Kernel Update Today, Downtime

I take the unusual approach of hosting my site and blog, on my PC at home. This means that if my computer, which I name ‘Phoenix’, has any down-time, so does my blog.

This afternoon, ‘Phoenix’ received a routine kernel update, that seemed to go well. But because even a Linux computer needs a reboot after a kernel update, this site was down briefly, from 12h55 until about 13h15.

On the same note I should mention that yesterday, March 27, we had a power-failure from about 16h00 until 17h45. For that reason as well, my site and blog could not have been on-line.

I apologize for any inconvenience to my readers.

Dirk

 

Kernel Update today, Downtime

I take the somewhat unusual approach, of hosting my site and therefore also this blog, on a private PC at home which I name ‘Phoenix’. This is not how sites are usually hosted. And what it means is that, while I get to play with my own server all I want, the visibility of this blog on the Internet, is only as good, as the up-time and the connectivity of this PC.

This evening a Kernel Update was put through the system, which required I reboot this Linux computer. Therefore, my site and blog were off-line from about 20h00 until about 20h15.

I apologize for any inconvenience to my readers, but these things must be done.

The kernel update itself seemed to have no ill effects, that I can detect immediately. But in all honesty, if there was ever anything wrong with a kernel update, there are essentially two types of problems which can take place:

  1. The computer immediately refuses to boot,
  2. It takes a long time to detect a problem, and when this is done, the problem is usually also detected by somebody other than me.

So because I’m back up, there’s nothing to complain about! :-)

FWIW, this computer had been running one session, for 35 days straight, with no real technical issues.

Dirk

 

Another Kernel Update, Same Day

This evening, Debian Team pushed through a second kernel update, Following this one, earlier this morning, which applied to the computer I name ‘Phoenix’. The reader will be reassured to know, that every kernel update to version:

 


3.16.0-6-amd64

 

Results in version:

 


3.16.0-6-amd64

 

But this time, something rather remarkable happened:

The X-server started, directly on the first attempt! :-) This means, that the problem which I was writing about above, may or may not have been solved, and the required reboot only took from 20h25 until 20h30.

Dirk

 

Kernel Update today, Downtime, Multiple Reboot-Attempts

Today, the PC which is hosting my site and blog, which I name ‘Phoenix’, received a kernel update.

Debian Team has not been following standard guidelines in their propagation of kernel updates, as the last 3 updates produced the same kernel-version number:

 


3.16.0-6-amd64

 

Because even Linux computers require a reboot after a kernel-update, this blog was temporarily off-line from about 13h05 until 13h25. I apologize for any inconvenience to my readers.

There is a fact about the build of Linux on this computer which I should bring up. I have the following on-board graphics-chip:

 


GeForce 6150SE nForce 430/integrated/SSE2

 

And this proprietary graphics driver is the only one, capable of working with the said graphics-chip:

 


NVIDIA 304.137

 

The graphics driver is installed from standard Debian repositories.

Somewhere between these software-packages there is a problem, which Debian Team has never been aware of, but which has existed ever since I installed Debian / Jessie on this computer. Directly after a reboot, the ability of the X-server to start, is not reliable. Sometimes, the X-server starts on the first try, but on other occasions I need to make 7 reboot attempts, before the X-server will start, and from one reboot-attempt to the next, I change nothing.

Once the X-server has started successfully, this graphics-chip will work 100% for 30 days !

I have been reluctant to point this out for the past few years, because if a Debian developer finds out about it, he will try to fix this problem. And when he does, he will brick my computer.

This afternoon, 7 reboots were in fact required, before the X-server started. That is why the reboot-procedure took 20 minutes of time.

(Updated 07/14/2018, 16h45 … )

Continue reading Kernel Update today, Downtime, Multiple Reboot-Attempts