Unable to start kconfig - SOLVED

Anne Wilson cannewilson at googlemail.com
Fri Jan 30 20:07:27 GMT 2009

On Friday 30 January 2009 18:01:33 Kishore wrote:
> On Friday 30 Jan 2009 10:53:58 pm Anne Wilson wrote:
> > On Friday 30 January 2009 14:49:32 Anne Wilson wrote:
> > > After all the problems yesterday on my CentOS box I think I have got
> > > most of .kde back.  However, an attempt to login as anne still brings
> > > up the "Unable to start kstartconfig.  Check your installation".
> > >
> > > kstartconfig is there in /usr/bin, and $PATH has /usr/bin.  I'm stuck
> > > now. Everything google can find talks about "Chown -R myname:myname
> > > /home/myname" but ownership is not the problem.  Files are correctly
> > > owned by both name and UID.  Just to make sure, I did chown - but I'm
> > > 100% positive that this is not the problem.  Can anyone else tell me of
> > > another reason?
> >
> > That was a total red herring.  I don't believe that it concerned
> > kstartconfig - but it was missing some config file from ~/.kde.  I had
> > copied back a best-guess set of files from ~/.kde, without, it appeared,
> > making any difference to this.  However, I suddenly realised that I had
> > not rebooted since I did that - just changed logins.  A reboot brought my
> > desktop up perfectly.
> Surprising. I'd expect kde to recreate any missing file. I still kind of
> suspect a corruption of some kind in perhaps the /tmp folder or something
> like that which got corrected in the startup?

I'll never be absolutely certain what went wrong, but today I installed a 
better quality psu, and while doing so discovered that one of the sata leads 
had a cracked connection which was making it insecure.  I now think that that 
was the cause of the whole mess.  After the big crash the whole inode table 
(or whatever it's called) was lost - it couldn't even cd to /var.  Meanwhile 
fsck had reduced my ~/.kde to a *very* short text file.  Corruption doesn't 
come much worse than that without actually losing much data.  In the event all 
I lost was my addressbook and diary - which would have been catastrophic 
except that I do back them up to elsewhere every day - a habit I started when 
kabc used to come up empty quite regularly :-)  Only one appointment was 
missing when I restored them from my backup.

Kde isn't to blame for any of what happened, but it challenged my 
understanding for quite a while :-)

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