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    Subjectknfs-1.2.2a strange behaviour

    I am using knfs-1.2.2 with kernel 2.2.9 in a RedHat 5.2 enviroment.
    Recently I had a strange effect after changing a file on the nfs-server.
    First a word about my setup
    The server machine has big disks and lots of Ram and is exporting its
    /usr-filesystem to a small old 8MB 16MHz 386 I found in the attic.
    This has been running for quite a while (some weeks) perfectly well.
    Then I installed a new sendmail binary on the server (in /usr/sbin).
    After thatI found that I was loosing mails (the 386 is a mail-gateway and
    of course runs sendmail from the shared /usr filesystem),
    and on the server I found entrys like the following in the syslog

    kernel: EXT2-fs warning (device ide0(3,7): ext2_free_blocks: bit already cleared for block 399089
    kernel: EXT2-fs warning (device ide0(3,7)): ext2_free_blocks: bit already cleared for block 399089
    last message repeated 41 times

    The missing ) is no typo.

    After killing the old and starting the new sendmail on the 386 all was
    fine again.

    My assumption is that 386 held only the current part of sendmail in memory
    (due to its lack of ram) and wanted to swap in the part of sendmail that
    handles incoming mail when it gets a new connection.
    Unfortunately it couldn't get these blocks from the server as there now
    was a different sendmail binary.

    IMHO this is a bug in either the nfs client or the server, as this can
    lead to serious crashes. If it hadn't been an nfs-filesystem. there would
    have a 'text file busy' error preventing my from overwriting a running
    file. Deleting removes the inode, but keeps the old text file as long as
    the program is running. Is it possible to implement this in nfs, or is
    there a contradiction to the stateless nature of nfs?

    Thanks for reading this far,


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