SUMMARY: NIS master not seeing auto.home updates

From: Gary Richardson (
Date: Mon Nov 24 1997 - 08:50:19 CST

Hi all!

Sorry for the delay in posting my summary. It's partly because it took
me awhile to try out suggestions on the machine (after all, it's the NIS
master), and secondly I've been swamped the past few weeks.

In short, the original problem was that the NIS master wasn't seeing
updates to the auto.home file, even though the slaves and all clients
DID see the update. (original message is at end of this email).

I tried suggestions from all the great people who emailed me. But I happened
to stumble upon the solution on my own. And it baffles me.

There was a copy of auto.home in the / directory! For some reason when
the automounter was starting up it was looking to this file in / for
the auto.home info. So even though the NIS map was changing, the system
didn't look to it - it only looked to the file in /. Very puzzling!!

Anyways, removing that file solved my problems. I still don't know WHY
it caused the problem in the first place, but I'm very happy that
things work as they should now.

Thanks to:


Original message below:

> Subject: NIS master not seeing auto.home updates
> Hi everyone,
> Boy, have I run into a really weird and puzzling problem. Let me outline
> the environment I have first:
> NIS master is a Sun Sparc5 running Solaris 1.1.2 (aka 4.1.4). The
> automounter is run with this command:
> /usr/etc/automount -m -f /etc/auto.master
> The auto.master file contains this line:
> +auto.master.sunos
> And the auto.master.sunos file contains this:
> /-
> /users auto.home
> /export/vol auto.vol
> /net -hosts
> The reason for the auto.master.sunos is that I run a mixed environment
> here (SunOS, Solaris, HPUX9, HPUX10). But that's not the problem.
> My problem? Well, if I go into the auto.home file and change someone's
> home directory to point to a new machine, the slaves and all the clients
> see the change and cd'ing works fine, but the master doesn't. Example:
> User dankulic was originally on coors:/export/users/dankulic. He got a
> new machine, and now his home directory in on fido:/usr/home/dankulic.
> Once the auto.home file is pushed, all other clients now look to fido
> for his new directory:
> {moonpie:224} cd /users/dankulic
> {moonpie:225} df .
> Filesystem kbytes used avail capacity Mounted on
> fido:/usr/home/dankulic
> 1952573 890522 866801 51% /tmp_mnt/users/dankulic
> {moonpie:226}
> But the NIS master does this:
> molson# cd /users/dankulic
> /users/dankulic: I/O error
> molson#
> And the end of /var/adm/messages shows this:
> Nov 13 11:37:52 molson automount[139]: can't mount coors:/users/dankulic: Too many levels of remote in path
> So for some reason the NIS master's automount isn't picking up the change
> even though the map has been pushed. I've even set the NIS master to
> ypset to itself, and both of the slaves. No luck. Yet clients can bind
> to either slave or even the master and they work fine.
> It's gotta be something local to the NIS master and most probably specific
> to the automounter, but for the life of me I can't find out what's
> causing this.
> Does anyone have any ideas? This has been puzzling me for a week now and
> I've exhausted all my options.
> As a side note, all the architectures (SunOS, Solaris, and HPUX's) all
> reference the same auto.home file so I don't think there's a problem
> with it. Also, all the SunOS machnes use the same /etc/auto.master
> method so I don't thnk there's a problem there.
> Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thanks in advance, and I'll
> summarize.
> -Gary
> __________ __
> _/ ___________/__ Agile Networks WHO: Gary P. Richardson
> __/___________/__ 1300 Massachusetts Ave WHAT: IT Systems Engineer
> __/___________/__ Boxborough, Ma 01719 HOW:
> __/___________/__ HTTP:
> __/ _________/

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