[CentOS] Emergency rescue help needed

Anne Wilson cannewilson at googlemail.com
Thu Jan 29 15:15:38 UTC 2009

Since repeated power cuts last week I've been a bit worried about the
state of my server.  Today it spontaneously rebooted - but failed to
complete.  Now it isn't recognising me as a user, by the look of it,
so I've got some questions before I do something that might make
things worse.

I can boot as root, and it appears that all my files are present.
System-config-user sees me as user 500, which is correct, so it must
be my kde login that is trashed.  Foolishly, I didn't install a second
desktop system, so I can't deal with things there.

While waiting for a reply I'm going to try to get essential files from
my home directory onto an external disk (I did a huge backup yesterday
of data files).

I assume that the hdd is failing - but I haven't seen any messages
from smartmontools.  Is there any way I can check that?  If it is I
don't want to waste time trying to repair it.

This is the information I gathered from /var/log/messages:

shows a host of setroubleshoot messages, culminating in SELinux is
preventing dovecot (dovecot_t) "append" to /var/log/mail/mail.info
(sendmail_log_t).  For complete SELinux messages run.....

then syslogd 1.4.1:restart

no reason given.  Everything then continues as normal until suddenly
EXT3-fs error (device sda7): ext3_lookup: unlinked  inode 638978 in
dir #638977.

Lots of 'Last message repeated' messages, and eventualy it shut down.

I did allow fsk to run when I restarted the box.

That doesn't seem a lot to go on.  Any advice?  Thanks


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