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Old 01-20-2011, 06:59 PM   #1
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Apple Time Capsule DHCP sets bogus hostname

Hi all

During Slackware 13.1 setup, I chose the hostname stella-sl2.

This hostname is also the one that the system is displaying before I configured network access.

After configuring wired network access to my Apple Time Capsule, my hostname suddenly changed to INTERFACE='eth0'.

As a result I'm noticing some very strange things, like the login prompt which has become "INTERFACE='eth0' login: ".

After configuring wireless network access to the Time Capsule, the hostname changed to "INTERFACE='wlan0'". Note that, during boot, wlan0 is brought up AFTER eth0.

Also strange is this:
bash-4.1$ cat /etc/HOSTNAME
bash-4.1$ /bin/hostname

Until now, it was only a minor annoyance, it didn't prevent anything from happening, internet connection was not affected. But now I'm configuring sendmail which needs to talk to a relay SMTP server, and sendmail "HELO"'s itself using the bogus hostname:

>>> HELO INTERFACE='wlan0'
<<< 501 HELO requires valid address
554 5.0.0 Service unavailable

Probably this is caused by the Time Capsule not adhering to standards. However, the Time Capsule's firmware is the latest version, so I cannot fix this.

Is there a way to prevent dhcp from changing the hostname? How can I make sure that the hostname that I configured during setup remains active?

Thank you

Last edited by Stella_C; 01-20-2011 at 07:06 PM.
Old 01-20-2011, 07:53 PM   #2
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In meanwhile I found a simple but not very elegant fix.

I removed the bogus hostname and entered my correct hostname in /etc/HOSTNAME

Then I removed write access from that file, to prevent dhcp from modifing it again.

I rebooted, and success, my hostname was stella-sl2 instead of INTERFACE=whatever.

Then I tried to have sendmail relay a mail message to our SMTP relay, again success: "... stat=Sent (Message accepted for delivery...".

It works, but I don't like my workaround as /etc/HOSTNAME should be having its default permissions.

Anyone has another suggestion to prevent dhcp from configuring a bogus hostname?

Last edited by Stella_C; 01-20-2011 at 07:54 PM.
Old 01-21-2011, 03:18 PM   #3
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One approach might be to change your /etc/dhcpcd.conf, specifically remove the option that requests a host-name on the following line:
# A list of options to request from the DHCP server.
option domain_name_servers, domain_name, domain_search, host_name
I don't have any Apple stuff and have never encountered this issue before so this is just a guess, but it may be worth a try.

'man dhcpcd' and 'man dhcpcd.conf' may provide other areas to explore.
Old 01-21-2012, 05:39 PM   #4
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Guess who just ran across this same problem today? :-)
Do you have avahi installed? If so, have a look at /etc/avahi/avahi-dnsconfd.action and its assumptions about /sbin/netconfig. Let me know if you can't figure out the appropriate fix :-)
Old 01-29-2012, 04:26 PM   #5
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I had the problem described above in Slackware 13.1. The problem did no longer appear in Slackware 13.37, not sure why exactly but I'm happy.


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