[PlanetCCRMA] /var/ problem?

fonse006 fonse006@csusm.edu
Wed Aug 10 18:21:01 2005

>Tim Berghoff wrote:
>> Hi, Scott!
>> Did you log in as root?
>> These "exclusive lock" errors always show up when I forget to su - .
>i think that also happens if you're running two root tasks at once ...
>such as having synaptic running while trying to install an rpm manually ...

There is one more possible cause for a rpm transaction lock failure.  Rpm 
cannot allow two instances of itself to be running at the same time because if 
they both happen to try to change the same resource it could lead to an 
unstable system.  So before rpm makes any changes to the system or the rpm 
database it checks to see if there is a transaction lock in the /var/rpm 
filesystem.  If there are no current trasaction locks then it creates a file 
that serves to claim that instace of rpm to have exclusive access to the rpm 
database until it gives up that privilage voluntarily.  Obviously you cannot 
get a transaction lock without root access as only root can write to this 
filesystem, but one tricky thing that can happen is if rpm bombs out for some 
reason it will not clean up the transaction lock and you will have to manually 
remove it before you will be able to use rpm to change your filesystem.