The recent power failures left me in quite a state of distress, not knowing what the fate of my computers would be.
The computer acting as my Web server, ‘Phoenix’ is a Linux computer, running a “Debian” version of Linux, and a flavor of that, which is “Kanotix / Spitfire” . After the second power interruption this morning, ‘Phoenix’ was actually easier to restart fully, than my Windows 7 machine ‘Mithral’ was. This was somewhat reassuring, since ‘Mithral’ has stronger hardware, and since If the software on ‘Mithral’ was ever permanently messed up, I could in fact try to resurrect it by installing Linux on it. It seems that Linux was after all more stable than Windows.
But what happened to ‘Phoenix’ was also better than a scenario would have been, which I had running through my head between 7h30 this morning and 12h00, the time at which I got ‘Phoenix’ running again.
I had had the scenario in my head, that ‘Phoenix’ could have started to perform an ‘unattended upgrade’, at the moment the power went off, a coincidence which I would have been unaware of.
Luckily, this was not what happened.
But had this happened, my own version of what would have gone wrong differs slightly from the official version, according to which the package manager would simply have gotten jammed in some locked state.
There happen to be other power-users, who complain on the Kanotix user forum, that they had been running a lengthy upgrade while their power was strangely cut. Those people ask for Expert support in unjamming their package manager, which more detached people on the forum give advice on how to do.
According to me, they had such a hard time unjamming their package manager, because this is not all that was wrong with their computers. According to me, those users suffered from two problems at once: A jammed package manager, plus A corrupted file system.
I had a vision of having to approach the Kanotix user forum with the familiar line, ‘An upgrade was running, when the plug was pulled.’ But luckily, no upgrade was running at that time…
…And, there is a specific reason why No Unattended Upgrades Were Running. After I rebooted ‘Phoenix’ successfully, I performed the upgrades manually, which were to have run, just to confirm that my package manager still works 100% .