[Beowulf] Re: Intra-cluster security

David Mathog mathog at caltech.edu
Mon Sep 14 15:40:25 PDT 2009

Our NFS file server does double duty, serving both the compute nodes on
the inside and some workstations on the outside.  That is somewhat
analogous to the intra-cluster situation. It turns out that updates some
time in the last year introduced an issue where the lock manager stopped
respecting the ports which were supposedly assigned to it.  It took me a
long time to notice this since there wasn't very much file locking going
on between the workstations and the file server.  However, anybody who
used gnome (which I don't) would have seen it, since gnome does some
file locking at startup, and this bug was was causing it to start very

Normally this port assignment issue wouldn't be a cluster issue, since
one doesn't normally run a firewall between the file server and the
compute nodes.  However, this would be a problem for intra-cluster file
sharing. To see if your file server has been bitten run

  rpcinfo -p 

on it, and if nlockmgr isn't in the right place, welcome to the club.

For more information, see for instance:


Long story short, the only way around this that I know of at present is
to put:

   options lockd nlm_udpport=4001 nlm_tcpport=4001

(or whatever port you want) in /etc/modprobe.conf or an equivalent
location and restart the NFS server.  OK, make that: umount all mounts
on the clients, restart the server, and remount on all the clients.  


David Mathog
mathog at caltech.edu
Manager, Sequence Analysis Facility, Biology Division, Caltech

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