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Re: My first Linux crash

On Mon, 4 Nov 2002, Robert Ian Smit wrote:

> I was surprised that this issue took down the system on Linux.
> I understand, as nate explained, that hardware errors will always
> result in trouble but I expected the kernel to react differently.
> (Or is this a limitation of x86 or the issue you mention?)

FWIW, I'm skeptical of Nate's claim that excessive I/O errors must bring
down the system. I'm certainly not a kernel hacker, but I see no reason
why the kernel couldn't do what it does in other roughly analogous
situations: decide that the stream is bad and effectively turn it off,
either by killing the process or by redirecting the stream to /dev/null or
something like that.  The whole point of a robust, threaded, multitasking
architecture is supposed to be that isolated errors *don't* bring down the

> Perhaps using a cdrom is not a good idea on a production system.
> Thankfully the crash happened on my desktop which is the least
> critical of all my systems.
> Is it recommended procedure to transfer files over the network
> instead of using a cdrom/cdrw drive for critical systems?

I've never heard anything of the sort.

Andrew J Perrin - http://www.unc.edu/~aperrin
Assistant Professor of Sociology, U of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
clists@perrin.socsci.unc.edu * andrew_perrin (at) unc.edu

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