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Computer fails to recognise self - details at 11

I run Bind 8.3.3 and exim 3.36, along with fetchmail 5.9.11 - I don't
think I'm considerably different from most others here at something like
that. Until yesterday morning when Zapping in overlay mode on display :0
gummed up Railroad Tycoon 2 on display :1, and then succeeded between
them in trashing the framebuffer, everything was working wonderfully.

That was the first reboot in five weeks, and when the system came back,
it couldn't find "localhost". It could find hosehead.dyndns.org and its
various morphs (hosehead.dyndns.ws and mlkahnt.dyndns.org,) and it had
no problem with, (eth1) and (eth0),
either. /etc/hosts was unchanged, but /etc/resolv.conf had been reduced
to just two entries - my ISPs nameservers, each preceded by a blank
line, leaving me to believe that some program is doing the rewrite on
bringing up the network link (I suspect the culprit is "usepeerdns" in
/etc/ppp/peers/dsl-provider, although that has been there for over seven

I editted /etc/resolv.conf to add:

domain hosehead.dyndns.org

at the top of the file and reloaded bind - things were generally
recovered, with one noticeable exception: fetchmail will not feed
collected mail into exim, report to the logs this:

Dec 18 04:06:00 hosehead xinetd[8398]: warning: /etc/hosts.allow, line
13: can't verify hostname: gethostbyname(localhost) failed
Dec 18 04:06:00 hosehead xinetd[8398]: libwrap refused connection to
smtp from
Dec 18 04:06:00 hosehead fetchmail[8390]: SMTP connect to localhost
Dec 18 04:06:00 hosehead fetchmail[8390]: SMTP transaction error while
fetching from kingston.net 
Dec 18 04:06:00 hosehead fetchmail[8390]: Query status=10 (SMTP) 

I can't telnet to SMTP either, as either "localhost" or,
although hosehead.dyndns.org (and its variants) is fine. Line 13 of
/etc/hosts.allow is:


so I am wondering (and haven't been able to track down appropriate
documentation thus far) if the definition of "LOCAL" has been tweaked,
either in some securing layer, or something elsewhere that I might have
inadvertently, umm, buggered. I haven't been touching firewall rules, so
I shouldn't (hopefully) be blocking access to exim from, but
to be honest, at this point, I am rather lost where next to look. Part
of the frustration is that "localhost" is working on other ports (http
and ldap work, https, ftp and ssh don't - telnet doesn't because I don't
run a daemon to serve it, so it better not work!)

I would also note that my system didn't automagically generate an ssl
certificate for itself when it restarted - the previous one had expired
by that point. I'm suspecting that the confusion at startup over the
system identifying itself might be part of the reason there, and the
expired certificate at the time of a restart being another.

I'm hoping that fixing this "localhost" problem clears up everything
else, but after sorting out the rest, my brain hurts. Maybe I need a
brain doctor (Doctor! Doctor! Are you the DOCTOR! My BRAIN hurts! No!
The Brain in my HEAD!) Maybe I just need to borrow a few other brains to
think of stuff that I should know to look at - hello other brains.
ML Kahnt New Markets Consulting
Tel: (613) 531-8684 / (613) 539-0935
Email: kahnt@hosehead.dyndns.org

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