[Pkg-shadow-devel] Bug#614946: passwd: /usr/sbin/groupadd fails because it cannot rename /etc/group.

Jeremy Sowden jeremy at azazel.net
Thu Feb 24 11:56:18 UTC 2011

Package: passwd
Version: 1:
Severity: normal

aptitude failed to install the pcscd package failed because the postinst
script could not add the pcscd group.  It turned out that /usr/sbin/groupadd
was failing, because it could not rename /etc/group+ to /etc/group and I had to
edit /etc/group manually.  I have reproduced the problem below:

  [root at ulthar:/etc] # groupadd grptest
  groupadd: failure while writing changes to /etc/group
  [root at ulthar:/etc] # strace -e rename groupadd grptest
  rename("/etc/group+", "/etc/group")     = -1 EBUSY (Device or resource busy)
  groupadd: failure while writing changes to /etc/group

lsof shows nothing:

  [root at ulthar:/etc] # lsof /etc/group

Move and patch also fail:

  [root at ulthar:/etc] # mv group+ group
  mv: cannot move `group+' to `group': Device or resource busy
  [root at ulthar:/etc] # mv group /tmp/
  mv: cannot move `group' to `/tmp/group': Device or resource busy
  [root at ulthar:/etc] # diff -u group group+
  --- group       2011-02-24 11:50:32.000000000 +0000
  +++ group+      2011-02-24 11:50:41.000000000 +0000
  @@ -70,3 +70,4 @@
  [root at ulthar:/etc] # diff -u group group+ | patch -p0
  patching file group
  patch: **** Can't rename file /root/tmp/pogtvZ4Y to group : Device or resource busy

Editing the file in-place works as expected:

  [root at ulthar:/etc] # tail -1 group+ >> group
  [root at ulthar:/etc] # diff group group+

-- System Information:
Debian Release: wheezy/sid
  APT prefers testing
  APT policy: (990, 'testing'), (900, 'stable'), (90, 'unstable')
Architecture: amd64 (x86_64)

Kernel: Linux 2.6.32-5-amd64 (SMP w/4 CPU cores)
Locale: LANG=en_GB.UTF-8, LC_CTYPE=en_GB.UTF-8 (charmap=UTF-8) (ignored: LC_ALL set to en_GB.UTF-8)
Shell: /bin/sh linked to /bin/dash

Versions of packages passwd depends on:
ii  debianutils                   3.4.4      Miscellaneous utilities specific t
ii  libc6                         2.11.2-11  Embedded GNU C Library: Shared lib
ii  libpam-modules                1.1.1-6.1  Pluggable Authentication Modules f
ii  libpam0g                      1.1.1-6.1  Pluggable Authentication Modules l
ii  libselinux1                   2.0.96-1   SELinux runtime shared libraries

passwd recommends no packages.

passwd suggests no packages.

-- debconf information:
  passwd/username: azazel
  passwd/shadow: true
  passwd/make-user: true

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