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Murphy's Law in action

At 7:25pm on Christmas Eve, my colo server threw a kernel panic — the Linux equivalent of a Windows blue screen of death — and went to sulk in the corner.

It is more than a year since the last time it panicked. But boy, did it pick a good time to do it!

Normal service is now resumed ...

6 Comments

1:

I hope you got an interesting error message out of it. There was one BSD system I worked on that had a habit of panicking inside the panic errorhandler. The result was the mildly-amusing "Panic while panicking" message. Luckily, whoever wrote the errorhandler had guarded against recursion, saving us from "panic while panicking while panicking while ...".

2:

I'd tried sending you the solution to all your problems. Unfortunately, this email's margins are too small to contain them...

Happy Chriskwanzakkah.

3:

Bruce: the best error I ever saw was on a NetBSD system back in, um, 1997:

Segmentation fault: alien abduction overflow: core dumped

(I've seen double panics on SysV UNIXen a couple of times, but not lately, thankfully.)

4:

To Bruce: ARMM ARMM ARMM ARMM ARMM ARMM ARMM ARMM

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ARMM_%28Usenet%29

5:

Strange, the AFOE server went futz over Christmas too. host claims it was "load" due to an insecure trackback script, but we don't use trackback. and we kept receiving comments spam throughout the outage.

6:

Charlie, has your server recently had a brain transplant? I ask because early last year I lost my firewall (`loki') to the Great Static Electricity Burst in the Sky; shortly before that tragic death, it celebrated Christmas (when I was 200 miles away) by kernel panicking, at 19:20:11 Dec 24 2005.

I think your colo machine may have acquired loki's old cast-off soul.

Further research into the mechanisms of electrical reincarnation is needed: I suspect something like that shown toward the end of Heinlein's _Beyond This Horizon_.

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This page contains a single entry by Charlie Stross published on December 26, 2006 12:20 PM.

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