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Trouble starting server

From: Barry Moore <barry(dot)moore(at)genetics(dot)utah(dot)edu>
To: pgsql-admin(at)postgresql(dot)org
Subject: Trouble starting server
Date: 2006-02-16 18:23:21
Message-ID: 3DAF6869-77A4-4B3F-ADCF-DBF36ACA5E41@genetics.utah.edu (view raw or flat)
Thread:
Lists: pgsql-admin
I have a PostgreSQL 7.4.8 installation running on RedHat Enterprise 4  
that I've been using for some time now, and haven't had any trouble  
with.  Recently the system went down, and now I can't seem to restart  
it.  I've tried running these commands as postgres user:

nohup postmaster -D /var/lib/pgsql/data > /var/lib/pgsql/logfile 2>&1 &
and
pg_ctl start -D /var/lib/pgsql/data -l /var/lib/pgsql/logfile

and they both reply that the 'postmaster successfully started', but  
then in the logfile I find 'FATAL:  could not create lock file "/ 
tmp/.s.PGSQL.5432.lock": Permission denied'.  And if I try to run  
psql I get:

psql: could not connect to server: No such file or directory
         Is the server running locally and accepting
         connections on Unix domain socket "/tmp/.s.PGSQL.5432"?

So with my minimal system admin skills I'm guessing that '/ 
tmp/.s.PGSQL.5432' is lock file where the system puts a lock on port  
5432 for postmaster to listen, but the pg_ctl and postmaster commands  
can't create that file because /tmp is writeable only by root (drwxr- 
xr-x   11 root root  4096 Feb 16 11:06 tmp).  Of course I can't start  
the postmaster as root, so I'm a bit perplexed as to what to do, and  
why I never had this problem before.

Any suggestions.

Barry

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