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Hosed system during package build

This is a first for me! As you may have noted from earlier postings, I
have been working on a source build process for distribution construction.
During the build of one of the source packages, the system "went away".

Upon rebooting the system, I got told that there was no console device, so
I rebooted to my "emergency" slink system. (My normal development system
is on hda1, with hda2 for swap, and hda3 for the slink system)

/dev contained the empty directory /pty, and a |init* file.

Recovering /dev from hda3 just brought up further errors:

/etc/init.d and /etc/resolv.conf are gone, but most of /etc is still

/bin is completely gone, as is /boot, although the system will still boot
on either the hda3 kernel or the hda1 kernel (both of which reside in
/dev/hda1/boot), so although the file system doesn't seem to know about
these files, they are still there for LILO to use.

Worse yet, my whole /Debian partition is wiped clean, so I will have to
recover from original source and hope I haven't lost too much work.

Before I rebuild this system and recover, I would like to understand just
what happened, so I "don't do that" again.

It is pretty hard to understand how a script failure in the middle of a
source extraction process (which is what seemed to happen just before the
lockup), could cause such pinpoint failures as those seen above. Why did
/bin go away, but only parts of /etc? Why did /boot and /bin go away
entirely, but /dev only got most of its contents removed?

I'm going to take my time "recovering" from this, as there are things
still on hda1 that I am likely to want saved. Any helpful hints about how
to keep such things from happening in the future would be greatfully

Waiting is,

_-_-_-_-_-   Author of "The Debian Linux User's Guide"  _-_-_-_-_-_-

aka   Dale Scheetz                   Phone:   1 (850) 656-9769
      Flexible Software              11000 McCrackin Road
      e-mail:  dwarf@polaris.net     Tallahassee, FL  32308

_-_-_-_-_-_- See www.linuxpress.com for more details  _-_-_-_-_-_-_-

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