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Re: w and who dont match

From: Paul Eggert
Subject: Re: w and who dont match
Date: Sat, 24 Jul 2004 00:58:24 -0700
User-agent: Gnus/5.1006 (Gnus v5.10.6) Emacs/21.3 (gnu/linux)

Jeetendra Mirchandani <address@hidden> writes:

> I have a FC1 system up since 45 days
> the 'w' command says 33 users logged in, but shows only 8
> where as who shows all 33 users
> all of these 33 users are not actually logged in....
> ...
> what is the problem? (I dont want to reboot!)

Thanks for your bug report.  Possibly your problem is that your utmp
file is corrupted.  Once this happens, different applications respond
differently to the contents of the file.  If one of your
utmp-modifying applications (xterm, login, sshd, etc.) is buggy, and
is modifying the utmp file inappropriately, then the solution is to
find and fix the application in question.

The GNU/Linux utmp file format has changed with time, and the problem
could be caused if you are using an older application that doesn't
understand the current format.  Often you can work around this problem
merely by recompiling and/or relinking the application.

This tends to be a fairly common problem with Fedora Core; e.g., see:
<https://bugzilla.redhat.com/bugzilla/long_list.cgi?buglist=125589> (a
bug in sshd) and <http://fedoranews.org/updates/FEDORA-2004-181.shtml>
(a bug in finger).

It's also quite possible that this is a bug in coreutils, but if so
we'll need to know more details, e.g., a copy of the utmp file that is
being mishandled, and ideally what is going wrong.

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