SUMMARY: Solaris 2.3 diskless client error: /dev/null: cannot create

From: Michael Assels (
Date: Mon Oct 03 1994 - 07:17:05 CDT

Original message:
I have been trying to get a diskless client to run Solaris 2.3.
The client is an IPX (not *really* diskless, but its disk is being
used for other things). The server is running SunOS 4.1.3.

This client seems to work (more or less) with one glaring exception:
Any time non-root users try to write to /dev/null, they get

        /dev/null: cannot create


        /dev/null: Not owner

depending on their shell.

I've verified that /dev/null exists, and that it points
at a device with the right permissions:

# ls -lgd /dev /dev/null /devices/pseudo/mm@0:null
drwxrwxr-x 16 root sys 5632 Sep 28 07:25 /dev
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 27 Sep 26 13:53 /dev/null -> ../devices/pseudo/mm@0:null
crw-rw-rw- 1 root sys 13, 2 Sep 29 10:24 /devices/pseudo/mm@0:null

I've done more than one reconfiguration reboot, with no improvement.
Any idea what I've got wrong? Could it be the 4.1.3 server?

From: Casper Dik <>

   This is a problem with NFS interaction between SunOS 4.1.x and Solaris 2.x.
   I think it may be fixed in the Solaris 2.3 or SunOS 4.1.3 kernel or nfs
   jumbo patches.

From: Per Hedeland <>

   Casper Dik diagnosed this problem when I reported it about a year ago
   (not on sun-managers, I think) for Solaris 2.2, and someone from Sun
   followed up and said it had been filed as a bug (ID 1140974) in Solaris
   2, and later reported that it had been fixed in what they internally
   called "2.3.2" - so presumably it is in 2.4.
   My workaround was to create 'dev' and 'devices' directories on the local
   disk somewhere, and then loopback-mount them over the /dev and /devices
   from the NFS-served root. I believe I had to add an 'S' script somewhere
   to make sure these mounts happened before device configuration

So I'll be looking for the patches mentioned by Casper Dik, and if I don't
find them, I'll try Per Hedeland's neat trick.

Thanks to

        Casper Dik <>
        Per Hedeland <>
        Dirk Boenning <>


Michael Assels    Comp. Sci.    Concordia U.
"O tempura!  O morays!" -- Cicero, after dining on eels fried in batter.
Dirk Boenning <>

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