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RE: Strange new message at log on.



Monday, May 10, 2004 4:18 PM Erik P. Olsen asked:
> I have suddenly begun to receive the following message box at 
> log on. It happens for any user except root:

The key is that it happens with all non-root users... 

> Could not look up internet address for epohost.epo.dk.
> This will prevent GNOME from operating correctly.
> It may be possible to correct the problem by adding 
> epohost.epo.dk to the file /etc/hosts.

Gnome needs to be able to resolve the hostname to an address for it to
function correcty.
 
> The domain name has all the time been in /etc/hosts, so I 
> suspect the problem has come after applying a recent update. 
> I think I updated an ip<something> package just before I 
> first saw the message pop-up.

Probably not an update, unless it changed the permissions on /etc/hosts.
This sounds like /etc/hosts is only root readable.

Log on as root (normally a BAD idea) and 'ls -al /etc/hosts'. If the
permissions show only root access (permissions flags as '-rwx------'),
then that's your problem. Run 'chmod a+r /etc/hosts'. This will make all
users able to read this file. The permission flags should change to
'-rwxr--r--'.
 
> Am I right in assuming that /etc/hosts functions as a sort of 
> local DNS which in this case would associate epohost.epo.dk 
> with 127.0.0.1? Because this would also explain why hylafax 
> has stopped sending faxes whereas it can easily receive faxes.

You are corrrect. The hosts file was the original internet name
resolution scheme. DNS was developed when the total number of hosts went
above a few hundred. However, for the hosts file to work correctly, it
must be world readable.

HTH

Eric Diamond
eDiamond Networking & Security
303-246-9555
eric ediamond net
 



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