Yenya's World

Tue, 16 Mar 2010

Fedora Mcelog Maintainer Sucks

Welcome to the new episode of the "bashing Fedora bug handling" series, this is your grumpy Fedora user Yenya speaking. I hereby declare that the maintainer of the Fedora mcelog package sucks:

At some time during the Fedora 11 devel cycle, there was a change in kernel in a way which mcelog events are reported. The userland package needed an upgrade. The problem has been reported in June 2009, and is still unfixed in F11 as of now. In the meantime, the same problem has been found in RHEL: reported in November 2009, fixed in January 2010.

Today after installing a new F12 server I have found another problem, which has been handled in a strikingly similar way by the Fedora package maintainer: it is still not fixed as of today, despite the fact that the corresponding RHEL bug has been fixed in September 2009.

Last time I have checked Fedora has been supposed to be a bleeding-edge roll-out-fixes-fast distribution. They are even discussing whether upgrades to new versions of software are feasible inside a single Fedora release. I think such a discussion is premature when some maintainers of packages installed by default are not even able to pull the existing RHEL fixes to their packages.

That's all from today's "bashing Fedora bug handling", see you next time!

Section: /computers (RSS feed) | Permanent link | 11 writebacks

11 replies for this story:

Jon Masters wrote: mcelog

Hi, Thanks for your comments on mcelog. I know it is frustrating when a kernel update ships in F11 that breaks something that was working for you. I will look to get an F11 update out for you, and I have seen the bug in question, but I would like to share some input about why mcelog is as it is. The upstream for mcelog dried up a while back and we were waiting to find out what would happen - would it be re-implemented as a layer on perf, or what else? So there has been a period of confusion. I won't comment on RHEL here, but I want to make it clear that it isn't that Fedora is being ignored. Anyway. I would love it if you would ping me on IRC or email me to get the full story before blogging about it. I will spend some time today and try to clean up what I can, and get the latest situation about upstream. Jon.

Jon Masters wrote: F-11 patch available

I have updated the mce struct in the F-11 version of mcelog 0.7. Please take a look at the update and help me to test it:

Vasek Stodulka wrote:

...and now we have a proof, that swaring at unrelated servers really works to fix things. :-)

Jon Masters wrote: mcelog update

Well, I saw the frustration here and decided something better could be done as a temporary patch about this before a blog posting gave many folks the wrong ideas. But I still wish I had been pinged on IRC, or by email to ask for the full story behind mcelog, its future, etc. before this blog was posted.

Yenya wrote:

Jon, thanks for the new package. I have installed it on three systems which had the record length problem in the past, and so far it looks good! As for pinging you on IRC beforehand: I have tried to ping you in the bugzillla a month ago (bug #507026 comment #17), and I usually consider using on-line communication (like jabber or IRC) too impolite - I know Fedora is a community effort without the support contract. Anyway, I never expected this blogpost to reach you so fast. I should (probably?) thank the anonymous pixies somewhere near the Brno Red Hat branch for forwarding it to you. I hope my blog post did not offend you (too much :-). In case it did, please accept my apologies. As for general frustration: I don't mind Fedora having bugs, but I really mind if I run into a bug which has been reported many months ago, has a known (though maybe not the most elegant) fix, but the fixed package is still not available.

Jon Masters wrote: mcelog update

Hi Yenya. I'm glad the update fixes things. Honestly, I'm a little annoyed that they shipped an updated kernel for F11 - I wouldn't have changed the kernel on such an old release. But be that as it may, I am not offended, you were right that there was a simple enough temporary fix that should have been pulled in. I guess I would like to have talked on IRC or by email in order to hear how frustrating this was for you as I think that would have persuaded me this was a bigger issue. Anyway, glad it works. Please up the karma and it will be released to everyone else soon.

Jon Masters wrote: please test latet update version

Hi, It turns out that the struct changes in mce were post 2.6.32. So you're running a testing kernel or something. There is now a new version that will work with the original F11 kernel and the updates that have yet to be pushed to stable.

Jon Masters wrote: please test latet update version

Hi Yenya, can you please test the latest version? It include support for the non-released 2.6.32 kernel you are running as well as the official 2.6.30 Fedora 11 kernel.

Yenya wrote: Vanilla kernel

Yes, I am running vanilla kernel on the servers in questions, sorry for not mentioning that. Anyway, the -5 package works for me.

Jon Masters wrote: perhaps worth a footnote

So it's perhaps worth a footnote in this blog post that you were not running the official Fedora 11 kernel at the time and that only one bug actually affected Fedora 11.

Yenya wrote:

I don't fully understand your last post: yes, the bug #507026 affects the later release of the F11 kernel, and the original reporter mentions his kernel release in comment #1. You were free to close the bug as WORKSFORSOME or whatever after comment #1 (altough porting the RHEL fix would have been nice). And I clearly stated in my blog post that I have ran into the bug #538550 on F12.

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Tue, 02 Mar 2010


In today's mailbox:

Date: Mon, 1 Mar 2010 20:40:32 +0100
From: arpwatch-at-our-domain
Subject: changed ethernet address (

          ip address:
    ethernet address: 0:25:b3:xx:xx:xx
     ethernet vendor: Hewlett Packard
old ethernet address: 8:0:69:yy:yy:yy
 old ethernet vendor: SILICON GRAPHICS INC.
           timestamp: Monday, March 1, 2010 20:39:50 +0100
  previous timestamp: Monday, March 1, 2010 20:20:35 +0100
               delta: 19 minutes
                  hw: SGI Origin 2000, irix6.5

Aisa has been running on SGI Origin 2000 hardware with Origin Vault external disk box since 2000, and was the last non-Linux UNIX server in faculty-wide use (there may be few OpenSolaris and other UNIX boxes here and there, used inside some laboratory, but that's all).

The hardware is still relatively up-to-date even in today's terms: 8 CPUs (at 350 MHz), 2 GB RAM, 100 Mbit ethernet, etc. It has been extremely stable: e.g. no disk have crashed in the last few years (actually, I don't remember any disk crash in Aisa at all, but my memory might be fading, especially concerning the first few years of production use of this server).

Section: /computers (RSS feed) | Permanent link | 1 writebacks

1 replies for this story:

Peter Kruty wrote: Aisa

Wow, there are some memories connected to this machine (e.g. don't type "killall" as root to get help as on Linux :). What will happen to HW?

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