. So I asked them to show me the ceremony. – This bit is true.
– You’re going to love it! We gather around the casket, some people sing, some people dance. Then we bury you and put two tree seeds over your biodegradable coffin, one of a fruit tree, one of a wood type. Then we drink, and tell tales about you. If we don’t have tales, we invent them. I heard it’s a little like an Irish funeral. – We are getting close to the Dome Airlock. – Why do you have doubts?

I decide to open my heart to this friendly mooner.
– I don’t know if we are doing the right thing. I think it’s futile. The Moon is a desert without atmosphere. It will never be a second Earth. Or do you think it will?
She looks at me, like evaluating if I believe what I just said. I think she’s trying to decide if I’m worthing it or not. I mean the discussion.
– We are already here. I was born here! You may not know our culture, but you can know me. We are real, and we don’t want to leave. The Moon is our home. Unfortunately, we are not able to get everything we want from her, but there is where you can help, my nameless friend! Look at it like being a 20th-century organ donor. You don’t know what they are going to do with what you give, but be sure we will try to do our best! And think about it. Your molecules, although transfigurated, will end up inside people like me. So will you do it? For me?
– Yes I will. – Yes I will. We close the airlock and we are in. Inside the Dome, heading to the core of the Garden in the Sky, the Explorer’s graveyard. Where I’m going to end, where I want to be buried in.

Posted in 2050, AI, aliens, fantasy | Leave a comment



That is not dead which can eternal lie. 
And with strange aeons even death may die.

In other words, I’m still here (Quote from the Necronomicon).  And I didn’t move to Italy or something. I’m just really pissed off with this year -2019- without any apparent reason but that it’s already March and I’m not able to achieve anything so far (was it different last year?) and the problems around me grow and grow big. In the meantime, I’m afraid I’m wandering around more than usual, distracted by TV shows, books, or new gadgets. I’m now in addition to an Impostor, a believer of one of the New Gods, the Big Procrastinator. That is a great title for an el Bosco-style paint. Pity that I’m not an artist.

Posted in Brondignach, dragons, fragments, friends | 3 Comments

Giving root power to a CentOS 7 user

This is an old one. I was explicitly avoiding to pass through this hole, but the time has come. There is the need to run a script that will copy data owned by ROOT from storage A to storage B.  We don’t want to change the permissions or data ownership, neither we want to run it on a crontab. Solution: allow the normal user to run the script as root. It is not so complicated if you know how to do it.

We have tested the script, and it runs fine as ROOT. I will place the script on /home/admin/bin/, that is accessible only for root. What the script does is irrelevant for the post. It could be a simple copy or rsync. In my case, it checks that the folder is properly named, that the data is not currently being transferred, and that the data folder is not existing already. Once we are happy with the script, we simply type visudo as root on the computer of choice for the data transfer task. We will see a file filled with explanations that is physically placed on /etc/sudoers. IMPORTANT: you need to edit it with visudo or your changes will not work!

Let’s say we want to let alpha and beta users run Both are AD users, by the way. However, we give them access only from one machine, where we open visudo. We can edit the file like we do with vi, pressing i (from insert) and wq to write and quit. At the end of the sudoers file we add

alpha ALL= NOPASSWD: /home/admin/bin/
beta ALL= NOPASSWD: /home/admin/bin/

We save the file and test that it works as it does as root. Obviosuly this is not the most effective way if we want a lot of people to run our script, but in principle, we don’t want a lot of people moving data around. Or do we?

Posted in bash, batch, big data, bits, EM, errors, linux, mac, osx, rsync | Leave a comment