I can't remember at what point I started, but I've finally repaired my home partition on my laptop after a multi-hour fsck session. I'm speculating I shocked the crap out of the machine; this house is full of static electricity when it gets cold, especially when I sit on my couches. This is my second winter in the house, and the first with the laptop (and with the couches, too, for that matter). There's so much static that usually whenever I get up I am shocked with the next item I touch -- fridge, thermostat, television antenna. The television shocks are particularly bad; hurt horribly and actually knock the TV out for a second or two. And, it seems when I get up if I am touching certain points on the bottom of my laptop I get shocks as well.
So, last week, suddenly my chat sessions all got hosed. It took me awhile to trace it down between a problem with my laptop and a problem with my DSL -- because it was both! My replacement DSL modem came today, but my laptop was still unusable. I finally found I was getting horrible IDE read errors on my home directory partition. I used a convenient Debian PPC install CD (had to look up Apple Open Firmware information on the net using my work laptop to discover the magic boot command I needed was boot cd:\yaboot). Once there, I switched to a console and started messing with fsck.
fsck was getting errors reading several blocks. Not to mention all kinds of inode consistency horrors caused by crashes caused by these read errors. Having to say yes to ignore and fix errors all the time got tiresome, so it wasn't long until I discovered the -p option (run noninteractively -- not what I wanted, it turns out, since an error just causes a halt) and the -y option, which says yes to everything.
Turns out what I wanted was the -c option, which ran a program called badblocks to mark off and elimate bad disk blocks. Apparently some had been fixed or marked off by my earlier fscks, though. This check took forever, but when it was done it ran a completely clean fsck, which I repeated (with -p, no less) for good measure, to assure myself that everything was now right.
All this started this afternoon. It's 11 now.
I'll have you know most of my bad inodes were in my MINICPAN/ directory! Thanks, Randall! >:O (Undoubtedly not caused by the CPAN mirror program, but as long as my life's in shambles, maybe he could at least take the blame.)
This thing seems to be working now. Of course, after I finally got it up it took an eternity to get evolution to work again. One of those maddening cases where I punch the error message into google and find many archived mails where people ask about it, very few answers, and a handful of unanswered mails stating that the standard answers are not correct. Turned out the time on my system was reset when I pulled out the battery during one of those crashes. Evolution and all its happy components (Corba, orbs, oaf, bonobo,
At any rate, so much chaos lately; it's nice to finally get something working.