Question on /stand/bootconf

 
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Bill Costigan
Honored Contributor

Question on /stand/bootconf

I'm trying to understand what /stand/bootconf is used for. Or to put it another way - what will break if boodconf is not correct. For example, what if only the first disk of a mirrored root drive is in the bootconf file.

Thanks in advance,

Bill
6 REPLIES 6
James R. Ferguson
Acclaimed Contributor

Re: Question on /stand/bootconf

Hi Bill:

It holds the boot disk device files so that 'swinstall' can find and update the boot loader if necessary. See the manpages :

# man bootconf(4)

Regards!

...JRF...
Bill Costigan
Honored Contributor

Re: Question on /stand/bootconf

James,

When you say swinstall, is that swinstall that I might be running to install patches on an already running server? And bootconf tells it all the disks that need to be updated if a patch changes some file in the LIF area?

Or is this an swinstall / hpux install that is being used to initially install a new system on a fresh set of disks? There are some posts about make_tape_recovery using this file, but I was sure what it was using it for.
James R. Ferguson
Acclaimed Contributor

Re: Question on /stand/bootconf

Hi (again) Bill:

> When you say swinstall, is that swinstall that I might be running to install patches on an already running server?

Yes.

Regards!

...JRF...

Andres_13
Respected Contributor

Re: Question on /stand/bootconf

From the man pages:

This file, /stand/bootfonf, contains the address and disk layout type of the system's boot devices or lif volumes. It is used by the Software Distributor and HP-UX kernel control scripts (fileset OS-Core.KERN-RUN) to determine how and where to update the initial boot loader. Normally the kernel's checkinstall script queries the system's hardware and creates the file. In rare cases when either the system configuration cannot be automatically determined or additional and/or alternate boot devices should be automatically updated, the administrator must edit the /stand/bootconf file manually.

RegardS!
VK2COT
Honored Contributor
Solution

Re: Question on /stand/bootconf

Hello,

On average, about 90% of all HP-UX servers I
check or get access to, have incorrect
or incomplete /stand/bootconf.

Very often, mirrors are not listed in this
file. The accuracy and importance of
/stand/bootconf tends to be a forgotten
issue.

Where mirrors exist, the /stand/bootconf
MUST have its own line for each of the
mirrors (LVM or VxVM).

/stand/bootconf is used by SD-UX and kernel
control scripts to determine how and where
to update the boot loader.

The /stand/bootconf file contains the
address and disk layout type of the system's
boot devices. It is used by the HP-UX kernel
control script (fileset OS-Core.KERN-RUN) to
determine how and where to update the
initial boot loader.

Where /stand/bootconf becomes so "visible"?

Here are real-life examples of problems and
disasters:

A) Ignite reports an error "not a LIF
volume".

B) Patch upgrade or O/S upgrade (for
example, from 11.00 to 11.11) can leave the
server unbootable:

The preinstall script will read each line in
the bootconf file, look at the device file
specified, and verify that it is bootable.
If it can't find a bootable disk in any of
the entries in bootconf, the install of that
fileset will fail. If it finds a bootable
disk, the install will proceed. You can
verify this by looking at the file /var/adm/sw/products/OS-Core/KERN-RUN/preinstall,
as an example.

Let's say a single entry in /etc/bootconf
file pointed to the wrong disk (it didn't
point to a correct boot disk). The admin
starts the upgrade from the command line,
sees that XYZ filesets were going to be
installed, and goes away. Of the XYZ
filesets, number of them are kernel
filesets.

Since the bootconf file is incorrect, the
analysis of the kernel filesets fails and
they are not installed while the other
non-kernel filesets are installed. This
leaves the server with half its filesets
11.00 (the kernel filesets) and the other
half 11.11 (non-kernel filesets), making it
unusable!!!

So, please ensure that /stand/bootconf
contains right information.

For that very reason, my Perl script
check contents of /stand/bootconf
and reports errors if it is not
in proper state:

http://www.circlingcycle.com.au/Unix-sources/HP-UX-check-OAT.pl.txt

For example:

AUDIT-PASS: Boot disk /dev/disk/disk3_p2 listed in /stand/bootconf
AUDIT-PASS: Boot disk /dev/disk/disk4_p2 listed in /stand/bootconf

Cheers,

VK2COT
VK2COT - Dusan Baljevic
Bill Costigan
Honored Contributor

Re: Question on /stand/bootconf

Thank you all for the information. That is exactly what I was looking for.