Time Slider Turns Off After Upgrading OpenSolaris

Maybe the title of this blog entry isn't 100% accurate, but as somewhat of an OpenSolaris novice, that's how the behavior looked to me.  And since I generally find technical info these days by typing my problem into a search engine, I decided to use my problem summary a this blog entry's title.

Here's what happened, and the fix.

I've been playing with OpenSolaris as my home media server; I took a little time off over the Christmas break but intend to get back to setting up services soon (promise!).  Well, today I was going to experiment with some changes and decided to make sure I could rollback to a previous version of the filesystem.  I had turned on the Time Slider feature of OpenSolaris 2008.11, telling it to create monthly, weekly, daily, and hourly snapshots of my filesystems.  It's cheap; why not?

Anyway, I listed my snapshots (by typing "zfs list -t snapshot") but the most recent snapshots I saw were from December 31; it's January 4 as I write this.  That seemed weird, so I typed "svcs list" to see if the Time Slider services were running.  Nope, they had stopped.

So, what happened on or right after December 31?  Did the New Year make my snapshots stop working?  Probably not, I thought.  The other thing I recall that changed was that I said yes to an update of the OpenSolaris release, via the package manager.  Turns out that created a new boot environment (BE), keeping the original around in case I needed to rollback.  That's all cool, except it had the bad side effect of mucking up the Time Slider services.

From what I was able to find on the web (I admit, not an exhaustive search), this problem is known; it is ZFS bug 6462803 (zfs snapshot -r failed because filesystem was busy).

The workaround that took care of the problem for me:

First, unmount the inactive BE; I found that by typing "beadm list" and saw that for my system, opensolaris-1 is not active.  To unmount it, I typed "pfexec beadm unmount opensolaris-1".

Next, type "svcs -xv" to see the services that are running into problems.  Then, restart them.  For me, it was five services, so ten commands to type:
# svcadm clear svc:/system/filesystem/zfs/auto-snapshot:frequent
# svcadm enable svc:/system/filesystem/zfs/auto-snapshot:frequent
# svcadm clear svc:/system/filesystem/zfs/auto-snapshot:hourly
# svcadm enable svc:/system/filesystem/zfs/auto-snapshot:hourly
# svcadm clear svc:/system/filesystem/zfs/auto-snapshot:daily
# svcadm enable svc:/system/filesystem/zfs/auto-snapshot:daily
# svcadm clear svc:/system/filesystem/zfs/auto-snapshot:weekly
# svcadm enable svc:/system/filesystem/zfs/auto-snapshot:weekly
# svcadm clear svc:/system/filesystem/zfs/auto-snapshot:monthly
# svcadm enable svc:/system/filesystem/zfs/auto-snapshot:monthly
Finally, verify: I typed "svcs -xv" and saw nothing (good!).  I typed "svcs" and saw the snapshot services online.  After a little bit, I typed "zfs list -t snapshot" and saw snapshots of my filesystems had just been made.

Looks like I'm back in business.  It also looks like I should tell my system to start using the upgraded OpenSolaris release I had installed.

By the way, credit to this blog entry for helping me understand what was going on. Nice and helpful; thank you!

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