SUMMARY: "ttymon cannot allocate controlling tty..."

From: Stuart Kendrick (
Date: Tue Sep 17 1996 - 11:32:00 CDT

Thanks to John Bradley for digging me out of this one, and yes, I should
have consulted the archives at

machine% ps -ft console

to find the process controlling the console. In my case,
/usr/sbin/rpc.nisd -C, e.g. the verbose reporting mode of rpc.nisd.

Kill it.

ps -ef | grep ttymon
Kill ttymon

Wait a few minutes for init to respawn ttymon.


The problem is inconsistent, e.g. rpc.nisd -C does not always "own" the
console. But once it grabbed hold, it wouldn't let go, no matter how many
times I rebooted or killed ttymon. Presumably, rpc.nisd -C *shouldn't*
own the console, but I'll let Sun worry about that.

Thanks also to additional respondents:

Jason Hunter, Sun Microsystems
Jim Craven, <>
John Justin Hough <>
Ron Loftin <>
John Bradley <>


Original post:
Stuart Kendrick wrote:
> gnat console login: root
> Warning -- ttymon cannot allocate controlling tty on "/dev/console",
> there may be another session active on this port.
> Login incorrect
> gnat console login:
> I rebooted this morning, and now I see this on the console whenever I
> try to login. Sparc IPC, Solaris 2.5.1, Sun monitor.
> This appears to be the same as bug ID kernel/tty/1257631 on Sunsolve. No
> posted work-around, I've called Sun, no known work-around, although my
> tech support person said he wanted to ask around some more and then call
> me back.

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