[CentOS] CentOS-5.4 Update?

James B. Byrne byrnejb at harte-lyne.ca
Thu Oct 22 19:34:26 UTC 2009

hdwr HPQ DC7700S ix86 Core Duo

I have just updated this CentOS-5.3 box to 5.4.  This process was
not satisfactory.  While the update packages all downloaded without
problem the update process itself stalled at several points.  By
stalled I mean that at some point the entire process stopped for
hours. The packages at which it stalled included evince, evolution,
totem and vinfo.  There may have been others but these I seem to

Restarting the update process required that the existing update be
interrupted with a <ctrl>C and yum-complete-transaction run.  It
took five iterations to get through to completion and in the end I
first installed all the remaining packages one at a time directly
from the command line using yum install packagename and then ran
yum-complete-transaction until all outstanding transactions were
cleaned up.

Now, while the system boots I have no gnome desktops for any of the
users on this host.  When root logs in all that is shown is a deep
blue background and a wirefram outline of the Firefox web browser, a
wire frame outline of an xterm window and an analogue clock.  Left
clicking on teh background displays a popup menu labeled "Tvm".

The mouse and keyboard work and when one clicks on the wireframs
then immediately fill with the application background, the CentOS
welcome back for FireFox and a black on white scheme for xterm.  All
the windows have teal menu bars.  Further, it seems that I cannot
switch between windows.  If I try to enter a command in the xterm
window then what I type appears in this compose window for

I would like to get my previous customised desktops back, but first
I would like to get the default to display. Are there any ideas on
how to proceed?


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James B. Byrne                mailto:ByrneJB at Harte-Lyne.ca
Harte & Lyne Limited          http://www.harte-lyne.ca
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Hamilton, Ontario             fax: +1 905 561 0757
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